It’s Kind of Like Sending Your Baby Off to College (OR, Lindsay’s Farewell Love Letter)

I have to be brutally honest here. This is a love letter to all of you, Babes in Arms’ customers. Forgive me if I get overly mushy, please.

The past five years of my life have been pretty unbelievable. I had secretly dreamed of owning a store since I was a kid, but I never believed that it was a real possibility. When the idea for Babes in Arms first came to me (when Neko was nine months old), it was simply, “I’m learning all these things (don’t wash your diapers in Gain; the baby’s knees should be up, not dangling while you wear her in the wrap; how to use a ring sling; which cloth diapers actually work at night) the hard way – and I’m so lucky to have resources like La Leche League and the Attachment Parents Village Calgary… what if there were a place in Calgary where parents could go and get the help they need with baby carriers and cloth diapers, and know that they were getting correct information, in a way that really helped them?”

The store always wanted to exist, and so, no matter how many times I told myself it was impossible, it came into being anyway. People appeared who had the same idea and the motivation and resources to make it happen, together. Once the ball was rolling, everything happened fast.

Babes in Arms was born in June 2007, when Neko was just 18 months old. We opened the doors to our first location in December 2007.

Some of you know us from that first year, when we had a 120 sq-ft. office space in the Birth Partnership midwives’ office. This was an amazing opportunity for us to start out. Starting small allowed us to manage our growth rather than growing too big, too fast. In those days, we were only open Tuesdays-Thursdays, and Saturdays! The best part of being in our first location was that we got to know our first clients on a very personal basis, seeing them through their pregnancies and up to their six-week post-partum appointment. People would regularly stop in just to chat. It was so lovely. Many friendships were born in that first year of business.

Jaime came on board in late 2008, and we have been partners ever since. Soon after, we moved into our current location in Mayfair Place. It has been an absolutely amazing four years of growth and change. We have changed our product categories somewhat, and brought in so many new and exciting products as well! We have extended our hours and welcomed many new staff. From the days when it was just two owners running the store front, we have grown now to two owners, a babywearing instructor, and nine staff members.

But, things are about to change. Jaime and I are each preparing ourselves for new opportunities and challenges come 2013. As of the new year, I will no longer be a co-owner of Babes in Arms. The store will be moving ahead without me, in the skilled and visionary hands of Jaime alone. Don’t worry! This doesn’t actually mean any changes for you, our clients! Our vision will remain the same. We will always remain committed to supporting families in attachment-based parenting and a more simple, natural and beautiful way of living. We will be in the same location, with the same staff, and the same commitment to education and service.

I might still stick around, in the store, for a while. Or, I might not. We don’t know yet. I’ll still be around, though. I have plans to continue to be involved in the attachment parenting and new parents world in Calgary, along with a few other career plans, and focusing more wholly on homeschooling Neko (who is now nearly seven!).

So, in short (she says, at the end of a really long post), I want to thank you all, sincerely. I have made so many amazing friends through Babes in Arms. I have met so many really incredible people whom I would not have had the good fortune to meet otherwise. You all scoff when I tell you I feel bad for not remembering each of your names, but it’s true – I feel like I know each one of you, and it feels strange when I can’t remember your name, because you are each so familiar to me. Every one of you has made this experience so wonderful, and I mean that.

Fall 2012: We’re Hiring!

We are hiring for Mondays, 11 am – 4 pm, starting mid-November, plus 2-3 Thursday nights (5-8 pm) per month. The Thursday shift runs for at least November and December but may be extended in the new year.

To apply for either or both shifts, please send us your resume by Oct. 31. You can email it to us at or bring it into the store. Be sure to include a cover letter (in the body of the email is fine) which outlines your babywearing and cloth diapering experience.

Training will begin the first week of November.

Babywearing and cloth diapering experience is essential. Preference will be given to applicants who would like to take both shifts; though we encourage applicants who are only able to work one of the available shifts to still apply. Qualified applicants will be contacted within a few days of Oct. 31 to set up an interview.

Happy Canada Day! Free Babylegs With Any Carrier Purchase!

This weekend (Saturday/Sunday), get a free pair of “I❤ Canada” BabyLegs with the purchase of any new baby carrier.

While supplies last; limit one per customer.

We are open 12-4 on Canada Day and regular hours the rest of the long weekend.

Happy Canada Day!


Happy Father’s Day!

Happy Father’s Day weekend! To celebrate all the amazing dads out there, we’re giving away free gifts this weekend!
1) Purchase any soft-structured carrier (Boba, Beco Butterfly II or Gemini, or any Ergo) and get a free RearView Mirror!

The Ergo Original soft-structured carrier


RearView Mirror for babywearing (back carries)

2) Purchase any mei tai (Catbird or Babyhawk) and get a free 20″ hazelwood necklace!

The beautiful Babyhawk mei tai carrier.
Hazelwood helps alleviate a variety of symptoms, most notably stomach and skin issues.
3) Purchase any 12 Cottonbabies diapers (single diapers only, applicable on Flip, bumGenius and FreeTime) and get a free 22-load bag of Claudia’s Choices detergent!

bumGenius 4.0 one-size pocket diapers


Claudia’s Choices is a recommended cloth diaper detergent, and made locally right in Nanton!

