As wrap fabrics are generally woven using natural fibers and, as we don’t believe in using chemicals to coat the fibers in order to soften them, woven slings would traditionally need breaking in before they were in their final, and softest, state.
Breaking in refers to the process where babywearers would use various methods to soften their slings and make them easier to adjust, such as knotting, twisting, rubbing or simply repeatedly using them – think about breaking in a new pair of jeans.
Read on to find out the secret to Oscha’s ready to wear fabrics and learn our favourite techniques for softening slings!
Do I need to break in an Oscha baby sling?
Depending on the fabric used to make your carrier, it might benefit from a little love before it is as soft as it can possibly be. There are a few yarns, such as hemp or thick linen, which you will see softened even further as you use your carrier more and more.
Read on to find some of our favourite techniques for softening your wrap even more!
While Oscha slings do not need to be washed; washing and tumble drying (if suggested on the care instructions) can be a good way to get your sling to its final length in order to begin the breaking in process.
We cut our slings a little longer than their true length to allow for some shrinkage, it is normal to see your sling contract a little after washing. A hot iron on some fabrics such as hemp and linen can also help relax the yarns and get the sling to it’s true size, with other yarns just wearing the sling is enough.
Some people also like to wash their slings as washing can help woven fabric to ‘bloom’, where you will see an increase in the texture and definition of the pattern.
This is a process where you ‘braid’ the length of the fabric onto itself. This process mimics the ‘passes’ used when wrapping with a sling; it helps to finish breaking in and relaxes the fibres of the fabric.
Similar to braiding this is a process which uses the friction of the wrap itself to relax the fabric. To use this method you fold the sling in on itself to create a shape that looks a lot like a colourful doughnut.
Running through Rings
If you have a pair of sling rings, or a ring sling, you can run the fabric through the metal rings to create the friction needed to break down the yarns and make the sling lovely and soft.
This one is fun to do anyway! Tying the sling to two sturdy points, such as table legs, or tying over the top of the table top, will create a fun place space for your little ones and by playing on the sling-hammock they will help you to break in the fabric.