Thursday, May 2, 2013

Favorite Baby Gift (To Give)

I have been to A LOT of baby showers in the past couple years, (and even threw one a couple months ago,) and I have decided that one of my favorite gifts to give to new Moms is a homemade ring sling.  Funny how we all have our "go to" gifts for showers, like for example, wedding showers, I always give kitchen items and baking supplies because of how much I love those things. 

I guess over the past few years, I have truly discovered that most of the baby items that people (myself included) register for, just aren't needed.  I'm ashamed to admit that several items that I received from my very first baby shower when I was pregnant with Leeland, went to the consignment store the next year unused.  For real.  The baby supply market is littered with all kinds of gadgets that are just plain unnecessary!  Let's be real, all you need for a baby is a few onesies, some cloth diapers and a lactating boob.... and just to make life a little bit easier, a baby carrier of some sort.

So back to the ring sling.  I first fell in love with babywearing when Leeland was a wee little guy, and I had a custom mei tai made.  It was SO cute and so fun to wear and I got loads of compliments on it everywhere we went.
Hold on a minute while I oogle at little Leeland hanging out in the mei tai .....

SO, shortly after Hayden was born, we graduated up to a Boba 3g, which is a soft structured carrier, or buckle style carrier.

.... and shortly after the Boba, I visited a few Triad Tot Toters meetings and fell in love with woven wraps.  And got one for Christmas (woop! woop!).
.... But this post is about ring slings, right?  I'm gonna be completely honest, the ring sling had to grow on me.  It looks so simple, but there is a little bit of a learning curve to it.  Once I got the fit right, it was perfect.  I love a ring sling for it's ease in breastfeeding, a little bitty baby, but I also love it for a toddler because it's easy to adjust when my indecisive 15 month old can't decide if he wants up or down and proceeds to go back and forth.

I made my first ring sling last year, for myself.  And still use it!
... And now I have to oogle at itty bitty Hayden....

I've made several since this one, and hope the Mommies that I've made them for have been able to use and love them.  The pattern I use to make ring slings can be found here, and it's super easy to follow.  The slings that I make are always linen or linen/cotton blends.  Linen is super supportive and also very breathable, which has been perfect for our very hot natured Hayden.

Here's a few photos of the most recent one that I made for a childhood friend.

Hard to tell from the photos, but the fabric is an off white and the floral looking design is a plum purple.  It's really pretty in person, I promise!  The 2nd photo there is a matching drawstring bag to hold the sling.  And the bottom picture is my sweet Leeland being worn-- he insisted that he get in the carrier when I was trying it on for size.  Babywearing is fun, and appreciated, even for a 3 year old!

What's your "go to" baby gift for a baby shower?  Not gonna lie, when it's a friend having a little girl, a close 2nd is buying them little girly clothes, since you know, I don't get to buy girly things.  ;)

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