Tweak of the Week: Buckle Carrier Back Carry

15 Feb

Getting your baby onto your back is one of the most freeing moments in babywearing!  Not only is a back carry most ergonomic for you, once baby approaches the 20 lb. mark and beyond, but this is when you truly get to be “hands free.”

Safety Note: Generally speaking, back carrying in a buckle carrier or SSC is recommended when baby is old enough to sit up unassisted.  Also, at first, practice in front of a mirror, if possible, over a SOFT surface and WITH a spotter!  This will ensure everyone stays safe and happy.  If baby is not into it and is bucking and fighting, try again at another time. 🙂

Your first back carry can be a bit daunting.  In this video below, I am using my Catbird Baby Pikkolo carrier (though the method is similar for any buckle/SSC carrier, except with others you would buckle the structured waist belt around you with the structured waist sitting on top of your hip area and the body of the carrier flopping down from the top of the structured waist belt).  First, I show a classic back carry with the carrier hanging down from your back, baby is scooted around (using the “hip scoot” method) and the carrier is brought up from between her legs and over her back.  After that carry, I demonstrate a carry in which you bring baby AND the carrier around with you.  This method is better for the beginner, because you can secure baby as you bring the carrier around and there is less to worry about…though it does tend to move your clothes around with you as you move baby in the carrier from your hip to your back.

Enjoy!

Tweak of the Week: Troubleshooting your Stretchy Wrap

9 Jan

One of the most common things I help new mamas with is troubleshooting their Moby Wraps, or other stretchy wrap.  I have 2 tips that typically seem to help almost everyone who is having difficulty –

1. Don’t fold the wrap in half, no matter what the instructions say, lol!  More often than not, you’re going to get more support by wrapping with the full width of the wrap, it avoids the wrap becoming rope-y and uncomfortable, it provides better support for baby, AND…it’s tedious to fold THAT much fabric perfectly in half!

2. Pre-tie tighter than you think.  Stretchy wraps work to support baby’s weight (which, in turn, provides more comfort and support for you!) by stretching snuggly around baby and holding him or her close.  ESPECIALLY with newborns, tying tightly is key to avoiding dangerous and life-threatening positioning (when infants slump down chin to chest and cannot breathe properly).  With older babies, it’s the tightness that will help support the weight.  When pretying the wrap, make sure to take out the slack as you tie and think of the wrap feeling like a “fitted” t-shirt against your body.

Need a visual?  Here’s a video I made with 17 lb. darling daughter who is perfectly supported and comfortable.  I used the exact same method when she was a newborn, the wrap may have been a smidge tighter.  I always put legs through the cross and avoid legs in the pocket hold, as I always found that baby would continue to slump down and curly into a ball (as newborns will do) if his/her seat is not made and held by the cross passes going from knee to knee.

 

Catbird Baby Babywearing Essentials Mei Tai Review

16 Oct

Oh, Catbird Baby Mei Tai, where have you been all of my “wearing” life? LOL.  Everyone knows I’m a HUGE fan of the Pikkolo, but while I’ve used the Catbird Baby Babywearing Essentials Mei Tai every now and again, I never really gave it a good “wear”…until the other day.  Wow!  For such an affordable mei tai, this baby is comfy as all heck.  (as you can see by baby who fell asleep in less than 5 minutes of wearing…)

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First of all, though the canvas is sturdy and so supportive, the brushed nature gives the fabric a soft and squishy feel.  The wide straps are lightly padded and form so nicely on your shoulders (and allow you to fold them in a back carry if, like me, you have narrow shoulders and only prefer the wide straps in a front carry).

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The nice wide feeling of the straps and the fact that they are lightly padded but not overly-so means that they lay very comfortably as they cross on your back, as well, spreading generously and distributing baby’s weight with amazing comfort.

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Headrest? No headrest? It’s really a matter of personal opinion, but Catbird Baby Babywearing Essentials mei tais give you the best of both worlds with a small, supportive headrest piece that can be flipped up for down, depending on your and baby’s needs.  I tend to flip it down (as pictured) when baby is awake so that she can see around, and then flip up when she’s asleep ( as in the first picture).

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Another reason I’m loving the CBB mei tais (call me vain) is the wonderfully wide waist belt area that tends to cover up the post-pregnancy fluff/muffin-top without creating bulging areas from digging or rope-like straps.

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I don’t have a picture, but I’ve used it with my petite 4 year old in a back carry, and I’m still in love.  The long body means it can fit itty bitties all the way through the long and tall toddler years.  The wide body is also able to be squished for smaller leg spreads and even has an attached elastic band to help with narrowing the width if general “squishing” is too wide for your babe.

The Catbird Baby Babywearing Essentials Mei Tai was previously only available (and still is…) in 3 solid colors (Spring, Earth, and Sunset).  QuirkyBaby, however, now offers the same great design and structure of the Essentials Mei Tai in select prints, too!  Try one out today!  You won’t be sorry.

