Guest Author - Nicki Heskin
The first thing that strikes you when seeing a L'oved Baby Nursing Shawl is that it is just absolutely beautiful. Plus it looks really soft, and makes you want to touch it. In those two respects, it absolutely doesn't disappoint. Overall, this is an effective nursing cover, with pros and cons that can matter depending on what is important to you. At right around $30, it's a fairly reasonable price for a fashion look, and available easily online at Amazon (see below) or at many local retail outlets.
As far as materials, the L'oved Baby Nursing Shawl is, as I said, really attractive. It's not *so* nice that I'd keep on using it as a regular shawl when nursing is through, but I certainly wouldn't be embarrassed to have it on in public. I like that they have kept their design simple and classy, and the same on all of their shawls, so all you are really choosing is the color. The colors available are muted and subtle – appropriate for a product that is meant to be worn by a mother and not a baby – I'll take classy over cutesy on a nursing shawl any day.
The polyester fabric is lightweight, which is nice because it doesn't feel suffocating for the mother or the baby. I tried it out with my two-year-old, and it was really comfortable. My toddler let me leave it on for a surprisingly long time, and when she finally requested me to take it off, held out her hand and cuddled it to her like a blanket.
The product is machine washable and dryable, although the tag does call for a cold water wash. I can't imagine why a regular cycle wouldn't be appropriate though. And warm water is probably even fine (we wash polyester in warm all the time) except for the possibility of browning of milk or drool or organic stains. As a side note, the product tag indicates it is made in China, for those who may consider that criterion in purchasing decisions. I wa
The neckline does not have a stay, which I generally like, but instead is designed in a very clever way. It is narrow enough to stay on the shoulders if desired, but even with my larger toddler, is large enough to pull out to expose the baby's head from the top, while still shielding well enough from the front and sides. I was surprised to like it without the stay, but it is easy to adjust from having a viewing space to pulling back over the baby's head with one hand, and nice not to have that hard stay near the face. It is easy to put on and off with one hand, even while nursing
The shawl comes with instructions for folding, which I followed, but was still unable to get it to fit back in the pouch the way it came. There is also no way to do it one-handed. However, it is possible to just "stuff" it in the pouch and deal with it later when home or when the baby is more contained. The fabric looked no worse for the wear after doing this, and can still be contained in the pouch (it just is a little bulkier).
According to the packaging, the shawl can also be used as a blanket, stroller cover, bassinet cover (I would not do this unless the baby is in the same room… if grabbed or kicked by the baby, I'd worry the neckline is large enough to collapse the shawl into the bassinet. It also indicates use as a pregnancy poncho, although I'm a little hazy on what that is or why you'd want it.
Overall, I think this is a nice quality, lovely shawl, with a useful role as at least a stroller cover once nursing confidence overcomes the need for a nursing cover.