Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Traditional Babywearing and the Babywearing Museum

This post is going to be mostly pictures.  Jen Wadleigh and Lindsay Ross of Babes in Arms taught about the various traditional carriers and demonstrated using them when appropriate.  The library also had displays of traditional carriers as well as a display of the evolution of modern carriers.  There were several pieces that were part of the collection of the Miao Baby Carrier collection.  Most of the others were loaned by Jen Wadleigh or Corrine Mahar-Sylvestre.

  Native American cradle boards and a carrying "net" from New Guinea.

The Miao Carriers:

Modern takes on traditional carriers:

A display of vintage modern carriers including the original Snugli, the HipSeat, etc:
The most remarkable thing about this is that we learned that all peoples have found a need to carry their young, and most have used a similar method to how they carry other items.  As a modern North American society, we lean towards things that resemble backpacks or bags.  Sadly, the bag-sling has been proven to be a dangerous design, but hopefully the backpack concept will prevail, and we can borrow from the traditions of other cultures to carry our young in safe, comfortable ways.


  1. Jen said something about how cultures tend to carry their young in the same ways they carry other items. I can see how with the bag slings that is true with out culture as well. Thanks for the nice post! :)

  2. That is exactly what I said! Cultures tend to carry daily items in certain ways, and when they found a need to carry their babies and children, they naturally gravitated towards what they already use and know. With us in the west with our purses, it lead to the advent of the pouches or the bag sling.