"While wearing your baby, you are increasing physical contact. This physical contact from mother to child increases the mother's progesterone. This is the "mommy hormone" that allows our breasts to produce milk, prompts our motherly instincts to kick in, and so much more! Babies who are worn in a sling are known to be calmer. This is because their caregiver can be seen, heard, smelled, touched, and tasted throughout the day. These senses, along with movement, help create an environment similar to what babies experience in the womb.
Babies who are worn in a sling have been known to develop social skills earlier than those who are not. The babies are closer to people and can study facial expressions, recognize speech patterns, and become familiar with body language. Babies who are worn in a sling have a decreased risk of "Position Plagiocephaly" (flat head syndrome). This is caused by babies lying on their backs in a car seat carrier for extended periods of time."
Having received and messed around with the ring sling over the past couple weeks, I found it to be very fashionable and functional, which are the 2 qualities most important to me when researching baby accessories. There are many sling designs out there, but there are a few characteristics about these from MamaVada in particular that I really like and don't always find in other slings. For one, they are reversible. The designs all seem to have one solid colored side, and one patterned side, which I find really helpful. It'd be nice to wear the solid side if you have a "busy" shirt on, but against a plain-colored top, the pattern would probably be nice. (C'mon now, I know you all think about fashion when choosing these things!). The other feature I adore is the large pocket with a zipper that's sewn into the lower portion of the sling. You can keep some diapers, wipes & your keys there, for example, without the need for a purse (great option for taking a walk around the block/park with baby in the sling). Lastly, they're lined, which gives it a little more body and "umph."
Now, if you've never used a sling before, they can be a little tricky. They are a little cumbersome to figure out at first, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes a non-thinking event, really. The ring design on this one makes it pretty easy to maneuver, although of course any time you're working with a large amount of fabric, everything takes a bit more work. The other nice part about the ring design is that it only wraps around you once...there's no maze of a wrap to figure out in order to get it on and no bulky fabric all over your body, knotted up in strange places. The other huge part is that instructions are included in a little pamphlet. Pictures with step-by-step instructions for different holds are within the pamphlet, which is extremely helpful.
Here is a bit more about Carrie & her business...
How did your business start and when?
MamaVada is a mommy owned and operated business. I started MamaVada with my newborn, Isabella, as my inspiration. Isabella was born three weeks early at only 5 pounds and 14 ounces. She was very tiny and had a hard time nursing. The second day we were home from the hospital, l wore her in my wrap-style baby sling. She was so happy being swaddled up close to me, and would sleep for hours in the sling. When she was awake, she loved to cruise around while slung up close to me. She could checkout her surroundings and explore new environments, while still feeling secure cuddled up close to mommy.
After using my wrap-style sling, I realized that it was very difficult to put on in tight spaces, like the car or a parking lot, without dragging the fabric on the ground. Also, when the wrap was on, I had about three layers of fabric wrapped around me and the baby. I got very warm while wearing the sling in the summer. That's when I started to search for a new baby wearing alternative and came across the ring sling.
I loved the idea of the ring sling. Out of all the slings available on the market, the ring sling was the easiest to use and the most comfortable for me and Isabella. It was also really great for nursing in public with privacy. The only thing was I had a hard time finding a ring sling that I liked. I wanted a sling that was fashionable and functional. So I designed myself a ring sling that was more to my tastes.
My ring sling is double-lined for style and comfort. It also has a large zipper pocket that's big enough for a small diaper bag's worth of items. It's cool in the summer so I don't get too hot, and the fabrics are soft and durable.
Once I started wearing my new ring sling around town, I would get stopped on the street. All the other mommies wanted to know where I got my ring sling, and where they could get one of their own. So, I told them the story I just told you...
How did you come up with your business name?
I come from an Italian heritage and wanted to come up with a business name that was catchy and original but also included an Italian vibe. Vada means “on the go” in Italian. Since MamaVada originally started by designing infant ring slings, I figured a name that meant “Mother on the Go”, would be perfect for representing today’s demands as a mother and how MamaVada could make their lives a little easier, comforting, and fun.
How long have you been making your creations?
I have a 2.5 year old daughter, and have been designing baby and mama creations since she was about 5 months old. It is always fun to include my creations into her wardrobe. All her little girl friends always ask me to make them a pair of bloomers. I have been sewing since I was in Jr High School and find being in front of my sewing machine meditative and relaxing.
What medium/s do you use to create your products?
I use mostly 100% cotton fabrics, but I also enjoy using cotton linen blends and any classy or funky laces and various trimmings I find. I don’t like making many multiples of one design. It makes me feel less of an artist and more of a factory shop. So you will usually see only 1 or 2 of the same creation from me before I move on and create something a little different.
Are your products located in any brick-and-mortar stores? If so, where?
Presently I do not have any of my products in shops. In the past I have had my rings slings in a few consignment shops in my home town of Santa Cruz, Ca. With the current trends of the economy and the cost of materials, I have decided to focus more on internet marketing avenues so I can focus directly to the customer.
My ring slings are double lined and reversible, which is unique compared to my competition. I use fashionable patterns of fabrics and colors that complement a wide range of outfits from comfortable to dress up.
My ring slings include a double lined 12” zipper pocket. This is great for using your sling as a infant carrier and purse in one. Many times I have run into a store with my baby in the sling, and keys, wallet, cell phone, diaper, travel wipes, and more all in the pocket. It is great for a complete hands free experience.
My new line of designer baby bloomers include 2-4” cotton lace trim around the legs. Currently I have used over 7 styles of lace trim and am always looking for new styles to create with. I haven’t seen baby bloomers online that include such detailing. This creates a bloomer that can be worn simply with a solid colored shirt, or dolled up under a short dress.
I have been successfully selling my ring slings off of Ebay for 2 years with 100% positive feedback from customers, as well as direct to customers through my website, www.mamavada.com. I have just launched my Etsy store and will be exclusively selling my lines on Etsy through www.mamavada.etsy.com .
I am currently working through my library of fabric to make room for new patterns and styles for Fall 09. In addition to my ring sling and baby bloomer line, I am working on launching a line of apron dresses for 2-4T sizes. I will also be offering special promotions on holiday greeting cards with purchases of my baby line this winter. So mark my Etsy store as one of you favorites for updates on upcoming promotions.
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