Wears the Baby?

Alexis Kelsall was introduced to babywearing at her wedding, when she noticed that her sister-in-law was wearing her baby in a wrap and the child didn’t make a sound the whole night.

“That was the moment I knew I would wear my babies when the time came,” Kelsall says.

Now, Kelsall is the mother of two and a babywearing advocate. She volunteers her time managing a local baby carrier lending library for the Halifax and Area Babywearers Group.

Babywearing — simply when someone “wears” a baby in a carrier on their body — is a rising trend in Halifax and, according to advocates, provides many benefits in addition to allowing parents to carry children hands-free.

“It also aids in bonding and developing the baby’s sense of touch,” says Jolyn Swain, owner of Nurtured Products for Parenting in Halifax and one of the first three Canadians to become certified as a Babywearing Educator through the Centre for Babywearing Studies.

The lending library Kelsall manages started as a way for parents to support each other and learn how to babywear. They average about 12 borrowers each month.

“Babywearing doesn’t typically come naturally, and many parents get discouraged if they can’t figure it out. It’s also the kind of thing that is immensely easier when you can get hands-on help,” Kelsall says...