BIJOU WEAR: NEWPORT HARBOR

c6ec3-img_6167

SPECS

  • 315 GSM
  • Width – 27 in.
  • Tapers – 6 in.
  • Blend – Cotton
  • Care – wash on delicate,cold water, low speed, spin or air dry
  • Price – $130(s2) – $195(s8)
  • Tester used was a s5

OF NOTE – Newport “Harbor” ships prewashed/finished  NOT in loom state!!
Released December 9, 2015; Jamie Gassmann of Bijou Wear has given us a most stunning nautical wrap!
Made of an Ecru cotton warp which provides a beautiful backdrop for the 45% mercerized cotton blue weft, this wrap is beyond gorgeous and quite the showstopper with its vibrant colorway and varying sizes of sailboats.

 

ce5b0-img_6341

As Jamie has stated “Bijou HQ moved to Rhode Island late summer last year, to the town of Newport. The harbor here, is sailings elegant version of a parking lot; bustling with activity. I know sailboats will be icons of our time living here and I wanted to continue in the same spirit of WINDMILLS, capturing icons that make people feel connected to place, people, or other times in their lives. So its Newport Shoreline and Newport Harbor, named after Newport, Rhode Island.”

Not only does Jamie want to help people feel connected to her and places they think fondly of but she is also dedicated to actually helping people with her strong connection to The Carrying On Project. Which she donates carriers and portions of sales to help promote the bond between returning military service personnel and their families.

Newport “Harbor” is a made-in-the-USA jaquard fabric, meaning the design is incorporated into the weave of the fabric instead of being printed or dyed on. This means that the beautiful sailboats are just slightly raised helping give the fabric a nice tactile difference.
The reason this particular wrap comes ready-to-wear is the use of mercerized cotton. This treatment of the cotton results into a more porous fiber as well as increasing its moisture wicking properties.
With mercerized cotton it has been known to shrink the length or width of your wrap, however it is not a permanent shrinking and can be remedied with a good steam iron to relax and re-soften those fibers.

261d3-img_6209

HOW “HARBOR” TESTED…..

When I first saw this wrap being worn by LaKeta from TandemTrouble I was floored by the beauty of it. I am a spouse of a USNavy serviceman and I love all things nautical, granted I dont actually know how to sail, however the colors are really what blew me away. I knew I had to get my hands on this, and aren’t I so lucky that shortly after “ooohing” and “aaahing” and all sorts of fangirling on every picture and post; LaKeta said this would become a traveling tester!!!!!

When I finally opened NEWPORT “HARBOR” it really was love at first touch! I immediately grabbed jamie (my son, not to be confused with Jamie the owner) for a Front Wrap Cross Carry (FWCC).

This is by far one of my favorite carries and jamie now recognizes it from its pre-tied passes that he is about to go uppies; so even if he isn’t in the mood to be worn its a quick up and down carry for us.
I have to say immediately I noticed a nice weight to “Harbor”, not too light but not really heavy. Tightening the passes felt really smooth and because of the jaquared nature of the wrap, once my pass was in place it gripped quite nicely.

4576e-img_6149

This wrap was extremely supportive not only to myself; hugging not digging into my waist or shoulders but also to my wiggly worm of a toddler. Even on my worst wrap job he wasn’t going anywhere even after popping his seat, and that is saying a lot because with 27 inches of width to this wrap its almost impossible to not get a nice deep seat!

Because I have a serial seat popper we don’t do any ruck carries or single pass back carries, that being said using the carries we did, I had no shoulder pain. Pleating on the shoulders always came out nice and there truly was never a point where I felt I was being pinched in, even on our one shoulder carry.

Since this wrap is also made of cotton there was enough breathability to keep us cool, yet comfy in the brisk cool January morning air of California all the way to the warm sunny afternoon.
For me, this wrap really molded well to mine and my sons bodies. It was all around super comfortable whether we had two passes or three!

I would recommend NEWPORT “HARBOR” for any age category but I feel this wrap really shines around the toddler phase. It really made my 27 lb. son feel weightless in almost every carry, it was so supportive!!

As you can see by this image of us at Mt.Laguna wrapping while in snow jackets, you might think would be a slippery nightmare! But it really wasn’t too bad and i honestly feel it is because I had NEWPORT “HARBOR”, each pass really stayed in place and getting the wrap through the rings was in a word ‘simple’.

