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Postal Hire Announcement

You wont be able to find the postal hire category in my shop right now. I’ve decided to make the switch to a different system. it should be up and running in a week or so. In the meantime please don’t panic, if you’d like to borrow something just shout. Hires are all £12 for 2 weeks and that includes postage to you. there are pods, onbu, mei tais and all sorts of gloriousness coming x

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What’s the difference between all the Onbu?

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Alright, heres the run down on types of onbus ( the awesome Kerry at It’s a sling thing has this brilliant explanation if you’ve not seen one before.

Onbus rock, they’re a rectangle of fabric with short straps at the shoulders that are fed through loops at the waist, they’re usually sized to fit your child. This makes them a pretty fast back carry with an almost unpoppable seat (your babies legs go above the rings/loops). they do carry high, higher than most other back carries and that can take some getting used to.

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many thanks to Nic at Congleton Sling library for this photo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your choices here are:

Fabric loop:

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Your shoulder straps are fed through that loop and pulled to tighten- some brands have a simple fold for the loop, Rock Solid loops are sewn with a twist meaning they have space to easily thread but hold tension really well. This makes them a little more effort to get snug but means that there’s no rings or hard parts at all to dig into your sides or clatter around the washing machine, it also means they fold up really small.

These generally come sized:1st size 6month-2 years (depending on child), 2nd 1year plus, 3rd for preschoolers.

 

 

 

 

 

Single Ring:

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Your shoulder straps are fed through that ring and pulled to tighten, they tighten easily and freely but some people find the rings hard and a little diggy, especially if they’re quite petite.

 

These generally come sized:1st size 6month-2 years (depending on child), 2nd 1year plus, 3rd for preschoolers.

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Double Rings:

IMG_20160310_142330-min Can be worn in the same way as a single ring but has the added advantage of being able to be prethreaded and used in the same way you’d tighten a ringsling, great for people who like the security of locking the tension of the straps and good for people who don’t want or need a chestbelt. There is a little bit of a learning curve but well worth mastering. Particularly petite people may find the rings dig in.

These generally come sized:1st size 6month-2 years (depending on child), 2nd 1year plus, 3rd for preschoolers.

 

 

 

Rockbu:

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Rockbu have the rings attached through a fabric loop and are designed to give a more versatile sling, there are ways to wear it on the front for smaller babies and on the back for larger babies. They can be worn in the same way as a double ring onbu. Particulary petite people may find the rings dig in.

There are some videos here

These are one size with an adjuster in the body and should fit from birth to 3 child depending.

 

 

 

 

Other manufacturers also make reverse onbu, with the rings at the shoulder and buckle onbus with webbing rather than straps.

many thanks to Nic at Congleton Sling Library for her gorgeous photo. Thanks to Claudia at Swing & Rock for her beautiful cats photo.

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My shop is back open.. And it’s got awesome in it!

Well that break was certainly worth it! My hire shop is filling up with so much beauty to try before you buy. Stunners like this :

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and hard working but good looking slings like this:

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Hire starts from £7 for two weeks but do you know that your local sling library just might have a 10 percent off code that you can use? and if they don’t then tell them to get in touch so they do!

Why not have a look, see if there’s something you want to road test…

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Big Banner Notice!

It’s been soo full on and busy round here for so long.. so I’m taking some time off to work on all those projects I keep waiting for time for. My books will be closed for custom orders until 1st October. If we’ve already discussed your conversion then go ahead and send it to me, I’ll work hard on it like we said 🙂

 

You’ll still be able to buy or hire from my shop so awesome will totally still be heading your way. Keep your eyes peeled to see what I do with the spare time 😉

 

You guys rock, thank you for being awesome.

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Sling Libraries, why they rock why you need one

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I’m a sling librarian, I am.. I’m that special kind of geek that collects slings and runs around all day making absolutely certain that the only time I get a cup of tea is 3 hours after it was poured. I spend a lot of time making sure that the people in front of me have found the right sling for their circumstances AND just as importantly that they know how to wear it safely and comfortably, that they feel confident enough to go home and fiddle with it too..

