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Beco Baby Carrier History

Posted by Alissa DeRouchie on

This Beco Baby Carrier Timeline is a work in progress. Please feel free to contact us with updates or inaccuracies. Updated August 4, 2016.

November 2005 – The first buckle carrier brought  to us by Beco, called the bECOpack. This could be referred to as the first generation, or 1G Beco, although the ‘generation’ names did not come into strong use until the 3rd and 4th generations were released. The first generation bECOpack was designed as a Mei Tai with buckles. The waist was padded to help transfer the child’s weight to the wearer’s hips. The shoulder straps were adjustable but did not buckle. They attached to the bottom waist strap which is a design component that was soon to change.

March 2006 – Custom bECOpacks were being produced in full-force. OOAK (one of a kind) carriers abounded as customers could send in their own fabric and also request changes to the bECOpack’s height, width, waist belt and shoulder straps. The standard bECOpack had evolved into the second generation. Included in this version was a hood that could be attached to the top of the carrier with velcro. Two standard strap colors were offered: black and natural. Accesory pouches were introduced and carriers came with matching bags. The more standard shoulder strap attachment, with the end of the strap coming to meet the carrier body instead of the carrier waist belt, is introduced.

April 2006 – The 3rd Generation Beco, or Beco 3G, was an evolution in comfort for both the baby and the wearer. Big changes included darts in the seat, making it easier to get the baby seated low and comfortably in the carrier. The shoulder straps of the carrier were also adjusted to have a dual buckle system. This buckle did two things. First, it allowed the wearer to adjust the strap length in both directions, making it easy to give the straps a tug if the carrier was on your front or back. The clips also made it possible to wear the carrier in a hip position. The third generation is also the last carrier to be sewn by Gabby herself.

Beco 4th GenerationJune 1, 2006 – The Beco 4th Generation is introduced, and thus ushers in the Beco era. Features of the Beco 4th include a removeable shaped hood, a small pocket in the body of the carrier, light padding on the edges of the carrier to protect the baby’s legs, and a strap that allowed the carrier to be rolled into itself and fastened in place for easy securing when the carrier wasn’t in use. Some enterprising babywearers found this to be an easy and functional hip seat, with the carrier rolled and fastened and the waist strap fastened on the wearer, the child could sit on the ’shelf’ the carrier made. The wearer still needed to hold the child on the seat, but it helped remove strain from the wearer’s back and transfer weight to their hips. 4th Generation Beco carriers were sewn in the United States by a small facory in California. No customs dimensions were available with this carrier.

2007 -Beco enjoyed immense growth in 2007. Throughout this year minor changes were made to the Beco 4th Generation, but the basic design remained the same. During this period of growth Beco continued to innovate and brought two short-lived carriers to the market, the Beco XO and the Beco BWD (BabyWearing Delight).

Beco ObiSeptember 2007 – Beco debuts two new carriers. The first is the beco Obi, a simple sash-style carrier that creates an X in front and back of the wearer and allows the baby to be carried in the front X. This is a front carrier only and can be used with infants forward facing and facing in. The Obi was short-lived and was removed from the market in early 2008. The second carrier that Beco was working on is the carrier that was soon to become the Butterfly.

January 1, 2008 – Outside influences require the Beco 4th Generation to be discontinued, but in its place Beco releases to the public the Beco Butterfly. An entirely new style of buckle carrier, the Butterfly introduces some great new features, such as an integrated seat which makes back carries easy, even for beginners, an an integrated infant insert allowing you to start wearing the Butterfly as it is, as soon as your little one is born.

Beco Butterfly 1April 2008 – The babywearing world is shocked as the Beco Butterfly is recalled due to buckles that allowed the webbing to slip through easily if the carrier was handled in a certain way. Beco handled the recall with grace, and carriers currently in use were updated with new buckles. All carriers going forward had these new, non-slip buckles standard.

September 1, 2008 – Beco introduces the Beco Butterfly II. With three major improvements, the Butterfly II becomes an even better carrier. First, the infant insert is now removable and adjustable. This makes it easier to use the Butterfly with newborns, and once your child outgrows this stage the insert is easily removed. The Butterfly II has a few extra inches of padding in the shoulder straps, and the hood now attaches to the carrier with a set of snaps. The hood is also curved and uses elastic to adjust the strap length instead of a threading system like the Original Butterfly. This change was necessary to allow the Beco Butterfly II to conform to European safety standards.

