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Wrap Review: Smitten Vena Cava Crema

Smitten is owned by Matt and Rachel, also the owners of 5 Minute Recess, one of my favorite retail shops for wraps.  Well known for their outstanding customer service and ridiculously fast shipping, it's no surprise Matt and Rachel have created such a lovely brand of their own.  Smitten is based in Texas, and claims to use only 100% natural non-animal derived fibers for its wraps which are spun, dyed, jacquard woven and finished in the US. Packaging and labeling is also produced in the US, and the wraps have passed ASTM F2907-14b and flammability testing and are lab certified to be free of heavy metals and phthalates.  Good stuff!

Natty (natural) wraps have never been my thing.  I love bold, deep colors and my wrap stash is dominated by pinks, blues, and greens.  But natty wraps have a following for being easy to care for and wash despite their light color, and for being incredibly soft, and since Smittens are "created to be worn," I felt good about trying a Vena Cava Crema as my first natty.

Crema is such a unique wrap! I've never felt anything else quite like it. One wrap it rather reminded me of was Didymos Orient (not the indio), but it's a loose connection. It reminded me, more than anything, of creamy French Vanilla ice cream.  The heart pattern was subtle in this colorway.

Crema is a thick, incredibly soft wrap that feels like a favorite sweatshirt and offers marshmallowy support and comfort, even with toddlers. It easily forms pillow-like shoulder pleats (see second picture above). I would say the standout features of this wrap are the cush and in-hand feel. I've heard people describe wraps as feeling like memory foam, and this was the first wrap I tried that I'd ascribe that attribute (or "marshmallowy") to. As soon as you hold it you get a sense for how spongey it is, and it's so soft (did I mention that already?). It's a very finely woven jacquard (dense), and doesn't have much texture. I would not choose it for summer wrapping/hot climate. I keep thinking of a sweatshirt or a thick interlock knit; it has drape and heft, and I'd say it leans toward dry. It held a half knot well for me, and I know others using it with slip knots. Another nod at its loungewear feel, the way the fabric clings to you reminds me of the way pulling a hoodie off over your head tends to take the layer underneath with it. I wouldn't say that it is super stretchy, like a plainweave handwoven or a Lisca, but it does have some. As for bounce, it moves with you in a very forgiving way; not a rock-solid wrap the way a linen blend might be, but something I could see wearing a heavy toddler in for many hours without any discomfort. Because of its thickness and other properties I would steer a new wrapper away. I didn't find it effortless to wrap with like my Ellevills, but even my sloppy double hammock was rewarded with a lot of comfort for the time my toddler was up. I don't think this wrap could dig if you gave it a shovel.

While Crema didn't remain in our stash (see above about loving color), it is absolutely a wrap I'd recommend to natty lovers looking for a dreamy soft wrap with lots of smoosh. I had a 7, but think it would make a magnificent ring sling or shorty.


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