When I was pregnant with my little one I went to a local Green Expo and met a girl who was manning a cloth diaper table and wearing her babies wrapped up on her back and thought it was the coolest thing ever. I vowed then and there to learn everything I could about babywearing! She informed me that she was a member of a local babywearing swap group and invited me to join their Facebook page and attend a Babywearing 101 meeting to learn all about it. I then proceeded to seek out a variety of Babywearing apparatuses and by the time my baby was born I had a Moby stretchy wrap, a Maya ring sling, a K’Tan Breeze, and an Ergobaby soft-structured carrier (SSC) – as you can see, I don’t do anything half-assed, I was all in!
After my daughter was born I was super excited to start trying out all my new carriers. My Maya ring sling was the first I used and it was wonderful for keeping my newborn up close to me during our bi-weekly Costco trips and to keep strangers hands out of my baby’s face (I still to this day do not understand what it is about being pregnant and having a baby that means you no longer have any right to personal space). Once I learned to adjust the rails and get a good seat I loved it and I still keep it in my car for quick, unexpected trips to the grocery store, etc. because who really wants to lug that infant car seat around the store!?!
The next one I tried was my Moby stretchy wrap and this one quickly became my favorite way to carry. Took a little bit to learn how to adjust the rails so that my baby was tight enough but after a few tries around the house we were ready for big adventures into the great outdoors! But my baby was over 9 lbs at birth and I knew she would quickly outgrow a stretchy wrap and while I love my Ergobaby for quick planned trips or errands that have multiple stops it just really wasn’t as comfortable to me as wrapping. (And I’ll be honest, I don’t love my K’Tan, not really sure why, just not my preferred way to babywear). So I began my quest for the perfect woven wrap.
I had previously done a bit of browsing in the woven wrap arena and quickly learned that for the most part they were out of my price range, at least until I learned how to wrap well and felt I could justify the expense. After getting pretty comfortable with using the Moby and the Front-Wrap Cross Carry (FWCC) I knew I wanted to invest in a woven wrap to learn new carries and eventually to get my baby on my back. So back to the online babywearing swap groups I went. I searched and searched and cried a little every time I fell in love with a $300-400 woven wrap. Until one day on the Babywearing on a Budget Facebook group I saw the perfect wrap, in my ideal color scheme, for a price I could afford!!! I was so excited… until I read the comments and learned that it had already been sold…. I shed more than one tear that day. But not to be thwarted I set out with a new DISO (desperately in search of) wrap: the Tekhni Arche Peacock.
At the time I didn’t even realize how perfect this wrap was for me but after a little research, this is what I learned:
Tekhni is a relatively new brand of woven wraps that was started by Alisa DeMarco, a mom and textile designer, in 2013. Her mission was to share her love of babywearing and bring woven wraps to babywearing enthusiasts at affordable prices.
The Arche line of woven wraps are an introductory line geared towards babywearing beginners and smaller babies. It is woven out of thin, flexible, lightweight material. Arche blends are 35% cotton and 65% repreve. Now you may be wondering what in the world repreve is… I know I was. And honestly, this is what sold me on the Arche line. Repreve is a recycled fiber made out of post-consumer waste and plastic bottles. In fact, a size M wrap is made of approximately 25 recycled water bottles!
The Arche line is an affordable line of woven wraps available brand new for $99 regardless of which size you purchase. It is available in three sizes: Small (4.2 meters), Medium (4.7 meters), and Large (5.2 meters) and available in three colors: Peacock (pictured below), Storm (blue hues), and Sunset (multi-colored with reds and blues).
