I share a lot of my babywearing pictures and I’m often wearing new and different wraps. Collecting wraps is a hobby for me, and it’s where most of my “fun money” goes. In the world of custom, hard to find and collectors wraps it’s easy to get caught up in the idea that babywearing is expensive. It can be… but it doesn’t have to be. Like anything else (bags, shoes, cars and even houses) carriers come in a wide range of price points; a Ferarri is nice but a Ford will get you around just as well.
I’m asked a lot of questions about “bargain” carriers so I wanted to put together a recourse on babywearing on a budget. But whose budget? I’m going cap our budget at $130. This may seem a little high to some, and if it’s high for you I’ll be sharing lots of carriers at lower price points as well.
Those of you familiar with the variety of baby carriers on the market may recognize that a few carriers are noticeably absent. For example the Baby Bjorn… the Bjorn is a lower price option carrier, but I will never recommend forward facing narrow-based carriers, regardless of price. I’m simply unwilling to sacrifice optimal positioning to save a buck.
Of course this is not an exhaustive list, but it’s a start.
Buckles (SSC’s- Soft Structured Carriers)
Ergo- $97.80– I love the Ergo, it is widely available and is an ergonomically correct design. The Ergo fits newborns (with infant insert or rolled up blanket to support infant) and toddlers.
Infantino Support Ergonomic Cotton Carrier- $44.99– Not all Infantino carriers are created equal, the ONLY Infantino SSC I am recommending is the Support, it has a wide base and proper ergonomic design, this is not true of their other SSC’s (Bliss, Breathe, Flip and Infinity)
Stretchies and Hybrids
US and NA Retailers- these online retailers in the US and NA all have wraps, ring slings, Mei Tais or other carriers for less than $130 in stock. Tips! Check the sale and clearance sections.
Abbys Lane – http://www.abbyslane.com/
Birdies Room – http://www.birdiesroom.com/
Cariboubaby – http://www.cariboubaby.com/
Children’s Needs – http://www.childrensneeds.com/
Frog Mama – http://www.frogmama.com/
Granola Babies – http://www.granolababies.com/
Heart-Hugs – http://www.heart-hugs.com/
Heavenly Hold – http://www.heavenlyhold.com/
Hip Mommy – http://www.hipmommy.com/
Marsupial Mamas – http://www.marsupial-mamas.com/
Metro Minis – http://www.metrominis.net/
Purple Elm Baby – http://www.purpleelmbaby.com/
Quirky Baby – http://www.quirkybaby.com/
Risaroo – http://www.risaroo.com/
Slingo Mama – http://www.slingomama.nl/nl/
Sling with me – http://www.slingwithme.com/
The Blueberry Tree – http://www.theblueberrytree.com/
The Mommy Dialogues – http://www.themommydialogues.com/
The Natural Baby Co – http://www.thenaturalbabyco.com/
Uppybaby – http://www.uppybaby.net/
Wear a Baby – http://www.wearababy.com/
Woven Wraps – http://www.wovenwraps.com/
Wrappers Paradise – http://www.wrappers-paradise.com/
Wrap your baby – http://www.wrapyourbaby.com/
Zerberts – http://www.shopzerberts.com/
Etsy and DIY
Because I have no experience with the carrier makers on Etsy I can’t recommend or vouch for the safety of their products. I urge you to do your own research before buying these carriers, find out if the maker is in compliance with new US regulations and if the maker is affiliated with the Baby Carrier Industry Alliance. Buyer beware! Don’t be afraid to ask questions!
As for DIY carriers, I’m not really into it, but there is an entire board on TheBabyWearer.com dedicated to DIY baby carriers. Here you can find information about how to make your own carriers, what materials are suitable for said carriers and safety information.
Babywearing meetings! Crazy people like me all over organize and hold baby wearing meetings where you can learn about baby wearing safely, try different carriers, and even borrow carriers to try at home. You can find local meetings by searching Google or Facebook, or if all else fails don’t hesitate to get in touch with me and I’ll help you find one.
Thebabywearer.com is an amazing resource where you can find video and picture tutorials, mentors, and plenty of babywearers active in the community who are more than willing to answer questions and make recommendations.
Any talk about baby wearing should include talk about safety. Babywearing International says it better than I could, so I encourage you to click through and read about it.