Features: Lengths of specially woven fabric, tested and designed to be used to carry babies and toddlers. Dyes used will be specially tested to be suitable for using in a product that babies may suck on. Most are a ’twill’ or ‘diagonal’ weave that allows for a degree of elasticity diagonally (though not lengthways or widthways). This allows the fabric to mould around you and your child for a custom-fitting comfortable carry. They can be from 2-5.5m long (the standard length is around 4.5m) with different lengths suitable for different tying methods. Longer lengths allow for more supportive carries and shorter lengths are quicker to tie.
Age Range/Suitability: Suitable for all children from newborn up to about age 3-4+. A Woven Wrap is a great option if you’d like to share a carrier between different sized adults and children, as the carrier will adjust to fit as you put it on, without needing to change any settings before use. Not suitable if you find tying knots difficult.
Carrying Positions: Front, back and hip, with many tying variations possible for each so that you can find the method that suits you best.
Options: Other than differences in length (and slightly in width – a woven wrap should be at least 60cm wide and most are around 70cm wide to fully support a child from the back of their knees to their neck), there are also many different fabric patterns and weaving styles available so that you can find one to suit you (of indeed your outfits!). ‘Jacquard’ woven wraps use a weaving technique that allows designs and pictures to be woven into the fabric. These are often reversible so the design will be in different colours on each side.
Standard wrap models are 100% cotton, but others may be made from other fibres including wool, linen, silk, hemp, bamboo and more. Different fibres will give a slightly different carrying experience and some people find certain blends more comfortable than others. The Library has examples of woven wraps with the following different fibres: cotton, linen, bamboo, silk and hemp (plus also a merino wool blend for demonstration only).
We’d recommend starting with a ‘standard stripes’ twill weave design of any of the main brands and would suggest that you initially go for whatever you like the look of most as that will make the most difference to how much you like using it!
‘Gauze’ wraps are woven from much thinner threads and materials. They are often lighter to wear, but some users can feel that they can be more difficult to tie comfortabley with heavier babies and toddlers.
Pros: Same wrap can be used from birth to toddler and with any sized adult; a wide range of different tying methods to suit different adults and children; shorter lengths are easy and quick to use for front, back and hip carries; most adaptable and versatile carrier option; very ergonomic for baby and parent; can be easier for safe back carries than other carrier types; attractive designs; can also be used as a blanket, hammock, scarf etc when no longer needed for carrying.
Cons: Longer lengths have a lot of fabric and are less quick to tie; can be hot in summer; steeper learning curve than some other carriers; huge range of fabrics and options available can be overwhelming; long straps can dangle on the ground while tying.
You can find out even more about Woven Wraps here: More About Woven Wraps
The Sling Library’s Woven Wraps are listed here: Woven Wraps