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Creative corner: Mother makes carrying her baby a work of art

It was only after her fourth child that she discovered babywearing

Cara Jones moved to Longmont in 2015  and brought her love for weaving with her. 

It was only after her fourth child that she discovered babywearing — carrying a baby in a sling or carrier. The concept combined with her love for weaving inspired her to pursue her passion for weaving and to create a business, Apatura Wovens.

Jones said, "I was introduced to the idea of handwoven fabrics via babywearing. I fell very quickly down the woven wrap rabbit hole once I was introduced to the concept after my fourth baby. Within a week of trying my first wrap, I was added to a handwoven wrap group by a college teammate, and I fell in love."

Joining local weaving groups helped Jones hone her craft. 

Jones said, "I jumped in and tried the wraps and started working with weavers on custom and semi-custom designs and couldn't get enough ... I sat down and threw the shuttle a few times, and it was love."

It wasn’t long before Jones found her niche in weaving, making baby wraps. The art of weaving and the beauty of the finished product contributed more to her love of the craft. It also made her feel special while handling the day-to-day challenges of motherhood.

"I am in love with the way woven wraps are equally functional and beautiful. I often walked around in ill-fitting, stained, smelly clothes with a baby and her older siblings in tow. Wearing said baby in a one-of-a-kind lush handwoven piece of art on top of that made me feel like a million bucks," Jones said.

While baby wraps are her first love, changes in regulations caused Jones to temporarily suspend baby wrap weaving and expand into other things like scarves, cowls and fabric. 

“Regulations were introduced a few years ago, which made it very difficult for small producers to continue. I stopped weaving wraps once they came into force," she said, "however, the greater wrap weaving community has been navigating it well.”

Jones identifies her style as unique in its complexity and use of bold patterns. She prefers to double-weave her creations, which is unusual in custom-made pieces, she said. 

"My style is much more about bold weave patterns than about specific use of color, though they interplay. And I don't ever do the same thing twice,” she said.