AT A GLANCE
Brand / weave:
Liora Rae Wovens / Bloom
24% Egyptian cotton, 76% combed cotton
396cm long, 67cm wide, 289gsm
Stretch, bounce, recoil, cush, supportive
I should start off with a warning. If you’re looking for a measured review, with staid language and a modest description of this wrap’s qualities, step away now. This review is not that.
Because I’m a tiny bit in love with Bloom.
I knew this was something special as soon as I pulled the wrap from its bag. Bloom has a texture unlike anything I’ve felt before. I spent a few days puzzling over its unplaceable familiarity before I realised that it reminds me of expensive tea towels…! That may not sound like a good thing, but trust me, it is. The texture is like a micro waffle, and is not rough but somehow a little coarse. It’s surprisingly pleasant in hand (I’m texture sensitive and loathe highly textured wraps), feeling reassuringly sturdy.
The other dominant in-hand feel is pure, glorious SMOOSH. I could squish Bloom in my hands all day long. In fact, I loved carries with some extra tail, because it allowed me to walk around squishing and testing the satisfyingly springy smoosh factor again and again. Did I look somewhat odd, as though I was trying to juice fabric? Probably, but I enjoyed it so much I just couldn’t help myself.
Once I’d assessed Bloom’s in-hand feel, I shook it out so I could take in the design. I normally hate large, frothy florals – they’re about as far away as you can get from my preferred geometric designs, and they almost make my skin crawl. I’m aware that’s something of an extreme reaction (!) but I’m owning up to it so you can understand why it’s unusual that I fell for Bloom. I expected the floral element of this wrap to feel pretty chintzy, but it really doesn’t. It’s oversized, and the detailing this allows for makes it look almost like a botanical illustration (which I just adore). The juxtaposition against, and interplay with the large diamond/chevron background is fascinating.
These colours are some of my favourites, so there was no chance I wasn’t going to love them. The light sage/mint and heather grey are soft, cool and complement each other beautifully. The colours have a tendency to look a little washed out in photos, rather than conveying the subtle, refined softness you experience in person. The touch of white picks out detailing, adding extra tonal depth and interest. As a finishing flourish to this lovely colourway, I found that in sunlight it has a slightly luminous quality. It’s truly, truly lovely.
Let’s step back into my journey to total adoration with Bloom. Thus far, this wrap had intrigued and then beguiled me with its in-hand feel, and seduced me with its looks. I was already feeling enthusiastic, but Bloom was about to seal the deal.
I wrapped with it.
Guys, this wrap is the stuff of my dreams. It’s got incredible stretch and recoil. I’ve previously described the bounce of thick Didymos Liscas as being like shock absorbers. Bloom is like Liscas on steroids. It really hugs you; the recovery from its stretch lends it wonderful movement without the wrap sagging one bit. If you’re ever wondering what true bounce with great recoil is, try this wrap. It exemplifies those qualities so perfectly that I could almost explode with excitement as I try to explain it to you. As I wore it, I kept picturing my son’s ball on an elastic string, which boingingings back perfectly each time it’s bounced. The bounce/recoil of Bloom is so good that it almost feels engineered.
The support of Bloom is pretty darn fantastic, too. I found it perfectly comfy in single layer carries, and in multi layer carries my toddler became blissfully weightless. That smoosh I couldn’t stop squishing makes for a wonderful shoulder feel. Never once did I feel a hint of digginess. In fact, the combination of support, smoosh and bounce make Bloom a fabulously forgiving wrap which handles sloppy wrap jobs gracefully.
Despite its slightly coarse texture, Bloom isn’t an overly grippy wrap. It walks the line between grip and glide rather expertly, finding a sweet spot between the two which makes second passes no worry, but holds wrap jobs and slipknots nicely in place.
To top it all off, Bloom is wonderful, easy-care cotton. As it’s not the tightest of weaves (it did acquire a few pulls during my week with it), I perhaps wouldn’t quite class it as a beater – but it’s great to know that any stains acquired will be easy to launder.
Now I’ve waxed lyrical, you probably want to hear about Bloom’s downsides. Well, whilst not dense, it’s not a thin or notably airy wrap – you might not reach for it immediately in hot weather. It’s a little pull prone. But its biggest drawback is that it might just make any other wraps you own seem redundant.
One and done? Shockingly, for this wrap collector, that suddenly seems possible…