Save money on your woven wrap and save time making it softer by buying it gently used. Learn more reasons why it can be wise to shop secondhand plus tips on what to look for and where to look for used woven wraps.
Little Bear was a year old before I got my first woven wrap. It was pre-owned, larger than my base size, and an organic cotton and hemp blend. Soon after, I bought a used organic cotton and linen blend three sizes smaller than my base.
If all this talk of base sizes and blends sounds confusing, let me assure you that it’s really quite simple. Basically, your base size is the shortest length that will allow you to do a front wrap cross carry (FWCC), which is the first way most people learn to wrap. (I promise, once you get the hang of it, you’ll find that’s also fairly simple.)
Different fibers feel differently. Once “broken in,” both hemp and linen are soft and supportive. Hemp is a bit warmer, while the linen is my pick for warm weather.
Before Wilder Baby was born, I bought a 100% organic cotton used woven wrap in my base size. Even though I have since acquired a few brand new woven wraps, I reach for the used ones just as often.
New or used, I believe woven wraps are the best for babywearing. If you are new to babywearing or trying to budget, shopping secondhand can be beneficial.
Why Choosing a Used Woven Wrap is a Good Idea
It’s worth it to consider buying a second-hand woven wrap.
Quality woven wraps are expensive. Buying one secondhand is a great way to save a little money.
Soft and Moldable
Used woven wraps are typically softer and more moldable because they have already been “broken in” by the previous owner. Some blends, such as hemp and linen, start off stiff and require a little wear before they reach their comfort potential. Like a good pair of jeans, woven wraps tend to get more comfortable the more you wear them.
Lots of woven wraps are limited editions that are made in small batches and sell out quickly. When looking for a second-hand woven wrap, there are more colors, patterns, and designs to choose from.
From baby spit up to blowouts, bodily fluids will likely get on your woven wrap at some point. If you’re baking in the kitchen, a little flour might dust it. If you’re putting it on outdoors, the fabric might graze the wet grass or get a little muddy. Although my 100% linen Didymos wraps are my absolute favorites, sometimes I wear my used ones simply because I don’t worry about getting them a little dirty.
Drawbacks to Consider When Buying Used Woven Wraps
Let’s take a moment to imagine a possible scenario that might arise when searching for a used woven wrap. You finally find one from a trustworthy brand that’s made from your preferred fabric choice in your favorite colors. It’s in excellent condition and priced well within your budget. But it’s not your base size. Do you keep searching?
Maybe, but not necessarily. If this happens to you, don’t fret. My advice is to research different carries you could do with that size and then decide if you would find it useful.
Remember how I mentioned that the first two wraps I bought were not my base size? I could still do a FWCC with the one that was a size larger; the tail was just a little longer. And I didn’t have to worry about the “shorty” that’s three sizes smaller than my base dragging the ground.
I doubt I would have ever bought that size 2 if it hadn’t been used, but I’m glad I have it in my stash. It has inspired me to try new comfortable carries that were outside of my comfort zone.
Reasons to Have More Than One Used Woven Wrap
One woven wrap can be sufficient for your entire babywearing journey; however, it can also be useful and practical to have more than one. And if you buy a used wrap, the money you save can be spent on another. Here are a few benefits to having an extra wrap (or more) on hand:
- You can wear one while the other is in the wash.
- You can have a long wrap and a short one for different carries.
- That shorter wrap might be more convenient to use when out and about, and the longer one may be more comfortable to wear for longer periods of time.
- One wrap could be more suitable for summer, while another is better for cooler temperatures.
- You may find that you prefer one wrap for your newborn but another for the toddler years.
- You can use two wraps simultaneously to tandem wear your kids.
- It can be fun to coordinate your woven wrap with your outfit. More designs = more fun.
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Tips for Buying a Gently Used Woven Wrap
- Shop around for your dream baby carrier. You can look locally at baby-centered consignment shops or search sites like ebay, Poshmark, and Mercari as well as babywearing social media groups.
- Look for a woven wrap without holes, stains, and/or pulls.
- Research the wrap to learn more about it. For instance, what year was it released and what is the fabric content?
- Check if the seller has good feedback.
- Politely ask for measurements.
- If you’re sensitive to allergens, you may want to find out if the wrap is currently in a pet-friendly home or one with smoking. Although I advise washing the wrap yourself before you use it, you may want to ask how it has been washed to see if you should wash it a few extra times. (Many laundry detergents aren’t actually made with clean ingredients and can leave a lingering chemical fragrance.)
- Negotiate the price, if possible, in a kind and respectful manner.
- If using PayPal, I recommend selecting “goods and services” rather than “friends and family.” This will provide more buyer protection, if you have to file a claim.
Like a thrifted book, a used woven wrap has a story behind it. It’s up to you what the next chapter will hold.
A used woven wrap can have a high resale value, so you may decide to sell (or swap) yours one day. They can also be upcycled. Think sentimental sewing projects: a pretty tote bag, headband, or journal cover.
Have you bought a used woven wrap? Tell me about it in the comments.