“I was thinking about trying your Cycle Pads, but they look oddly shaped. Do you make any that are shaped like normal pads?”
This email is about a decade old, but I’ve received similar questions over the years. Your pads are funny looking. Your pads don’t look like my old Always pads. Your pads are shaped differently than my big-brand cloth pads. Your pads are different. The underlying worry is that our pads are different, therefore our pads are inferior. Nothing could be further from the truth!
True, Wallypop pads are shaped differently from most other pads on the market.
When I was initially trying out cloth pads before my first pregnancy (good heavens, it’s been nearly 14 years now), I based my first pads off of the store bought disposables that I used. You know, more or less an oval with little wings sticking out the sides. FAIL. Just like the store-bought pads, I had trouble with my underwear getting stained immediately on either side of those wings. So I made the wings a bit bigger. It was better, but on heavy days, I still had the same problem. So I made the wings bigger. Then they were kind of awkward. (And I’d love to show you pictures, but this was well before I was anticipating owning my own business, and I didn’t photograph my pattern development process like I do now.)
One day, I said, hey. Let’s forget this “wing” idea. How about if I just go straight from the top corner of the pad to the end of the snap-around bit? Make it an extended hexagon?
The result was a pad that perfectly protects the sides of underwear without any chafing or irritating edges rubbing against the upper thighs.
Guess what? Shape does matter, and the old disposable-model maxi pad shape isn’t actually the ideal shape for a cloth menstrual pad.
If you need more convincing, I combed through my emails for ones from Cycle Pad customers…
“Remember that I was worried about the shape of the pads? I decided to try one and you were right – I love it. Next payday, I’m getting a few more.”
“I’ve received my Cycle Pads. Used them for two periods. No leaks! Going to wear my good panties next month!” (this one makes me chuckle…)
“The pads are amazing. Got them in time for my period to come back after the baby. It’s not like I enjoyed it, but the pads were comfortable and didn’t leak at all. Thank you!!!”
Laguna and Kailani have arrived in all their radiant loveliness.
Laguna is a Wrapsody Breeze wrap, and Kailani is its Hybrid counterpart – both are BWI fundraiser wraps. Not only is Wrapsody making a donation to BWI National when these wraps are purchased, but Wallypop will also be making a donation to our local BWI chapter (BWI of Central Iowa). We’ll donate $10 of the purchase price of each of these wraps to BWI. :)
They really are lovely in person – make an appointment to check one out, or just purchase one via the website and you’ll have it in mere days.
That almost works, right? (the song…)
Anyway. Christmas and other winter holidays are coming and even though I agree it’s kind of too early to really be thinking about it… I’m going to talk about it anyway.
Because. Custom orders.
Every year – Every Year – I get desperate emails in mid December. “My wife really wants a Doctor Who Mei Tai.” “My sister’s having a baby and I decided I want to get her a custom Onbu!” “I’d love winter/Christmas themed feeding pump accessories to give my tubie for a stocking stuffer.” “I want to get my toddler some diapers for under the tree!”
BUT. The time to be thinking about custom sewing for holiday gifts is now. I’m currently scheduling custom orders for November. I’m only taking a few for November, and then a few for December, and then there won’t be any more spots until January.
So if you think you might be wanting to gift someone with the awesomeness of Wallypop custom sewing this holiday season… or if you want to gift YOURSELF with that kind of amazingness… or if you want your spouse/mother/kid/Santa/fairy godmother to gift you something stunning from our sweat shop… you might want to be thinking about it sooner rather than later.
Yes, this is a sale for the locals only.
Did you know we now carry LennyLamb SSCs? Yes, yes we do. And we’d like to see more Central Iowans wearing their little ones in LennyLamb! So we’re having a sale.
So, for a limited time only, use code IOWAROCKS at checkout AND select “Pick up at Seller Location” as your shipping option to bring the price of the gorgeous LennyLamb carriers down by $10. This sale price is available ONLY for pickup orders. (So actually you don’t have to live in Central Iowa… you just have to want to drive here to pick it up.) Now, the unfortunate detail is that my cart can’t actually apply a sale price based on your chosen method of shipping, so the discount will actually have to be taken off manually…
WHY would you want to own a LennyLamb?
– suuuuuper comfy
– soft and floppy right out of the package
– so pretty
– not the same SSC that everyone else is wearing…
– more affordable than many other wrap conversion SSCs
– did I mention super comfortable?
– more wearing options, since the straps unbuckle and may be crossed behind your back. (Yeah… no more struggling to fasten that awkward chest clip when you’re wearing a kid on your front. Awesome for T-rex moms.)
Wallypop already offers the BEST price for LennyLamb in the state of Iowa, and this sale just makes the prices *that much better.*
I’ve just restocked Mei Tais – AND some of the new Mei Tais feature removable hoods!
I plan to continue offering many different levels of canvas mei tais – some are very basic, some have more luxurious features – but those with hoods will, from now on, have removable hoods.
For those of you with Tulas, the snaps and snap placement are compatible with your Tula.
