I don’t know exactly where the trend started, but you may have heard the term legacy wrap in some of the online babywearing spaces and wondered what it meant exactly.
The short version is it is a wrap (or ring sling or carrier etc) that you plan to hold on to after your child has grown up and is no longer carried, because it holds a special meaning, and you may even like to pass it on to your child when they grow up and have a family of their own.
So what might your legacy wrap/carrier be, and where would you find it?
A legacy wrap/carrier might be:
- released on your child’s date of birth, or another significant date in your lives
- named the same as your child, or yourself, or the place where you live
- your favourite colours, or colours of your favourite sporting team, your country or your family crest
- a pattern or print that has meaning for you
- your first wrap/carrier
- your child’s favourite wrap/carrier
- a gift from an important person in your child’s life
- anything else that makes it important to you!
If you want to find woven wraps released on particular dates, try SlingoFest, which contains a catalogue of woven wraps, their release dates and fibre content. Limited Edition Woven Wraps Database is another great resource for wraps released before March 2014, and often includes useful information like wrap weight and what its retail price was on release. These websites are also just a bit of fun for geeking out about wraps and learning more about the different brands and the different wraps released over the years.
If you do plan to hold on to a wrap or carrier to pass on to your grown children, it is important to consider storage. Textiles can deteriorate over time, and while it may be a lovely thing to hand down to the next generation of your family, it may not be safe for babywearing anymore. When left folded for extended periods, permanent creases can form that can leave points of weakness in the fabric. Mould and mildew can be a problem, particularly in humid or damp places, and don’t forget about moths! It would be very disappointing to pull out your beloved wrap after 10 years in storage to discover it was full of holes chewed by hungry moths (hint: sticking your wrap in the freezer will kill moth eggs).
Our legacy wrap is Natibaby Quadroses Carmine, which was released on the day my daughter was born. It’s a gorgeous shade of pinky-red and a blankety linen blend that Natibaby are well known for. It was a great wrap from around 6 months old when she started to get a bit heavy for all cotton wraps. I bought it in a size 6 originally, but when my daughter was about 10 months old I had it chopped to a 3 and had the rest made into a bag. I found the wrap a bit diggy over 12kg due to the linen content, but it was better in multi-layer carries.
As a way of holding on to this wrap into the future, I had been thinking about turning the wrap into cushion covers for my daughter’s bed. Another suggestion from one of the women at a babywearing meet I attended recently was to take a plain quilt cover and sew it on as an accent at the foot of the cover, which I think would work well with the design of this wrap. So think outside the square about how you can hold onto your legacy wrap/s and keep using them long after your child is no longer carried.
Do you have a legacy wrap or carrier? I’d love to hear about it and why you chose it!