#3. The story behind: making of Konny
The main fabric chosen after wearing them myself
In the picture the seamstress sent me, I was able to find the very first samples evenly hung at the studio. My heart was pounding with joy. I had the highest expectations for those made from 100% cotton fabrics and functional fabrics widely used in sportswear. But I ended up dropping them both.
The baby carrier made from 100% cotton ensured a tight fit at first, but it became loose quicker than I thought. I went out for a 20-minute walk, holding my baby in the carrier. It soon became so loose that I had to return, holding my baby in my arms without the carrier. I used to prefer cotton fabrics as a mom, but soon realized, for my carrier, the fabric would have to be blended with spandex in order to be used for a long time. The cotton carrier shrank after washing, but it didn't last long. I had two other samples made from 100% cotton fabrics, but they were both dropped for the same reason.
The baby carrier made from a fabric for sportswear was highly elastic. It didn't get loose easily, so I thought it could be used for a long time. But after wearing it for awhile, I discovered a problem. I felt too hot that I soon became soaked in sweat, tightly holding my baby in the carrier. The fabric was popular for quickly absorbing sweat. Even so, the fabric itself was too thick. So I asked the wholesalers at Dongdaemun to find a lighter fabric, but they said it was impossible for them to precisely reduce the weight of fabrics as they were only selling ones mass-produced in factories. Unfortunately, I had to drop this one as well. (Interestingly, I recently found a copycat product made from a similar functional fabric that I previously tested and dropped.) Lighter functional fabrics I found were also dropped as they easily became saggy. Thicker ones with higher density ensured a tighter fit but I felt too hot in it. In the end, I dropped both types as I couldn’t find the one with the right amount of density.
Next, I tested a sample made from a cotton/polyester blend that was light and soft. Between the two types: one with spandex and one without, the spandex-blended one was much comfier to wear. One without spandex caused inconveniences as it was tight yet not stretchy. I had to forcefully bend my baby’s legs whenever I was putting him in and out of the carrier, because the shoulder sashes didn't stretch. I also figured I wouldn't be able to use it by the time my baby got bigger as I couldn’t secure the inner space of the carrier. The other one with spandex was really stretchy with high tension. As the fabric quickly restored after being stretched, my baby seemed relaxed in it. Also, I was assured that the fabric would perfectly adjust to the baby’s changing weight as he grew up day by day. The cotton/polyester blend had not been my top choice, but I concluded after testing that it would be the best to ensure the desired wearability and usability of our customers.
Testing samples made from fabrics with different blends. It was the only way to assure myself...
Both 100% cotton and functional fabrics failed to meet my expectations. They could work perfectly for other daily clothes. But since the Konny Baby Carrier was designed to be stretched out accordingly as the baby got heavier, I needed to carefully choose the blending mix and processing method that ensured superior usability and wearability. After trying out all the samples myself, I learned that what I imagined could be totally different from reality. And I was glad that I took the time to test all samples made from fabrics of different blends. As a consumer who also raises a baby myself, I strongly believed that eventually, the shortcomings I found were to be noticed and the merits I found were to be appreciated by all.
The cotton/polyester blend is widely-used for adult T-shirts and kidswear. The fabric used in the Konny Baby Carrier passed every quality standard for newborns’ innerwear.