Review: Birch Blast – The Newest Eco2Cotton Release by Bijou Wear

Bijou Birch Blast in a Double Hammock with a 3 year old
Bijou Birch Blast in a Double Hammock with a 3 year old

I had the opportunity to try out another release from Bijou Wear, and I jumped at it. I am so interested in this Eco2Cotton yarn and what kind of potential it has in the woven textile world. Birch Blast arrived here a few weeks ago amidst the chaos of our recent trip abroad. I have just recently been able to wear it out and about. This woven wraps completely different from the Windmills High Plains tester that came through here, though they share some trademark characteristics like the color and texture which is unlike any other woven I have felt.

 

For those of you wondering what I am talking about, I will save you a Google trip. Eco2Cotton is this awesome Eco-friendly yarn that is comprised of recycled fabric scraps from textile mills. It is a largely cotton fiber, with traces of Polyester. It is un-dyed after it is spun, further lessening it’s environmental footprint. In its natural state, is creates this grayish color that seems like it is made by mixing all the colors on the palette together. It is unique, and interesting to look at, and you can pair it with any outfit and it will pick up the colors in it subtly. The design itself is really appealing too – who doesn’t like Fireworks? It has a timeless aesthetic. I told my friend a few months back that this was “the year of the Natty wrap”, and this Birch Blast is a wonderful contribution to that  woven wrap category.

 

A LOT of stretch in this weave! This is after a long walk with a 30lb kiddo.
A LOT of stretch in this weave! This is after a long walk with a 30lb kiddo.

This wrap is REALLY thick. The texture definitely contributes to that blankety feel in hand. It was perfect for toddler snuggles. The Dragon Baby would tuck her arms in and snuggle up on my back every time I put her in it. The support was some of the best I have ever felt. That polyester mixed into the wrap gave it a lot of diagonal stretch. After I had wrestled my 30lb 3 year old into a double hammock that I was sure was nice and tight, I took a walk with her to the park. We walked around for about 30 minutes, and upon arrival… I was able to take a few inches of slack out of the carry. I had my partner take a photo, it was shocking! I think a combination of the thickness of the wrap, the grip from the texture, and the stretch of the yarn gave me a lot of trouble getting a tight carry when I was going for fancy multi-pass carries. Not all wraps work in all carries, something we all know very well. The odd thing was – it was not remotely uncomfortable even with the slack in the carry. It did not dig, or cause me to strain my shoulders – it was so thick and supportive it really held her weight well. It wrapped so much differently than the High Plains Windmills I reviewed a few weeks back. This wrap has so much bounce in it, even though it doesn’t appear to when you first feel it.

 

Toddler ruck in the 99 Ranch - Bijou Birch Blast
Toddler ruck in the 99 Ranch – Bijou Birch Blast

I had a suspicion that this would be an ideal toddler ruck wrap, so I tried it out. Perfect. This wrap has the grip, the width, and the 328 g/m2 thickness to rock a toddler ruck. Wore her for over an hour in the grocery store comfortably, and I didn’t have to do any wrestling to get her in a comfy carry. I feel like this weave has more texture to it than Windmills. The pattern itself contributes to that, there is a lot more going on visually with Blast. I adore that texture on this wrap, it makes it shine in a single pass carry. For that reason , I would recommend trying out a shorter size rather than a longer one. I used a knotless finish, and the grip in the wrap held it perfectly in place – no movement after that long trip to the store.  The stretch in the yarn again became evident, when my daughter was able to muscle her two elbows into the wrap between our two bodies, even after I had taken the time to meticulously tighten the carry. There was no movement in the front of the carry, it stayed tight and comfortable even with the addition of her elbows and arms.

 

Ruck with a Knotless finish - a carry this woven seems like it was meant for
Ruck with a Knotless finish – a carry this woven seems like it was meant for

They are known to wrap pretty long, so keep that in mind when you are choosing a size to purchase. The width 26″ (66cm!) across is pretty wide as wraps go… great for toddler wearees.  All of the things I most love about this wrap, make it not the best candidate for a newborn or brand new wrapper. If you are in the market for your new baby, I would recommend checking out some of their Tencel blends instead. If you are looking for a new addition to a toddler stash, or are wrapping subsequent children – you are really going to enjoy this unique new addition to the world of Woven Wraps.

 

 

Post Office in a Double Hammock with a Freshwater finish
Post Office in a Double Hammock with a Freshwater finish

 

These woven wraps are so easy to take care of, which is always a win for me. They can be thrown in the washer, dryer with no heat. Iron or not, these things never get wrinkled – definitely appealing if you are as hard on your wraps as I am on mine. I feel like we may start to see some of these popping up in learning libraries as they are such a low maintenance woven with a great business behind them. Bijou Wear is proudly woven in the United States, and contributes a portion of all their profits to the Carrying on Project.

 

 

I am so very excited to have been able to try out these new sustainable fibers! I was not expecting the two different wraps to feel so different in hand, and it has been fun to experiment with them both. This will make me even *more* excited to see their next Eco2Cotton release, and how it differs from these early releases. Congrats to Bijou Wear on another awesome release! I look forward to many, many more.

Playing around with my toddler in the park
Playing around with my toddler in the park
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