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Follow along with nine of the most influential, trend-setting women in the blogosphere (and their babies!) as they fire up their fashion savvy and compete to style the most fabulous, original outfits around Sakura Bloom slings and key wardrobe pieces.
Here’s the really fun part and where you come in! the Styleathon is a unique, interactive event designed to spread the love to our customers and readers, with frequent opportunities to win the same items featured by your favorite bloggers!
Our Lovely Hostess: Leigh of Marvelous Kiddo
Head on over to The Sakura Bloom Styleathon now you are just in time to enter the Round 1 giveaway!
Tell us a little about yourself, your family, and your love of babywearing.
I have 3 children Ella 7, Brennan 4 & Finn 8 weeks. I have been babywearing since my first child was just a few months old and here I am seven years later (where does the time go)! I am a full time Mommy & part time Photographer.I am actually just getting back to work since having Finn and will be wearing him during my upcoming photo sessions.
What was your “a-ha” moment with baby carriers?
When I had my second child I really realized how wonderful babywearing truly is & how important is is to have your hands free!
What is your favorite thing about a ring sling?
I love that it is adjustable giving a perfect fit every time. I also think they are so pretty.
Clearly we’re biased, but we love photos of parents with babies in slings. What do you like most about photographing infants?
There is nothing more beautiful than capturing the closeness of a parent and child…babywearing creates an amazing closeness. My absolute favorite thing to photograph is an infant in a sling.
What is your Sakura Bloom sling of choice?
Right now we only have our Simple Linen in Organic Raven (which we love) but if I could pick any one it would have to from the Luxe line and probably Moondance.
Thanks to Stephenie and Finn for sharing with us!
Are you ready for a Mommy Triathlon? Adventures in Babywearing is looking for seven moms to try out three amazing Sakura Bloom slings, each for a two week period. We want you to get to know these slings, to use them as part of your everyday life, and to share your results with us in three ways: through photos, video, and writing. The mom who best represents the Sakura Bloom spirit of “the modern art of babywearing” will win a grand prize of a sustainable eco-luxury Sakura Bloom Luxe Collection Sling (msrp $540)!
So, first head over to Adventures in Babywearing enter to be one of the lucky seven moms and then grab one of these beautiful buttons created by Fawn&Forest! Post it on your blog or anywhere you see fit and link it up to The Sakura Bloom Triathlon. Help us celebrate International Babywearing Week by spreading the Babywearing Love!
What’s even better than sharing baby sling love with your children? Having a close friend who does as well. At Sakura Bloom, we hear a lot from parents who are teaching the ropes to their friends and family, showing them the hows, whens, and whys of using a baby sling. Our dream is to reach the point where everyone on the block knows how to put on and use a sling.
Two women in Chicago are helping us get closer to this goal by spreading the word with style and care. We’re thrilled to introduce them to you in this interview, two of our favorite Sakura Bloom mothers: Carrie and Heather!
Tell us about yourselves, your families, and your favorite things.
Heather – I’ve been married to Mark for 8 years and have two kids, Moriah who is 3 and Isaac who is 8 months old. I stay at home with the kids and love being a Mom. My first experience with slings was when I was on a missions trip to Malawi, Africa in my college days. I always thought that someday when I had kids of my own I’d love to use the simplicity of a sling. I like to get my hands into many different crafts and hobbies and always seem to be doing some project.
Carrie – I have degrees in math and physics. When my son came home, I expected to go back to graduate school a few months later. Well, last words and all. Turns out the little man needed me with him. I am now the mother of two children, both born in South Korea. My son is almost four and my daughter who just turned 2. We live in Chicago, but still miss our hometown of Ann Arbor and hope to move back there someday. My favorite things? SHOES! And BAGS! And SLINGS! Seriously, I freely admit that I have a passion for heels, handbags, and Sakura Bloom slings. Did you know you can carry a baby in a Sakura Bloom sling while wearing 4″ heels and still be comfy? Because you can. I’ve done it.
I work part time while my husband is with the kids as a photographer. It is something I fell into and really love. I love the math side of it; I’m always seeing angles, etc. while I am shooting. I think perhaps once the kids are in school, I will go back to grad school. But we’ll see.
You two became friends through your love of baby carriers. What have you learned from each other over the years?
Heather – I learned my love for ring slings from Carrie. I used mostly mei tais and wraps and saw how easy a ring sling was with her kids and decided to give it a try.
Carrie – To not be such a stereotypical guilty mother! Heather also taught me how to wrap. I think I introduced her to Sakura Blooms? (Yes, she says I did)
People often can’t refrain from commenting on babies in slings. What are the best comments you’ve received from strangers?
Heather – My favorite is always “I wish they had one of those when I had babies”. I mostly just love being an example and then get such joy out of seeing my friends buy a sling for themselves. Isaac is a real cuddler so lately I’ve been getting comments about how cozy the sling is and how much he seems to love it.
Carrie – The one I get most often is, “That’s the best seat in the house!” Darn straight it is. Love it.
Do you share slings?
Heather – I’ll try them on… that’s how I fell in love with Sakura Bloom ring slings =)
Carrie – We have. Not often enough though!
What do you wish all new parents knew about baby slings?
Heather – They’re simplistic. They also encourage bonding and getting to know your child and his/her needs. It also allows you to get other stuff done and to get around easily when a stroller isn’t always convenient.
