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Budget Edition Babywearing Review: Toto Wraps Samburu

John

bw review banner samburu After officially celebrating our first International Babywearing Week (2014), I was so fortunate to have been contacted by (my now friend) Tandem Trouble. She was beyond kind enough to send me the first few "real woven wraps" I had tried out! This beautiful wrap was the first to ever allow me to appreciate tandem carries and help me really learn back carries. And between the gorgeous and subtle blue weft and the comfort of the Kikoy material, it's hard not to fall in love.

samburu main

For the first 16 months of our babywearing journey we had only used a DIY OSNABURG WRAP*, so when Samburu came to visit I was excited to finally have a "real wrap" to snuggle in. Immediately out of the box it is light and soft. I opened it near a window and the first thing I saw was blue sprinkled throughout the wrap. The way the weft shimmers gives this wrap more beauty than a print or pattern could ever offer. I was surprised, and a bit skeptical, when it came to the thinness of the Kikoy cloth. It was completely floppy and about everything else that was opposite of what we had known our entire wrapping lives.  But I was ready to dive into learning how to love and truly appreciate wrapping with it.

*I had VERY briefly tried a Didymos and Oscha woven before Samburu came. Very briefly.

samburu specsThe first thing I noticed about this wrap is that the Atlanta heat stood NO chance. I also learned that this wrap gives you as much love back as time you put in. Because of the thinness, you want to make sure that you take the extra few seconds to get all your passes where you want them and that everything is nice and secure. If you do, you can wear as much "baby weight" as you want for as long as you desire. If you don't, you are going to feel the wrap start to work against you. If you don't wrap your back carry with flat shoulders on the ruck straps, they will dig. If you don't take the time to spread the passes across your back when wrapping a front carry, you will feel the weight of your baby. And the more slack you can get out, the better for weight distribution. While that may sound super demanding, what it did for me was give me the urge to learn more about my carries and explore different ways to perfect them. I became better, and quicker, at parking lot back wrapping, But the part I loved most about having this wrap was all of the extra time I found myself spending with the girls while I practiced wrapping and rewrapping them. To top it off, they started to love being wrapped even more, and I was constantly reminded why I even began wrapping them in the first place. (There were some pretty intense cuddly moments!)

samburu checklist

I mostly tandem wore the girls in this wrap because, well that's the only kind of babywearing I really knew at that point. I did occasionally wear one on my back, but front carries were a no go. Aside from the fact that the girls had NO interest in front snuggles since they wanted to see EVERYTHING (aka look over mommy's shoulder), this wrap wasn't my most favorite for front carries. It's not to say that it's not doable, but it just wasn't the most comfortable for me. The thinness of the wrap made everything a touch trickier for front carries, because I felt like it could dig easily if you had a squirmy squish who could potentially keep the wrap shifting around on your shoulders, or if you didn't wrap your shoulder passes/straps flat. (Side note: If you wrap using the top rails to guide the placement of ruckstraps/shoulder passes and both the top and bottom rails to guide your passes, you will nail it 99.9% of the time!)

Overall, if you are looking for something simple and intricate you should definitely consider Samburu. It's a great wrap for beginners or anyone looking to add to their stash without breaking the bank too hard.

 

Check us out in our FIRST babywearing workout video sporting Samburu! Supportive enough for ALL the #dancingfun