babywearing

Slings for All 

I got to try out a Wildbird ring sling recently while I was teaching at a babywearing meeting. I was super excited when the meeting attendee brought it over because I was dying to try it out since I heard that our group added it to our library. Usually when teaching in person, I thread the ring sling on so that I can make sure that it does not twist on my back. When I attempted to thread the Wildbird sling, I could not get it back through the rings because there was not enough fabric. Without skipping a beat, I took off the sling and put it on the meeting attendee to  get her situated. What I wanted to do was cry. I was panicking on the inside. I felt so angry and embarrassed that  yet again, a ring sling did not fit me.

Later, I checked the Wildbird website and found that the slings are only 74-77 inches long. That is about a size small/medium. I am a fat* woman with broad shoulders.  My sling size is an extra large (XL). I can work with a long large. I prefer to use a 2XL.  Short one size slings are not  inclusive to the wide range of babywearers in the community.

I did write to Wildbird on their Facebook page and they stated “Hey Brittany! So glad you wrote us, we actually have longer slings in the works. Watch for news soon!” Soon. They do not currently have any longer slings in stock.  In their chatter group, the owner expanded on this statement and blamed growing pains on their inability to make longer slings right away. When asked what length the longer slings would be (after suggestions as well) Wildbird only stated that they would give everyone details soon.  Once again, fat babywearers are an afterthought.

Really, I should have known that their slings would not fit me. Their social media and marketing are filled with thin people wearing their slings. I am sure that some fat wearers can wear Wildbird slings since  not everyone is the same shape, but myself and several other wearers cannot. I truly hope that they do make good on their statement.

There are several companies that do offer long or sized slings. Sleeping Baby Productions, True North Ring Slings, Soul, and Maya Wrap are just a few of the many companies that offer long slings.

Fat me and baby Minerva comfortably in an XL Maya Wrap ring sling

*Fat is the term I use to describe myself because I am fat. I describe fat people as fat. It is not a dirty word. If you are uncomfortable with that, I don’t know what to tell you.

babywearing, review

Review: Kol Kol Baby Carrier Onbuhimo

Kol Kol Baby Carrier is a company out of India that makes affordable and comfortable baby carriers. Fun fact: The company is named after the first words that Bayiravi’s (owner) son spoke! So sweet!!  They will soon be releasing an onbunimo and I had the pleasure of trying it out . 

Minerva is about 20 lbs and 28 inches tall.  She fit great in the carrier. With onbuhimos, all the weight is carried in your shoulders, so one of the most important aspects of the carrier for me  is the padding. Kol Kol’s padding was so soft! It reminded me of a pillow. It was very comfortable on my shoulders.  I also like their hood which is rare because I usually can do without a hood on most carriers.

 The carrier even fit Maxine comfortably! She will be four years old soon and is in 4T clothes. The onbuhimo fit great in my diaper bag which is a plus since I pack so much stuff when we leave the house and since there is so little fabric, it is  ideal for warmer weather as well.  The fabric breathed very well.  I think that this will be on my list of carriers to buy!

Be sure to check Kol Kol out on Facebook  and Instagram, and  also Join their group Kol Koling on Facebook!

babywearing, Tutorials

Tutorial: Short Front Cross Carry

Short front cross carry is a poppable carry that can be done with a base -1 to base -4 depending on the wrap you use. This carry can be done with or without a ring. This will demonstrate how to do short front cross carry with a ring.

You will need one  large sling ring (or medium if your wrap is thin) and your wrap to do this. I am using Smitten Lady Bird’s Bluebonnets.

Brittany holding a red sling ring in her hand and a blue, green, white, and purple woven wrap in the other hand

Continue reading “Tutorial: Short Front Cross Carry”

babywearing, review

Review: Soul Onbuhimo

 

Soul is a wonderful company based in Bangalore, India that has taken the world by storm! They offer so many various carrier styles. From slings to buckles–they’ve got it all! They even have some pretty sweet accessories to match their carriers. I first came across them on Instagram a couple years ago and since then I’ve been watching them explode! Recently I was sent a Maze Blues Jacquard Onbuhimo to try out.

Brittany and Minerva are standing outside. Minerva is on Brittany's back in a blue and black geometric print onbuhimo. Brittany looks away while Minerva looks into the camera.

