My New Adventure in to Online Retail, meet Naturally Babies

For all of you who have not heard yet, let me introduce you to Naturally Babies, the online shop for all your cloth nappy and babywearing needs.

Naturally Babies for cloth nappies and baby carriers

I first thought about this when I was on maternity leave in 2013 as I became excited by cloth nappies and ergonomic baby carriers that I was using with my daughter. I both wanted to share my new passion with more mummies and daddies and have a shop in Leeds where you could come and see the products in real life and buy them there and then. Time rolled on, I couldn’t think how to fund this, so back to work I went. Still the idea lurked in my head and as time went by I also needed a way to work that would give me some flexibility with my daughter as she gets older, goes to nursery and then school. Eventually, I decided to try and get a bank loan and make my dream a reality. Despite what I initially thought in these more austere times, I did find a bank who would loan me the money I required. Yippee. In the meantime, I had a Cancer diagnosis to side swipe me but me being me (readers of this big will know about this already), I wasn’t going to stop my dream coming true and anyway I now had a bank loan to pay back!

We “opened” for business on 12th March. Naturally Babies your place for all your cloth nappy and baby wearing needs and advice became a reality.

It’s hard starting a business for anyone, I knew it would be but you never quite know what something will be like until you do it yourself. I am still working whlst getting this going but to get it going it really needs time. Time to get the website up and running, time to choose and order products, time to put products on the website, time to create your social media posts, time to think about marketing.

This sounds like I am not happy. I am. Being in it’s infancy, it’s a bit scary, as I really do want it to be successful. Each time I make a sale, I get a happy feeling and think it’s worth while. With my realistic, accountancy head on, I know that everything is fine. Business’ take time to get going and need a lot of promotion.

It’s great to be doing things that are similar and different to my usual job in Finance. Allowing to be a bit more creative than usual and learning about the world of SEO! I have also just been on a course to become a babywearing consultant, so that customers can feel really confident with the advice that I give and to expand my business in to baby consultancies as well. Sharing babywearing with more people.

I couldn’t do this with out my husbands support. As always, he is amazing. Helping to keep the house going whilst I get an order packed or put together a new post for social media and taking on the role of delivery man.

Will it just be a hobby or will I be able to give up my current job and allow me some flexibility while my daughter is young. I don’t know yet, it’s too early days to tell at the moment but I am giving the business the best shot that I can. If nothing else, I’m excited to be doing this and sharing my passion with others and I can’t believe that I have over 600 Facebook likes in just under 2 months!

Naturally Babiesfor all your cloth nappy and babywearing needs

Do come and take a look at Naturally Babies.

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Pouch Sling – Not Popular But Worth Having In Your Stash

Pouch Slings are not popular. This is because they became unfairly associated with bag slings. Also, the sizing can be difficult and confusing for people

Bucking the sling trends, I have to own up to loving mine. Last year when I started going to The West Yorkshire Sling Library, a pouch sling was mentioned to me. I didn’t think I needed one at all but Nicola talked about hip carrying at 7 months and later their use for quick up and downs, together with how small they fold up for carrying about.  I tried one on and could see that it could be useful. Added that it was only going to cost me around £20 second hand, I thought that I’d get one. At the sling library I tried a size 2 Hotsling on with her weighted doll. It seemed to fit me but I should have been suspicious as I’m bigger than Nicola. She had explained that Hotslings had stopped making single sized pouches as there were just too many sizes and colour options to make and retail. They had changed to adjustable ones that she didn’t like as much. Although I can not remember why.

Off to to ebay I went. Size 2 eventually ordered from the US. I was, however, surprised at how many US individuals would not mail to the UK. I excitedly waited for my pretty package. Tried it on and it was too small. Boo hoo. I resold this on a Facebook sling group. Not the easiest sling to sell but there was a taker. Then I went the opposite way and bought a size 3 and 4.  Panicked, despite thinking a 3 would be fine. It was. More reselling to be done.

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Well I have had my pouch sling for nearly 18 months. It is incredibly small when folded up, so great for taking out and about and has been an up and down life saver for me. Especially earlier on when we had late afternoon melt downs.

I found great videos on you tube to help me make sure I used this correctly and that I could make sure it is comfortable for both of us too. Your local sling library should also be able to give you advice if you find you are struggling with your new sling.

For some unknown reason, I find this easier to use than a ring sling and much more comfortable.

I must add, I have only used mine for hip carries.

Don’t dismiss the cheap, handy and useful pouch. You may find it an added bonus to your sling collection.

 

 

 

 

Babywearing – Good for mummy, good for daddy, good for my daughter’s social skills!

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We’d always decided to buy a baby carrier as part of preparing for my daughters arrival. Along with a pram is was part of the kit we wanted. We saw it as practical at the time but didn’t understand all the wonderful benefits it would bring to all of us. Devout baby wearers will start wagging fingers at me when I say that our first carrier was a Baby Bjorn Miracle. They will say that I was harming my daughters hips, as the ‘M’ position is much more ergonomically correct. I would say, if you have no known hip problems, it is fine to use (personal opinion based on my reading of articles and knowing that there is no peer reviewed research on it out there yet) and for us helped us immensely to cope with hours of crying from Colic. I didn’t get on with the Baby Bjorn and moved on to a stretchy Kari Me Wrap. Today at nearly 14 months we both mainly use a Boba 3G soft structured carrier, along with the other 5 different slings and carriers that I now own. I may have gotten the baby wearing bug!

Now we as parents love carrying our daughter. Getting a hug in a carrier is fantastic and being close enough to kiss means she receives lots of kisses from us. Not having a bulky buggy in a shop or restaurant is a godsend, but what I’ve really noticed over the months of wearing her, is how social she can be. When we are in a shop and she can smile and interact with a shop assistants. When we walked past the Ritz hotel in London, she waved at the door man and he waved back. Bumping in to a work colleague, they could both have a proper “conversation”, without someone having to bend down and pear in to the pushchair. People notice her and chat to her, smile and wave, she smiles and waves back. It is so lovely to see and helps her to be a more social child too.