Tag Archives: baby slings

New Zealand Babywearing Week 2011 Event Wrap Up – Babywearing North Shore Group Launch

ManducaNew Zealand Babywearing Week was perfect timing for the launch of new babywearing group ‘Babywearing North Shore‘.  The launch took place on Tuesday 11 October and was well supported with a great turnout.  Brief demonstrations of how to wear the main types of baby carrier were given followed by an opportunity for attendees to ask for help with their own carriers, or to try on a different type that they were curious about.  Here are some of the Babywearing North Shore team in action  (along with special guest, Jessica Richards of Slingbabies who demonstrated a woven wrap, and also explained why bag slings are a dangerous babywearing option):

Storchenwiege woven wrap

Kozy CarrierManduca baby carrier

(Images top – bottom:  Helen demonstrating a pouch sling (hip carry with a toddler); Jess demonstrating a woven wrap with ‘Scary’ the demonstration doll; Rebecca demonstrating a stretchy wrap; Helen demonstrating a Mei Tai with a sleepy toddler; Rebecca demonstrating a back carry with a soft-structured carrier).

We also enjoyed drawing winners of the products donated by the generous New Zealand Babywearing Week sponsors!!  The lucky winners are pictured below with their loot – fumbee shoulder strap protectors, Manduca front pouch, The Natural Parent magazines & a 1yr subscription, Rockin’ Green laundry detergent, OURS DVD, Tummy2Tummy Babywearing Instructional DVD and Huggalugs leg warmers.  A big thank you to the sponsors!

ManducaBabywearing North Shore meets on the 2nd Tuesday of each month for a workshop style meeting, and the 4th Tuesday of each month for a coffee group meet up.  For more information visit the Babywearing North Shore Facebook page or the Babywearing North Shore blog.

Weekly Focus: Ring Slings

Storchenwiege ring sling

Ring slings are a one shouldered carrier suitable for newborns through to toddlers.  A ring sling can be used the same way as a pouch sling – the difference though is that a ring sling is adjustable so one size will fit all wearers.  The ring sling is adjusted by pulling the end of the fabric through purpose made sling rings, allowing baby to be adjusted upwards and inwards so that they are nice and snug against the wearers body.

Storchenwiege ring slingAlways make sure to use a ring sling that has been made with purpose made sling rings as these have been weight tested for safety.  Never use a ring sling if the rings have a join in them as they may pull apart causing the sling to become dangerous.

Babies can be carried in several different holds in a ring sling – upright cradle, tummy to tummy, hip and back. The most common carry with a ring sling is the hip carry as shown below.

Storchenwiege ring sling organic As with any baby carrier, positioning is very important when carrying your baby.  For an upright cradle carry with a ring sling, always make sure baby’s face is clear of fabric and that their chin is not pressed into their chest – an easy way to make sure the airway is clear is to make sure you can fit two fingers between baby’s chin and their chest.  For carries with an older baby or toddler where their legs are out, always make sure their knees are higher than their bottom.  This can be achieved by spreading the fabric of the sling right up to the backs of your child’s knees, creating a comfy seat for them.  This ensures optimal positioning of baby’s developing hips and spine.  The images above and below show the correct positioning with the child’s knees higher than their bottom.

Storchenwiege ring sling LillyWhen carrying your child in a tummy to tummy, hip or back carry, make sure to pull the fabric nice and high up baby’s back, making sure the sling is nice and snug.  This ensures that your child’s back is well supported.

The fabric of the ring sling should be nicely spread across the wearer’s back, as pictured below.  This allows the child’s weight to be evenly distributed across their caregivers shoulder and back and makes for comfortable wearing without any painful pressure points.  The fabric should cap the shoulder, it should not dig into your neck.

Storchenwiege ring sling Bio Eric Ring sling terms and their definitions:

Tail = the end of the sling that hangs through the rings.  This can be held over your child if you’re caught in a rain shower, to cover your child for sun protection or as a breastfeeding cover if desired.

Rails = the edges of the sling.  The top rail goes behind baby’s back in upright carries and can be adjusted to bring baby in closer to you.  The bottom rail goes under baby’s knees in upright carries and can be adjusted to lift baby higher up your body – their bottom should be about level with your tummy button.

For more information about ring slings and to find instructions complete with photos, please visit Slingbabies!

Article written by Helen MacMillan of My Natural Baby Ltd

Storchenwiege ring sling images used with permission.