**All while supplies last.




Ergo Original soft structured carrier

The lowdown on dryer sheets

If you’ve attended our Cloth Diapering 101 class, or been into the store and received the low-down on washing cloth diapers, you probably already know that it’s recommended that you be very careful with your cloth diapers when it comes to dryer sheets. Never, ever use a dryer sheet or dryer bar in the dryer with your diapers or diaper covers. Any fabric softener, including these two types in the dryer, or liquid fabric softener in the washing machine (including as an ingredient of your detergent) will leave a film on your diapers and covers that reduces and eventually stops absorbency, and will cause your covers to leak. I learned this the hard way! If your covers leak right through as if they are not waterproof at all, this is most likely your issue; though it’s important to note that even if your diapers aren’t doing this, you may still have build-up from fabric softeners. Other symptoms include reduced absorbency; stay-dry lining that repels moisture (instead of letting it soak through to the insert); and diapers that smell “funky.” If you suspect you may have a residue issue, please refer to Bummis’ Residues Troubleshooting Page.

Liquid fabric softeners are not as much of an issue, because the answer is simple – just never allow liquid fabric softener to enter the washing machine with any components of your cloth diapering system. This means also using a detergent that does not contain fabric softeners (even soy softeners and other natural softeners).

Our full selection of cloth diaper options.

However, the issue with dryer sheets and bars is more complicated. This is because, even if you choose to use them with your regular laundry, your diapers could still be in danger. You see, dryer sheets and dryer bars leave a fatty film on the inside of the drum of your dryer. You read that right – it is actually fat. Dryer sheets are made with beef tallow, meaning if you are vegetarian or vegan, they’re not a good fit. There are a couple that do not contain beef tallow, such as Method brand dryer sheets, but it’s best to do your research – and the information is not usually easy to find. (For instance, I have not been able to confirm whether or not dryer bars are also made with tallow.)

Using Dryer Sheets or a Dryer Bar and Concerned About Your Cloth Diapers?

This fatty film stays on the inside of your dryer for at least a load or two after the sheet or bar was last used, so if you plan to continue using these products on your regular laundry, we recommend running a load of towels through your dryer on the h0t or high setting without a dryer sheet or bar, prior to drying your diapers.

Another way around this issue is to consider always or usually line-drying your diapers. At the very least, line-drying covers makes sense, as they do not absorb water and dry very quickly once out of the wash. Line-drying will also greatly prolong the life of any Aplix closures on your diapers and covers. Most diapers will dry overnight or in about 6-8 hours, depending on the time of year, and the relative humidity and temperature in the area where they are hanging to dry. Calgary’s dry climate and abundance of sunshine pair well with line-drying laundry of all types. Please note that all-in-one diapers do take a fair bit longer to dry – often in the 12-24 hour range, depending on the type and brand. Other advantages of line-drying? If you’re hanging your diapers inside to dry, they will humidify your house as they dry; if you’re hanging outside to dry, you can count on the magic of sun-bleaching to get your stains out!

More on dryer sheets.

Some other factors to consider when deciding whether or not to continue using dryer sheets:

  1. Dryer sheets cause a coating on clothing and therefore will cancel out the fire retardancy of clothing.
  2. Dryer sheets are not recyclable nor reusable – the only option is to send them to the landfill.
  3. That lovely scent they leave on your clothes? It’s tough to part with the idea of the “fresh laundry” smell, but consider this: that scent is thanks to “fragrance,” a blanket term for synthetic chemicals that have been linked to a whole host of issues, from asthma, to skin irritation and headaches, to brain damage in developing fetuses and much more. Fragrance also contributes to indoor air pollution, and contains toluene.
  4. Fabric softeners, either liquid or in the dryer, are designed to reduce or eliminate static in synthetic materials and serve no purpose with natural fibres.

A great place to check for more information on the ingredients in fabric softeners is The Less Toxic Guide.

For ratings of different fabric softeners from least to most toxic, try The Good Guide.

Dryer Sheet Alternatives

“So,” you might be saying right now. “Tell me. How, then, am I supposed to keep the static out of my clothes?”

Happily, there are a number of great options that will not only be more gentle on the environment but also save you money. They work on one of two principles:

  • Carbon fibres woven into a piece of fabric absorb static electricity – these are known as dryer cloths.
  • Dryer balls (available in different materials) used in sets of two or more, bang together and against clothes, using force to expel static electricity. These come in plastic varieties or wool. The latter seem to last indefinitely and many people feel they are more gentle on clothes.

We carry wool dryer balls at Babes in Arms.

We Still Have Kangaroo Korner Adjustable Pouches in Stock!