Carrie – That they are the best things ever. Seriously. My babies are so comfortable in slings and I love having them close to me. That and Sakura Blooms are comfortable and stylish! Can’t beat that. They are fabulous in the city, as strollers just don’t always work so well on public transit. I love how easily I can adjust my children in a Sakura Bloom from my hip to my lap (or from my back or from my front…) while riding a train.
I wish I could give every adoptive parent a sling. Using them is probably the single best thing we did with both our children to encourage attachment.
If you could choose just one Sakura Bloom sling for each other, which one would it be and why?
Heather – Surf Luxe because of the amazing support for her kids and the color would be stunning on her and her kids.
Carrie – Sol Luxe because she looks amazing in orange and I hate her for it. 😉
(Thanks to Carrie, Heather, and their beautiful families from all of us at Sakura Bloom. Next time in Chicago!)
Have sling, will travel! In this edition of Men in Slings, we are thrilled to feature new dad Vincent and his adorable son Leland. From their local coffee shop in Vancouver to the other side of the world, read on to learn about the places they go in their Sakura Bloom baby sling!
What is your favorite thing about a baby sling?
The physical and emotional connection that you feel when having your baby close to you.
We hear you traveled to Hong Kong and Toronto with just a Sakura Bloom sling and nothing else (no stroller). Can you tell us about that? Our boy was just under 20 lbs. when we were traveling so it was very manageable to use a sling all day. In fact, the freedom and mobility is unbeatable when traveling in urban cities that are cramped and full of stairs. We did get a lot of stares however mostly because a) dads generally never carry their kids and b) slings are ultra rare in Hong Kong.
What do you wish other fathers knew about using baby carriers?
A baby sling is a lot more comfortable for both the baby and dad than most carriers. Also, babies like to be close to you. Eye contact and touch is extremely important and strollers deny them of these needs.
Anything else you’d like to add?
The slack fabric is great for covering the baby when it’s sunny out but still allows him to see through it! Also, the packaging for the sling is very well designed.
In celebration of Mother’s Day, we are launching our new blog series, Bringing Baby to Work. In this feature, we will be sharing stories from around the world of baby-friendly workplaces and the women (and men!) who make them possible and successful!
Tell us about The Little Seedling.
Molly – The Little Seedling is a store in Ann Arbor, Mi that focuses on natural parenting and unique, practical baby goods. The store started due to a need in the area for cloth diapering information and has grown (in 5 years!) to a complete baby and maternity store.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Molly – My favorite part of my job is connecting with other mothers. For me, the “baby stage” was so hard! Being able to say to another mom… “don’t worry if your baby cries in the store, we have all been there” is so wonderful. I don’t ever want another mom to feel like she can’t come into our store to shop, relax, chat, enter into adult conversation or whatever she needs that day! Of course the store is here to provide a product but we are also here to provide support to families.
We were thrilled to learn that your staff wear their babies at work in Sakura Bloom slings. Tell us more!
Molly – I learned early on that there is no way to sell a product unless you LOVE the product. Customers want first hand information and to know that there isn’t a single answer for each person. Finding the right employees was hard! I needed to employ parents because they are the ones we are catering to. Allowing moms to bring their babies to work allows me to hire the *right* people for the job. With daycare costs so high it is almost a necessity for me to allow this or my employees would not be able to afford to work. Not to mention the fact that I would hate for work to interrupt the nursing relationships of my employees with their babies! Oh… and we never have a shortage of cute little models around the store!
Jennifer + Giedra + Kerry
Working at The Little Seedling sounds fantastic! What does it mean to you to be able to have your child with you at work?
Jennifer – Working at The Little Seedling is great! Being able to bring Henry (17 months) to work means that I CAN work. Day care just isn’t something we can afford so this is the ideal situation.
Giedra – It’s a huge gift to be able to bring my son to work with me. For me I wouldn’t be able to work any other way. Everyday I am so grateful to Molly for the privilege of bringing my child to work.
Kerry – It is such a wonderful thing to be able to bring my child to work with me – It’s important for my mental well-being to be able to get out of the house and go to work, but that wouldn’t be possible for me if I were not able to bring my son.
What sort of response do you get from customers?
Jennifer – Most costumers have very positive responses to seeing us with our kids at work. “How nice to be able to bring your child with you!” and “Are you hiring?” It also really helps for customers to see some of the products in action – cloth diapers, slings, toys, clothes, etc.
Giedra – I would say mostly it’s that people think it’s very unique. Some can’t imagine “having” to bring their child and others wish they could do the same.
Kerry – All of the responses have been extremely positive – Many ask if we are hiring! A few people have even said that they make sure to come to our store since it supports moms with babies.
What Sakura Bloom sling is your favorite?
Jennifer – I love the silk essential ring sling! I have it in chocolate~terracotta!
Giedra – My favorite is the silk essential ring sling, as well. It’s so supportive for an older child and allows for easy up and down, perfect for a toddler on the move. I look forward to trying it out with a newborn. I also covet the blackberry stripe artisan sling, oh so gorgeous.
Kerry – I LOVE my linen essential ring sling in storm~cloud! It’s casual enough for every day wear, but so beautiful that I feel good wearing it even when I’m in spit-up stained yoga pants.
Thank you to Molly, Jennifer, Giedra, and Kerry from The Little Seedling. You are an inspiration to working mothers everywhere!