As you might know, I schedule out my bigger projects (baby carriers, large diaper orders, large diaper repair orders, etc.). But many people don’t realize (or, probably, don’t even care, lol) that I really don’t schedule out the smaller projects. I put them in their own bins just like the larger projects, and then I grab them when I have the right size chunk of time, or when I’ve finished a big project and want something smaller with more immediate rewards before starting on the next big project. That’s why when you ask about turnaround on a smaller (non baby carrier) project, I’m kind of cagey about how long it’ll take. I just work them in.
So I thought I’d share with you a rather typical collection of small projects that I completed over 4 days of working. Most of these were cut in advance, and then sewn up in batches of similar things. Because that’s how my mind works.
If you don’t recognize them, there’s two sets of rectangular suck pads for a customer on Etsy, Harry Potter corner suck pads I made as an inventory item (available on Etsy), A customized hood and suck pads set to match a customer’s Sidekick Tula, Mickey Mouse G-Tube pads, a pretty houndstooth Tula cover that turned out to be the wrong thing, completely my fault, a hearts insulated feeding pump bag holder (from a customer who wrote, “thanks to the cover I bought from you last month, I’m finally sleeping all night for the first time since we brought our daughter home from the hospital!!”), and a completely awesome amazing Firefly Tula cover.
It seems like everyone these days is extolling the virtues of the weighted blanket. From people with autism or sensory issues to people with no known diagnosable conditions who just like the weight to parents desperate for something to keep their kids asleep a bit longer… everyone’s using them, it seems. (note: blankets are not appropriate for use with babies under 1 year of age.)
And why shouldn’t they be? I love weighted blankets. I’ve always preferred sleeping with weight on me. My two older kids don’t appreciate weight, but Teddy certainly does. It’s comforting to some people, and it provides pressure needed by others.
And you can certainly purchase some majorly expensive weighted blankets these days. And you can also purchase some really super cheap ones, too. Wallypop blankets are somewhere in the middle, in keeping with our philosophy of keeping our products affordable for average families. But I still get a large number of comments suggesting that weighted blanket prices merely reflect makers’ desire to take advantage of special needs families. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Let’s take a look at the expenses that go into a weighted blanket, and why it might not be in your best interests to purchase a cheap one.
1. Fabric. Wallypop blankets are made from name brand fabrics that will last for years and years. This is potentially more important in a weighted blanket, because we’re asking the fabric to do something it wasn’t really meant to do – hold up a lot of weight. Particularly when blankets are washed, the addition of weights adds a LOT of strain to the fabric, so starting with quality fabric is a must.
2. Inner layers. Wallypop blankets are made with two full inner layers to hold the beads that provide the weight. Cheaper blankets typically omit these layers, which are crucial to blanket stability and lifespan. They also mean that an older worn blanket can often be repaired (if it develops a hole, or is ripped or rubbed thin in places) instead of needing to be completely replaced. If a hole develops in the outer layer, the inner layers still hold the beads safely in place. These inner layers also make the blanket safer – if a hole develops in the outer layers, you’re not dealing with a bed full of tiny plastic pellets.
3. Pockets. Wallypop blankets are sewn with relatively small pockets to keep the weight evenly distributed and also to help contain any bead loss should the blanket get torn. Many cheaper blankets either omit these pockets entirely, or use much larger pockets. This results in uneven weight distribution, and encourages all the beads to run to the edges of the blanket and shifts the weight off of the user.
4. Weights. Wallypop uses high quality poly pellets as the weights. The pellets we use are smooth and round (or oval, or sometimes a flat disc, it just depends on what our supplier has in stock when we order). Cheaper pellets are typically blunt -edged and aren’t as smooth inside the blanket. Some cheaper weighted blankets are made with other materials, as well – before purchasing, it’s a good idea to find out what exactly will be inside your blanket when you buy it. I’ve seen blankets made with metal weights (which can rust), and even some made with food products like rice or beans, which can attract bugs and mice and which also make the blanket essentially non-washable.
5. Time. A quality weighted blanket made with four layers of fabric, small pockets, and quality beads takes time. Cheaper blankets, sewn with fewer fabric layers, larger pockets, and less careful sewists, can be made much faster. But our blankets are sewn with care, and that just plain takes time. Compared to the other products I offer, weighted blankets are one of my most time-consuming products. (They’re also the second most expensive product I make in terms of direct materials cost.) I do not apologize for paying myself above sweat-shop rates for my work. That said, weighted blankets are not a huge money-maker for me, because I want to keep them affordable.
Hopefully that helps you understand where all the costs of a weighted blanket come from and gives you a little better understanding of why good you can expect to pay a bit more for good quality blankets.
Weighted blankets – or any blankets – are not appropriate for children under 1 year of age. Please note, if you’re using a weighted blanket with a small child, please place the blanket on the legs ONLY. And Please make sure you’re using an appropriate weight.
After some customer feedback and thinking about design improvement on our wildly successful (seriously beyond what I imagined) insulated feeding pump bag covers, we’ve changed the design for them going forward.