We were as sad as anyone when Kangaroo Korner went out of business last year. They were an awesome company and their Adjustable Fleece Pouch was one of owner Lindsay’s first babywearing loves. We did have a ton of adjustable fleece, cotton and mesh pouches in stock when they announced their closing, and have slowly been selling out. At this point, we are down to very few, but we know that there are still lots of people out there looking for them. We figure the babywearers and the slings have a better chance of finding one another if we take this online!

Here’s the deal:
I’ve listed below what we have in stock. The sizes fit: Small ( 28-36″, 80-140 lbs), Medium (34-41″, 100-200 lbs),
Large (38-45″, 140-300 lbs). We can only ship these in Canada and the price is $50 including shipping. These are final sale. First come, first served – we can’t guarantee how long any of these will last! To order, call 403-835-4613 (10-5 Mon-Sat, 11-4 Sun) or email

Fleece pouches

1 L right-hand – cayenne
1 L left-hand – cherry

Cotton pouches
1 XL right-hand – cream
1 M left-hand – cherry (mispackaged)

Some reviews of the fleece pouch: Reviews on

Babes in Arms co-owner Lindsay wearing a two-month-old Neko in the KKAFP, 2006

Carrying a Toddler on the Back or Hip – Our Newest Video is Online!

While using my Beco Butterfly II to carry Finn, who is 2 and is at my house during the day two days a week, it dawned on me that a lot of Beco users probably don’t know their carrier can also be used for an assisted hip carry. Finn had been riding on my back but wanted to walk for a while, and then slowed down considerably – if we were ever going to make it to the library, I needed to pick him up for a while! Without a carrier, that would mean throwing him on my hip, or with the carrier, normally I would have gotten him back on my back. Plus, I’d be carrying the carrier in my arms when he walked. This is one of the things I love about the Beco Butterfly II – when he got down to walk, I rolled it up, secured it, and buckled it around my waist. Then when he got tired, I picked him up and he rode on my hip, with my arms around him – the same as carrying him on my hip, only with my spine in proper alignment, so much easier on my back! I wanted to share this great feature with our clients and with people who might be shopping around for a carrier. Of course, the Beco Butterfly II also works great right from the newborn stage.

Would You Like to Work at Babes in Arms?

Want to join an amazing team of likeminded parents in our store? We pay a Living Wage, offer flexible hours and are a lot of fun to work with!

If you:

  • are available weekdays between the hours of 10 am and 5 pm
  • have experience using cloth diapers and baby carriers
  • love helping and empowering other parents
  • love to work with people and learn new things

then please forward us your resume by October 23, either by emailing or bringing it into the store.

We look forward to hearing from you!

International Babywearing Week – Oct. 10-16, 2011

It’s International Babywearing Week, and the theme is Babywearing: A World of Possibilities!

Celebrate babywearing with us during International Babywearing Week 2011, Oct. 10-16 in Calgary. Events around town give everyone the chance to witness, learn about and celebrate babywearing! Whether you’re just curious, are new to babywearing, have a helping hand to offer other babywearers, or just want to celebrate your love for babywearing, this week has something for you! All events are free and open to the public.

Planned events include:

Oct. 11 10 am – noon
Free Carrier Clinic
Attachment Parenting Village Canada Playgroup
Winston Heights Community Centre, 520 27 Ave NE
Need some help with your carrier? Have pressing questions about babywearing? Whether you’re scared, worried, flummoxed or just need a bit of reassurance, we can help! Several babywearing experts from Babywearing Calgary, various local businesses and the local attachment parenting community will be available to help you out, answer questions, adjust your carrier or your baby’s positioning or let you try out a new carrier.
More info here:

Oct. 12 12:30-2:30 pm
Babywearing Mall Walk
Chinook Centre (meet in common area in front of customer service (by time capsule, beneath the food court)
Come meet some other babywearers and even try out a new carry or carrier if you’d like! Requests for carriers to borrow should be submitted on individual event by midnight, Oct. 10.
More info here:

Oct. 13 10am- noon
Babywearing Mall Walk at Crossiron Mills (Balzac)
We will meet at the north end of the mall by the indoor play area. Since it can be difficult to pry kids away from the play area, if anyone can think of a better place to meet, then please let me know. Extra carriers are available if you’d like to try something new or don’t have one. Please make that request the night before. More info here:

Oct. 15 10 am
Babywearing Flash Mob!
Come perform a flash mob with us – we’ll symbolically ditch our strollers in synchronized time and walk off into the crowd happily wearing carriers. If you’ve ever wanted to say “Synchronize Watches!” this event is for you.
More information here:

Oct. 15 2 pm
Babywearing Mall Walk
South Centre
We will be meeting at the upper entrance by the Sportchek. I have a few different wraps, mei tais and a ring sling I can lend out if anyone needs! I’m also willing to wear a 2nd child if needed lol. Let me know!
More Info Here:

Education for healthcare professionals
A carrier donation drive in benefit of local parents

Find more information on celebrations around the world here:

Find information on Babywearing International Contests related to Babywearing Week here (bottom of page):

Volunteer to help plan or run Calgary events here:

Join Babywearing Calgary (free! volunteer run! monthly drop-in meetings!) here:

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