Beco Butterfly IIAlso introduced with the Butterfly II are limited edition custom carriers. Retailers are now able to select their own fabric for the Butterfly panel and create an exclusive carrier.

January 1, 2009 – The Butterfly II continues to gain popularity, and Beco introduces a few new colorways, called the Duo Collection. Butterfly II Duos are solid organic color carriers, three of which have two tones and an owl screen printing on the panel.

February 1, 2009 – Beco adds a third snap to the Butterfly II hood, eliminating the gap that could happen in the middle of the hood with the old two-snap attachment.

September 13, 2009 – Beco Baby Carrier introduces the newest Beco, the Gemini, at the ABC Kids Show in Las Vegas. Unlike the carriers before, the Gemini can do a forward-facing carry, which shocks some and impresses others. The Gemini is only in prototype at this point and will not be released to the public for many months.

 July 2010 – The long-awaited Beco Gemini becomes available to the public. The hype surrounding the launch of a new Beco keeps the Gemini at the top of the list for babywearers.

Beco continues to manufacture both the Beco Butterfly II and the Beco Gemini carriers. Only slight changes have been made to the models over time to improve them. The basic design of each remains the same.

September 2012 - The Beco Butterfly II carrier is phased out and marketing begins for the launch of the new Beco Soleil carrier.

Beco Gemini vs. Beco Soleil

January 2013 - Beco announces all manufacturing moved to China. While this announcement is disappointing to retailers who are focused on sustainability and eco-friendly products, the move allows Beco to continue producing a high quality product without raising prices. Both Gemini and Soleil are being manufactured overseas, although the Soleil has not yet been released to the public.

With minimal hiccups, the move of production to China produces a quality product able to meet the demand of a growing brand.

April 2, 2013 - Here comes the sun! Beco Soleil carrier is now available for sale. The Beco Soleil boasts cross-able shoulder straps, a large shaped set with a high panel, dual adjustable shoulder straps (now known as PFAs, Perfect Fit Adjusters), padded leg support, padded head support, and a waist band pocket. The Soleil works in front, back and hip carries and is a reengineered carrier to make carrying comfortable for the wearer.

The Beco Soleil does not accommodate infants as-is, but requires a Beco Infant Insert. Many parents find the Soleil to be a good step-up carrier after using the Gemini from birth.

October 12, 2013 - The a la carte program for the Soleil is abandoned and carriers now come standard with hood and carry all bag.

Beco Gemini Limited Edition HeroApril 20, 2014 - The limited edition Beco Gemini Hero is released. This all-over camouflage print honors military families and Beco gives a few of these carriers to families who are welcoming home their own heroes from deployment. 

October 2015 - Beco shows off their new Toddler carrier at MommyCon OC. Pictures and speculations circulate.

January 16, 2015 - The Beco Toddler is released in small batches. These limited edition carriers were all made in the USA! Rumored for months before being released, the Beco Toddler lives up to the hype with a large, contoured body, legs out padding, PFAs and cross-able straps.

Retailers continue to sell the Toddler in limited edition batches of 2-3 prints over the next nine months.

Beco Toddler Carriers

 

March 27, 2015 - The first batch of toddler carriers included "Woodland Trail" which sparked an online outrage. Beco realizes their missteps and creates a Cultural Competency Panel and then issues an apology. Included in this is a renaming of the Gemini and Soleil prints formerly known as "Teepee." The name is changed to "Steps."

September 22, 2015 - The standard line of Beco Toddler carriers becomes available. These carriers are not limited and are also made in China. The retail price drops $20 from their Limited Edition counterparts.

October 17, 2015 - Beco introduces the 2016 collection at ABC Kids. The Full print Beco Gemini ABC 2015Gemini receives a makeover with all of the designs taking a half-wrap conversion all-over print design. In bigger news, these Beco Gemini carriers will have a pocket on the waistband like the Beco Soleil and Beco Toddler carriers. 

 

April 14, 2016 - The babywearing world is shocked when Beco and Boba announce their merger. Beco is purchased by Boba and Gabby, while staying on for a short time to ease the transition, will step away from Beco, leaving it in the hands of long-time babywearing manufacturer Boba Family. 

Boba announces that the Soleil carrier will be discontinued. The Soleil does overlap with the Boba 4G carrier, but we are disappointed to see the Soleil go since the Soleil has the advantage of straps that are able to cross in the back. It's all about the X! 

 

 

 

 


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