Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bag slings and sling safety

Well, there has been a big flap in the babywearing world in the past couple of days. It seems we are about to be warned that "slings" are unsafe by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The problem is this: No matter how you wear them, no matter how you cut it, BAG SLINGS ARE ALWAYS UNSAFE (You can see one in the photo to the left). I teach this all the time in babywearing classes. A bag sling can not support your small baby in a safe position and I ask parents who bring them to me for help to simply throw them away (many have!). When a baby is crunched into the bag part of the sling the baby has no support for a safe spine and head position in this style of carrier. A child can get curled up with chin mushed against chest and can have what is called Positional Asphyxia, or PA, which basically means, they can't breathe because their tiny airway is crunched up. So, yeah, bag slings are bad.... however, many carriers support children in safe and comfortable ways to support their back and head in a way that is safe and appropriate for their developing spine and neck.

The problem is, this is one style of carrier and the media seems to be jumping on all baby carriers and slings as being potentially harmful. Well, let me say this... most things are potentially harmful if used incorrectly, whether it be your baby's car seat, their crib, their swing, their stroller, or their sling or other baby carrier. The important thing that most media sources are failing to report is the information that parents need for safe carrying in a sling or other style of carrier. As parents we are given more instruction on how to keep our babies safe in cribs and car seats (though not enough) Here are some guidelines for safe babywearing:

1) Your baby should always be CLOSE ENOUGH TO KISS. That means their head should be high on your chest.
2) Your baby's knees should always be higher than his or her bum so that your baby is sitting safely on their bum.
3) Your sling or carrier should extends up your baby's back to their armpits (if they have head control) or to support the back of the head (if they do not yet have head control).
4) Your child's face should NEVER be covered by the fabric of the carrier or by your clothing.
5) Your baby's bottom should never be below your waist level (if they are close enough to kiss they shouldn't be below your waist).
6) Your baby's head should always be higher then their body.
7) Your baby's head should always be supported unless they have complete head control.
8) Your baby should be snug against your body, not dangling or flopping away from you as if in a sack.

This is a good list of guidelines, and most carriers if used correctly by parents meet these criteria.
If at any time you, as the parent, feel that your child is not safe or comfortable you should take the carrier off and seek help to make it work correctly.

There will be a class on babywearing safety and safe positioning at the Center For Breastfeeding in Sandwich, MA on March 22 at 10:30. If you have questions or concerns I urge you to email me ( or come to the class. I am always available to help with slings and carriers.

Let me just say it again... Babywearing is a good thing, but bag slings are bad.... like anything, babywearing can be done incorrectly (just as there are accidents in cars, cribs and strollers!) and things can go wrong. But when done right, babywearing can be your most treasured and special baby bonding expirience. You, as the parent, need to be educated about all aspects of taking care of your baby and it can be a tough job, but babywearing should be something that you strive to do because you and your child will benefit by it. As with everything in life, it is hard to separate fact from fiction sometimes... but the facts in this are simple, babywearing is safe when you follow the rules... just like driving and swimming and using a carseat... all safe and good things, when you are educated and informed.

I would like to assure people that I do not carry any bag style slings at Pinkletink Baby and that all the carriers at Pinkletink are safe when used according to the manufacturers directions and following common sense and basic babywearing guidelines as outlined above. I am committed to teaching safe babywearing in my community here on Cape Cod and I give full customer support to help you and your baby have a safe and comfortable babywearing journey together.

Here are some useful links to other sites with information about bag slings and sling safety.

What is a bag sling?

Correct Positioning

Common Sense

NY Times Article

Northhampton News report

Babywearing Press release at Taylormade

Thursday, May 21, 2009

More info about Night Rainbow

Ok, I wanted to answer some questions people have posted in comments about Night Rainbow. So, here goes:

Kalia asked if all the stripes will be the same width. Yes, they will be all the same width. Each stripe will be about 5 centimeters wide, or approximately 2 inches.

