Baie Slings Element Airlie Review – Budget Wrap!

Baie Slings Element AerlieBaie Slings is known for its intricate designs, its traditionally Celtic and English designs, and its mid-range pricing. Many of their wraps are hard to find, and devotees stalk coveted wraps all over the internet. But Baie Slings is more than that: they wanted to make the babywearing love accessible for everyone. So this year they introduced their ‘Appleseed’ line.

Appleseed is named, of course, after Johnny Appleseed, who traveled across the US, planting apple trees wherever he went. While Baie Slings says they’re only a “small wrap company”, they want to use their new line to do the same with wrapping: by making it affordable to all customers. Their prices range from 63 to 99 pounds, or from about $99 to $150.

And luckily, because Rhys and his wife are amazing businesspeople, they haven’t skimped on the quality. Each Appleseed wrap is woven on a natural cotton warp bay2and a colored combed cotton weft. They don’t come in the regular Baie Sling tote bags, but instead a biodegradable bag. They also haven’t been finished at the mill, and require a wash before wearing.

And how do they wear? I got my hands on a size 6 Element Airlie. It’s a “snug weave”, and comes in at a heavier 267 gsm. It feels and wraps its weight as well; I found myself sticking to single-layer carries in the Southern heat.

I wore Airlie in several different carries, from a double hammock to a JBC and a FWCC. LIke I said, I felt the weight of the wrap. This is a thick one, and it pays off on the shoulder support. Airlie delivers marshmallow fluff cush on the shoulder. I only had problems with it when I wore a bra too tight at the shoulder underneath it, and that caused the wrap to dig. That happened more than once, in the same bra/wrap combo. Make of that what you will.

Airlie offers plenty of bounce. I’d rate it at medium. This is not at all a solid wrap, so linen lovers stay away. It’s also mildly stretchy, especially along the pattern, which makes it possible to get a tight, moldable carry. For all its weight, I never had a problem getting Airlie tight, and never did I feel as if I were wrestling it into place.

bay3This is a thick wrap, but I don’t think it would overwhelm a newborn, since it gets super soft after just one wash. I really liked it for 25 lb Sunny, who seemed about the right weight for it. It gave us plenty of support and cush with a moldable carry, and never dug or sagged. It would work for an even older kid – I bribed three-year-old Baby Bear to get up once or twice, and in a FWCC at that. He never dug at the shoulders, and though he did try to flip out of it, the stretch didn’t let him succeed. Please don’t ask why I had a three and a half year old in a FWCC.

Overall, this seemed to have a lot of sleepy dust; Sunny passed out in it regularly. We enjoyed our time with it and would consider buying one for our own.
Obviously, Baie Slings intends this as the One Wrap for people. You could make it work from newborn to toddler if you lived in a climate that didn’t get above eighty degrees on a regular basis. I found it too hot for regular summer wearing, due to its thickness, in a multi-layer carry (which is what you’re generally doing if you’re only using it one wrap). But with some creative rucks – my solution – you could manage to take this wrap from babyhood to preschooler.