In Defense of High End Babywearing

My babywearing world was recently bombarded with posts about a woman who scammed two other women in a 3 way trade of Highy Sought After (HSA) Tula baby carriers. She received her Tula and tried to mail fraud her way out of sending her Tula to the next woman, as agreed upon in the trade. Each Tula in the trade was worth $1300 and it was not Paypal backed.

I had the same reaction about wraps and Tulas when I first started looking at these things. Who is paying this much for FABRIC?!

Then you catch the BSC. Lol, just kidding.

It is a little bit like strollers. Many serious babywearers don't even have strollers so I think they justify how much they spend on carriers because they didn't spend money on a stroller. (Actually, I haven't used a stroller in a long time since I got my Tula and Neobulle.)

You can buy a cheap stroller that will do the job but the more the spend, up to a point, the easier the stroller is to use with more bells and whistles, either for the baby or the parent. I have tried a cheapie JJ Cole wrap hybrid carrier and if that's what babycarrying was like, I would have personally quit and never looked back. It carried Ben but it was uncomfortable over long periods. I used a moby and it was comfortable but really a hassle to wrap and can't be used past 15 lbs.  I have tried a full wrap conversion Tula and it's the comfort and convenience that is unparalleled.

Everything past the aforementioned point is really just style points. Like the Andy Worhol X Bugaboo collaboration. No one needs a pop art inspired banana print on their $1200+ Bugaboo, they just really WANT it. Because at some point, for many moms, like their clothes, their baby gear becomes an expression of themselves. And their babywearing is part of what defines them as mothers.

In luxury carriers (anything over $150), the fabric is more comfortable and as a result, easier to wear for longer periods of time (babywearers will often tell you a tale of how they wore their baby for the whole day with nary an ache as a testament to how good their carriers are), the carrier is better designed (easier to nurse while wearing or allow baby to sleep) and able to last baby longer (wider seats allow for longer use).

Arguably, most wrap/highly sought after carrier owners will tell you that they intend to sell their carrier when their child has outgrown it. This is why they'll spend more than the $150 mark for rare wraps and carriers. And because they are highly sought after (and as a result, outrageously priced), they should retain their value, if not appreciate in value. It's practically an investment, they reason. And in some cases, these women will resell their carriers for more than they bought them for. So they can spend $1300 today, and in a month or so, depending on how the demand as driven by the tastes of the mommies on the market, it might be worth closer to $2000.

That being said, no more un-backed trades for $1300 carriers.

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