What Makes A Firespiral Wrap
Firespiral Slings jacquard woven baby wraps are made entirely within the North West of England. We use small, local producers and suppliers wherever possible with ecological and ethical production embedded into our ethos.
Firespiral is the creation of Tamsin and Jen. We are passionate about woven baby wraps and had a shared dream to one day have our own designs woven. We are lucky to live in an area with such a wonderful weaving heritage, and to have been able to find all that we need so close to home!
Our designs are inspired by the universal patterns in nature that stray into both science and myth; the magical way in which we are connected to the world and its rhythms. Jen lives at the edge of the West Pennine Moors, surrounded by stone circles, local legend and the wild beauty of the hillside, with the shadows of the cotton mills in the valley below. Tamsin lives on the windswept the mercurial and brooding Irish Sea. We feel a real sense of belonging to the ancient landscape of the North West of England and it is from this wonderful place that our inspiration takes shape.
Some of our designs are an exploration of naturally occurring pattern, and some could be more accurately described as ‘story cloths’.
We both have creative backgrounds, Tamsin from an architectural viewpoint and bringing her experience of transforming wraps under the guise of Violet Chameleon, Jen as an artist and art psychotherapist. We design our own wraps rather than using existing stock designs for our fabric, or employing a fabric designer to create designs for us. You can read more about our design process (LINK to blog post- our designs)
We want our woven wraps to be both artistically beautiful and take on deeper personal meanings for their wearers.
We love working with local and family run businesses as it means that we can be personally involved in every area of production and meet lots of interesting people along the way! As artists and wrap enthusiasts we enjoy being able to remain ‘hands on’ and getting to know all the individuals who play a part in the creation of our wraps.
The business is embedded in our family lives, and this allows us to give our utmost care to it whilst meeting the needs of our little ones. Decisions are made around the kitchen table, babies nurse as we answer emails and small children cover parcels with airmail stickers! It isn’t always glamorous but it allows Firespiral to be a precious part of our daily routine and that personal care is extended to every customer.
Our cloth is woven in the small mills near to us. There are several elements that determine how well a particular cloth will work as a woven baby wrap, and we have carefully researched and developed them to provide you with the best possible wrapping experience with our slings.
Our weave is specially designed to allow the threads to move within its construction; this helps the cloth to mould snugly round you and your baby. Being able to get the wrap neatly and evenly tightened around you provides more support as you don’t trap sneaky pockets of slack that will work their way out and lead to sagging after a while. As the warp and weft fibres aren’t tightly meshed together they can expand into the space and remain thick and cushioning yet airy.
These properties give our wraps longevity- they are forgiving and pliable for successfully mastering those first few carries, and that quality comes into its own again when your once tiny baby is now a big hulking toddler and you need to fully support their weight with an evenly tightened, snug wrap job.
Whilst our hemp, linen and wool blends will lend the extra strength of the properties intrinsic in the fibre blend, our weave makes even our 100% cotton wraps toddler-worthy.
Another bonus of the looser weave is that it provides a greater strength of colour and a more authentic feel to the fibres used as there are longer lengths of the warp and weft yarns exposed before the two cross over each other again. This is why our wraps feel incredibly soft and drape so well.
Having a warp face and weft face to the cloth allows you to have two different looks to the one wrap, depending on which side out you wear it!
We source the majority of our yarns from suppliers in the UK with only our hemp coming from a supplier in Europe (where it is grown and spun in an ecologically sustainable way). We value ethical, ecological production with a low carbon footprint. We are involved in a movement aimed at reinvigorating the once great textile industry of the North-West of England. Our area has deep historical links with Indian cotton; ours is grown and processed there by a company committed to its responsibility to caring for its employees and the wider community. They take pride in their traditional skills and strict ethical production policies.
Our wraps are cut and hemmed by hand by a small, local company (LINK to Judith blog post). We don’t use automated cutting machines or industrial scale hemming machines. Our booklets are made using traditional methods rather than digital printing. We like the handmade touch that comes from utilising time-honoured skills. Our packaging is all locally sourced, and our plastic packaging is biodegradable and recyclable.
We sell a variety of accessories and each has been sourced from small independent manufacturers who match our ethical ethos. You can read more about them here (Slingamebobs, Alison, Tea towels, button badges)