Babywearing Groups in New Zealand – Spotlight on Waikato Baby Carriers

In the lead up to New Zealand Babywearing Week (Oct 10 – 16, 2011) we will be featuring the babywearing groups that run meetings in New Zealand. So far we have featured Slingbabies and Babywearing Wellington – this week we learn about Waikato Baby Carriers!

First, meet Kerry and Claire who run Waikato Baby Carriers – this is Claire:

Waikato Baby Carriersand this is Kerry:

Claire & Kerry answer some questions for us:

When did Waikato Baby Carriers get started and why? Our first ever meeting was 3rd August 2010.

(Claire) We started WBC because we are passionate about babywearing and its many benefits.  I used to get stopped by people who thought my baby looked snug and happy and wanted to know how/where/why etc.   It’s cool to be able to do something you love so much with a dear friend and it means we get to spend time playing with gorgeous carriers while helping other Mums.  It feels really good to be able to share the babywearing love.

(Kerry) What she said :0)

When and where are your meetings? We meet on theTHIRD THURSDAY of the month at Parent’s Place, 87 Boundary Rd, Hamilton. It’s the back room – go down the driveway and through the gate to get there.

What happens at a typical meeting?

(Claire) Our meetings are very relaxed and people just come and go as they please.  Some people come most months and some just when they need a hand.  We welcome everyone with an interest in Babywearing whether they are looking to buy a carrier, learn to use the one they have or simply have a cup of tea with other Mums.  We try to focus on safety and are largely guided by the wants and needs of the people at each meeting.  One day we might do a back wrapping demo while other days there is a lot of interest in SSCs or trying a stretchy.  Our aim is to meet people’s needs and by and large I think we manage that.

(Kerry) Our meetings are pretty informal and people can come for advice or just to connect – though our focus is to help people with their babywearing needs and we want to make sure people go away with new knowledge and/or skills.  people We will often do 2 or 3 different demos over the time period according to what people need to see as well as helping individual Mums with learning about new carriers or how to use their current carrier more comfortably. We love teaching people new tricks that make life so much easier.

I’m pregnant but interested in Babywearing, can I still attend meetings?

(Claire) We have a few Mum’s that we met when they were pregnant and they still come along now that their bubs are a bit older.  One Mum that springs to mind has gone from using a stretchy to a ring sling to a Mei Tai and now she wants to learn to back carry. It has been awesome sharing her journey with her.  When i bought my first wrap (a stretchy) I learnt to tie it well before bubs arrived so that i was confident tying it before i added the pressure of a tired/cranky/tiny baby so i think this is a great option.

(Kerry) Of course! It’s a great idea to come along and get a feel for the different carriers and ‘try before you buy’

Are baby carriers available to hire from a lending library? If so, how does the lending library work?  We do have a lending library which is a combination of carriers that have been donated and carriers we have bought ourselves – and many of our Mum’s have enjoyed taking home and trying an SSC, MT, RS etc. Lending is at our discretion and there is a nominal bond for the more expensive carriers. We also have a Tummy to Tummy DVD that is available for Mum’s to borrow.

Who organises and hosts the Waikato Baby Carriers meetings?  Claire and Kerry organize and host the meetings – though we happily would accept help from other experienced babywearers :0)

If each of you could share just one Babywearing tip, what would it be?

(Claire) Practice makes perfect (well nearly perfect lol)

(Kerry) Start with the one type of carry in the one type of carrier that you need most for your circumstances as they are *right now* – you can deal with the rest later

How can people get in touch with the group?  The best way is email (waikatobabycarriers@gmail.com) or visit the Waikato Baby Carriers Facebook Page

New Zealand Babywearing Week Father’s Day Photo Competition

The Natural Parent Magazine and manduca front pouchFather’s Day will soon be here – Sunday 4th September 2011.  We want to celebrate the NZ babywearing Dads out there.  For a chance to win a copy of the latest The Natural Parent Magazine, and a manduca front pouch, share a babywearing photo of the babywearing Dad in your family on our facebook page and send in your contact details by email.  A winner will be drawn randomly on Father’s Day.

The Natural Parent Magazine is a treasure containing articles on intelligent living, connection parenting and health & well being.  The manduca front pouch can be used with any type of baby carrier that has a waist belt by securing it with the velcro strap.  It can also be used with the handy shoulder / waist strap.  Compact yet able to carry all the necessities including your phone, keys, cash, cards, sunglasses, snacks . . .  Total prize value $49.85

So post your images on the New Zealand Babywearing Week Facebook page, then email your name, delivery address and phone number to helen @ mynaturalbaby dot co dot nz  Your entry will need to be received by 9pm on Saturday 3rd September 2011.

Good luck to all who enter!