Centered Handmade Review: Precious

centereed1The end flourishes got me.

I’m sure there’s some technical weaver’s term for the magic elven pattern Rachel uses to decorate the ends and middle marker of her Centered – handmade Precious. But I knew, when I saw it, I was Gollum and that wrap was the One Ring. It wasn’t just the decoration. It was the subtle peachiness against the pink to blue grad, that perfect warmth counterpointing a soft verge into cool. I had to try it. It was in a friend’s possession at the time, and I pretty much demanded to review the darn thing. It had a list a mile long, but it would be mine. Oh yes, it would be mine.

So finally, after some travels all over the US and the Great White North, Precious returned to its rightful place around my baby (and on the floor of my car, because I can’t wrap all the time). This time, I spent a little less time goggling over the colors – Rachel’s eye for color sits right up there in the wrap world with Tessa of Vaquero and Alisa of Tekhni. I spent a little less time trying to make that peachy bit fall perfectly in the middle of my boobs (the one problem with pretty middle markers: you have to get them right in the middle) . And I spent some more time thinking about how the darn thing actually wrapped.

In a few words, pretty darn well.

So often I have some magic Rivendell fluff come through that’s pure eye candy, but doesn’t live up to the gorgeous (or the price). Precious wasn’t one of them. Don’t get me wrong: wrapping with it got me over my Gollum-like need to horde the Precious. But that’s not because it sucked.

centeredpfauI prefer bouncy, squishy, ace-bandage wraps – this is why I love twill in all forms. I hate linen; I prefer hemp over cotton and wool over both for sheer feel. I’ll always pick twill over plain weave. And I’ll always love a wrap that slips rather than grips.

Alas, my darling. We were not meant to be.

Precious has plenty of grip: much more than I see in many plain weaves, and since it’s been traveling all over the continent, this thing is pretty broken in. I found it very solid on the shoulders – not diggy, but not smooshy; I had to place my passes and didn’t find sandwiched shoulders very comfy in the longterm. Wrapping wasn’t a wrestling match, but I really had to work that L-pull in a double hammock. Grippy indeed.

Precious also had very little bounce, which tends to go hand-in-hand with very little stretch. I’d wear a trampoline if I could get away with it, so while I found this comfortable, Sunny didn’t boing quite as much as I’d like. It reminded me of linen more than most cotton that comes through here, and sat solidly on the medium end of the weight spectrum.

But it’s so.damn.pretty. I don’t really care. My main beef is that it needs to be done with centered carries only, because of the gorgeous middle marker. Then again, asymmetry is in.

I’d put a newborn in this baby in a heartbeat. It worked well for 20 lb Sunny; after that weight, the linen-like aspects tend to start to bother me, but that’s when most mamas think they start to shine. So if you’re a linen-lover for bigs, then this is the wrap for you.

Mostly I loved having something so beautiful that I didn’t feel I had to baby. For all the delicate lacework, the beautiful coloring, we took this hiking several times, in addition to our usual Target forays. It’s hard to find something this pretty that can do rugged. I can’t wait to see what else Rachel pulls off that loom of hers – especially the contest wrap coming up soon.

Unfortunately, I don’t get to keep Precious, and neither do you. However, you can enter to win a golden ticket pass for one of Rachel’s next releases (excluding the contest wrap). May the odds be ever in your favor!