Joy And Joe Gallery Opening

Saturday 22nd of April was the grand opening of Joy And Joe’s babywearing Gallery (And shop!) right in the centre of St Helens! I think you’ll agree it’s a bit exciting! So I grabbed a demo doll (Ingrid) and set off out to do a bit of wrapping geeking!

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First job when I got there was create some directions for people on the day and in future too! So first of all find the bus station and Millenium Centre, then look for Bickerstaffe Street between the Millenium Centre and Hair Design as demonstrated by my forehead

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Follow the road around to the right (if you come in through St Helens Central train station you come straight onto this road so turn left not right!) and you’ll be faced by this (except without me and Ingrid usually!)

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Look for this sign and go up the stairs, at the top the first door is Joy And Joe! If you want to visit all their wraps you just need to make an appointment with them!

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But enough directions! Wraps!

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This was one set of rails, there was shelves behind, then in the other room, another set of rails and more shelves so many wraps! Tiem to change the KoKaDi I arrived in and put Ingrid in something more appropriate!

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I’ve been wanting to get my hands on a Quad blend for ages so that’s exactly what I did. It was a beast to get through the rings! It’ll be superb when it’s broken in though, soft supportive and generally amazing! This is Electric Violet SMP (35% silk, 40% linen, 15% cotton, 10% ethically sourced lambswool)

I posted up on facebook to let people know where I was. I was requested to find Lansbury (many of the named for people who work with J&J or for local places, it’s obscenely cool!) so I did!

Lansbury 1 Lansbury

At this point I was ignoring the mayor because wraps! “Winged Dream Lansbury” is another Quad Blend (45% Mako cotton, 25% linen, 25% lambswool and 5% silk), it was a little rough!

After the thicker wraps I felt the need for a much thinner one, so I found the thinnest one there, somewhow my photo os that has vanished 🙁 (I will have to selflessly go back and take another!)  “Fountains Of Love” Elyse 50% Mako cotton, 35% Cashmere, 15% Bamboo It was like wrapping with air, so light so breathable but still right on the money to hold a baby up!

One of my St Helens volunteers rocked into view then to join me in the geekery! “What shall I wear?!” Said Naomi, since she’s currently enjoying wrapping with a 3 I grabbed a shortie and disovered it was shorter than I thought, one (alright 3, the wraps melted my brain!) slip knot(s) later and here’s Naomi!

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I’ll tell you more about this wrap at the end!

I decided to go back to the Quad Blends because I obviously hadn’t used my musces enough!

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Cartosyle Roxanne! 45% Mako cotton, 35% Merino wool, 10% linen, 10% Silk. This one doesn’t come with an official sensitive skin warning like Lansbury Bridge does but I found this one to be a bit itchy on the delicate skin of my chest. I suspect after a wash it’ll ease up and be more pliable and soft, this one was definitely a work out to use in Loom State!

I suddenly realised there was a full rail I’d not availed myself of and that was where I found Carostyle Hallam. An Exclusive made for the Northern Sling Exhibition and only one left that wrap utterly captured my little geeky heart. I mean look at the middle marker placement on my double hammock!

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Hallam is 45% Mako cotton, 35% Merino wool, 10% linen, 10% Silk The same blend as Roxanne but oddly it was softer, thinner, easier to wrap with. Pliable, grippy, supportive. Seriously, of all the wraps I tried that day this one is my favourite, in fact it’s probably up there as one of my favourite wraps of all time!

At this point Bisi (who runs Joy And Joy) decided to tell me that she’d like to donate a wrap to the library, J&J and St Helens, we’re St Helens let’s do this thing! Now, somehow I channeled sensible librarian and didn’t request Hallam and it’s (likely to be) demanding washing instructions. Instead this came home with me:

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Not the photographer (he went back to Wales!), Amanthus Vicki Feathers! Remember the wrap Naomi was wearing up there! Yep same one, but this one is a size 3 (because we don’t have one!) 50% mako cotton and 50% combed cotton. It will be superb when it’s broken in and we can teach you some speedy supportive wraps with shorties! Come and give it a go!

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And that’s it, one dodgy selfie with St Helens Town Hall as I wandered back to the car dreaming of Hallam and a wrap hub right in the centre of St Helens was open! I suspect I might be back again (hopefully still being a sensible librarian and not leaving with Hallam…)

– Rachael