If you are new to the world of babywearing, or just keen to find out more, your best port of call is a Sling Meet.. If you are in Auckland, Slingbabies is probably the group you are after. They have meets in East, North and West Auckland currently and the West Auckland one, (the one I head along to when I manage to sort a drop off session for my big boy at Playcentre cause its normally a session day for us) is this coming Friday, the 3rd of June, held at Sturges West Community House, 58 Summerland Drive, Henderson, from 10-1130am (https://www.facebook.com/events/1401395353209215/?ti=cl)
Sling meets are a great place to seek information from a variety of unbiased sources, most are volunteer run by mums passionate about babywearing. They often seek a koha (donation) from visitors to cover venue hire and such but these services are run on love, not money. Some, like Slingbabies West Auckland, offer a large and extensive library of carriers to try and hire, and at really reasonable costs.
I recommend anyone, regardless of level of experience or any other factors, try before you buy when it comes to baby carriers, slings and wraps. The standard loan period with this kind of sling meet gives you more than enough time to work out if you like a certain option/style/brand is for you or if you want to try another. And a sling meet like this is your best, most comprehensive way to do this in many standard situations… It was my gateway intro to babywearing when I borrowed a Kozy Carrier Mei Tai from the Slingbabies library over three years ago now!!
At a meet like this, someone may briefly outline the variety of styles of babywearing options available; from a Pouch sling, ring sling, stretchy wrap, woven wrap, Mei Tai, Soft Structured Carrier etc and provide some kind of outline of how they look and function. This will give you a good idea of what kind of style you think might suit you, an awesome outline if you are yet to purchase something or looking to try something new, alternatively it may provide you will some idea of where or how the option you already have stacks up to those others on the market…
If you are seeking help with a carrier, sling or wrap you already own, this is the place to ask. With lots of knowledge collectively between the volunteers and others attending, it is a rare case that someone can’t help you!
I have managed to sort my affairs to be able to come along this month, particularly exciting for me as I currently have a beautiful tester wrap, Neo from Tarabeau in The Netherlands that I am excited to show off to an apreciating audience 😉
Come along if you are in Auckland and not busy, it’s great fun to play with other options, soak up knowledge from other babywearing mamas and learn so, so much about the world of babywearing! Even if you are not in Auckland, be sure to check out the Slingbabies website, it’s a great source of all kinds of knowledge, relevant articles and links!