Friday, September 26, 2014

International Babywearing Week 2014: Share the Adventure!

BWI Colorado Springs!

This year is our first International Babywearing Week as an official chapter! See our events timeline below for the week of October 5-11th, 2014. It's not too far away and we can't wait to see you all at these exciting events planned just for you by your BWI Staff.

Everyday on our Facebook pages, we will have a different theme to celebrate! And for every actual event you attend you will receive a raffle ticket to enter for some AMAZING prizes! Mark your calendar for as many events as you can to up your chances for things like a gorgeous Ring sling, a BWI membership, and more! If you're not already a BWI member, what a better time than now to join! If you join by International Babywearing Week, you and other existing members will receive TWO raffle tickets for every event you attend, instead of one!

Shout it Out Sunday, October 5th- Join us for a kick-off day at the zoo! Starting at 10am. Meet at the front gate to spend the day with your fellow babywearers! Click here to RSVP!

Momentum Monday, October 6th- Join us for food and fun at a BWI member's house from 10am-12pm. Food and drinks provided. Contact a BWI VBE or group admin for location information. Click here to RSVP! 

Also, join us on Facebook Monday evening for a fun virtual scavenger hunt! Watch the Page for details. 

Teach Me Tuesday, October 7th- Do you have a question for one of our VBE's? For just $10, you can get 20 minutes of personal one-on-one instruction to help get your carrier fitting just right. Please follow this link to RSVP and fill out a registration form. All proceeds benefit your chapter!

Tuesday evening, join us on Facebook for a Do-It-Yourself Babywearing Poncho Session. No-sew fleece and an Intermediate level sewing options will be available. Post your pics online as you create your very own poncho for the upcoming colder season! 

Work-out Wednesday, October 8th- Join us for a Babywearing dance class! Taught by our very own Galen D. from 9:30-10:30am. Click here to RSVP and make sure you are able to attend due to limited space. 

America the Beautiful Park Playdate, also wednesday, at 3pm. Come wear those babies! RSVP here!

Throwback Thursday, October 9th- Two events planned for this day! The first is a playdate at Judge Lunt Park at 9am! And then that afternoon we have an Ice Cream Social from 2:30-3:30. We will all grab some ice cream at Josh and John's and take some time to chat! See both events here and RSVP: IBW Park Playdate and IBW Ice Cream Social

Flexible Friday, October 10th- Come walk with us! Our Babywearing Walk will be at Bear Creek Park at 10am. For a map, details, and to RSVP click here!

Share your City Saturday, October 11th- Come to our "Donut party!!" See you at the Fountain Library for coffee and donuts! We will be raffling off all of our week's prizes. Join us from 9:30-11am. Click here to RSVP if you are coming. We want to make sure we have plenty of treats for everyone!

Don't forget to like our Facebook page and join our Facebook group! All events are listed in the events tabs. Find the next BWI meeting near you! We look forward to knowing you better!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

DIY Carriers: Safety first!

If you're thinking of making your own carrier or just shopping for one, this guest post has some great tips and information for safety! 

By: Alena Sutherland

When making or shopping for a carrier, fiber content is a good place to start. I love natural fibers. 100% cotton, 100% linen or a cotton/linen blend is my kind of jam. But not all cotton is created equal. Bottom-weight is what you want. 

What does bottom-weight mean? It means a fabric you would make pants or a skirt out of. So all those lovely, pretty patterns on quilter's cotton are out, very sorry. Don't worry, they can make a great accent panel on a mei-tai or pocket on a ring sling tail.

So, what are safe fabrics? Osnaburg is a popular choice for DIY carriers. Natural in color, it takes to dye easily. It can be found at most Wal-Mart and Hobby Lobby locations, and sometimes JoAnn's. Bottom-weight linen is also a good choice. My friend recommends for linen. She says product number IL019 is good for wraps or ring slings and product number 4C22 works well for soft-structured carriers
and mei-tai panels. 

What about tablecloths? I hear about them online a lot...Yes, I love a great tablecloth as much as the next crazy DIY babywearer. 100% cotton is my preferred fiber content. Mahogany Brand on and Threshold brand from Target are a couple great 
brands to try. I love to hunt thrift stores like the Arc for tablecloths too, but have a good feel for fabric weight before you try this if you're new to babywearing DIY. 

How about curtains? If they feel like one of the tablecloths I mentioned above, go for it. Otherwise, take a pass. 

What about bedsheets? Only for emergencies, I say. And then, only doubled. They are too thin and not sturdy enough to hold a seam. 

If wrapping isn't your style, you'll need additional supplies to create the carrier of your dreams. 

What are safe rings for ring slings? I order from They are saftey and weight tested and approved for babywearing. Multiple pretty colors to choose from and they ship quickly. If you're in a pinch, you can use rings purchased from a feed and tack store. Look for something that is at least 3/8” thick and has smooth welds. Craft rings which are 1/8” thick from JoAnn's, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, etc., are NOT SAFE. Please, plan the extra 3 or 4 days for shipping and buy from 

Where to buy safe buckles/webbing for a soft structured carrier? is the place to go for these items. I've never made a soft-structured carrier, so I have no personal experience with them. 

