Thursday, July 31, 2014

Poarta-ma soft structured carrier (SSC) review

Romanian company Poarta-ma came to my attention with the relaunch of - and I was lucky enough to win one of their gorgeous carriers in a random giveaway (HOORAY!)... and THEN they agreed to send me an extra one to give to one of you lovely lot! So here it is - the Luna Mare toddler-size soft structured carrier.

in a nutshell, this is a better budget (around $100aud) Tula. Very similar dimensions (cinches down a bit more for more petite wearers) and construction.

It's perfectly constructed and cinches down easily to fit me (an aussie size 10) and Audrey (12 kgs/28lbs) very comfortably. All webbing is finished with elastic loops to keep excess length tidy and there's plenty of it - this is a very adjustable carrier that I think would suit variable body types, and we'll confirm that at our next babywearing meet!

Audrey is knee-to knee and comfortably contained in the body - arms in, even! Leg padding is generous and my picky child didn't complain when we hiked to the shops and back. Neither did my shoulders or back - I wore straps straight AND crossed (you know, for variety) and actually like both ways, although I found the crossed a bit more faff to tighten. The next time I started with the shoulder straps looser and the underarm straps tighter and found tightening on the diagonal much easier.

The waistband is nicely padded and quite wide- absolutely no rolling or digging, and brilliant support in a back carry which enabled Audrey's weight to stay close to my centre and not sink into my hips. I am ecstatic to add this to our local library and even happier to be giving one away - just ENTER HERE or head over to my Facebook page to get your entries in!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Review and GIVEAWAY of My Chickadee Designs

So, a couple weeks back  I was very fortunate to receive a gorgeous parcel from My Chickadee Designs - and you might too! Here's what was in mine....

 Carryall - yes, that's a WHOLE hemp indio sitting there!

What better way to seriously road test a nappy bag than tow it on three flights and a three-week trip? Chickadee Designs' carryall (pictured above) held up like a champion.

First challenge: fitting in enough stuff to qualify as Audrey's sole carryon piece of luggage. It may appear sleek and streamlined, but this bag accommodated three complete changes of clothes, a tea towel bib (best thing ever), a wet bag (a fancy, matching wet bag, no less!) several activity books and sheets of stickers, a block set, bag of buttons, bag of pipe cleaners, pencil roll, teething remedy, Nurofen, Panic-stop (ok, that was mine)... a ring sling AND a size 3 turquoise hemp Indio. Holy wowza. 

OH - and my phone went in the incredibly handy front pocket for quick access.
OH - and the iPad went in the padded centre pocket (with zip closure).

The three sections kept all our stuff clearly organized and saved us a couple of times when fumbling for a quick and dirty distraction. It was the perfect height for above-seat storage and was easily nudged under a seat for a small-plane flight, no complaints or issues. 

Once landed and settled, it was emptied and has become the perfect day bag - capacious enough for a few acquisitions while we're out and about, but light enough to be slung over a shoulder and carried casually.  While we didn't bring the included change mat with us, the matching wet bag has been fantastic for containing wet swimmers and it's lovely to have such well-made matching accessories. Totally blown away by the quality of construction and very happy to be supporting a WAHM! 


Hello genius! So many times I see the question: but if you don't have a pram, how do you carry all baby's stuff? The answer is one of these sleek little beauties. 

Audrey likes it so much she's taken to marching about declaring "Bag...shops!" Basically, it's two elastic topped pockets (genius!) and unrolls into a change mat. You could easily fit four disposables or two mcn and a wipes baggie in one pocket, your wallet, phone and keys in the other, roll it up and done. No handbag, no diaper sack. Finito. We may have test driven it and I can verify that even toddlers will fit on the change mat!
Again, totally impressed by My Chickadee Designs' workmanship - impeccable sewing and a fantastic product for harried mums feeling a bit overwhelmed by the stuff one can fit in a nappy bag! 

Mei tai 

Yeah, you can all see how cute this is. And honestly, she could just use a scarf but it's nice to have a carrier that's easy enough for a two-year-old to navigate and get out of when they're done :) 
The long Velcro tabs on each strap make it very adjustable (Audrey is a skinny 2yo and fits the smallest setting well).
Impeccable craftsmanship and sweet thoughtful details really make this for me, like the matching change pocket and sturdy lining that means a tonka truck can be babied just as easily as a Waldorf doll :) I really love this as a sibling gift and just allowing children to emulate thoughtful parenting practices.

NOW, generously, Janina has a 10% off coupon for you ALL with the code keepcalmandcarrythem at checkout, but even better, you can enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for your own carryall, clutch AND carrier (winner's choice of mini/large) in YOUR choice of fabric! Go now! Go quickly!