3f92c-img_6166-1

You can see my son had shimmied a little extra arm room but the only time jamie was mildly calm was while he was in that carry!! It was a beautiful wrap that truly was breathtaking against the snowy mountain backdrop!!

I am so thankful to have had the oppurtunity to host such amazing craftsmanship from Bijou Wear and an eye-catching creation from Jamie Gassmann!!

 

ETHOS: PHEOBE

img_57561

SPECS

  • 400 gsm(gm/2)*
  • Width- 70 cm
  • Blend- Cotton warp/Banana fiber weft
  • Straight twill weave OR Plain weave
  • Hand wash on cold, air dry
  • starting price about $158

*GSM or gm/2 = grams per square meter and is the metric measurement of the weight of a fabric.

Handwoven in Nepal from hand spun yarn; ETHOS PHOEBE lives up to its ethical name by its very nature.
The Napali weavers weave these wraps as a humanitarian effort to help the relief effort from the earthquakes in 2015.
The sale of each handwoven buys fresh water, food, schooling facilities, shelters, toilet facilities, livestock, bedding, and much more for families in Nepal.

The Banana fiber, which is also sourced ethically in Nepal, resembles bamboo and ramie fiber. However, banana fiber is actually of a higher grade and is much finer thus making it easier to spin.
Despite its fineness, banana fiber is extremely durable and has a natural luster that gives it a shiny appearance.

DID YOU KNOW?

That spun banana yarn and woven banana textiles are very moisture absorbent and because their processing does not involve chemicals, they are completely bio-degradable!!!
9025e-img_5755

 

HOW PHOEBE TESTED….

I did receive both weave types however I spent most of my wrapping time using the straight twill weave.
When I picked up this folded wrap, my first thought was “she’s so HEAVY”!
However, it was pretty deceiving because when I unfurled her she was quite light and airy.
Really, it was like woven wrap magic!

Ethos Phoebe does not wrap as her gsm would have you believe, while I tested with a size 7 (my base +2) there was quite a lot of fabric; however it was easily manageable and never felt like it was weighing me down.

6cbbe-img_5753

I wish I could describe for you how Ethos Phoebe felt, but I’m lacking the vocabulary to accuretely convey the softness; especially to those who have never used a handwoven wrap, but all the nubs and slubs and fuzzy fibers that help make such a unique yarn; made for the softest wrap I’ve ever felt up to date.

Seriously, if they made this into a blanket for my bed or a throw for my couch, I most certainly would buy it!!!

 

This was my first official tester so I stuck with the basics: the Front Wrap Cross Carry (FWCC) and the Double Hammock (DH). I really wish I took it for its paces though, but hindsight and all that.
Anyways, this wrap was basically made of sleepy dust(a term babywearers use meaning your child can easily falls asleep in it) and was so comfortable.
There was absolutely no dig on my shoulders and with each pass the grip was envious. I did find trying to tighten strand by strand actually made my passes a little loose; it definitely worked better(for me at least) to tighten in larger sections.
The width was just right for my 20 month old toddler. Given the proper size this wrap would be great for newborns because again snugly softness, but it most certainly will stand up to even the most wiggly of toddlers!

Using banana fibers was new to me in terms of weave material, however it was very soft (which for some reason when I hear the term fiber I think coarse not soft) but that really was far from the truth; and you could see a subtle sheen up close from the wefts.
So, I did have the joy to not only test the straight twill weave but also the plain weave. I’m honestly not entirely sure why, but the twill weave was my JAM!!!!
For both variations though, the passes really slide into place and gripped quite nicely. I didn’t feel I had to continuously adjust or move around to get myself and my son comfortable.

I thought because it was a Natty woven I would be scared to use it, but because of its sturdiness and lovely cush factor; I could easily see this being a workhorse wrap for me. I was constantly grabbing for it. My son at the time was teething, so nursing often was key, and with this wrap; ESPECIALLY dropping down to nurse and maintaining tension, as well as keeping a good seat were essential to this extended breastfeeding momma.

ETHOS PHOEBE was a wonderful wrap and after finally writing this review, I honestly think I might add it to my permanent stash. Do not be scared that it is a natural woven and might get dirty(because lets face it; what anything doesn’t have a little smudge here or there from small children or *gasp* a makeup smear from our chins), I promise you this wrap is worth every penny!!! It is fantastic and I hope to try another Ethos wrap in the future!!!
8d183-img_5541

Easy Feel Products SSC: ABSTRACT MOSAIC

Easy feel products Soft structured carrier, Abstract Mosaic, standard size, close up

A close-up of the gorgeous fabric and IKAT print!

