I strongly believe that, as consumers, every economic decision we make leave a moral trace behind it. As a parent, I strongly believe that every purchase made for our children influences them from the very beginning of their lives, long before they understand the concept of “shopping”.
It hasn’t been easy or always possible to find items for our child that combined the ethical values we stand for, the budget we have, and the needs that emerged as we walked the path of parenthood, one step at a time.
Why a Baby Wrap
One of the items that was easy for us to identify as an essential was a baby wrap. When reading about the relationship between a mother and the baby she carries in her womb as described in the Bahá’í Writings, my husband and I came to appreciate that the relationship is even closer than science leads us to believe: it is a deep, spiritual connection. And because, in a way, the wrap would be giving our baby and I an extension of sorts of the closest physical bond we would ever share.
There are a lot of other reasons why a wrap is a good idea:
- It promotes bonding between parent and baby;
- It may help reduce postpartum depression;
- It frees up your hands but not at the cost of leaving baby behind;
- It helps calm fussy babies by making them feel safe and warm in a womb-like environment;
Using a wrap was good for both baby and I especially in the first weeks post-partum. My little one would only be happy and relaxed when she was on me, and I felt the most happy when she was with me. And so, wrapping her allowed me to go on walks, able to enjoy the beautiful Canadian summer and basking in the joy of having a baby. Both having her on me and exercising so soon after delivery in the form of walks no doubt helped keep away any form of postpartum blues I might have potentially been at risk of.
Why a Solly Baby Wrap
The Solly Baby Wrap also has the added—but not exclusive, mind you—benefit of distributing baby’s weight evenly all over the carrier’s upper body, which means no extra pressure on the carrier’s shoulder or the baby’s joints and spine. The fabric is it made of is far thinner than—but just as strong as—that other similar wraps are made of. It makes a huge difference when it comes to comfort; be it winter or summer—but especially summer—it makes for a far more comfortable baby wearing experience.
Supporting Small Businesses
It’s short-sighted to claim that all big businesses are bad and that all small businesses are good. It seems that, at this point in time, getting the things that we need for our baby and staying within budget requires balancing out purchasing items from both small and big businesses.
My husband and I do, however, have a soft spot for small businesses for many reasons, including:
- Small businesses can be held accountable a lot more easily than big businesses, and many small outfits hold themselves accountable in away big ones—the consequences of whose decisions are so far removed from the decision-makers that they are easy to ignore—just can’t.
- Small businesses usually remain more connected to the grassroots and usually give more than they take.
- Shopping small businesses encourages the development of a broader variety of products; the better suited an item is to our needs, the less we will buy overall in search for the best product.
Buy Made in North America
Every other argument else aside, the environment is why I prefer, when possible, to shop for items made in North America. On the one hand, the item has a lot less distance to travel. On the other hand, the manufacturing industry here is regulated with standards far friendlier to the environment than those of other countries. Granted, it means that items are usually more expensive, but it’s money well spent, in my mind.
Lenzing Modal Textile
The Solly Wrap is made of Lenzing Modal, something I hadn’t heard of until I was researching what wrap to purchase. The fabric is manufactured in Los Angeles from Austrian beechwood trees (not sure if the pulp is imported from Austria, or if the trees are planted in California). The fabric itself is lightweight yet strong, cool to the touch even in hot weather, gets softer with each wash, and can handle being dried in a conventional dryer on low heat. And it seems that its carbon footprint is a lot less than most fabrics other wraps are made of (here and here).
Although I didn’t have much luck personally getting extra information or support from the Solly Baby team, they have really thought through how it could provide parents with the help that they might need as they try to master the art of wrapping their baby. A series of well-shot tutorial videos make it crystal clear how to do just that. The lookbook is chockful of gorgeous pictures of mothers carrying their babies; I have to admit that the reality is quite far from all those shots—I didn’t manage to feel anywhere near as polished, rested, well-dressed, clean, and well put together as the mothers in those shots do. Maybe the Solly Baby team could provide support in that regard, too!
For balancing eco-friendliness, usability, a relatively good point price, and just plain prettiness: recommend.