New to Hand Woven Baby Wraps?
A hand woven wrap is a piece of cloth made on a loom by a weaver. The threads that come together to make each wrap will have been handled several times from the measuring to the threading to the tying on and then to the part where a shuttle is thrown through across the warp and the treadles pressed. It is a long process and takes many hours to make.
How is a Hand Woven Baby Wrap different?
Before owning a hand woven wrap you are likely to have owned other types of baby carriers. The closest type of carrier would be a machine woven baby wrap (where a machine powers a large loom to make the fabric), woven wraps are great for their flexibility in use (you can try different ways of carrying), support and can 'grow' with you as your baby gets bigger and heavier. You can change the type of carry rather than the baby wrap. This is the same with a hand woven baby wrap.
Hand woven baby wraps are a piece of art, they are made in low volumes and take many hours to make. They often have lovely wrapping qualities due to a weaver using great quality fibres, slightly looser more flexible weaves and what I believe is the effect of the handling and 'hands on' approach to hand weaving.
Finding out about hand woven baby wraps is akin to walking into a very large sweet store! There are warp yarn choices, weft yarn choices (fibre, colour, order density and so on...), weave choices, middle marker choices, finishes to your wrap and more. It can be daunting but exciting too. Every weaver will be different so it is worth getting to know their style. For example F&H wraps tend to be on the thinner side (although not always!), I beat quite hard when I weave and often use the same Cotton in the warp. Remember the same weave & fibre may turn out differently with a each weaver. It is great to get information from places like Loom to Wrap as there are a lot of baby wearers and baby wrap weavers to guide you in your choices in the end I think it is most important to like your weaver's style.
How do I get a hand woven baby wrap?
Following social media is a good way to know when baby wraps become available. As mentioned before, they tend to be made as limited editions so only a few will ever be available. F&H currently have a few online as I have been weaving an extra wrap or two whilst weaving custom wraps. Check out Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & the Online Shop.
What if I want my own design?
You can get slots for custom or semi-custom baby wraps. They are offered via the mailing list and/or Facebook usually a few times a year. Currently there are a few 'mini' custom slots available - find out more here.
A semi-custom: the design is already on the loom (Social Media will keep you up to date with the latest designs)but you get to choose the fibre & colour of weft yarn, sometimes a variation in the weave, the length and finish of the wrap.
A custom: this is where a design fee is paid to bring together your ideas from the very beginning - you can choose warp colour & fibre, weft colour & fibre, weave pattern, the length and finish of the wrap.
What if I want a baby wrap but don't know where to start?
No problem, I am pretty patient and actually love talking about weaving so I am very happy to discuss requirements, guide you with sketches, samples and IT mock ups. A great place to start is by trying a tester wrap and/or being part of the Tester & Chat group on Facebook.
Are hand woven baby wraps hard to look after?
a Hand woven baby wrap does not need to be any more difficult to look after than a machine woven wrap. Both types can be made of fibres that will need to be washed in different ways. For example a wool wrap, whether it is machine or hand woven will often need to be hand washed. The weave of the wrap can make them more likely to pull but I try not to have wraps that have more than 4-5 floats (depending on other factors) which helps prevent pulling issues.
Finding it difficult to understand some of the words used? Take a look at this glossary.
Just remember if you're not sure - get in touch!
Ready to own one? Or fancy a peak at baby wraps available now? Let's Go.
Want to know more about bespoke baby wraps? Let's Go.
Want to try a 'Mini' custom slot? Let's Go.
Pop over to the Facebook page to join in!
Next up on the Loom! & Semi-Custom slots….
Sagrada Familia Inspiration Warp
Laura’s inspiration starting point was the Sagrada Familia. The warp is a soft 8/2 Cotton with bands of natural and colour across the width (2,4,6,6,6,4,2 inch bands) blending into each other. The colours blend from pinks to light lilac and a deeper purple to gorgeous greens. They are all work so well together.
If you choose to have a semi-custom for this warp you can choose any of the weave patterns below or a mixture of them, choose colour and fibre of the weft (horizontal) yarn and the wrap’s length & finish. They are all twills with varying treadling (pressing of pedals) to create the different patterns.
Please follow the Facebook page for ongoing process photos as the warp is put onto the Loom,
Please fill in this form if you’d like a slot:
I will make sure any slots are allocated by 20.09.16
This is one of the weaves I am hoping to turn into baby wraps. It is one of Bonnie Inouye’s – her designs are amazing but it takes a bit more work than many other weaves I have been working on as it involves two shuttles; one weaves a plain weave and one creates the pattern. I think it will give a cushier, slightly thicker wrap for the Autumn and Winter.
Another plan for the loom is not decided yet as the winner of the current competition on Facebook will be letting me use their inspiration to create a warp. The winner will get a minimum 68cm x 68cm piece or they can upgrade to a baby wrap or scarf. Pop over to Facebook to join in!
I am still mulling over the Autumn/Winter ideas and will pop some more ideas into my August Newsletter – make sure you are on the mailing list to get that in the next couple of weeks.
More Rainbow Hearts- blankets & baby wraps
Inspired by dark winter mornings and shared fairy tales these blankets have been woven for you to snuggle you little ones with your own warm, snugly story times.
I love the blue ‘haze’ this blanket has so thought I ought to show a short video so that you can see the blankets in motion. The Zigzag blanket has the same affect.
I wanted to show you my first wall art using my handwoven fabric. This one is for a niece this Christmas but I will be making others available in the coming days and weeks. I hope you like them!
This fabric is a crackle weave using cotton.
I can get quite a range of animals – so I’d love to know what you’d like to see?
I know we all enjoy seeing how things ‘come about’ so here’s a little part of my weaving. This part is a vey small section of the whole process but it’s what most people think of when they envisage hand weaving. Enjoy!