SPECS

  • MATERIAL: 100% handwoven heavy bottom weight cotton
  • BODY PANEL WIDTH: 14.5 in
  • BODY PANEL LENGTH: 15.5 in.
  • STRAPS: 1 in. thick(Curved shape)
    • smallest setting: 22 in.
    • Largest setting: 42 in.
  • WAISTBAND: 1 in. thick (Dense compressed foam)
    • largest setting: 30 in.
  • BUCKLES: Single adjust
  • HOOD: attached hood with hood ties (hidden pocket for storage)
  • CHESTCLIP: yes
    • smallest setting: 5 in.
    • largest setting: 17 in.
  • LEGS OUT PADDING: yes
  • SAFETY ELASTIC: yes
  • PFAs: yes
  • SEAT DARTS: yes
  • SIZE: STANDARD and TODDLER ( 15 lbs. – 44 lbs.)
  • PRICE: $89 – $109

Easy Feel Products has been a company that has offered mainly cloth diapering needs for about 2 years now. Recently, Shikha Garg, the owner and creator behind Easy Feel Products has ventured into the world of soft structured carriers; with the help of her mom and a small yet amazing tailoring team in India. Don’t let the young age of the company deter you because these carriers are extremely well made, super comfortable, beautiful, and competitively priced.

From my brief interactions with Shikha; she is genuinely open to providing the best fit and care to her customers needs. She is warm and friendly and all of those great attributes extend into her business interactions as well as her social media chatter group: Cuddles and Snuggles with Easy Feel.

I mean how ADORABLE is that group name!!

Scenic view of a lake and Easy feel soft structured carrier

We had a lovely afternoon out at Santee Lakes in San Diego. Abstract Mosaic looks just as stunning as the lake!

 

All their carriers are made with woven 100% cotton bottom weight fabric, and are up to the American Society for Testing and Materials; specifically code ASTM F2236-14.

*IMPORTANT TO NOTE* Easy Feel Carriers are for 15-44 lbs; they are NOT FOR NEWBORNS.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

I received a travelling tester of Abstract Mosaic in a Standard size.

I immediately wrote down my first impressions after taking this carrier out of its package.

Thick shoulder strap padding- I really liked

Very firm waist padding- I didn’t like

Wide waistband- iffy; similar to Tula ~not short person friendly~

Waist pocket- LOVED

Great fabric!!

HOW IT TESTED:

My first impressions addressed I started my time with Abstract Mosaic slowly. I was still preferring my Liliputi SSC and was using that frequently. However, when your toddler starts bringing you the carriers he wants for Uppies; you listen!

9 times out of 10, the Easy Feel carrier was what my son wanted to be in!!

The fabric felt like a wrap conversion ( I actually thought that it was at first) and not only was it visually stunning in it’s IKAT  print but it was surprisingly lightweight and really had great airflow. I don’t believe Jamie or I had any issues with overheating or sweating in Abstract Mosaic.

I loved the fact that it had a cute little waist pocket. Closer to where the belt clipped instead of being in the middle of the waistband was definitely a preferred placement option for me. I found it to be just big enough for a debit card and that was about it. Definitely not large enough for my Iphone plus.

Image showing a soft structured carrier buckled around the waist. No child is in it; the wearer is showing off a small waistband pocket.

When your outfit matches your carrier! #crushedit #babywearingunicorn

The wide waistband, I thought I would have the most issues with, was actually a feature I was most thankful for. I was wrong to compare it in it’s entirety to Tula. While it is similarly wide and a bit uncomfortable (while in a front carry) with it’s unfortunate placement falling closer to my lady bits than my actual waist; the similarities end there. The dense compressed foam which  I originally thought would be hard and uncomfortable, was indeed quite moldable and formed nicely around my body. Also, it held up very well to my toddler, keeping it’s shape and not folding under the weight of him. Allowing the carrier to continue providing me proper lumbar support, even after a few hours of wearing. This became a very important feature for my husband as he had back surgery a year ago and it has been difficultfor him to find a comfortable fit in any carrier since then. While his babywearing periods are short and few, he agreed this feature was extremely comfortable on his back!

The thick shoulder strap padding was also a fantastic feature. It really molds well to the wearer and has nice bounce back! Easy Feel’s SSC straps DO NOT have a criss cross option but their curved shape, forgiving plush thickness, and overall weight distribution; I didnt feel this was a missed option.

