Monday, 6 June 2011

glamping...


I am in totally in love with this Bill Brown sleeping bag that unzips to a quilt! It couldn't be more different from those 'boil in the bag' nylon numbers I grew up with. I am however, not in love with it's £180 price tag. 

I still need to order our new (moving up the property ladder) five metre bell tent but can't decide between the one with separate ground sheet, that we had with the four metre bell and was perfectly adequate or pay more for a groundsheet that unzips? Should I buy from Soul Pad or Bell Tent UK and is there much of a difference apart from price? 

Or find someone going to the Netherlands who can just pick one up for me from here - decisions, decisions!

12 comments:

  1. Emma - we have a 5m Soul Pad tent and although I don;t believe there is much difference between them and Bell Tent I would highly advise buying a separate groundsheet (If you don't mind a few spiders - we are in England after all - nothing too scary out there). If you buy the separate ground sheet then you can pack the full tent away very easily and dry the ground sheet out separately. If you have a wet weekend and you have to pack up the whole tent in one bag you will end up with a very dirty (and mouldy) tent, unless you have a massive garden in which to dry it out again. Also you can roll up the edges on a warm day and have a sun shelter with the breeze blowing through the sides.
    I hope you enjoy your bell tent - I always look forward to seeing other bell tents when we go camping.

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  2. What a gorgeous sleeping bag! I want it too now but the price tag is a bit large! :(

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  3. I love our Soul Pad with all of my heart! And you get to sing "We got soul, cuz we got a Soul Pad" to the same tune as the The Killers song. Go for it Laydee!!

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  4. Hi Emma
    We bought ours from the Dutch site & they shipped it to the Uk i just emailed them first. It has been a brilliant workhorse & stays up most of the summer in the back garden Rx

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  5. Do not skimp. This is your family holiday for the next 20 years!! Buy the zip off.... it's so worth the extra!! And the ground sheet is heavier too. I have not regretted spending those extra pennies one little bit. Now - that sleeping bag is something else!!!

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  6. Emma, I have a 5 meter bell tent (from the lovely Soulpad peeps) with the groundsheet that unzips. I chose that one because I *hate* any creepy crawlies coming into the tent and i thought this would be the safest choice for me. I can't compare it to the one with the completely separate groundsheet though as I have never slept in one. As it completely zips in, there are no little breezes and no chance of rain trinkling in if there was a complete and utter downpour. The zipped in groundsheet comes completely away from the canvas tent (this is not made clear on the soulpad website) so the canvas tent section can be packed away separately from the zipped off groundsheet if need be, and of course dried separately too. I actually went to B&Q and bought a tarpaulin for £11 to use as a footprint to save getting the groundsheet muddy at all which worked really well.
    Now, the down side to the zipped in groundsheet, is at the back of my mind i have a worry that one day the zip might break/get stuck although I am probably being paranoid as the it seems very sturdy. I have never heard/read about one being stuck/broken. I also think it probably isn't quite as easy to roll up all the sides when it is hot as the one you previously owned. We have just got back from camping two days ago, and i didn;t roll up the sides as I was too lazy to unzip it all even though it was very hot.
    About Soulpad/Belltent. I have not had any personal experience of Belltent,although if you go onto the camping section of the Mumsnet forums you might find some, not so positive disccusions about their customer service? The customer serives from Soulpad is amazing. They have an extremely good reputation and their tents are a beautiful quality.
    Sorry about the essay I wrote you!
    warmly,
    Rosaleen xxx

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  7. I genuinely need a new sleeping bag but I can't see getting the husband to agree to the price (especially x2!) Love it though. Having enjoyed your posts about Giffords I had the most magical afternoon at Hay - I have posted on my corner!

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  8. We have a 5 meter bell tent with groundsheet that unzips. It's ideal. No beasties crawling in and I am sure it will protect from rain too. Which we need here in Scotland. You have also still the option to roll the sides up if it gets really warm.

    I am from the Netherlands but had not heard from this Dutch company. They are very good priced, is it the same quality as the Bell tent ?
    The big tents look fantastic will be ideal for our big family ;-)

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  9. What a pity: my parents live 2 miles from the shop you mentioned ánd we are going for a holiday to the UK this weekend.
    But I'm afraid their car is way too small for a big tent like this. Otherwise it would have been perfect!

    Irene, lurking from Amsterdam

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  10. Found this blog because I also am looking for the answer which belltent to get; zipped or not. The price difference is huge, is the zippered, thicker floor really worth the extra 200 euros?

    About the canvas quality, there are 400 and 285 ones, don't really know about that one either. First I wanted the tucked in floor, 400 canvas and dutch laced tent but then I discovered the A-frames but those don't come with laced doors and the zipperthing and *aaagh* you how it goes, now I really don't know which one to get anymore.

    What I DO know, the tents from belltent.co.uk and Obelink overhere in Holland are exactly (!) the same.

    Kat

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  11. HI HAS ANY ONE BROUGHT A 5 METRE ZIG FROM CARMA KANVAS,I AM TOO TRYING TO WORK OUT WHICH IS BEST AM WORRIED ABOUT THE WEIGHT OF ZIG??CARMA KANVAS SEEM A BIT CHEAPER ASWELL REALLY NICE LADIE TO CHAT TOO.ALSO WHAT DOES EVERYONE THINK OF BELL TENTS BEING FIRE RETARDENT OR NOT AS A LOT ARE ?

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  12. Customer service from Bell Tent UK has been absolutely atrocious. Sent the wrong item. No answers to voicemails or emails. The people you do eventually get through to seem to lack an appropriate level of maturity or professionalism to inspire any confidence in their ability to resolve the problem. And eventually it transpires that they are wholly incapable of resolving it... I have been chasing a refund for several weeks now. Very poor show all round.

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