Youth Invention Deathmatch

Photo of two kids at separate invention forums holding their products.

In the left corner, we have heavyweight sixth grader Matthew Wimpey slugging away with Baby Safe Deluxe, a sanitary cloth that can stick to and cover an entire public restroom changing table surface. You know, sort of like a disposable potty seat cover because you’re a germophobe.

In the right corner, we have lightweight 5-year-old kindergartner Grace Coller pushing a one-piece baby sleeper with color-coded crotch snaps. She aims to cut down on parental snap confusion, that awkward situation where you’re finishing up your baby’s crotch snaps and you discover you have one extra snap missing its partner.

Sadly, further details are lacking on these two fledgling products as they were only recently unveiled at youth invention fairs in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Greenville, South Carolina.

I’m skeptical of the boy’s invention because what does a male, let alone a sixth grade boy, know about changing tables? Meanwhile, that little girl’s crotch snaps will only serve to efficiently tell you that you’ve screwed up. Sure, you could snap the crotch snaps first using the color coding, but who among us can summon the Herculean strength required to accomplish such a feat? That’s why missing snaps are always found when finishing up the crotch!

But don’t listen to me. What say you Thinga-readers? Which of these amazing inventions will crush the competition? In coming to your opinion, feel free to fill the absence of detailed information about these products with whatever you feel comfortable making up from your imagination.


11 Responses to “Youth Invention Deathmatch”

  1. RobMonroe says:

    I’m surprised by your initial assertion that a male would not know what to do with a changing table cover… My skepticism would be more about the fact that this “invention” already exists in many forms.

    I don’t think that either are of much use in the long run. Our little girl was out of snap pants in 18 months…

    March 16th, 2010 at 5:04 am

  2. AJ says:

    Oh come now Rob, don’t pretend that fathers know the first thing about child care. As if a father could ever change a diaper, let alone in a public restroom!

    March 16th, 2010 at 7:16 am

  3. Cindy says:

    I say any changing table cover that you carry with you is ugh; needs washed and if I didn’t want my kid touching those germs in the first place, whey would I carry them around in the diaper bag for a day or so?! Any changing table cover that is disposable ROCKS, but would ideally be stocked by the owner of the restroom and we all know that’s not going to happen. Would I carry disposable ones with me, possibly… but I prefer to use paper towels these days.

    For the places without KoalaCare thingies, I say boo… Don’t arrest me for changing my kid in the parking lot them. I am the master at changing while my kid stands up though!

    The snap thing, not gonna work. Now fabric pieces that extend the snaps of onesies would be priceless! Problem is most snaps are not universal; Carters and Gerber use different snap designs.

    March 16th, 2010 at 8:20 am

  4. My Boaz's Ruth says:

    A 5 year old came up with color coded snaps? In any case, that’s my choice. The other I have alternatives that work well already.

    March 16th, 2010 at 10:58 am

  5. anastasiav says:

    My question is: snap-mismatch is most likely to occur during overnight changes, and who turns the lights on then?

    March 16th, 2010 at 11:40 am

  6. Kelly says:

    Now if the color coded snaps glowed in the dark she may have something.

    March 16th, 2010 at 11:49 am

  7. Mags says:

    As a teacher, sadly, I have to say that most ideas do not come from the children… Although I always give the benefit of the doubt.

    March 17th, 2010 at 7:31 am

  8. Elizabeth W. says:

    Personally I like the color coded snaps. I don’t really have a problem with snapping baby sleepers personally, but my husband – even after three babies – is so utterly confounded as to which snap goes where that he refuses to even attempt to use our snap sleepers anymore. He will hunt through all the clean and dirty laundry until he finds one of our three zip-up sleepers to use or will just skip the clothes and put the baby in a t-shirt and blanket. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but if I was shopping the baby clothes department and saw a sleeper with color coded snaps, I would definitely pick up a few.

    March 17th, 2010 at 7:36 am

  9. Allison says:

    I must say neither invention is very inspiring. Not a lot of creativity or originality. I wouldn’t buy either and don’t really see a need for either that other products are not already providing.

    Hmmm that sounded kind of harsh but really for kid inventions they are pretty ho-hum. Where are the rube-Goldberg style baby rocker/diaper changing/spoon feeding machines? The inventions that while not really practical have the unique inspiration that comes from a child mind?

    This post reminded me of the Invent America program. Is that program still around? I could only find a website from around 2006~2007 for it.

    March 17th, 2010 at 9:14 am

  10. Penguinmommy says:

    The snaps idea is better, I agree that glow in the dark is better and am currently digging out some craft paint to that end…

    March 29th, 2010 at 3:58 pm

  11. Wendy says:

    To Cindy: You can get onesie extenders at You get a package of 10 in 5 different snap sizes that cover most different brands.

    April 7th, 2010 at 12:15 pm

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