When I requested to try this new company’s SSC, I had not measured my son before it was in transit so i believed he would fit the Standard size. I quickly realized I should have first requested the Toddler size instead!

Soft structured carrier, Easy Feel Products, Abstract Mosaic

Just a smidge too small.

~My two year old baby apparently had grown into a tall little boy!!!! Where does the time go????~

So, Jamie at the time of this testing was 33 inches tall and about 27 pounds; so the standard size was just a bit small for him. The body panel came just under his armpits ( if you have a leaner, you know this can be an issue) however, Easy Feel uses great grippy webbing and even with a leaning toddler those perfect fit adjusters(PFA’s) didnt budge! The same could not be said of my time with a Madame GooGoo carrier.

Jamie was also just  a smidge too big for the width of the body panel to go knee to knee. What was still nice was the cushy and thick leg padding. So even though he wasnt sitting with perfect weight distribution he was very comfortable withouht any fabric digging into his thighs.

I almost forgot to mention the attached HOOD!!! It is so cleverly concealed in a hidden pocket at the top of the body panel! Tandem Trouble has a great image of this over at her website! It has hood ties that you attach to hood clips on the shoulder straps and is generous enough in fabric to act as a sun shield but also a proper hood.

I can’t wait to get my hands on Easy Feel Products Toddler size SSC, I just know I will enjoy my time with it even more given the proper fit for my two year old!!!

Lake view, soft structured carrier, Easy feel products

Our day at the lake, really was such a beautiful backdrop to Abstract Mosaic.

 

MY RECOMMENDATION:

There are just a few things I would change given the chance. Even though I feel this carrier is petite friendly (the shoulder straps go down to 22 in.) I feel if those straps could go down to 20 in. that would be absolutely perfect! Maybe, this could be accomplished by allowing even more room for the PFAs to tighten the straps at the top of the body panel. Or, maybe, by adding dual adjusters on the straps under the wearers arms.

Also, I love the idea of a waist pocket and I really prefer the Easy Feel placement decision; however a little more fabric forgiveness with the pocket itself would be beneficial. Once the carrier is on the wearers body the pocket became really tight and you could only put a debit card or ID in it. It would be nice to be able to at least put a set of car keys in it as well.

 

Overall, I loved this carrier. There were minimal things I would change and with the proper size for my child; I am positive any discomfort I may have had would be alleviated! With a price tag of $89 for a standard size or $109 for a toddler; I am beyond excited to have an Easy Feel Soft Structured Carrier as part of my very own babywearing stash!!!

Look at that great back carry height!!!

Look at that great back carry height!!!

 

 

LILIPUTI SSC: FOLK-TALE

 

A bi-racial family poses for a picture. They are wearing matching red shirts with a Mickey Mouse head on it.

We didn’t realize Jamie had gotten sunscreen in his eyes, so poor little fella looked like he was crying! Also, I’m a big fan of hip sacks!!!

SPECS

  • MATERIAL: Canvas and 100% ORGANIC cotton
  • BODY PANAL WIDTH: 12.5 in. or 18 in. (with leg extenders)
  • BODY PANEL LENGTH: 13.5 in. (cinched all the way) or 15.5 in. (fully extended)
  • STRAPS: 1 in. thick
    • smallest setting: 22 in.
    • largest setting: 44 in.
  • SHOULDER STRAP WIDTH: 3 in. (curved shape)
  • WAISTBAND WIDTH: 5 in. at widest point (curved shape)
    • smallest setting: 34 in.
    • largest setting: 62 in.
  • BUCKLES: dual adjust
  • HOOD: yes, detachable
  • CHESTCLIP: yes
  • LEGS OUT PADDING: yes
  • SAFETY ELASTIC: yes
  • PFAs: yes
  • SEAT DARTS: yes
  • SIZE: infant into toddlerhood
  • PRICE: $125 (conversion rate from EUROS)
Selfie image of a father, mother, and toddler boy. in a soft structured carrier back carry.

Showing off that high back carry!!

****DISCLAIMER**** As of right now this carrier is NOT U.S. compliant but they are working on getting their testing approved.****

Alright yall; I’m gonna start off with some real talk. I have no idea how to pronounce this companys name. I dont know if its lily-putty or lily-poo-tea; or something else entirely!