Instead of one central snap at the top, the top snaps now mirror the bottom snaps – two evenly spaced snaps. In addition, we’ve added a hanging loop if you desire to use this to hang your feed.
Many Zevex/Moog users will find that they wish to continue hanging their feed by pulling the hang strap through their feeding pump bag’s top loop, but some will prefer to use the new hanging loop. Kangaroo users will likely wish to continue hanging both the feeding pump bag and the insulated cover from the IV pole – they will likely NOT wish to use the new hanging loop, as it could result in the feed bag hanging too low inside the insulated cover.
The change should not negatively impact your use of the covers, but could positively impact it. I expect most of our users will experience no impact at all, but for those of you who’ve asked for an interior loop – voila!
Wrapsody has created this beautiful wrap – Laguna – as a fundraiser for Babywearing International (BWI), and they’re allowing retailers to participate in the fundraiser.
So here’s what I’m going to do:
– For every Laguna that I buy from Wrapsody, they will donate a bit less than $9 to BWI National.
– For every Laguna that is purchased from me, I will donate $10 to my local BWI – BWI of Central Iowa.- In addition, for every 10 Wrapsody wraps (of any type) purchased from me between now and July 12 when the pre-order closes, I’ll donate 1 Wrapsody wrap to BWI of Central Iowa’s lending library.
Here’s the thing. The pre-order closes JULY 12. That’s in 3 days. So if you want one – don’t delay!!
If you want to pre-order, it’s a $40 non-refundable deposit, then the remainder ($46 plus tax or shipping) will be due within 10 days of the wrap’s arrival on my doorstep in October. You may place your orders here: babywearing.wallypop.net/wrap
I received this via private message this evening:
“A few online discussions this week have me grateful that we discovered Wallypop fitted diapers! I have always called my DS a heavy wetter, but after trying your fitteds, I’m not sure if he is any more. He peed out of everything else we had – mostly pockets and AIOs – and we were growing desperate for an overnight solution Someone pointed me your way, and I love love love the fitteds we bought from you. Zero leaks overnight with our ‘heavy wetter’ DS. Thanks!”
It was interesting because a few online discussions I’ve read this week (perhaps the same ones, lol) have me wondering about the perception of having a “heavy wetter.” The email above isn’t the only time we’ve seen this happen – a mom calls her child a “heavy wetter” because he’s peeing out of everything they have, which is usually big name brand pockets, particularly on overnights. Someone points them my way. I give my suggestions for “heavy wetters” and they invariably end up trying out a fitted diaper or two. A few weeks or months later, I get an email or message saying the fitteds were working PERFECTLY!!
And that’s GREAT!
But it does have me wondering – has our perception of what constitutes a “heavy wetter” changed in recent years? I would not generally perceive of a child whose pee can be contained by one of our regular instock fitted diapers as a “heavy wetter.”
Ten years ago, our fitteds were pretty well-situated in the middle of available levels of absorbency in diapers – perhaps off towards the “more absorbent” end, but still in the middle third. Then we’ve had this trend toward trimmer and trimmer diapers – and those diapers are also getting less and less absorbent. Add the influx if China Cheapies, which aren’t renowned for being absorbent. And new parents are being advised that using just an insert or two with these expensive but not terribly absorbent diapers should hold their baby all night. Then when it doesn’t, the child is labeled a “heavy wetter” and the parents are understandably frustrated. The addition of the label “heavy wetter” really serves nobody but the people who sold/made the diapers in the first place – “hey, it’s not our fault – your kid is just a freaky heavy wetter!”
When I first started out diapering, it was not super common to hear parents describe their babies as “heavy wetters.” Now, a good 40-50% of the cloth diapering families I know believe one or more of their children is a “heavy wetter.”
Is it, perhaps, that our standards for what a cloth diaper should be able to do have just declined over time?
Because, truly, if Wallypop’s regular, nothing special, in stock fitteds can contain a child’s pee for a reasonable amount of time… that’s not heavy wetting. That’s pretty much a normal quantity of pee. :)
Now, you were probably wondering what I’d suggest for heavy wetters.
– If you feel your child is a heavy wetter and you haven’t tried a good, absorbent fitted diaper, that should be your first step. Doesn’t have to be ours, but of course, ours are awesome and affordable.
– If you’ve tried a good, absorbent fitted diaper and that’s not doing the trick, make sure you pair it with a good quality (using Malden Mills brand fleece) fleece cover, or a nice thick wool cover that’s been lanolized well. If you buy or make knitted or crochet wool covers, make sure you make the fabric thick enough.
– If that’s not working, I have made for some kids an extra special super absorbent fitted. I’ve checked back with literally 100% of the families I’ve made these for, at intervals, and not a one has been unhappy with this solution. :) It’s a hemp and sherpa fitted with a hemp and sherpa soaker pad hidden inside the diaper, then a hemp and sherpa soaker pad attached at the front edge, and an extra help and sherpa soaker pad that snaps in to the back of the diaper, and then another hemp and sherpa soaker pad that’s available as a lay-in soaker if you really really need it. Pair that with fleece or wool. Poof, no more wetting.