Kristi Wiegman, VBE
Back in October we had the opportunity to host a "traveling wrap" via the wonderful Rachel at 5 Minute Recess. The one we hosted was a size 3 grey and ecru. We had it at several meetings, and our VBEs got to try it out more so that we could give you a review!
Keppeke is a great budget brand. At around $100 for a size 6, it's a great value. They are 100% cotton, but are thicker and very supportive. In fact, it compares very favorably to my thickest and most supportive wrap, a Natibaby hemp/cotton blend. If you gave both of them to me and told me to close my eyes and tell which was which when they were both brand new, I'd probably be hard-pressed to tell the difference by hand. It's also almost as supportive as hemp when wrapped, which is seriously awesome for 100% cotton! I am wrapping a 35+ lb 2.5 year old, so I can definitely tell the difference when I am using a supportive wrap...especially in a shorty! This totally held its own in my favorite shorty carry, Shepherd's Carry.
This dot print is super cute and versatile. I don't worry too much about getting my wraps dirty...but if you did get a spot on the lighter side of this wrap, the "wrong" (darker background, lighter spots) is just as cute!
The version we got had been traveling for a while, so it was a bit broken in. Brand new, you can tell this wrap would be pretty stiff. But with use and a little steam iron action, it seems like it would soften up very nicely (it was almost as soft as my broken in Natibaby I mentioned).
Jennah's Arbitrary Ratings Breakdown
Cush: 3/5 - when it gets softer, it'd probably be a 4/5, but it still needed some breaking in
Softness after breaking in: 3/5 - this wrap is never going to be super duper soft and cuddly I don't think
Newborn suitability: 2/5 when brand new, 3/5 when broken in a bit
Baby (6+ mos) to toddler suitability: 4/5
Suitable for wrap conversion (RS, MT, or Buckle): 5/5 - not easy to pull at all, can take a beating!
Cost (in this or other colors): $79 - $120, and watch 5MR.com for sales!
Keppeke wraps are machine-woven in Blegium and this tester's large polka dots gave it a modern look that I loved (okay, polka dots in any form are a weakness of mine). Bollekes is a solid wrap. It has great support for cotton and held a knot well. I wore my 18 month old for over two hours at one of her older brother's football games and I never had to retighten. It's a dense weave, but doesn't feel heavy in had. I think this is one that requires some work to break in, but imagine the result would be very rewarding. The wrap is a bit wider than average (29.5") which might make it difficult to use with a small baby but makes it great for toddlers or new wrappers that need some extra width to get a good seat when learning to back carry. I also loved how sturdy it was and think this would make a great everyday workhorse wrap that you can use regularly without worrying about pulls or snags.
I would most likely recommend Bollekes to someone looking for a sturdy toddler wrap who wanted a fun print on a budget. Keppeke has since released a 'newborn line' of wraps that are supposed to be much softer - if you try one let us know!