Since Minerva is my main wearee, I tested this out mostly with her. I did wear this some with Maxine (40 lbs) and she fit in it well! Minerva is about 20 lbs and 28 inches tall.  She was juuuust big enough to fit well in the carrier. With onbuhimos, all the weight is carried in your shoulders, so one of the most important aspects of the carrier for me  is the padding. Soul hit it out the park with this padding. I have tried a few other brands of buckle onbuhimo and this one had the squishiest padding. It reminded me of memory foam. The padding is thicker than in their buckle carriers which is a good thing.

Brittany and Minerva are standing outside. Minerva is on Brittany's back in a blue and black geometric print onbuhimo. Brittany looks away while Minerva looks just off camera with a huge smile on her face.

The Soul onbuhimo has perfect fit adjusters (PFAs ) which help get  the carrier to fit better. With Max, I preferred them all the way out. With Min, I liked them all the way in. The chest clip can be moved up and down to get to a comfortable spot as well. Everything on this is easy to adjust . The Soul onbuhimo fit great in my diaper bag and since there is so little fabric, it is pretty ideal for warmer weather as well. I got to wear it in 90 degree Virginia heat–it was not that bad!

Brittany and Minerva are standing outside. Minerva is on Brittany's back in a blue and black geometric print onbuhimo. Brittany smiles into the camera while Minerva looks just off camera with a huge smile on her face. They are leaning toward the camera.

Onbuhimos are recommended for wearees who have sufficient torso control to support their heads and sit up independently. I found that the carrier fit me pretty well. I am plus sized, so that is pretty important for me. It fit me with Maxine  with plenty of webbing to spare and made me very happy!

Brittany and Minerva are standing outside. Minerva is on Brittany's back in a blue and black geometric print onbuhimo. Brittany and Minerva look off camera with huge smiles on their faces.

Be sure to check Soul out on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and  also Join their groups Soul Family/Soul Family US Edition on Facebook!

babywearing, Parenting

Babywearing

On the left is the first time I wore Maxine (2ish weeks old.) On the right is the first time I wore Minerva (5 hours old.)

The single most important part of my parenting journey is babywearing. Period. I mean of course there are other important things like feeding the baby, taking your vitamins (like these Honest vitamins,) and making sure you get to eat, but babywearing is one part of my parenting journey I can’t sing the praises of enough.

Thanks to babywearing, I’ve felt more confident in my parenting journey. I know that my children feel safe with me. I know that I can comfort them at a moment’s notice. I know that my relationship with them is getting stronger everyday. When the world is too overwhelming, I know that I can comfort them while they comfort me. 

What is the most important part of your parenting journey?

This moment in motherhood inspired by the Honest Company‘s honest moments video series.

babywearing, Diversity, Outreach

Diversifying Your Group

“How do I help my group become more diverse?”

“How do I reach out to people of color?”

“We try to invite more people to our meetings but they don’t ever come! What are we doing wrong?!”

These are just some of the many statements and questions I hear from various people who want to make their local babywearing group inclusive. The funny thing about these questions is the fact that these groups have done NOTHING to make their groups inclusive before asking. Not even a single google search.

Well, here is something you should bookmark if your goal is diversifying your babywearing group.

Continue reading “Diversifying Your Group”

babywearing

Wearing in Pajamas

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One of the most common comments I see in babywearing groups on pictures of kids being worn in footie pajamas is “You’re not supposed to do that! You’re hurting your baby’s feet!”

Well that’s not exactly true. You CAN wear your baby in footie pajamas. Here are a few tips to make you successful in this endeavor.

  1. Size up the pajamas if you can.
  2. Make sure that there’s extra room in the foot area before you start the carry. This is achieved by pulling the fabric at the feet.
  3. Make sure the toes are not bunched in the foot area once settled into the carrier.

When the pajamas don’t have enough extra room, not only will it make things more uncomfortable for the wearee, the wearer may have difficulty getting a good seat when wrapping or using a ring sling. When I tried this out, I could not get the fabric in the back of the knee to form the seat. I could only get the fabric as far as the pajamas let me.

If the footie pajamas are snug on the child’s feet when in sitting position before putting them into the carrier, I’d skip wearing in those pajamas. Who am I kidding–I’d probably cut the feet off of the pajamas so we could use them longer!

Happy Babywearing!