Sling libraries perform a very important function and they should be shouted about, loudly and often. When you first come to slings (and you should, they’re so very very practical for a meeelion reasons) there’s that terrifying wall of TOO MUCH INFORMATION and often what you think you need or what your friend has raved about probably isn’t going to suit you as well as you’d hoped.
Sling Libraries are often created and run with zero funding, resources collected together by the librarians and volunteers (very very few get paid) and worked tirelessly at. They see many people every day, week, month and they help them all… There’s something in it for them too.. they gain knowledge of what’s likely to work for you and they get to see your face when you hold your baby close. It’s better than money (but money helps too 😉 )

So that’s why they rock, they stop you making an expensive mistake in buying something that may not suit you and then they work and work at narrowing down the massive choice to the sling that’s going to be used every single day and will be your favourite parenting tool. That’s why I am certain there is no substitute for in person support, guidance and sling teaching. There are a few ways of finding a service near you,  uk sling libraries or Babywearing UK  have directories that are pretty useful, as is putting your area into google or facebook search box with the word “sling”, heck! you can even inbox me if you want help finding yours.

I am a sling advocate first, I’d far rather help you find the right sling for you than sell you one of my slings (ok, so I believe my slings are awesome, cos I’d be nuts not to right?) and so I urge every one of you coming here and looking at my shop to first ask their local library if they have a Rock Solid Sling you can try on first and if they don’t to Try Before You Buy. I’m so sure that’s the right thing to do that if you do decide to buy from me after that I will gleefully discount you your hire fees, and if you don’t decide to buy I’ll be glad to have helped you on your quest to find your forever sling, sometimes I give good suggestions too, I’ve been librarianing for a loooong time, I’m good at this.

So from this Sling Librarian to you Sling Shoppers please, if you already use your local library then go tell them how valuable they are.. RIGHT NOW. If you don’t use your local library start now, it’s well worth it.

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Please can you help me?

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People of the internet, my wonderful and amazing customers, friends and colleagues, I need your help on a very important, nay world changing, matter. I kid but I’d still love to know what you think. 

Say hello to polli and salem:

Polli is one of the volunteers who all work so hard with the directors at Parenting North East CiC to enable so many families to carry their smalls. She popped into the office to try on the Oddbu and I think their faces say it all.. But Polli calls it a Rockbu! and it’s growing on me, so on this long holiday (I’m away from the office too, some rare time off for me and my smalls). I’m about to formally launch this as one of my permanent products, just as soon as I’ve made photo and video instructions and so I ask you to make the choice for me… What shall I call it, the Oddbu or the Rockbu? 
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Just look at their happy faces:

thankyou berry much you awesomes. 

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Have you met ellie? 

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This is Ellie, Ellie is a sling educator and a long time sling librarian. She’s been testing pods for me since before Rock Solid was Rock Solid.

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Jazz hands baby!
 It’s Ellies face you’ll see on a lot of the videos on the pod instructions page. Last night she sent me this video and asked me what else she should demo for you guys:
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Ellie is awesome for doing this, with the new parenting support CiC we set up getting seriously underway, the tutoring new sling professionals with the School of Babywearing CiC and the amazing and gratifying popularity of Rock Solid Slings I really was struggling to find the time to show you all the awesomes of podding. So Ellies gonna…Help us help you, what do you want to see that we haven’t already shown you, ring finishes, adapted wrap carries, how to spread your passes on a back carry, anything, however big or small. Telllllll meeeee…. pleeeese.

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Big and small… pods for all!

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The holy grail of slings and baby carriers… where can I find a carrier that will fit my newborn right up til we stop carrying? Is there anything I can carry my 3 year old and 4 month old in?There are lots of carriers that say they do this, and some do. A woven wrap for example can carry a newborn and an adult (not at the same time obviously) but not everyone wants to , or feels confident in, wrapping. There are soft structured carriers that have devices to adjust them but they need the settings changed between children. There are more and more carriers looking to solve this problem and that’s a really good thing.

But how simple is a pod! No adjustments between sizes, quick and simple, no hard parts either. Is it true though, that one pod will fit small to tall? Let’s have a look…

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A toddler on a parents back, when we think of pods this is what we think of and it looks awesome right?

The same toddler, a little bit older now in a gorgeous but different pod on mams back…
The same pod, worn with a tiny baby in accordance with the TICKS guidelines for safe carrying. How lush are those pics!Shall we look at some more? This is a wonderful customer who loves her bespoke wrap conversion and I love her pics!

