Babywearing Week

Wednesday October 3rd, 2018

Babywearing Week

It’s International Babywearing Week, a week-long celebration of the all the wonderful
benefits of baby wearing and we spoke to Hannah Wallace, Owner of Wear My Baby,
London’s specialist baby carrier store and advice service, to get the lowdown.

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What made you decide to open a Baby Wearing Boutique?

The absolute need for one! Until we opened there were no specialist baby carrier
stores in London. Or the whole of the south of England. I’ve worked as a babywearing
educator and consultant for 4 years, so I knew it was something parents needed. You see,
buying a baby carrier is different to shopping for other pieces of baby kit. It’s more like
buying a bra. Different ones suit different people, so it’s best to get a proper fitting and then
try out a few styles to see what feels right. You can’t do that if you’re buying from Amazon.

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What do you love about Baby Wearing?

Babywearing can change your whole experience of parenting. My team and I – we have
8 Wear My Baby Consultants working across London and south east England – have parents
telling us every day that a comfy sling has changed their lives. Babywearing means you can keep
your baby close, soothe and comfort them, and still get on with everyday life. You get to zip around
on trains and buses and get around the supermarket. You can make lunch for your toddler and do
the school run with ease.

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Do you have any favourite carriers for newborns, babies and toddlers?

That’s a tough one. We only sell carriers that we have tried and tested robustly, so we have a lot of
favourites. I actually have a top 15, but here are just 3 of them.

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It’s hard to beat a good quality stretchy wrap for newborns.
They might look a bit like full-body origami, but once you’ve got the hang of them they’re blissfully
comfy and support, for you and your baby. They are one of the few truly universal types of sling, so
they’ll suit just about every parent and baby from day one. The Izmi Baby Wrap is brilliant quality,
made from soft-but-strong and breathable bamboo fabric.
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If you want to carry your baby facing outwards
(not before 4months+) and like the idea of a more structured and padded carrier, then the
Ergobaby Omni 360 is definitely one to try out. It’s one the very few carriers that can hold your baby
in a supportive, ergonomic position, even when facing outwards. Which makes it kinder to your back
than many of its competitors.
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For a great in-between carrier we love the Mamaruga Zensling.
It’s handmade by made by a small British brand so you won’t see it gracing the shelves of John Lewis.
At least not just yet. It’s easy to use, adjustable and suits tiny newborns up until they’re toddling.
Made from stretchy jersey fabric, it’s marshmallowy soft. I call it the Tracksuit Bottoms of the sling
world. And who doesn’t love slipping into tracky bottoms after a long day
– or, in the case of new parents, night?

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What tips would you give to newbies looking to try out Babywearing?

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1. There is no one ‘best’ sling or baby carrier.
Like bras or jeans, the best one for you depends on a number of factors: your shape, your posture, your baby’s age, what you’re using it for –and what feels good on your body.  So don’t be surprised if your friend lends you the Best Sling Ever and you don’t like it!
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2. Get some expert advice and try before you buy.
Come for a Consultation or workshop at our London Boutique, or with a Wear My Baby Consultant near you. Between us we have over 50 years experience of carrying our own kids and have worked with many thousands of families, so you’ll be in safe and very knowledgeable hands.
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3. High and tight is key.
When parents tell us their newborn baby doesn’t like their sling, or that it doesn’t feel safe or comfy, it’s often due to the sling being too loose and worn too low. You should feel totally hands free. Slings need to be tight to be safe, with your baby’s airways fully protected, snuggled high enough on your chest that you can easily kiss their heads.See www.wearmybaby.co.uk/babywearing-safety for more safety info.
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4. Practice.
Some of the most comfy, supportive carriers, like stretchy or woven wraps, can take a bit of practice. Once you’ve got the hang of them they will rock your world, so keep trying. We have some handy videos on our new YouTube channel.
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5. Persist – and get moving.
Your baby may protest when going into a sling. It’s new, and it’s a transition, which babies often don’t like. Their cries will seem louder when settling them into a sling than when settling them into a buggy, as they’re a lot close to your ears! But chances are they will settle quickly once they feel safe secure and snuggly held. And get moving. Babies love movement. It’s incredible soothing. So get your shoes on, get your sling on, then go or a walk around the block.
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6. Enjoy the cuddles while they last.
You cannot spoil a baby by cuddling or carrying them too much. There will come a day, maybe very soon, when they only want sleep in their bed and not on you. Of course buggies are great too, and I’m not saying anyone needs to carry their baby around all day, every day. But it’s hard work, this parenting malarkey. Babywearing can make it all a bit easier.

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About Hannah Wallace
Mum of two Hannah founded Wear My Baby in 2014. She is a highly experienced Babywearing Consultant and has trained with Slingababy, the School of Babywearing and L’ecole A Porter. In July 2018, she and her team opened Wear My Baby Boutique in Tooting, SW London, London’s specialist baby carrier store. They offer a sling hire service, in-store consultations with an expert team and after-hours workshops for expectant parents and health/birth professionals.  Wear My Baby has a team of Consultants offering one-to-one help and pop up events in London, Surrey, Kent, Hertfordshire and Reading. Find out more at www.WearMyBaby.co.uk

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This week get 10% off our Snug As A Bug Suit, a new style a reversible double layer outerwear style that’s designed with baby wearing in mind. Click here to find our more about baby wearing week > 

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