Pros: Affordable, great choice of colours/patterns, suitable from birth, multiple carrying positions, well-made
Cons: Not as comfortable to wear for long periods as the more premium brands
Overall Marks: 8/10
For the first 6 weeks of Squish’s life, he lived in my stretchy Kari-Me wrap. However, very soon he became too heavy for me to lug him around in it all day long. I decided to move to a woven cotton wrap that would offer more support.
So, I started my search, and discovered that woven wraps can be pretty expensive things. There are several well-known and popular brands such as Didymos and Storchenwiege that are wonderful but that will set you back close to £100 (or more, depending on the fabric, length and rarity of the design).
After some extensive trawling of the net (and harassment of the members of the babywearing community on LJ that I frequent), I tentatively settled on purchasing an Ellaroo wrap.
The Ellaroo wraps are competitively priced – I purchased mine for £49.00, including first class delivery. They are made from 100% cotton and woven in Guatemala. They come in a variety of beautiful colours and patterns, and a range of sizes – small (4.2m), medium (4.6m) and large (5.2m). I chose the large – I am plus-sized, and therefore wanted to be sure there would be enough fabric to wear Squish in any type of hold. And for more reassurance for parents, all of the dyes used are non-toxic.
I was half expecting the wrap to be of sub-par quality, considering how much cheaper it was in comparison to it’s competitors, but I was very pleasantly surprised. The wrap is beautifully soft, the colours are vibrant and the quality is clear to see. I was worried about how I would manage when it came to tying the wrap – I was so used to the ease of my stretchy wrap, which I could pre-tie and just pop Squish in and out of – but it was so much easier than I thought – thanks to the easy-to-read instructions that came with it. The Ellaroo wrap has just the right amount of stretch to ensure that we are both comfortable, but it’s ‘sturdy’ enough to be incredibly supportive. Due to the diagonal weave of the wrap, it can be easily tied so that one half of the width is tighter, leaving a slightly looser section to tuck baby’s head in if required.
You can use the Ellaroo wrap to carry your baby in a variety of holds – a quick search on youtube yields hundreds of instructional videos showing how to wrap your baby in a front, hip or back carry and there are many variations in each position, including some that make it possible to breastfeed baby whilst in the wrap.
Overall, it’s a great woven wrap and I would recommend it. However, I find that I do get some back and shoulder discomfort after wearing Squish in this wrap for long periods (2-3 hours+) – hence the loss of two points in my overall score. However, I am prone to shoulder and back pain anyway, so this may not be an issue for someone who hasn’t got those issues.