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One Year at QuirkyBaby and a Giveaway to Celebrate: Win a Maya Wrap Ring Sling or Wrapsody Stretch Hybrid Wrap!

1 Sep

Well, it’s been a whirlwind year for me at QuirkyBaby!  Taking over on Sept. 1st of last year, I couldn’t have imagined how many amazing people I’d get to meet and help on my mission to spread the babywearing love (…or what it would be like to run the business over my first year through a devastating hurricane, while pregnant, having a baby, and surviving the early newborn days and colic!)

One of my favorite blog posts that I made this year was entitled, “You Are a Baby Carrier.”  As I work to make babywearing accessible for all different types of caretakers and babies, the heart of my mission is that it is the ACT of carrying your baby in your arms that matters, more than the product.  As an avid babywearer who really loves to try out everything I can get my hands on, it is fun to get caught up in the rage of the latest “it” carrier, wrap conversion, newest wrap, etc.  But, it’s important to come back down, sometimes, and remember that every carrier is a “real” baby carrier.  There are none that are better or worse than others.  Everyone has different tastes and opinions for what he/she likes in a carrier, and each baby likes different ways of being held for different reasons. Certain carriers might fit and feel better to one person and maybe other carriers fit and feel better to a different person, but that doesn’t mean that carriers are ranked in terms of good, better, best.  They all help us to carry and care for our children, and that is the most important thing of all.  It’s not about the brand, or how much you spend. It’s about the act of carrying your children and whatever carrier you prefer, can afford, and find comfortable to do so.  There was a blog post on Where We Wear, recently, that really sums it up so eloquently.

Two of my favorite carriers are a Maya Wrap Ring Sling and a Wrapsody Stretch Hybrid Wrap, both of which I’ve sadly heard described sometimes as “beginner” carriers or not “real” carriers, as if they’re fine carriers to start out with and then one must move on to something else. There is no reason that these brands should be labeled as “entry level” carriers, as if one MUST graduate to something else to be part of the babywearing community.  If you choose to expand your horizons, that’s one thing, but many “real” babywearers, like me, still use carriers like the Maya Wrap and Wrapsody as go-to carriers with newborns, toddlers, and even preschoolers.  Maya Wrap Ring Slings are one of the original wrap conversions – made from wrap fabric woven in Guatemala and converted into a ring sling.  Wrapsody Stretch Hybrid Wraps are not your every day stretchy.  Besides the fact that the colorways and patterns are gorgeous, they are supportive enough to take you from newborn through preschooler, can be used in every type of carry one might do with a non-stretchy (including back carries and tandem carries!), and the slight stretch has such a lovely bounce on your shoulders and helps wrap with that second-skin quality.  I have just a “few”pics (and, believe me, there are more!) of how much use I’ve gotten out of my Maya and Wrapsody.


So, to share my love of these brands, and to celebrate my first year at QuirkyBaby , I’ve teamed up with Lizzy from Where We Wear for a giveaway! 

Visit Where We Wear and the official Where We Wear Facebook Giveaway Page for details on how to enter, and don’t forget to submit your own pictures and stories to the Where We Wear blog to help continue the mission.  At the end of 2 weeks, a winner will be chosen at random from all entries.  The lucky winner will have the choice of a free Maya Wrap Ring Sling in Berries or a Wrapsody Stretch Hybrid  in Bridgid.  I can’t wait to see all of your beautiful babywearing pics and hear your wonderful stories!



Tweak of the Week #4 – Woven Wraps

10 Apr

When doing a Front Wrap Cross Carry (FWCC), did ya ever have trouble tightening up that top rail? When you adjust the fabric, do you find that it gets caught or rubs tightly under your arms? Hopefully, this tweak of the week can help! 🙂

Why Buy New ? (…when you’ve heard you can get such great bargains buying used)

6 Feb

There are some reasons why, as a baby carrier retailer AND a babywearing educator, I always steer a new babywearer to try to purchase a carrier new. It’s not just because I’m a retailer and I want a profit. Heck! I’ve sent babywearing parents to other retailers who carry products QuirkyBaby doesn’t. With the growing popularity of online baby carrier FSOTs (for sale or trades) and swaps, it seems like most people think, “Why should I buy that carrier new when I can buy it for less on one of these sites?” And, to be fair, I have gotten many carriers well-loved and recycled from other babywearing mamas. I love the FSOT and Swaps! Who doesn’t love finding that amazing deal on a baby carrier at a thrift shop, consignment sale, or craigslist? But, even when I find those “deals”, there is something of which I’m always aware – Caveat Emptor.

As an experienced babywearer, you might know what to look for when you pick up a used carrier. You might know the general age of the carrier, how to examine it and test it for flaws/defects/stresses to the fabric and seams that could cause tears, whether or not the directions the come with the used carrier are updated to the latest understandings of babywearing safety and standards (if it comes with directions at all!). But, many people don’t…especially those new to the babywearing world.