*if you know PLEASE help a sista out and message me so I can edit this post*

What I do know, is that this carrier is super comfortable and comes with, IMO a lot of bells and whistles.

So lets get to it!!!

LILIPUTI is a European based company, manufacturing their products in Hungary.

**FUN FACT– this company sells way more than just SSC; such as babywearing coats, leather baby booties, and other accessories for you, your child, babywearing related and otherwise.**

They have a great business vision and by purchasing from them, you are supporting and helping a small family business. They have started to “…………fulfill our intention to offer parents bringing up a young child solutions which help them ensure oppurtunities providing safety for their child and themselves, strengthening contact and supporting physical and mental health in all kinds of situations.” – taken from the Liliputi website

Their soft structured carriers (SSC) and Mei Tai’s are made with organic cotton fabrics meeting the regulations of the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

Not good at all!!

*spoiler alert– this is by far my favorite ssc to date and that is comparing against Tula, Ergo, and MadameGooGoo*

While out on our walk, you can see how the straps are right in my armpits, also this was as far up as i could get the hood. Not functional IMO for back carries and toddlers.

While out on our walk, you can see how the straps are right in my armpits, also this was as far up as i could get the hood. Not functional IMO for back carries and toddlers.

The first time I wore this I found the straps would rub right into my armpits. I also thought the hood was completely pointless. Now; I know I forgot to adjust the shoulder PFA’s, but I still think the hood is pointless.

After completely adjusting for my body I found this carrier was very comfortable and petite person friendly. It was very comfortable and cushy on my shoulders and after my initial test walk, I realized there was no “after SSC pain’ in my lower back.

 

 

HOW IT TESTED:

I found myself choosing this carrier over my other SSC time and time again. We decided to have a family fun day and spent about 3 hours at Legoland in FOLK-TALE. On Valentines Day we spent about 5 hours at the San Diego Safari Park. I also have used this almost every day since receiving it for our everyday walks and  trips to the mall.

Not only did I find this carrier comfortable but (as a petite person; 5ft and 110 lbs.) it has been difficult to find a great carrier because most SSC straps and waist belts just dont get small enough for a proper fitting. My husband(J) who is 5’10 and 190 lbs. also found this carrier to be most comfortable; and there was still plenty of room for it to get even larger.

HOW IT TESTED: FROM THE MALE PERSPECTIVE

J really enjoyed the fact that the carrier was so light weight; being as he is the self professed pack mule on most of our adventures, having to lug the carrier around during times not being worn adds a significant weight. Or rather in this case, a weightlessness factor when crammed in a backpack. This is because the LILIPUTI full buckle carrier is made of only two layers of organic cotton as the body panel, instead of multiple layers of heavy canvas and batting. It was very airy and breathable and didn’t leave J’s back into a “sweaty hot mess”. J also enjoyed the comfort of the straps; it was just the perfect amount of padding in terms of thickness and density. Another great feature J enjoyed was the chest clip. It has a great range for up and down adjustibility as well as actual chest width adjustments. One side of the chest clip is adjusted by traditional webbing and the other side uses an additional stretchy webbing. Since J is built like an upside down triangle the chest clip feature was a bonus for him.

Babywearing dad. Shown from behind at a slight angle, image shows a male carrying his toddler son in a back carry in a soft structured carrier.

Comfortable for both toddler and Dad.

Back to our regularly scheduled review…….

While FOLKTALE was in my possesion I also had the privalege to use it as it’s infant carrier option; when my friend brought over her 6 month old daughter. Not only did my friend ALSO think this carrier was super comfortable but she was really impressed by the infant insert. She normally uses another carrier with a heavy and bulky infant insert, not only making both wearer and wearee uncomfortable after long periods of time but also having them drenched in sweat!

However; with Liliputis’ fabric insert with stretchy leg holes, she found that her daughter immediately had a positive and calming reaction to this carrier and even outside in the heat was able to easily fall asleep. And while this carrier does not prevent sweat it was significantly less than her personal carrier.

Image inside a living room shows a woman wearing her 6 month old daughter in a front carry.

This mom was used to Tula’s; but found the light and airy infant insert to be much more comfortable for her and her 6 month old daughter.

 

MY RECOMMENDATION:

There are a few things I would change such as the floating elastics in some places, as I really prefer the attached elastic at the end of the extra webbing. I still find the hood to be a bit pointless, but specifically in a back carry for a toddler. I feel that this problem could be alleviated by moving the placement of the hood closer to the top part of the body panel, or allowing the hood attachment loops more space to adjust higher or lower along the shoulder straps.

