July 2014 - Baby Tula Blog

July 2014 Archive

We, the people of Tula

 

Dear Tula Friends and Fans!  We appreciate your support and are so humbled by your love through the years! Thank you for your beautiful photos that you send us or post on our Facebook and Instagram pages. Thank you for spreading the Tula Love. Thank you for all the questions we receive daily. Thank you for being the most fun and enthusiastic group of fans we have EVER met or even ever heard of. You are what makes Tula so special and so amazing. Thank you! We are forever grateful and therefore will always listen to ALL your feedback and respond to your requests.

Ever since we started our company (please click here to see how we began our adventure),we have worked to improve our carriers and service to better suit the needs of our customers. With so many questions and curiosity about Tula behind the scenes, we have decided to create this post to give you a little peek into Tula’s story: where it’s made, how it’s made and the people behind it.

Some fun and interesting facts about Tula Carriers:

* Tula was founded at the end of 2009 while Mike and Ula (the owners) lived in Poland.

* In 2011 Mike and Ula moved to the USA with an intention to produce and sell carriers only in Europe. Meeting the local babywearing group inspired us to introduce our carriers to the babywearers in the US.

With the growing demand, we opened a production facility in Mexico, just 30 minutes away from our San Diego office. Mike and Ula went to college with the owner of our facility in Mexico.

The first year of operating in Poland, all the Tulas were packaged by Ula and Mike. Mike carried them from our apartment to the post office in the snow. He didn’t speak any Polish but became a favorite customer and every time Ula came to drop off boxes, the women in the post office were slightly disappointed haha 😉

* 75% !!! of the Tula Team in San Diego are parents and they babywear.

Tula is a product of love for our children and babywearing, but it is also a product of finding a way to support our family while wanting to stay close to my sick mother in Poland. In 2009, we moved to Poland to live closer to my parents when my mom was diagnosed with cancer. I wanted to be close to her and needed to find a way to stay. We created this business with a goal of selling 1 carrier a day.

Our recent addition to the Tula collection are woven wrap and ring slings, which are woven in Poland in a family-owned mill with over 20 years of experience.

* Our operations manager in Poland has a background in philosophy. Most of our employees have a background in teaching or humanities. We operate very differently than most businesses. 🙂

* The seamstresses in both of our locations follow Tula’s Facebook page and are proud to be a part of a product, which brings so much happiness to families!  🙂

Our name used to be Tuli, which derives from a Polish word “to hug.” When we needed to change our name, we wanted it to be different, yet similar enough so it didn’t confuse our previous customers. We found Tula, a “girl version” of Tuli. haha.. Also, TULA contains Ula’s name and her last name initial T.

* The Tula Team consists of people with diverse backgrounds and, among all of us, we speak 7 languages (8, if count Baby Sign Language) … oh… and Mike speaks his own language, that none of us understands, so 9!!!! 😉

* We wear flip-flops to the office and there is a surfboard holding court in the lunchroom 😉

* Our logo is a BEAR 🙂

*Our wrap conversion carriers are made with love in Poland. Our canvas carriers are made with love in Poland and Mexico. We visit both facilities on a regular basis.

*We have a quality control point in Poland where our Made in Poland carriers are inspected. We have two quality control points for our Made in Mexico carriers – one in Mexico, and one in San Diego, California.

*We use high quality fabrics for all of our carriers. Fabrics used to make our Made in Poland carriers are sourced from Poland and the USA. Fabrics used to make our Made in Mexico carriers are sourced entirely from the USA.

*Since day one, we have used the highest quality, military-grade Duraflex buckles for all of our carriers in both locations. The Duraflex buckles used in our Made in Poland carriers are sourced from the European Duraflex distributor. The Duraflex buckles used in our Made in Mexico carriers are purchased in the USA and these are made in the USA using raw materials from the USA. Duraflex buckles comply with the Berry Amendment for domestic production. (Please be sure to check out our instructional video below on how to properly and safely buckle the Tula carrier)

* In addition, and in conjunction with testing to meet ASTM and CPSC norms for BCIA, carriers from both locations are undergoing a rigorous third-party assessment of our materials from an independent laboratory. These tests include phthalates, heavy metals and chemicals, amongst many other key test items. We already have good news and now are looking forward to receiving this certification.

*In response to some of your questions on how to properly use Tula products, we have created instructional videos, which we hope you will find useful!

Have you seen the informational video on how to safely use your Tula Baby Carrier


We are so humbled by your love and support of Tula through the years. We are here to assist you, to listen, and to make the most comfortable and safe carriers using prints that will make you feel like a rock star.  😉

Let me introduce you to some of our team members! <3

Our production facility in Mexico. These people have been with us since 2012 🙂 Carmen, the women wearing glasses (on the left), is the floor manager:

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And a little peek into our production in Poland. This is Dorota, our floor manager:

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If you ever communicated with our office in Poland, you may have met Eva! 🙂

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 Meet Team TULA San Diego: http://www.tulababycarriers.com/pages/meet-team-tula

Tula Families // Michelle & Family

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Where do you live?

Nantucket Island, Massachusetts

How many in your family?

Just we three.

Age?
I’m 26, he’s 25, and the little he is 2.

Work?
I’m an artist/ illustrator/doll-maker/stay at home mum. Zak is a landscaping supervisor. Odin is a toddler, although he doesn’t get paid for that. Really he should pay me, I think.

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First Tula?
When Odin was too big to carry in the sling, I came across Georgia at Documenting Delight’s blog post about the Tula vs Ergo for a bigger kid. Instantly knew I needed one. I was in love with Zoom Zoom but it was discontinued, which is how I found the Tula B/S/T on Facebook. Very luckily, I instantly found my Zoom Zoom and have since passed it along to another mumma since finding  WC.