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cutest little baby on mam.
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cutest 5 year old on dad.. off to the park.
this is what I love about pods… differently sized adults, differently sized kids, so many combinations and they’re all so simple!Now in fairness I personally think there is little substitute for a good soft stretchy wrap on a brand new baby and pods really come into their own from around 4 months up but they can be used with new babies and if you choose to try it there are some videos here . The great news is that they are just as fabulous for babies not born yet! Can you see dad up there? he’s tied the straps in such a way as to leave the stomach free from any pressure. This is often referred to as “tying tibetan” and lots of pregnant women who are already carrying their older child and feel fit and well and wish to continue find that this is a major upside of a pod.

I love pods, this is why I love them. One carrier, that fits most adults and genuinely can be used from very small to preschool and is easy to get the basics down on, that’s just the holy grail of slings!

and the last set of photos that proves just how totally awesome pods are:

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The utterly and totally amazing Sam over at Geeky Sweetheart carrying her 2 oldest children in the best thing we ever made for a baby shower
* these photos all show pods made from purpose woven wrap material, traditional style cotton pods can also be used to very comfortably safely carry your child wherever you wish but some of the more complex carries may not work as well. *
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Why Collaborations are awesome

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I mean look at these pair. Slings don’t get much more stunning than this! deep, beautiful black with this colourfully awesome arcade panel right? 

But why are there 2 different slings? Well one isn’t a baby carrier, it’s a toy. We know that all kids love to mimic the adults in their life, it’s an integral part of learning how to be a grown up, it’s great for their development to find ways to let  them do that. 


The one on the left is a brand spanking new Podaegi with one of this years in stock fabrics, the one on the right is a doll tai, a mini mei tai for your little one to practice being a parent, just like you do. It’s fully CE marked so you have the assurance of it’s safety and little one feels proud to be just like you. Only I didn’t make the toy sling. My colleague Clare did. Have you seen her stuff? No? GO LOOK NOW over at Clarabugs Creations Her work is just perfect in every way. 
And this mornign while I was putting the finishing touches to the pod I said “wouldn’t it be awesome to make a parent/toddler pair? And it is… You can, if you want buy this exact pair over on my etsy shop  Thanks to the generosity of Clare. You can also buy one or the other if you like… And even better still you could order a matching doll tai with any of my pods. How awesome is that! 
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Lets talk oddbu baby

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I make pods. That’s all I do, because I believe it’s better to make one thing really really really well than many things just ok. And I make fantastic pods, I’ve worked hard over years understanding not just my product but how carrying works and how carriers work and the ins and outs of an entire industry. I loved pods long before I made one. And then I made one… and then two… and then… well you know where this is going.

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The Oddbu started as a what if.. a game really. Pods and Onbus, the slightly more niche carriers for the hardcore slingers. Or they were… I don’t see them that way. I see them as carriers that suit some situations really really well. But an onbu.. well it’s sized, meaning that one size fits a small range. What if you could combine that super adjustable one size does most of the Pod with the super speedy deep seat of an Onbu? And off I went, there was the famous minature oddbu attempt, the photos were unintentionally X rated.. .bob the builder was in the minibu doing very wrong things to postman pat… but the idea worked and so I made a big one…

I’d tell you about it but I’m going to let one of my sling tester extraordinaire Beccy tell you…
it was agreed that I would receive a tester oddbu and I would use it and see what I thought of it. Was I excited?! yes! YES I WAS!……The effort to make a seat is so incredibly minimal. I hate making seats. I have t-rex arms” So far, so good… so she took it to slingmeet.
“It was a big hit.. big being the word, the thing was a bit huge…so the second one was a little smaller all round…was just as lovely except it had smaller rings which made it more difficult to tie. That was my only issue with it. I was so in love with the testers”

The third one was almost perfect, it lives in my office for trying on. The oddbu is finished, it’s ready to see the light of day, a size adjustable onbu is possible, better yet it has double rings meaning it’s handy for the SSC fans too.

And Beccy has provided me with some fabulous action shots of the very simple, very versatile sling of joy.


Pods may be my first love but this is the baby of a pod and awesome so it counts right?

Please stop by and read Beccys full review of the oddbu plan on her blog I’d love to know what you think.