The Liliputi full buckle SSC is perfect for infants and toddlers alike. With so much room to adjust not only the shoulder straps, waistband, and chest clip; but also the body panel; it really can be a perfect fit for both wearer and wearee at ANY stage of wearing!!

At $125 conversion rate from euros, that is an amazing price point for a full buckle carrier! But to me the real bonus is that it comes with the infant insert AS WELL AS the leg extenders!

I mean, c’mom….you can’t beat that!!!!

Overall, this carrier is by far my FAVORITE and I know if given the chance, many will agree me!!!

Image shows a sleeping toddler on top of the soft structured carrier. Commonly known as a a successful sleep transfer.

After a long day at Disneyland a nap is needed. And a succesful sleep transfer is a double win for this mommy!!!

PINKNOVA: THE NATURAL KISS

IMG_6738

 

SPECS…..
 
  • 250 g/m2 (GSM)
  • WIDTH – 27 in.
  • TAPERS – 5.5 in
  • BLEND – 100% COTTON
  • CARE – machine washable
  • PRICE – $155 s2 – $190 s7
  • TESTER SIZE 4 

 

IMG_5906

So I’m going to be real with ya’ll, I dont know much about this company except that the owners names are Llse and Judith, they are moms and baby wearers, their company is based in The Netherlands, and its only about 3 years old.
Oh wait, I guess thats more than I thought!
What I do know is that Llse and Judith know EXACTLY who their target market is. Their wraps are simoultaneously simple, timeless, and eye-catching. They are made from some of the finest fibers, such as silk, Merano wool, Giza cotton, and linen. Making their wraps absolutely LUXORIOUS but also maintaining an affordable(ish) price tag.
And champagne tastes is pretty much my life; at a little over $200 or a little under $200 (depending on where you are on the globe) for a size 7, made from luxery fiber blends; may not exactly be beer budget money however I would willingly pay that for top quality woven wraps. 
 
Released July 7, 2015 as a limited edition, The NATURAL KISS has an Ecru Egyptian cotton weft and a Beige Giza cotton warp. 
GIZA COTTON is some of the finest cotton in the world coming straight from the Nile Delta in Egypt. The irregularities in this cotton are so minimal that it makes for a very smooth finish and often gives a silky look and feel when it is woven into fabrics. 
The Natural Kiss is a jacquard fabric however because of the high quality cotton used all those perfect little lipstick kisses dont offer much in terms of grip as compared to other jacquard woven’s I’ve tested.
 
– side note- can we just talk about those perfect little lipstick kisses?! mine never turn out this good, like who was their lip model, is what I really wanna know. 
 
HOW THE NATURAL KISSES TESTED……..
 
So I first saw this wrap in its cherry chapstick colorway and loved the vibrant pink and subtle purple of it. However, I just didnt feel it connected with me. I know I’m weird here but I’m also probably not the only one that feels a wrap needs to call to me “the wand chooses the wizard harry”; if you will.
 
I had been looking to test a shorter wrap as my tablecloth shorty (I ended up finding to be too short) and I wasn’t really reaching for my size 6 regularly anymore. Low and behold my good friend Hillary over at BUGGLET BABY had a size 4!! The subtle ecru and beige really made for a complimentary wrap not only because I liked it with my own skin tone but also because it really went well with any outfit. And lets be real sometimes that can be a deciding factor if your going to be out running errands or what have you.
 
IMG_5785
So my first carry was a REINFORCED ROBINS HIP CARRY TIED UNDER BUM (well technically knee) and man was this comfortable! Sliding the extra fabric through the robins shoulder loop was a breeze and having both the right and other right side showing always makes for a special wrap job in my book. I did find because the passes were smooth that after 10 mins of a squirmy toddler what I thought was properly tightened became easily loose.
In some of the pictures you can’t really tell its kisses at all over the wrap; it kind of looks like a cheetah print instead.
 Next we tried out a DOUBLE HAMMOCK TORSO CARRY WITH STERNUM CHEST BELT. 
Every time I tried a torso carry it was a disaster. The pressure was too much on my boobs making them leak or I was booty tooching so much to keep him high because I thought he was too low, that my back would hurt! However, with KISSES this wrap/carry combo was AMAZING!! Jamie felt so secure and snug. My back didnt hurt and I was “milk circle” free, ya’ll!!!! That is a win/win people.
IMG_5862
We also tried a FRONT CROSS CARRY WITH RINGS. First I should say I used large size sling rings but really should have used medium. Also I forgot to cross the back straps making an ‘X”; which would have allowed me to spread the back passes to be more comfortable. That being said; the wrap was pretty slippery in those rings, there wasnt really anything for it to grip to. So for this blend/wrap it is absolutely vital to use the proper size rings or you could have a slip out!
FullSizeRenderFullSizeRender-4