Tweak of the Week: Tightening you Mei Tai

14 Oct

Using a Catbird Baby Babywearing Essentials Mei Tai to demonstrate how to pull to tighten and adjust your mei tai properly, so that straps end up comfortably crossed on your back and not on your neck. Enjoy!

Kinderpacks are HERE!

1 Oct

 

They’re here!…..

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QuirkyBaby is so excited to add Kinderpacks to its offerings!  Kinderpacks are the perfect buckle carrier for ultimate comfort when carrying your older and heavier toddler AND big kid!  My husband and I have been using a Toddler Kinderpack with our daughter since she was about 2 and a half and she finally fills it out at 4 years and 30 lbs!  (granted she’s on the petite side, so it took her a while to grow into the length).  She may not fit knee-to-knee in terms of the width anymore, but because of the unique design of the Kinderpack with it’s incredibly deep seat construction, it maintains that ideal “M” shape position with her knees higher than her bum, even at 4 years old.  With a 50lb. weight limit, we’ll probably see our oldest age out of it before we reach that maximum weight.  Looking for a carrier for your tall and heavy toddler?  The Kinderpack is the buckle carrier for you!  Believe the hype. 🙂

A little bit about the Kinderpack:
Carrying Positions

  • Front facing in (shoulder straps can be crossed)
  • Back carry (shoulder straps backpack style)

Fits

  • Standard size:
    • Fits babies and children 18 – 50 lbs. or approximately 8 months through 3 or 4 years of age
    • 16″ h x 17″ w
    • best choice for petite toddlers or toddlers who like to ride with their arms out
    • deep, rounded seat and high weight limit make this the best choice for a Kinderpack that will last you without having to change sizes – up until about 3 years of age or a child wearing a 4T clothing size.
  • Toddler size:
    • Fits children 25-50 lbs. and 32 inches tall and taller, or approximate ages 18 months to 3 or 4 years old.
    • 18″ h x 19″ w
    • This would be the choice for the older toddler or preschooler who likes to ride arms in, or who needs a very tall back for support.  Please be aware that the Toddler size is MUCH larger than the Standard size and that the minimum recommended size may still be too large for a child just meeting the minimum requirements.
  • Standard and Toddler carriers with Standard Straps will fit most sizes from a women’s size 4 to a women’s size 22 with adjustable 19-20″ straps.

Features

  • Contoured carrier body and deep, rounded seat to support baby in a proper seat position
  • Three-part, slightly curved waist belt that molds to your body and doesn’t push pants down
  • Super padded, dual adjustable shoulder straps with Perfect Fit Adjusters to custom fit strap length
  • Straps can be worn crossed or backpack style
  • Stuffable hood
  • Made in the USA by a WAHM
  • Recommended spot clean or hand wash and lay flat to dry to prevent shrinkage, color bleeding, or damage to the carrier.  If machine wash is necessary, use Gentle Cold Cycle and on Large Load to help water dilute any dyes with carrier in a pillow case.  Color catcher sheets are recommended to prevent color bleeding. Lay flat to dry.

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Updated Sakura Blooms and NEW Silks!

20 Sep

Check out the GORGEOUS new Simple and Essential Silks available from Sakura Bloom.  I think my favorite is the Bittersweet~Raspberry! Yum!  What’s yours?

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Sakura Bloom silk ring slings are so soft and moldable, lightweight while incredibly supportive.  I couldn’t believe how breathable they were until I took one for a spin on a summer evening!

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Tweak of the Week #6 – Adjusting the length of your Pikkolo

19 Sep

I made a similar tweak video about mei tais, but have recently had some questions from customers about the Pikkolo seeming too long or short. Here’s a video showing how I adjust the length of my Pikkolo as needed!:)

Baby, it’s cold out there! (well, chilly…)

17 Sep

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It’s that time of year again to start thinking about cold-weather babywearing! What are some of your tips? I’ve zipped my kiddos up on my front in a big coat, used a car seat poncho, tried (and failed) at a DIY fleece babywearing coat, and loved my Catbird Baby fleece and Kowalli (as pictured above).

Here’s my blog from last season for more info on these great accessories, in-stock now!  http://blog.quirkybaby.com/2012/10/15/time-for-cold-weather-babywearing-and-a-giveaway/

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.

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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!

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And next on the list for trying out with a newborn… the lillebaby COMPLETE!

2 Aug

Since having little Miss S., I’ve been primarily ring slinging or wrapping her.  My other go-to carrier (and my hubby’s fav!) has been our Catbird Baby Pikkolo (see previous blog for more about the Pikkolo with a newborn).  Now that she’s a bit bigger and has some head/trunk control, I’ve been trying out some other buckle carriers with the little lady.  We really enjoyed the lillebaby COMPLETE Airflow one hot afternoon.  Click the picture below for all of the reasons why!

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