There’s a whole lotta new happening for the Brooklyn-based maternity/baby-wearing/all-natural parenting biz formerly-known as Caribou Baby. Born and beloved in the borough’s neighborhood of Greenpoint, this shop — which also serves as a education and community space for expecting, nursing and new moms — has changed things up with a new name to align with a slightly tweaked mission, and a new retail space in Prospect Heights. Read on to get the lowdown on the new identity and the fresh storefront.
A Store Grows in Brooklyn
The “baby” of local mom Adriane Stare (who dreamed up the concept after giving birth to her first son — she now has two) Caribou Baby opened its doors four years ago in Greenpoint. Stare was partly inspired by the community of other new moms that was helping her maintain her sanity, as well as a newfound passion for baby-wearing, and both became key elements of the store, reflected in its merchandise and educational programs. (If you wanted to buy any kind of baby carrier or learn how to use one, Caribou Baby was the place to go.) Business boomed, Stare’s husband quit his job to help run the store and the staff increased five-fold.
What’s in a Name?
This year brings big change to the brand. Not only is the business opening a new store in Park Slope, it’s changing its name to Wild Was Mama to more accurately reflect a maternal- (and parent)-centric focus. Of course, babies are still integral to the operation, but it’s the support of mothers and parents with products and services such as carriers, nursing bras and supplies, maternity clothes and related programming that form the core of the business.
The New Digs
Located a stone’s throw from the Barclays Center, the new Wild Was Mama store is stocked with everything its sister shop in Greenpoint is known for, with the exception of cloth diapering supplies due to its smaller footprint.
Merchandise ranges from a comprehensive inventory of carriers of all kinds such as the popular Beco and Ergo brands in addition to gorgeous wraps and slings from makers Didymos and Girasol. Whether you’re a newbie to babywearing or an old pro, staff is knowledgable and helpful when it comes to outfitting you with the best babywearing solution for you. (They’ll also help you figure out how to wear the baby and keep all involved warm this winter, with the pricey but multi-functional down M-Coat — which morphs from a maternity coat to parka with room for baby to “normal” coat for post-child-wearing years — or snazzy adapters for your current winter wear.)
Other sections of the shop include stylish maternity wear, cute clothes for babies, natural toys and teethers (as a rule the shop steers clear of plastic as much as possible) and an apothecary area, where customers will find natural remedies for sniffly or uncomfortable kids.
A large selection of nursing bras and related products can be found in the rear of the store, as well as a dressing room for trying things on.
Finally, a comfy lounging/nursing area outfitted with cozy seat and a rocking chair (as well as a cute toy kitchen to occupy the tiniest of customers) provides a place to take a load off.
While the new store’s reduced smaller square footage doesn’t really allow for educational programming during regular opening hours, classes and support groups such as La Leche meetings after hours (the store closes at 6 p.m.) are a possibility once customer demand and interests are determined. (Check the Wild Was Mama website for development on that front.)
Wild Was Mama
464 Bergen St.
Have you stopped in at the new Wild Was Mama? If so, tell us what you though in the comments below!