Thread? I like Gutermann thread. Other name-brand poly-coated threads should be just fine as well. 

Now, with your supplies in hand, what would you like to make?

A wrap is the simplest to make. First, pre-wash your fabric. Then, simply cut to width and length, add tapers if they thrill you, and hem. Most wraps are 28”-30” wide. If you want tapers, be sure to cut them like a parallelogram, not a trapezoid. If you've forgotten your geometry, don't worry, here is a visual: 

You want the green parallelogram, not the red trapezoid. This way, you have the same length along both the top and bottom rails. How long would you like your wrap? This handy table from is my favorite quick reference. I've added a column of “Length in yards” which I rounded to an easy-to-measure number so you know how much fabric to buy at the store. Keep in mind most fabrics shrink in the wash, so buy a little extra.

Size       Length in meters        Length in feet       Length in inches        Length in Yards

2            2.7                            8.86                     102.36                       3

3            3.1                           10.17                    122.05                        3.5

4            3.6                           11.81                    141.73                        4

5            4.2                           13.78                    165                             4.5

6            4.6                           15.09                    181.10                         5

7            5.2                           17.06                     204.72                        5.75

8            5.6                           18.37                    220.47                         6

Ring Sling
A ring sling sews up fairly quickly and easily. Your fabric should be about around 30” wide. Lengths vary from 62” to 95” finished. Finished means you need to add a few extra inches for your shoulder sewing. You pick a shoulder style: gathered, pleated, eesti(for personal use only, this shoulder style is licensed property to Jan at Sleeping Baby Productions). Be sure to have a minimum of 3 rows of stitching. Please visit and for some of the best information on the web for DIY ring slings. 

Asian-Style Carriers
Rather than re-inventing the wheel, I shall direct you to a fabulous blog for the nitty-gritty how-to-sew instructions. Please, when sewing these carriers use quality thread, attach straps to a sturdy inner layer of fabric, and reinforce attachment points with x-boxes, as shown below.  


And if you'd like a mei-tai and a ring sling from one tablecloth:

Onbuhimo (or Onbu)

Podaegi (or Pod)

Remember, all of these DIY safety qualities should hold true when you're shopping on Etsy, Facebook swap groups, or elsewhere online. If you're ever unsure of the characteristics of a DIY carrier being sold online, go with your gut! The safety of your little one depends on it. Always compare prices to other retail sources. Sometimes, if the price is too good to be true, it is. And of course, you can always ask a VBE on the BWI Colorado Springs page for advice or a second opinion. Happy and safe babywearing!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Ways to get baby on your back

If you've been wearing your baby for awhile, you might find yourself getting curious about wearing baby on your back. Having two hands free with baby behind you can be invaluable. But we have to put the safety of our kiddos first and foremost. (If you're new to back carrying, please use the help of a spotter or practice over a couch or bed.) 

Here are some great videos to demonstrate how you get a baby on your back depending on your carrier type. 

Soft Structured Carriers are great options for back carrying. The waist belt can offer a lot of back support, and padded straps can make for a comfy wearing experience. Once you have the waist strap secured around your waist, you can use a "hip scoot" or a "superman toss" to get baby into the carrier on your back. Watch this video to see how it's done.

Woven Wraps are incredibly useful and versatile when back carrying. With some practice, you can get baby high and snug on your back. This can alleviate a lot of the discomfort that comes from having them too low or far from your body in other carriers. There are numerous back carries you can use with a woven wrap. A Mei Tai  is a lot like a SSC (soft structured carrier), but has the great comfort qualities of a woven wrap. For both a woven wrap and a mei tai, you can use a "hip scoot," "santa toss," or a "superman toss." The video below gives a great rundown of these methods. 

Again, remember to use a spotter or practice over a bed if you're new to back wearing. If you still have some questions, ask a Volunteer Babywearing Educator on our BWI Facebook page, or come to our next BWI Colorado Springs meeting! We look forward to seeing you there to answer your questions and get to know you better!

Where We Wore in August

Hey BWI Colorado Springs! This is "Where We Wore" in August! 

Amanda J.'s husband wears their daughter in a Standard Rainbow Gems Tula at the Balloon Glow!

Amanda J. and her little girl enjoy the Colorado Springs Balloon Classic at Memorial Park.

Erin C. snuggles her daughter at the airport one last time before her nine week long military training. 

Jennifer P. and her little boy enjoy the view at Memorial Park while wearing a Didymos Petrol Hemp Indio.

Jennifer P. and her kiddos watch the Balloons at the Balloon Classic. 

Lyz B. and her kids enjoy the start of the Balloon Glow.

Sarah L. and her sleepy little boy on top of Pikes Peak while using a Tekhni woven wrap.