Do you want the freedom of babywearing but fear you won’t be able to afford a carrier in time?
We are cognizant of the fact that even the most fundamental carriers can be prohibitively costly. And if you go with the designer route, you can expect to pay upwards of a few hundred dollars for a single item.
Making your own baby carrier is the subject of this article. To help mothers of varying sewing abilities create a secure and cozy baby carrier, we provide detailed instructions for a variety of slings, wraps, and mei tais.
Some Reasons Why Baby Carriers Are Beneficial
Baby carriers are a convenient way to keep your child close and content while yet allowing you to carry out your daily responsibilities. In addition to keeping your baby close to you as you do other things, such as run after your older kid or doing errands, a baby carrier can also help you put your infant to sleep.
You may save space in your car by ditching the cumbersome stroller in favor of your baby carrier when you go out and about.
Positive Effects of Developing Your Own Carrier
Making your own baby carrier is beneficial in a number of ways. The price tag is a factor. Inexpensive or expensive materials can be used to build a carrier, depending on your budget.
If a store-bought carrier doesn’t quite match your body type, then it could be worth it to try making your own.
Any of these guides can be modified to yield a custom carrier that serves your purposes. You could also make little versions of these carriers for your kids to use with their dolls or as presents for friends.
Selecting the Right Carrier
It might be challenging to decide amongst the several carrier options offered.
Four of the most common types are described here.
1. Soft-Structured Carrier
The most frequent type of baby carrier is one with a soft construction. Its body is made of a gentle fabric, and the straps that go over the parent’s shoulders and across the waist are cushioned for comfort. The buckles on the straps ensure that your child will be held securely in place.
A baby wrap is a single, long length of cloth used for babywearing. Wraps are multifunctional; you can wear your baby on your chest, back, or hip depending on how you fold and knot it.
You may wear your infant or young child on your chest, hip, or side in a ring sling. It is worn over the shoulder and then wrapped over the hips. Metal rings are commonly used as fasteners because they allow the sling to be adjusted to the desired degree of tightness.
4. Mei Tai
Mei Tai carriers include elements of both wraps and soft-structured carriers. A carrier’s body is a piece of structured cloth with four long ties that wrap around you and your kid and are tied to keep the carrier in place. A mei tai allows you to carry your baby in a variety of positions, including against your chest, facing the world, on your hip, or even on your back.
In what ways are baby slings constructed?
Making a sling may sound difficult or even daunting at first. But have no fear, a no-sew instruction makes it possible for even a novice to create their own sling. Regardless of your level of experience, we have a project for you to tackle.
- Stock up on the necessities. Your materials list should include two sling rings, 2.25 yards of fabric, a sewing machine, pins, thread, a measuring tape, and an iron.
- If your fabric is wider than 28 inches, trim it so that you have 2.25 yards total.
- Fold the longer side inside by a quarter inch and lay the cloth out with the patterned side down. Put the fold through the iron to create a crease, then fold it over another half inch. To get these creases ready for sewing, pin them.
- After securing the longer sides with pins, move on to the next step. The shorter ends of these sides will fold over the longer ones.
- A straight stitch up one of the longer sides, across the shorter side, and back up the other long side should be used. There will be an unfinished edge on one of the shorter sides. To keep your stitches from unraveling, backstitch briefly at the start and finish of each row.
- Mark a point 15 inches down on the raw edge with a pin.
- Start at the raw edge of the hem and thread the cloth through the two rings. To make a neat 15-inch fold, bring the hem down and spread it out on both sides. Make sure there are no twists in the cloth.
- Sew directly across the unstitched hem to secure the rings in place. Above the 15-inch point, sew a line a half-inch higher. So, you’ll have three hems to reinforce the sling and make it stronger to carry your baby.
2. No-Sew Sling
- Gather a length of woven cloth that’s about 2.5 yards long. The fabric can be anything strong, such as a sheet or tablecloth.
- Arrange the fabric so that one end goes over one shoulder and the other end goes around the opposite waist and lay it flat across your back.
- Gather the cloth evenly by pinching it together over your shoulder and again at your waist.
- Make sure the shirt behind your back isn’t twisted.
- Join the two ends of the cloth together in a slip knot. To do so, insert the tail through the top and pull it up behind you. Drop it straight down, then sling it over your shoulder and under your other arm again. To finish the knot, feed the cloth through the loop.