MY RECOMMENDATION……

Overall, this wrap would be great for any age, it is super soft for newborns and with its generous width and strength of fibers works well for toddlers. What is also a huge selling point is that because it is cotton it breathes beautifully. Even with 3 passes and summer heat, you and baby both would be able to stay relatively cool.
Remember we are wrapping a warm body to another warm body after all. 
I would say there is a medium cush factor in terms of shoulder comfort depending on the carry. My biggest critique is that it is quite slippery; like a little eel.  I found if my wrap was sloppy, there was no way it would hold up to my wriggly toddler. However, if i wasnt rushed and was able to pay attention and not just use muscle memory, really focusing on strand by strand tightening; I had some of the most secure wrap jobs. I would definitely say this wrap/blend is more for the experienced wrapper than the novice. The learning curve to wrapping is steep and no one needs additional discouragement becasue your passes keep sliding down!! 
IMG_5779

This is really a beautiful wrap and I’m very much looking forward to trying other blends and prints from PINKNOVA!!

TINY TIGER BABY: EVERLASTING GOBSTOPPER

No Filter – This was taken inside my home next to the open backdoor


SPECS


  • 275 GSM
  • WIDTH – 28
  • TAPERS – BLUNT ENDS 
  • BLEND – COTTON
  • PLAIN WEAVE
  • MEDIUM AND LIGHT GREY WEFT 
  • CARE – MACHINE WASHABLE
  • PRICE – $122 – $132
  • Tester was a size 2 (8 ft or 2.7 m)
 
 
Woven in Scramento, CA by a military veteran and his wife. Ryan and Kat are a family owned and operated business, they not only produce handwoven but also machine woven wraps. They are known as Tiny Tiger Baby and KHR Wraps.
Their wraps are American made and they try to source from American companies as often as possible. What is really cool and what they take great pride in; is that their wraps are made on Draper vintage looms. Babywearing The Magazine did a great piece on them where they talk about their company and looms here. 
 
Released February 21, 2015EVERLASTING GOBSTOPPER is 100% cotton and comes in a medium grey weft or a light grey weft. When I received it, it was a lot more purple-y in person than what was shown in the stock picture. Which was strange because it never really came across as really purple in the pictures I took either. Must be a trick of the wrap!!
The name is very fitting if you have ever seen the inside of a jaw breaker (what I can only assume was Mr.Wonkas inspiration as well.)
 
 
 
HOW EVERLASTING GOBSTOPPER TESTED……
 
My first impression was that this reminded me of a sarape blanket. If you are unfamiliar with serapes, you can read up on them here and here. 
Also it was super thin; which for those in warm climates we know is a BIG selling point. Since it was so thin that also meant it was extra floppy, just crumbled onto itself. 
 
It should be said that this is not considered a learning wrap; meaning both rails are the same color. Which if you are just beginning your wrapping journey that may be something to consider.
 
So we started with a Front Wrap Cross Carry, tied under bum.  There was no real stretch so I found SXS (strand by strand) tightening would actually loosen my tension. It was better for me to just tighten a top rail section and then a bottom rail section. This wrap has lots of texture so grippyness was not an issue but because of that there was no real glide. Grip, it had in spades but not glide. The width however, allowed me to get nice deep seats with plenty of extra room for along Jamies’ back.
FWCC TUB – this kid cracks me up

 


Next we tried a Shepard’s Back Carry. Here was where I noticed this wrap might not be for me. I found while the thinness and floppy nature of the wrap were great, the texture was difficult. It felt like once I tried to slide a pass over an existing part of the wrap, it was stuck like glue! I couldn’t move it anywhere!!! I basically had to collect as much of the wrap and all its tension in the exact place I wanted it to be in before moving on to the next pass. There really was no slide and glide factor. This also came into play while trying to tie a rebozo hip carry with a slipknot finish. There was no stretch to the wrap so trying to get a good slipknot was dare I say; impossible.


