Welcome to Messy Mattie

Mychal's Fam.png

After my son was born I became slightly neurotic about 1) Making sure he stayed alive and 2) Researching exactly what he would eat, eat in, chew on, play with, sit in, lay in, dress in, etc. I became an expert in swaddles, bassinets, toys, teethers, bottles, high chairs…as any parent knows, the list goes on and on.

But it wasn’t until Wilder was 6 months old that I realized how hard it would be to keep his high chair clean. The chair was easy to wipe down, but the safety straps were another story. The straps we had on our wooden Ikea high chair became completely encrusted with old food—it was practically impossible to keep clean. So I searched far and wide, but there was nothing on the market in this country or any other that was designed to help with this problem. 

At one point, I replaced the straps entirely—but within a week or two, they were just as gross as the previous ones. Even if they were "clean," they didn't look clean, because the food and grime sets into them in a way that just won't come all the way out. 

And then...baby number 2. My daughter arrived when my son was 2 1/2 years old, and that was wonderful...but things got a lot messier, and a lot sooner than the first time around. By the time she was ready to sit in her high chair, I remembered: The high chair straps. Ugh. They get so gross. This was next-level with trying to feed my son and daughter while also following the advice to let them “explore” and feed themselves. "Let them play with their food,” most pediatricians say. And they are right. It's how they learn to feed themselves, and it's wonderful for them to experience that texture, the hand-eye-mouth coordination, etc. But sitting back and watching the food fly is quite the challenge, especially with two. And the build-up on those high-chair straps became unbearable.

I knew I could design a product to help with this mess. I knew there must be a way to cover those straps. There had to be a simple way to cover them with material that was food-grade safe, BPA-free, would wash down instantly, and could be easily removed and fully immersed in the sink or machine wash. And they had to be durable. So durable, in fact, they can even be passed on to other babies! 

So, I designed Messy Mattie: The simple solution to food mess on those very necessary safety straps. I hope they can change your life the way they changed mine. And, sure, life with kids is still a mess…but Messy Mattie helps keep you just a little more sane.

Mychal Pinkard