The Connecta a Soft Structured Carrier as such but a buckle tai. It uses the traditional design of a mei tai with the ease of buckle closure rather than tying. It does not have a structured waist and thus it can be worn higher up the body in a position the wearer finds the most comfortable. As Sarah T put it’s the Connecta is really comfy, no padding so just seems to mould to us when we wear it!
What I like the most about the Connecta is that the lack of padded waist means it is easy to roll the waist to make body shorter and to clinch the waist band in using the provided accessory strap. This allows it to be made suitable for use with newborns (7.5lb and over). Alison C borrowed the plain black version from NESL and said “I found it really easy to use and liked the extra strap to make the base smaller for younger babies.” The waist clinching ensures that their legs are not over extended and is recommended until 10weeks of age. We are at 17 weeks and are only just beginning to think about stop using it. However, it is a recommendation and as such stop when you are ready and I am led to believe the 10 week suggestion will be removed from the next lot of instructions.
At £62 the Connecta Integra is much cheaper than most soft structured carriers and many mass produced slings. The design provides the best M shape positioning for babies and thus it is an extremely affordable way into babywearing. Also available is a solarweave version. Solarweave is a sun protective fabric which blocks out up to 99% of UVA and UVB rays. It is a breathable fabric which allows you and baby to keep cool. The construction also allows for use in water making it ideal to take on holiday.
A few people who have borrowed the Connecta have found that they can’t get the straps tight enough but this tends to be shorter or petite framed mums. I am 5’10” and do have to have them pulled as tight as they will go. However, the number of mums who have borrowed one of the library Connecta’s and gone on to buy their own is now in double figures so clearly they are doing something right. The Connecta Integra is safe to use until 16kg although it had stopped being knee to knee on Henry at about 15months I can still carry him in it if necessary. After having a sneaky try of the ‘tester’ toddler Connecta I can’t wait for them to be released too.
I will continue to advocate the Connecta to anyone who wants a sling and buy them for gifts for expectant friends. They are affordable, easy to use and supportive. The perfect carrier in my opinion and the best of all – a British company, what is there not to like.
Library users who have hired a Connecta can receive a discount if they decide to purchase their own. Ask me for details.
- Suitable from 3.5kg-16kg – birth to toddler
- Wear on the front or back
- Based on traditional chinese ‘mei tai’ but fastens with buckles for ease
- Wide base supports anatomically correct position for baby and optimum comfort for wearer
- Wide well padded shoulder straps
- Quick and easy to use
- Distinctive and innovative fabrics and designs for a contemporary look
- Wide 50mm webbing used throughout for comfortable front carries as well as back
- High quality low profile contoured nylon buckles with dual adjustable waist
- Accessory strap included that can be used as a chest strap, to narrow the body of the carrier to use with a younger baby, and to hold the carrier together when folded
- Uniquely shaped and contoured body
- Body can be rolled at the bottom to shorten if necessary
- Fits up to a UK ladies size 22 approx. (longer straps available by special request)
- Conforms to BS EN 13209-2:2005