Shepard’s Carry
Robins Hip Carry TUB
(tied under bum)



I also found that doing one shoulder carries for me were painful. I’m generally not a fan of one shoulder carries to begin with; my shoulder/arm will fall asleep or go numb and some wraps tend to lay wrong on a crappily placed pinched nerve. Unfortunately this style of wrap did just that. A dig into an existing problem, yes but painful none the less. So if this is something you deal with as well (this is also why I have yet to find a ring sling I can use regularly), this particular woven may not be for you.

There is not all bad news here;  our final carry with EVERLASTING GOBSTOPPER was a Taiwanese Back Carry. Which has quickly become a go-to favorite carry of mine. I decided to use this carry and go for about an hour walk around my neighborhood. I wrapped in my living room really focusing on placement and security. Not only was I comfortable while in this carry and wrap but so was Jamie. He even had a wrap nap on this walk and again because of that generous width I was able to bring up some extra fabric around his head like a hood, covering him from the rays of the sun as well. When we got home and I was able to take off the wrap (no successful transfer that day haha) we were only slightly sweaty; and with 3 passes in 80+ degree heat in California, that was FANTASTIC!!!


Taiwanese Back Carry
Does this also remind people of
Zebra stripe gum!












MY RECOMMENDATION…..

I would recommend EVERLASTING GOBSTOPPER for the 6 month and older age group, as it really does stand up nicely to the weight of older children.
And even though this particular wrap wasn’t my jam, this was the first wrap my son went to kiss; so there is always that gleaming recommendation!
Overall, I did enjoy working with this wrap and for those familiar with this type of texture this could very easily become an everyday workhorse wrap!
I am looking forward to seeing what else will be coming from TINY TIGER BABY.


THAT WRAP NAP

” A sweet treat with several color-changing levels that spread throughout the wrap. The colors help stimulate mental activity in both baby and caregiver, helping pursue new ideas with confidance and clarity. The colors promote harmony, peace, and wholesome feelings.” – Kat

#tinytigerbaby

 

Maintaining a love journal for your children

What is a Love Journal?



So a few years ago, i decided i would write a love book for my husband. I would write in it every day for a year and give it to him on our following anniversary.
so cute, right?


https://www.pinterest.com/pin/73605775137967596/


Man, i love pinterest!! It makes it seem like it was totally an original idea but alas; it was not.(insert link to pinterest inspiration here)


So what is a love book you might ask? Well, this particular book was filled with love notes, similar to journal entries(as in i dated them)

And while the goal was to write in it every day, i can tell you as a procrastinator and self proclaimed non-driven person that didn’t happen AT ALL!!
Some days(weeks went by without a single entry and some entries were just a photograph i glued to the page, some entries were song lyrics that reminded me of us, or just him, or how i viewed our relationship at the time(which is so super adorbs except for the long ass songs that took like 3 pages or the ones that had the chorus like 5X in a row)

I did miraculously keep this LOVE BOOK a secret from my dear hubby for a year but by the time i gave it to him for our anniversary it was only HALF full. i knew i should have got the small skinny journal to start!!!

So while i didnt fill up my LOVE BOOK by the time i gifted it; i thought it would be a great idea to start one for my son!!!
Since there is no real timeline on when to gift it i dont feel bad if i miss days or even weeks before starting a new entry.
Yay me for not giving myself a deadline!!

So i originally thought for this momento i would buy one of those DR.SEUSS books and give it to his teachers each year so they could write some heartwarming message to him as he grew up(insert pinterest insperation)

HOWEVER, lets be real here 1)i most certainly would forget that shit at least one or two years and 2)what if the teacher wrote some backhanded compliment or something i didnt feel was positive or what have you.

So needless to say i scrapped that idea


Then i thought “oh, how cool would it be to give him an album filled with $20 bills instead of pictures!!”

Again, not an original idea, thank you PINTEREST!! https://www.pinterest.com/pin/73605775134366235/
But then i realizedwe already have a savings account where we try and save $500 a year in for him and plus(lets get real here) if i see/have an extra $20 bucks lying around that shit is gonna get spent.

Saving is so much easier when i cant see/hear/touch/smell the money!!!


Then that ludicrous idea started floating around about buying your child a domain name and posting pictures and memories to it and giving them access to it when their older. I thought who the heck has time for that nonsense and then i realized thats basically what ive done in my sons LOVE BOOK so…….

C’est la vie(that is life)
I guess i just prefer the tangible.