May 2016 - Baby Tula Blog

May 2016 Archive

Tula Woven Review: Dancey Doll Twirl by Sarah Peter (Jack Sarah)

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Name: Dancey Doll Twirl
Fiber content: 30% Tencel, 70% Cotton
Weight: 260gsm (medium weight wrap)
Size: 6
Wrapee: 26m old son, 23 lbs

I recently had the wonderful opportunity to host a special Baby Tula visitor, called Dancey Doll Twirl. As a long-time fan of Dancey Pants Disco, and the wonderfully talented mama behind the brand, I was thrilled that she had an opportunity to design a wrap for Tula based on her adorably unique dolls. The excitement and support from the loving community of DPD fans and friends (and those who know her from the babywearing community) was tangible, my own enthusiasm included.

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I knew a Dancey Doll was coming to visit, but I had not been informed which colorway. As soon as the package was delivered to my doorstep, I prepared myself with a camera to take some “unboxing” pictures. This was my first Baby Tula Woven Wrap, and I did not know what to expect in terms of packaging and the surprise color. Opening the box, I was greeted with the most stunning Tula Woven tote – a beautifully drawn babywearing mother, in a drawing style all too familiar to me… definitely the amazing work of Michelle Housel! Peeking into the soft canvas tote I saw charming little doll faces smiling back at me, in a most vibrant minty-teal color. Honestly, I had not been expecting this color – I had previewed the other colorways that had been released, and anticipated one of those. It was a complete but welcome surprise to have Twirl visiting!

After snapping a few flat pictures of this cheery wrap, I quickly unfolded it to get a feel of the weight and blend. I own a few tencel blends, so I already expected the wrap to feel soft – and it definitely was! Even though this was not direct from HQ, I’m pretty sure after even one wash, any loom state Tula tencel blend would be as soft and pliable as this traveling Twirl was. It’s a quality I really appreciate about blends like this… so easy to care for and break in! In hand, Twirl felt very similar to my all cotton wraps in weight and texture, but had a bit more floppiness and a touch of silkiness to it. Additionally, I was really satisfied with the amount of diagonal stretch it had, and how neatly it recoiled as I tested it.

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My first impression wrapping with Dancey Doll was that Twirl was moldable with a slightly silky glide – it hugged us in all the right places without digging or feeling too slippery on my shoulders. The wrap was even forgiving enough of a seat-popping leaner who got a little too rambunctious at one point; it held up pretty well to my son pulling his arms in and out many times during our walk, only needing some slight readjustments to tighten everything up towards the end of our adventure. Having a toddler, I prefer multi-pass carries for support; passes remained smooth and effortless, even with the extra reinforcement for my wild child. Knots were of course a breeze in all of the finishes I tried (CCCB, Shepherd’s, and even a quick ruck knotted at my waist), and I felt that it had a reasonable amount of cushiness for my 26 month old son. Twirl’s wrapping qualities felt very balanced in general (due to the cotton-tencel ratio), and I must also point out that this blend has an absolutely beautiful drape!

Overall, Twirl was an absolute delight to host. The pleasant wrapping qualities combined with a charmingly whimsical design, really enables Dancey Doll Twirl to shine as an easy-care wrap. It’s perfect for those looking to keep a functional tencel blend in their stash. Comfortable for both small babies and toddlers, this wrap certainly grows with you and your child. Novice wrappers will be delighted with the friendly wrapping qualities Twirl has to offer, and more experienced wrappers will appreciate the quality of this tencel blend. I honestly did not know what to expect of a Tula Woven Wrap, but was very pleased by the design and wrapping qualities of this distinguished and affordable brand.

Thank you again for this amazing opportunity to host Dancey Doll Twirl – I thoroughly enjoyed this unique and beautiful visitor!

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If you would like to read the interview with Michelle Housel about the inspiration and creation of the Dancey Doll design, you can locate it here: http://blog.tulababycarriers.com/lets-celebrate-with-tula-dancey-dolls/

Babywearing Educator Spotlight: Kat Picson Berling
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Babywearing educators are a wonderful asset to the babywearing community. Their experience, knowledge and passion for babywearing can help caregivers overcome challenges, find solutions, and gain confidence in wearing their baby. We appreciate the role that babywearing educators play in our community and we are excited to celebrate their role through this series of babywearing educator spotlights.

Our first Babywearing Educator spotlight is on one of our favorite local educators, who we have personally seen in action and admire! We asked Kat Picson Berling, of Crispy Bata, to answer some questions about herself and her role as an educator.

Where are you currently offering your services? 

San Diego, California

Tell us about your babywearing  related business? 

I started Crispy Bata, my babywearing consulting group about 2 years ago. I started offering private consults because I saw that there were parents and caregivers who couldn’t attend our nonprofit babywearing group’s weekday morning meetings for one reason or another, or they wanted the baby’s other parent to be present, or they were shy in large groups. At first I started with an afternoon playdate so that parents could come at the end of their workday, and some people were able to attend those meet-ups. But there was still a lot of parents who expressed the desire to learn how to use their baby carriers, but just needed some individual help. So I started consulting to fill a need in the community. In the past few months, I have also expanded my business to include small weekend and evening classes, as well as carrier sales. 

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How did you first get involved with babywearing?