- Make sure the knot can be moved freely up and down.
- Loosening the fabric creates a seat in the sling, where you may put your infant.
- Get everything you need together first. Gather your tools: five yards of cloth, scissors, a serger, and thread.
- You’ll need five yards of fabric, but you can get away with a width of only twenty-three inches if you cut it.
- Create a neat fold in the cloth by bringing the two shorter ends together.
- Cut off the corner by cutting through both layers of cloth from approximately eight inches in.
- After one corner is cut, fold the fabric in half lengthwise so that the cut edges are on top of the uncut edges, then cut the opposite corner. Because of this, the ends will be minimized and much less of a hassle to tie.
- If you don’t want your cloth to fray, you can serge the edges. If you are using a stretchy material, like jersey knit, this step is unnecessary.
4. No-Sew K’Tan
- Get everything you need together first. Two T-shirts without side seams, scissors, and a third T-shirt, scarf, or belly band are required for this project.
- As a first step, lop off the sleeves of both T-shirts. If you’re using a third shirt, use the same procedure.
- Drape a T-shirt diagonally over your chest and over one shoulder.
- Place the second T-shirt over your shoulder in the same manner.
- You may wear your baby in this carrier by placing them in the inner T-shirt piece so that their legs are straddled on either side of the cloth, and then slipping the outside T-shirt loop over their legs. To keep your little one safely within the carrier, tuck each leg beneath one of the loops.
- Check that your baby’s airway is not being compressed by the T-shirt and that he or she is sitting up high on your chest.
- The third loop of your T-shirt, or the belly band, should now be stepped into, pulled up to your abdomen, and spread from your baby’s neck to its bottom. To increase the carrier’s stability, wrap a scarf over your stomach from your baby’s neck to its bottom.
5. Mei Tai
If you want to make a Mei Tai, you’ll need the following ingredients and tools:
- It’s a big sheet of paper or butcher paper.
- The straps will require 3.5 yards of fabric.
- Elements of body fabric with fusible interfacing.
- Something to serve as a pointer.
- The body sections require two pieces of fabric about 2/3 yard each (use two different kinds to make your mei tai reversible).
- It’s a tape measure.
- One of those irons.
- The use of a sewing machine.
- Make a pattern for the wrap’s main body. The overall dimensions should be 19 inches in height, 16.5 inches in width at the base, 13.75 inches in depth in the center, and 5 inches at the sharply pointed ends. That adds out to a breadth of 9.5 inches at the very top.
- Cut four pieces of fabric in the shape of the body piece using your design, two from the interfacing fabric and one from each of the body patterns you choose.
- In order to make the straps, you will need two pieces of fabric that are 22 inches wide and 80 inches long. Next, divide the leftover fabric into two pieces that are 11 inches wide by 32 inches long.
- Put the fusible interfacing’s textured side down on the unfinished side of your body parts. Use an iron to join the pieces together.
- Replace the opposite body part in the same way.
- In order to make the straps, fold the long edges in with the correct sides of the cloth facing in and secure the fold with pins.
- You may make a single strap by joining the long ends together and just leaving one short end uncovered.
- Turn the strap right side out, press it flat, and topstitch around all four sides.
- If you need four straps, simply repeat steps seven and eight.
- Take one of the shorter straps and pleat it on the end that is not all the way done. Lay it on the right side of one body piece, allowing a half-inch seam allowance.
- Repeat step 10 on the other side of the body with the second short strap.
- Repeat with the shoulder straps, which are longer. A half-inch seam allowance should be left once again on the body piece.
- Fold the straps’ ends and place them flat in the middle of the back panel.
- The second body section should be laid on top of the first, right sides together. The straps’ ends are protruding, as may be seen. This guarantees that they can safely support your baby’s weight.
- Join the two parts of the body together by pinning them and then stitching all the way around the edge. If you want to turn everything right-side-out, you’ll need about five to six inches of headroom at the top.
- Take care while snipping the seam allowances on the two rounded regions.
- Apply some upward pressure on the top and flip your carrier inside out.
- Flatten the carrier, and then topstitch twice around the whole body section.
For the Final Word
Benefits aside, babywearing may add up financially. You may save money and have fun if you make your own baby carrier. Your infant will reap the benefits of cuddling, while you can keep your hands free and your finances secure.