Sling Slang – a guide to baby carrier terms

We went to our first sling meet when Sprout was just a few weeks old. Mums there had all sorts of slings, and many had more than one, and everyone seemed to know what they were doing, apart from me. I was failing at remembering the names of babies and mums, even before I tried to understand the sling-slang that seemed to make up half of the conversation:

“Stretchy”     “Cushy”     “unicorn”      “DISO”       “permastash”

It was almost overwhelming. But what I failed to realise then was that everyone there had been in the same position once, and probably not very long ago.

“It’s terrifying to go into a group thinking everyone knows each other and everything they’re doing, when actually the truth is that most people probably just met each other and everyone is making it up as they go along!” – George, wrapping mama.

I’ve now hosted several sling meets, and trust me, George is right. But it doesn’t hurt to be a little prepared, does it?

Things you’ll hear at sling meets

  • TICKS – guidelines for wearing your baby to help make sure they are safe.
  • Base Size: the smallest length of woven wrap you can do a FWCC with. For the average mama this is a 5 or 6.  The size of wrap you’ll need for particular carries is worked out from this. For wrap sizes in metres see the photo below.
  • “HW” – hand woven; “MW” – machine woven.
  • “squish” – a baby. It’s a term of endearment. And useful if you can’t remember any more names.
  • “toddler-worthy” – a carrier designed for a toddler or a woven wrap strong enough for one.
  • “beastly” – a wrap that is proving a little difficult to tame; usually a thick wrap that needs more breaking in.
  • “cushy” – a wrap that’s has a nice cushion feel on your shoulders. I’d say it’s the opposite of “diggy”… But both are subjective!
  • “unicorn” – special, rare, unobtainable, highly desirable
  • “FSOT” – For Sale Or Trade
  • “DISO” – Desperately In Search Of
  • “All In” – price of a pre-loved carrier inclusive of fees, post & packaging
  • “stash” – a collection of carriers
  • “churner” – a person who sells or trades wraps frequently. They may be curious, picky, searching for their unicorn, or simply writing a blog.
  • “permastash” – Permanent Stash, stash I do not imagine selling. AKA My Cold Dead Hands.
  • “legacy wrap” – a wrap with personal significance, often released on baby’s birth date or connected to their name. Try these databases:     http://slingofest.com;  http://wovenwrapsdatabase.com

These are some of the slang words we use here in England, and thanks to enthusiast Facebook groups I know these terms are also used in the USA and Malaysia.  What sling slang do you use? Have you heard a word but don’t know its meaning? Please comment below to expand all our vocabulary.

Types of carry using a wrap; there are many more, but these are great to start with.

  • FWCC – Front Wrap Cross Carry : the woven wrap carry most people are shown first
  • PWCC – Pocket Wrap Cross Carry : the carry you use with a stretchy
  • FCC – Front Cross Carry
  • DH – Double Hammock : a comfy back carry
  • RTIF – Ruck Tied in Front : (Ruck – Rucksack) : a simple back carry
  • RUB – Ruck tied under the bum

I hope this helps.

So if I ramble on about “my cushy squish-worthy BBS HW WSMT, that is such a unicorn I know I’d never find another, so has to be permastash as I want to be a baby-wearing granny” you know exactly what I mean? Nope? Well, hopefully neither does my husband 😉

Sizes of Woven Wrap