How long have you been babywearing?
Since the beginning! We had a Moby wrap but it was so ridiculously hot. We moved onto a Maya Wrap ring sling, but the padded shoulder was uncomfortable so we started using the Ergo more. Sakura Bloom ring slings were much more comfortable and then we found Tula and nothing felt as heavenly! haha!

More than one?
I own one full toddler Mockingbird and one standard Benvolio. I also just received a toddler Mermaids which I designed! It is so special to have my art made into a Tula.  I had another standard canvas that I gave away recently to another mumma who I knew would appreciate it!

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Other carriers?
I was in the Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries, so I am also a big lover of ring slings. I find them most comfortable with smaller babes though! I didn’t really get into wrapping until just recently, which is sort of inconvenient since my child is more than half my height at two years old. I’d like to play around more with wrapping with the next one though.

What do you like about Baby Tula?
Besides the fact that it’s super comfortable, I really like the fact that it comes from a small family business. Ula is rocking it with her work and it’s pretty inspirational. I like the design more than other buckle carriers and even when doing comparisons, Tula still wins for comfort for me and my little.

What makes your family unique?
I think we have some pretty interesting hobbies. We have a huge garden and we keep bees. Zak is a studying mycologist and we grow our own medicinal and gourmet mushrooms which is pretty interesting. It’s neat to be able to teach Odin about the different mushrooms we come across and about the honeybees and how important they are to the environment. I make art and it’s really cute to hear Odin ask if we can do art together. We have some pretty cool friends who all do something unique and Odin loves them all to pieces. It really does take a village and in our first year we lived with four friends. Having spent his first year with six adults, he tends to warm up very easily to people.

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What’s the strangest thing we’ve done while babywearing?
Zak insists that he’s fought off an alien invasion while rocking Odin in our Amitola. I think the strangest thing I’ve done is use the bathroom, but that’s pretty ordinary so I think Zak wins.

What’s your biggest struggle right now?
Trying to balance my art with my mothering. I have some help this summer since Zak’s little sister is out of school, but it’s overwhelming to know that I have to really work towards setting up my foundation so that when summer ends, I can easily continue to work even with a little one home all day.

What makes you happy to be a parent?
When I can directly see my influence in him or when he shows that he is learning something positive by example (sometimes it’s the opposite though and he copies something he shouldn’t! Ha!). Recently, he found a piece of trash in one of the flower boxes outside of our favorite coffee shop. He picked it up and sighed, shaking his head. He then brought it over to the trash can. That made me ridiculously happy.

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How does babywearing make your life easier?
Odin doesn’t want to be worn too often lately, but for a long while it was the only way to get things done throughout the day. Art making or chores or even longer walks. We wear him now mostly on those longer walks when his little feet grow too tired to keep going.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give a new parent?
Go with the flow and don’t stress. Things will constantly be up and down and right when you think you have it all figured out, it WILL change. Do what works for you, regardless of what everyone around you says or what seems to be most popular. Every so often, someone tried to guilt us for nursing in public/nursing a toddler or co-sleeping. We never let it bother us and things run pretty smoothly (generally).       DSC_8689 DSC_8719

Tula Families – Lindman Family

Welcome to Tula Families – a fortnightly feature showcasing some of our lovely Tula families around the world.

We’re kicking it off with the Lindman family and this epic photo:

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Where do you live?
Portland, OR

How many in your family?

Four. Me, my husband David, our daughter (16 mos) Clementine & our French bulldog, Sebastian.

What does your family do for work?

I’m a stay at home mom & a children’s book author. David has a online store so we’re lucky enough to have him at home most of the time too.

How long have you been babywearing?

I’ve been babywearing since she was about 3 months old. I tried a few times when she was younger but she didn’t like it. Probably because I didn’t have my Tula yet. 😉

What other types of carriers have you used?

My first carrier was a k’tan but she hated it. Then I tried a baby Bjorn. I went for a 15 minute walk to a local baby consignment store the first time I used the Bjorn. It hurt my shoulders so bad that I bought a used Beco baby carrier for the walk back. I wanted to sell my Bjorn on consignment there but they wouldn’t take it. Now I know why! The Beco was way better but I couldn’t nurse her because an annoying piece of fabric was in the way. This frustrated her to no end. Finally, a few weeks later I ordered my Baby Tula & it’s been heaven ever since.

We have two Tula carriers. A blue zig zag & a beautiful embroidered hot air balloon toddler carrier.

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What do you like about Tula?

I love the design & comfort. I love that I can actually multitask, handle teething issues, get her to sleep and go anywhere and do almost anything with my Tula. My husband once said, “It’s so simple and brilliant. I don’t know why other carriers try to make them so complicated”. They are also the most aesthetic carriers out there!

Where does babywearing take you?

Shopping, parks, walking our dog, festivals, kid friendly movies, berry picking, beaches, marathons, traveling on airplanes & boats, hiking, fishing, and all around town. I only use my stroller for jogging & super long treks & I still bring my Tula as backup.

What’s one piece of advice you would give new parents?

 Do what works! There are so many parenting styles out there and everyone has an opinion but you just have to do what works the best for your family. Every baby is different and not every family functions the same way. I also highly recommend reading The Baby Book by Dr. Sears. It helped me so much!

What’s the best advice you were given?

The best advice I received was to ignore the false claims that you can spoil your baby by holding them too often. I read it in a Dr. Sears book actually and he has nothing but good things to say about babywearing & co-sleeping. I always had my daughter either on my lap or in carrier and she is the happiest, most social toddler I know. 🙂

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 If you’d like to have your family featured on the Tula Blog, please express interest by emailing blog (at) tulababy (dot) com – we’re so excited to share different journey’s Tula families are on!