I remember when my girlfriend gifted me with my first pair of baby leg warmers. I looked at them curiously and thought "is this for when my baby does yoga?' and had a chuckle and put them away.
The house I birthed my baby in had an old hardwood floor that was drafty. As she was born in November, we had quite a winter to get through. I thought about the baby leg warmers often when changing her, those cute little kicking legs, all open to the air like that bothered me, especially as a new mom, trying to do everything 'right' and being as diligent as I could.
So I dug out the cream coloured leg warmers and put them on her. I oo'ed and ahh'd for a bit at their adorableness and then continued to breastfeed her. For the next diaper change I found myself pleased. I could access the diaper easily and her wee legs were still all cozy.
Naturally, I needed more! After all, that one pair needed to be washed. So I hunted around for a while for a good price, irked at the $15-$20 price tag on most I found. Since by that point I was pretty much a single mom, I couldn't afford to buy any. So I waited.
The spring came and I found myself at a friends family weekend camping extravaganza and a wonderful woman had brought a bunch she was selling for $5 a piece! Yoink!
By this time I was full well into cloth diapering my child. I had figured everything out and had my nice routine going, easy peasy. Then I had a eureka moment. Wait! You mean I can make outfits with a leg warmer and a cloth diaper? I can still show off that cute cloth too? The designer in me reveled!
I had just started Yummy Mummy Emporium as a business since I needed an income to support my child and myself. I was primarily supplying cloth diapers, wet/dry bags and amber teething necklaces, trying to share information and help other young moms with natural health information (my training is in naturopathic medicine) and on how to save money. When this woman at my friend's place suggested to me that leg warmers could be a great adjunct to my business, I agreed whole heartedly. She was kind enough to connect me to all the right people.
Suddenly, I had plenty of leg warmers to play with. I matched outfits with leg warmers and diapers and head gear, like bows, bands and clippies. There seemed to be an interesting psychological effect happening...despite my stresses, I felt like a good and caring mom. And that got me through the tired days, the stressful days, the broke days, and the depressed days.
My girl always had a pair of leg warmers on her. By studying her in them, watching her play, fall, and climb I started to gain new insight on the fringe benefits of these little tubes of cloth.
Easy Access: Leg warmers made my 10 - 13 daily cloth diaper changes a breeze. One diaper off, wipe, one diaper on. Done.
No Wicking: Pants are over rated. Uncomfortable around the waist and sometimes causing wicking from the diaper, changing pants on a wriggly baby or toddler all the time was not my favourite. I had a girl, so tossing a skirt over top was easy to do or a simple pair of shorts worked if it was cooler. But pants? Blah! Do you have any idea how fast these creatures' legs grow?? Fast!
Bridge the Gap: I get lots of customers in my store carrying their children and I always see a sock, a gap and up there...the pants. Leg warmers solve the gap. Or on an older child who is out growing his pants or his sweater or coat, leg warmers make the leap on the arm toward the wrist. Why spend $40 on a new coat when you can spend $8 on arm warmers for that last stretch before the spring? Extra clothing mileage saves you money...leg warmers are versatile and handy for your pocketbook too.
Bugs! In cottage country we have bugs. That young flesh is a tasty treat for a mosquito or worst, a deer fly or horse fly. Good luck getting through a leg warmer suckers!
Extra Warmth: It's a cold, wintery day and my girl wants to go outside to play or she is heading to daycare, a pair of leg warmers, then her pants over top, is extra protection from cold weather and falls on the ice. Aren't you a smart parent!?
UV Protection: Having fun at the beach? Despite the sunscreen use, you feel it's time to get the sun off those legs so you grab a pair and on they go. Now your child can play in the sand a little longer and your worry of a burn or excessive skin damage is gone.
Protection from Falls: I remember the one and only day I forgot the leg warmers and it's a lesson I won't soon forget. My daughter last summer, toddler, wanted to walk to the park. She had on her skirt and her fun shoes and well, mommy was thinking water, cell phone, money, hats, sunglasses and half way there...the leg warmers. Uh oh. "Oh well, we'll be okay", I thought. So we are walking on the side walk and my girl sees a puddle and takes off for it. A split second later she has tripped and lands on her knees... they are all scraped up, bleeding and our outing, ruined. In my mind I kept repeating "why did you forget the legwarmers, WHY???" If she had them on, she would gave cried a little and then we could have continued on. Instead, I had her fighting me not to touch the owies, a long discussion about bandaids, extensive crying and consoling and a massive boo-boo focus that was mentioned for DAYS. Not particularly fun. Prevention is cure.
Nice Legs! Kids are always getting banged up from their practices at walking and learning about life. A child's legs free of bruises can exist because the material from the leg warmer cushions the blow.
Patella Cushioning: Beyond the skin, we have developing structure. The patella is a delicate area with lots of nerve, tendon and ligament connections and when your baby is learning to crawl leg warmers protect this important area.
Great for Potty Training: To have on a pull up trainer and a pair of leg warmers during potty learning makes everything a breeze. They feel confident of their skills to get the job done. Win-win!
Popular! People, friends and family always commented on my daughter's adorable leg warmers. Comments like "how unique!" "that's fun!" or "can I get a pair like that?" It took focus away from the usual discussions and seemed to be a good 'ice breaker'. I actually began to carry some with me as people wanted to buy them right on the spot! Especially if I went to a park, I would bring some. Always a mom there worried about her child skinning his knees.
Choice for Children: "What leg warmers do you want to wear today love?" "The blue ones!" Children love to feel empowered to make decisions for themselves at (to me) a surprisingly young age. So to be able to give your child options when getting dressed is a great way to do this.
Long Lasting: I have a basket full of leg warmers, naturally, and they have lasted well for years. They wash easily and stains come out. They also stay useful as your child grows! The same leg warmers I had for my daughter when she was 6 months still fit her now at age 3 and as she grows they will just grow down the leg until they protect her shin only. They will fit her until she is around 10-12 years of age. Now THAT'S good value.
Events: I admit it, using leg warmers can be slightly addictive. Like many mothers who cloth diaper, leg warmers too can be an addiction, mainly because outfit planning is fun. It is also fun to plan the photo session outfits and dress them up for Halloween, Valentine's Day, Christmas, Canada Day, etc... I mean c'mon! What a legacy! Don't worry, it's a healthy addiction.
When people come into my store they see many styles of leg warmers to choose from, for both boys and girls (the boys love them too and they do NOT look silly at all). I am constantly having to update my website with styles, quite a task as a single mompreneur with a toddler! So if you are looking for any specific colours and styles, just email me and I may just have what you are looking for. Of course I ship anywhere...and they are simple to send...
Thank you for reading and supporting Yummy Mummy Emporium!
Curious? SHOP HERE for leg warmers!
Amandha D. Vollmer
This creative mompreneur herbalist