So firmly set on my mission to find a Tekhni Arche Peacock I scoured the interwebz. I checked every online babywearing swap group and was so disappointed that I couldn’t find one in my base size wrap (my base size is a size 6 – typically around 4.7 meters long) and wasn’t ready to try a shortie wrap yet. I had perused Tekhni’s etsy page and at the time she only had a size S in stock (I’m kind of a “fluffy” mom and in hindsight probably could’ve worn a S, which is the equivalent of a size 5 wrap but I was scared it would be too short at the time). So I took a chance and sent a message to Alisa through the etsy page and asked her if the line had been discontinued. Alisa responded quickly and said she would check her inventory to see if she had any in stock and to my surprise she later sent me a message saying she had ONE size M and that she would list it on her etsy page for me to purchase. I had hoped to ask for a wrap for Mother’s Day and this was late April. But knowing that I couldn’t afford to wait I jumped at the opportunity and purchased it as my early Mother’s Day present to myself!
My Tekhni Arche Peacock fresh out of the package!
When my new wrap came in the mail I was so excited I could barely wait to start wearing my baby! But like a good little consumer I read the instructions and washed my wrap as suggested before wrapping. After the first wash my wrap was already super soft and flexible (you will often hear this referred to as “floppy” and many woven wraps have to be broken in first before they are easily mold-able). I was pleased to learn that it was an easy transition from my stretchy Moby wrap to my Arche Peacock and I was easily able to wrap my little one up using the FWCC carry that I was familiar with. The wrap was nice and comfortable and didn’t cut into me even when wearing my daughter on long walks around the neighborhood. In addition, the material is very breathable and we are comfortable wrapped up together even in the warm, Alabama climate (it’s been in the 90’s the last week or so) even though my little one is a furnace just like her daddy!
I’ve now had my Tekhni Arche Peacock for about a month and a half and have been pleased with how easy my wrap has been to work with while learning new carries. I’ve been slowly but surely working my way through the 30 Day Wrap Challenge list, although its going to take me more like 6 months than 30 days to complete it (see pic below), and my Arche Peacock has done beautifully with all the base carries (just gotta get on making my DIY Osnaburg shortie wrap to go back and learn the shortie carries). I haven’t braved the back carry yet but my little one is only just starting to sit up unassisted so it’s only a matter of time before I beg the hubby to be a spotter and start practicing my superman throw to get her back there! I’m confident that my Arche Peacock is up for the task!
30 Day Wrap Challenge
Kangaroo carry with the Tekhni Arche Peacock
As I mentioned previously, my daughter is not so little. Born at 9 lbs 4 oz she has maintained her growth trajectory at the 90th percentile and was 16 lbs at her 4 month check up. So sadly, we will be outgrowing the Arche Peacock before too long. But currently it is still up for the challenge and it is easy to wrap her up and feel like she is well supported despite not being a “smaller baby” like the wrap is geared towards.
My ONLY constructive criticism of the Arche line is the thread shifting (pictured below) but Tekhni was up front about this tendency on their etsy page so it was no big surprise. It is due to this particular fabric weave and not common with their other lines of woven wraps. I followed their washing instructions to help lock the threads into place and prevent excessive thread shifting but still notice it in a few places, mostly where I tend to grab in order to tighten my rails. It looks like this:
But I can actually shift the threads back into place for the most part, it just takes a little time and TLC to do so. Overall, this is something I can live with.
In summary, the pros and cons of the Tekhni Arche Peacock with Repreve are:
- cost, any size for $99 brand new
- repreve blend for the eco-conscious
- lightweight and breathable – excellent choice for warmer climates
- good beginner wrap
- beautiful colors!
- great customer service!
- supports a work-at-home-mom (WAHM)
- designed for smaller babies so you would have to upgrade when baby gets above 20 lbs
- tendency towards thread shifting
Overall I’m in love with my Tekhni Arche Peacock wrap and will be sad when my baby grows out of it but am thankful to have discovered such a wonderful company and will likely buy another Tekhni when I’m ready to upgrade and invest more in my next woven!
Want to know more? Check out Tekhni’s website for more information about the Arche line of woven wraps or to learn about their other wrap designs!
More pics and info of the Arche Peacock on Tekhni’s Facebook page.
More information on Repreve here: What is Repreve?
Check out the feature article on Tekhni in Babywearing Magazine’s Budget Issue.