My first child, Gavin, was born in 2006. He is and was a very cuddly child who did not like to ever be put down! I was active on my online birth club at the time, and someone suggested NINO (Nine In, Nine Out, the precursor to Babywearing International). I found that the group had a chapter in San Diego and started attending meetings while I was on maternity leave. My first carrier was the dangerous pouch sling that was recalled! I bought another pouch sling from a work-at-home mom, and then a mei tai. I wore him regularly until he was over a year, and sporadically until he was over 3 years old, which everyone thought was so radical at the time! I began teaching in 2012 when my second child, Audrey, was almost a year. Our local babywearing group leader asked me to help out, and I happily said yes. Since then, I helped in our transition from an independent group to the San Diego chapter of Babywearing International. It has been a joy to watch the group grow and to see the members spread the babywearing love in San Diego. The first meeting I attended had 5 or 6 moms. These days, there are 20 to 100 caregivers at our meetings. Nine years ago, it was rare for me to spot another babywearing family out and about. Nowadays it is rare for me not to!

What do you find most rewarding as a babywearing educator?

It is a small, simple thing. But sometimes I’ll help a caregiver place their baby in a carrier, and their shoulders just relax, and they smile to themselves. You can just see in their eyes the freedom they are anticipating just from being able to attend to their child’s needs in such a simple manner, and maybe getting one other thing done at the same time. Most moms just want to be able to go to the bathroom for 30 seconds without having to hear their baby be upset. Or to get 5 minutes to help their older child tie his shoes and put on his jacket. Babywearing will allow them to do that, and so much more.

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What is one important tip you like to share with new or first-time babywearers ?

This is hard for me to answer because certain moms and caregivers need to hear different things because they employ the skill of babywearing for various reasons. But for the most part, I like to tell everyone that babywearing isn’t something you learn just once and you’re good at it. We as new parents are learning a bunch of new things all at once, and it’s okay to say we’re not good at something from the start. Babywearing is not necessarily instinctual; it’s not something that we all just know how to do. Everyone was a beginner once. A client who happens to be an accomplished musician told me, “You make it look so easy.” I told her, “You make playing the piano look easy. But I know you’ve had years of practice. I’ve had 9 years of practice in wearing my children, and at first I thought it was hard, just like you. You will make it look easy if you keep trying.” 

To connect with Kat, visit her Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/crispybata) or website (www.crispybata.com)

If you would like to nominate babywearing educator to be featured on the Tula blog and Facebook, please visit: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1MXmdmoof68jhHn6n547gd-9iUJLNBj46kQhYlrtPzbQ/viewform

If you would like to nominate yourself to be featured in our Babywearing Educator Spotlight, visit: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1IMF9cr6on1G64nBCArY2Vih1kI1cP9K7LVNWRUBtjAM/viewform

 

Baby Tula Celebrates the San Diego Zoo Centennial Celebration!
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When we were approached by San Diego Zoo Global to produce a special Tula Baby Carrier for the Zoo’s Centennial celebration, we knew it would be a perfect collaboration. Ula, founder of Baby Tula, and her family have long been San Diego Zoo members and love visiting the Zoo often with a Tula in tow. A Tula carrier that showcased the San Diego Zoo Centennial logo not only would make for a vibrant and gorgeous Tula, but it would also be a way for us to give support to a locale that has meant so much to us, personally, and for our community of families.

The San Diego Zoo has long been a much loved destination for families. While visiting the Zoo, being able to hold your child close in a baby carrier while you enjoy the sights and excitement of the zoo makes the experience all the more interactive and memorable. The elevated perspective while being carried makes it much easier for your little one to see many of the animals and communicate with you in your shared experience. And, on a very basic level, wearing your baby at the Zoo makes the various terrains more accessible to you and small children. Locally, it is very common for babywearing families and friends to meet at the Zoo for playdates!

 

With the natural synergy of babywearing and zoo visits in mind, Baby Tula and the San Diego Zoo came together to develop a limited edition carrier to allow families to enjoy babywearing at the Zoo while commemorating the anniversary of the Zoo’s inception 100 years ago. The ROAR! carrier features the iconic Centennial Celebration logo embroidered on the main panel of a light gray Tula carrier and provides comfort with intuitive, versatile adjustments.

Along with being able to create a beautiful carrier for the San Diego Zoo Centennial celebration, we also wanted to give back to the world famous zoo and the amazing animals we see during our many visits. As part of our shared commitment to conserving wildlife, 10% of proceeds from purchases of ROAR! made online at www.TulaBabyCarriers.com will be contributed back  to the San Diego Zoo Global Wildlife Conservancy, up to $10,000. The Wildlife Conservancy provides support for wildlife conservation efforts at the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. Their international field programs operate in over 35 countries on 6 continents. To date, 43 animal species have been reintroduced back into native habitats, and many more are being protected here and abroad.

Based on the Tula communities’ love for baby wearing at the Zoo, the team at Baby Tula has organized an official “Tula at the Zoo” day on May 21, 2016, encouraging families across the world to visit their local zoo and share their favorite carrier shots. Those visiting the San Diego Zoo that day will have the opportunity to meet Team Tula, try the new ROAR! carrier, and be entered for the opportunity to win future admission for (4) four, including special a “Inside Look Tour”.

The ROAR! Carrier can be purchased online at www.TulaBabyCarriers.com or at select retail locations in San Diego County beginning May 13th, 2016.