Sheri asked if there will be a pre-order or if she will have to wait for in-stocks. The plan at the moment is to get a pre-order going just as soon as everything is finalized with the people at Girasol, hopefully sometime next week. I want to make sure everything is squared away and set up before I start a pre-order, and I have not heard anything final regarding dates from Girasol yet because they had a holiday in Germany today and weren't in the office. Hopefully I will have more info very soon, and will be able to get the pre-order rolling early in the week next week. I will certainly keep you posted about that here. Sheri also asked when they will be available. The pre-order will run until June 20th, when the wrap will go into production. It will arrive at Pinkletink in the first week of August and will ship out to you all within a day or two of arriving with me. All orders ship USPS Priority Mail and will get to you within 3 days in the US or within about 6 to 10 for the rest of the world, putting the arrival date to you at early to mid August unless there is a delay somewhere along the line in production or shipping from Germany.

I also wanted to give people the heads-up that sometime in the next couple of weeks the Pinkletink website might be down for a few hours while I convert it all to the newer, better website that my super cool friend Mark is working on. We have a great design in the works and it's going to be much easier to navigate and find what you are looking for. I am hoping that will be up and running by early June-ish.

Well, I think that's all the news that's fit to print. I will be away this weekend, but I will be back by Monday evening and orders that come in over the weekend will ship Tuesday morning by 10:00. Have a good holiday weekend everyone!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Pinkletink Baby Girasol Exclusives

Hi Everyone,

I have been playing with bits of string a lot this morning and here is what I have come up with. This will be the first Girasol exclusive from Pinkletink Baby. As soon as I have everything set up I will set up a page for pre-orders.

This wrap will be called Night Rainbow. The weft will be the deep blue on the left of the picture.

Please post your comments to let me know what you think, and also sign up to follow the blog for updates on Night Rainbow.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Customs hassles resolved!

Well, Customs is holding my Girasol order and doesn't seem to want to give it up. It has been sitting at US Customs awaiting clearance for about 2 and a half days now, and it's still not budging. So, the Girasols are coming, but slowly! Meanwhile, my stock of Hoppediz wraps is mostly online now and available to order. CatBird mei tais and Freehand mei tais are also available now to order!

Keep your fingers crossed with me that Customs clears the Girasol order soon!

UPDATE!! They cleared the Girasol order through customs and it's here! You can order online now on my In Stock Girasol Page

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Catbird Baby

Hello everyone!

I am happy to announce that my stock of Catbird Baby mei tais is available now here! We have three lovely colorways in stock, organic orange/espresso (a great choice for a carrier for Dad!), Somerset, and Pop Garden.

Come and check them out!

Orders are shipped out by noon the next business day. We ship by USPS Priority Mail so that your order should get to you in just a few days. How's that for service!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

so much coming in

Oh my goodness, have I got news for you! I have been scrambling about the last few days ordering up a storm... well, no actually I have orders in to the following companies and will have stock very soon from all of them. I have 3 types of mei tais on the way BabyHawk, Freehand, and Catbird. I have 5 types of wraps on the way, Storchenwiege, Girasol, Wrapsody Bali Baby Stretch, Wrapsody Bali Baby Breeze, and the Wrapsody water wrap for your summer beach fun! I will also have a few Storchenwiege ring slings coming in with the Storch wraps. And I also have BabyLegs leg and arm warmers coming in soon including the new BabyLegs Cool designs for summer. They are a sun resistant very light and cool mesh fabric to keep your baby sunburn-free without using so much sunblock. How cool is that! I am really excited about everything that is coming in over the next few weeks and I hope you will check back as my orders arrive to see what is available.

The other very exciting news is that Pinkletink will soon have a whole new look. A friend of mine is working on making the website look totally great and super easy to use. We want you to be able to find just what you are looking for as easily and as quickly as possible so that you can get what you want when you want it! I have every confidence that the new site will be great. It should be up in the next few weeks. Keep checking in!

owner of Pinkletink Baby

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Signs of Spring!

Hi everyone! My name is Nora and I am very excited to announce that I am the new owner of Pinkletink Baby! Meg, the previous owner, kindly turned the business over to me over the weekend and I am in the middle of getting the new website up and running. Until it is fully functional in a few days things will be a little messy around here. After a little Spring cleaning, though, a lot of new stock to get entered on the site, and some patience on your part while I learn the ropes a bit, I think Pinkletink will be better than ever!

Over the next few weeks I expect orders of Freehand Mei Tais, Babyhawk Mei tais, Catbird Mei Tais, Storchenwiege wraps, Girasol wraps, and hopefully a few other bits and pieces (I'll keep you posted.... I am working on a few other things being available here too!). Keep an eye out here for updates and I will try to keep you in the loop when new stock comes in!