A bit about ring slings in general.
Ring slings are often thought of as a pefect beginning carrier, easy to use, etc. While I wouldn’t say that ring slings are HARD to use, they do have a learning curve, and some people just simply don’t get them. I can honestly say that I’ve seen more people have difficulty with a ring sling than with a wrap – not that ring slings are all that difficult, but they’re not as simple as some want you to believe.
A bit about safety.
The rings used in ring slings are of UTMOST importance. The best ring slings are made with rings manufactured by Sling Rings. Their rings are very safe, tested to 250 lbs, and abused in every way possible. Note that some major brand names of ring slings do not use these rings and have had ring-related recalls. Not good.
Now, about Wallypop ring slings.
We make our ring slings from a variety of midweight cotton fabrics – we try to choose fun or understated prints that look good from both sides (front and back). We also make deluxe slings from silk or other high-end fabrics. You can make a ring sling out of other weights of fabric, but we’ve found that much lighter weight, and the sling tends to cut in to the wearer’s shoulder and the baby’s legs. Much heavier, and it’s just, well, heavy.
We use nylon rings for our cotton slings. In our experience, the nylon rings grip the fabric better than metal, so they’re less prone to slipping.
For the Deluxe slings, we use aluminum rings. Not because they’re prettier or more deluxe, but because the higher-end fabrics we use (silk, satin, etc) tend to be thinner fabrics, and they are more easily gripped by the aluminum.
Wallypop ring slings are unpadded. In our experience, the padding in padded ring slings tends to just make the slings less adjustable, as the padding gets tangled up in the rings. Most people who start out using a padded ring sling, believing they need the padding for comfort, find that switching to an unpadded ring sling is actually more comfortable – they don’t need the padding, after all, and the lack of padding allows a better fit.
The shoulder of our ring slings are made with an inverse double pleat. Um, what? All that means is that it’s SUPER COMFORTABLE! Just wide enough on your shoulder to be comfortable without unduly restricting arm movement, but readily spreads out across your back with minimal bulk. I’ve also found that this type of pleat seems less likely to twist up than others I’ve tried.
When you wear your ring sling, always make sure to keep the rings near your armpit. If you find the rings tend to travel down as you adjust the sling, first – start with the sling adjusted a bit shorter to start with, and second, pull OUT not DOWN.
Always keep fabric between you and baby, so that the baby has a secure place to sit. You never want to rely on friction to keep your baby in the sling!