Fashionable cord ties soft on babies

By Catherine Gaffaney

Rotorua mother Ashleigh French, with her daughter Jupiter, is taking up the new trend of knitted/crocheted umbilical cords. Photo/ Ben Fraser
Rotorua mother Ashleigh French, with her daughter Jupiter, is taking up the new trend of knitted/crocheted umbilical cords. Photo/ Ben Fraser

Kiwi parents are getting behind a growing trend - using colourful knitted or crochet umbilical cord ties instead of medical clamps.

Australian medics have concerns about the potential for the non-sterile materials to cause infection, but a Kiwi midwife says the potential can be easily minimised.

Rotorua mother Ashleigh French used a tie on her fifth child, Jupiter Morris, who was born in July.

"I used hospital clamps in the past but then saw pictures of the ties on Facebook and thought they looked really cute so I decided to get one.

"It's just common sense to keep it outside the nappy and make sure it doesn't get wet or dirty."

Jupiter Morris, who was born in Rotorua on July 22, wears an on-trend handcrafted umbilical cord tie.
Jupiter Morris, who was born in Rotorua on July 22, wears an on-trend handcrafted umbilical cord tie.


French's family thought she was "pretty crazy" to use a tie.

"They didn't really get why I would bother with one, but it was really cute and it's a nice keepsake.

"I also liked how soft it was on Jupiter's skin and comfy it was when I was holding her. The hospital clamps are quite hard and there's the risk of them getting caught on clothes."

French opted for a rose, which is Jupiter's middle name.

Christchurch midwife Jacqui Anderson said she had seen more parents using fancy woollen ties in the past year.

Infection could be avoided if the tie was kept away from the abdomen, over the nappy.

"The cord needs to be a bit longer so the tie won't get wet or soiled and there's less potential for irritation.

"The base of the abdomen has to be monitored for infection but it's not that common. I've never had an experience with infection."

Anderson, who is also an adviser to the College of Midwives, said sterilised string has been used for a long time, and also muka, a flax fibre with anti-bacterial properties, "has been used by Maori families for centuries".

- NZ Herald

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