When you buy a used baby carrier, there’s a lot you don’t know (like age of the carrier, whether or not it’s been recalled in the past, how many times it’s been washed and whether or not the fabric has been weakened, etc.). There are no guarantees. When you purchase new, from an authorized retailer, there ARE guarantees:

1. Guaranteed Satisfaction – if you’re not happy with the carrier you choose, most retailers, like QuirkyBaby, have a return/exchange policy.
2. Guaranteed New In Box – carrier will come to you brand spankin’ new! No worries about past spit ups, accidents, fragrances, pet allergies, over-laundering, smoke smells (yes, there HAVE been mamas who bought from FSOT and gotten a carrier that smells of smoke…and if the seller denies it and refuses to refund you, there’s nothing you can do.)
3. Guaranteed Warranty – If something happens to your carrier, even if it’s your own fault (accidentally slam the buckle clasp in the car door and need a replacement, carrier tears in the wash), the manufacturer will usually send you a brand new replacement carrier (or replacement part) easy-peasy.
4. Guaranteed Fair Pricing – authorized retailers MUST price carriers at MSRP (or below for a sale). You’ll know that you are not getting ripped off or be the victim of price gouging. Just the other day there was a USED Wrapsody Hybrid Stretch on a very popular swap that was priced above retail. Several mamas replied with interest, and the wrap sold very quickly. If any of these mamas had done their research, they would find that they could have gotten the same wrap, NEW, with free shipping in most cases, AND all of the guarantees listed above for LESS than the price of that used wrap. Definitely use those FSOT/swaps for hunting for your “hard to find”/”desperately in search of” dream of a carrier that you can’t buy new anymore…but don’t shop on them without checking retailers, first. 😉

Loving my Wrapsody Stretch Hybrid Orca at SeaWorld! (bought new from Quirkybaby...before I was the owner, lol!)

Everyone loves a bargain and I have absolutely been known to try out some carriers after buying used from other WONDERFUL babywearing mamas. But, as an educator, I believe that new babywearers are best served by buying a fabulous and safe carrier new from a trusted, authorized retailer. Plus, as Rachel the babywearer (not Rachel the babywearing retailer), I know that when I do buy new from other babywearing retailers, I’m helping this industry that I love so much! We really do need to support babywearing retailers…they make the multitude of carrier options available to all of us. Not just QuirkyBaby, but all of the mom-owned, small-business, babywearing vendors. We’re small and we’re definitely not doing it for the big bucks. We’re doing it because we love babywearing, and want others to love it, too!

Baby Carrier Sales and News at QuirkyBaby, June 2011

1 Jun

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  • Memorial Day Sale continues for a few more days! Take 10% off and enjoy free US shipping on most baby slings and baby carriers at Quirkybaby. Baby sling and baby carrier brands on sale: Babyhawk, Kozy, Boba, Scootababy, Pikkolo, Maya Wrap, Moby Wrap, Hotslings AP, and Wrapsody. Baby accessories on sale including BabyLegs and Sunday Afternoons Kids Play Hats. Sale doesn’t apply to sale items, Ergo, Beco, and Sakura Bloom products, but you can still qualify for free BabyLegs on orders over $100!
  • Need to protect those tender little arms and legs from the sun? Check out the new designs in BabyLegs Cool, with a UPF protection factor of 50+! Other great sun protection items: Moby Wrap UV baby wraps, and the best kids’ sun hats ever from SunDay Afternoons that are cool, comfortable, and actually stay on!
  • Need a cool, lightweight, and portable baby sling or baby wrap carrier for hot summer days? A woven cotton ring sling from Maya Wrap or a single layer linen ring sling from Sakura Bloom will keep you and baby cool and ventilated.  Need two-shoulder support? The Wrapsody Bali Stretch is a great option for those who want a traditional all-in-one carrier for newborns through toddlers, while the Ergo Performance gets rave reviews for its high-tech breathability and support.
  • New Beco Gemini patterns coming soon! Lucas on Espresso and Aiden on Espresso will expand the boy-friendly/gender-neutral range of this extremely popular buckle carrier that enables forward facing out, forward facing in, hip, and back carries.
  • In other Beco Baby Carrier news: Beco Gemini and Beco Butterfly in the sunny, cheerful Luna organic print have been discontinued. Limited Edition Beco Butterfly in Ever and Duke are in stock only while supplies last! And there are still a few Beco Butterfly carriers on sale for $20 off with free US shipping in Aiden, Lucas, and Natalie prints.

Wrapsody Bali Stretch Wraps Debut at QuirkyBaby

13 Oct

I am delighted to welcome Wrapsody Bali Stretch Wraps to the QuirkyBaby line up!  Back in the days when these were known as GypsyMama Bali Baby Stretch, it was a gently used Aphrodite Bali Stretch that persuaded me to give her a new home and to give wrapping another try once we’d outgrown the Moby Wrap. I’d tried — and given up in frustration on — too many big-name brand woven wraps to count. The Wrapsody was like a wrap with training wheels; once I’d practiced with it for a while, I was able to move on to the challenges of heavy-duty woven wraps such as the Storchenwiege.

The Wrapsody Bali is essentially a hybrid between a woven and a stretchy wrap — more supportive than a regular stretchy wrap, and thus appropriate for back carries, but cushy and forgiving of less-than-perfect wrapping skills. (It’s also a lot cooler than most woven wraps, so it’s a great choice for warm weather.) The Wrapsody is a great beginner or intermediate wrap — perfect for a newborn, but also perfect for a bigger baby when the Moby just isn’t supportive enough any more.

These stunning wraps are batiked in Bali, Indonesia, under fair trade and environmentally friendly conditions.