The Best Baby Carrier, According to Mama Peach

Photo of a mom carrying her toddler in a Babyhawk Khaki carrier. Oh, and there are tulips too.

Mama Peach sporting a Babyhawk Khaki on Mother’s Day at the Canadian Tulip Festival, Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario.

Thinga-reader Mama Peach is a tiny bit fanatical when it comes to baby carriers. After last week’s Name the Best Baby Carrier
discussion she e-mailed a few photos of her 2-and-a-half-year-old and
the 17 carriers she owns. That’s not counting the ones she stores in
her car and the ones she has borrowed.

Yeah, today’s article title is misleading. Someone who owns and uses
17+ carriers has trouble choosing just one she likes best.

Photo 17 baby wraps, slings and pouches neatly folded on a bed.

Mama Peach’s 17 wraps, slings and pouches.

She explains:

"As you can see, I love my carriers. I buy/trade a lot of them on a large babywearing board.
I have loved many carriers in my time that have gone on to find new
homes. I lend them out to new parents to use. When you are wearing your
child from birth through to toddlerhood, your carriers are an
accessory/extension of you. Which carrier(s) I use during the day
really depends on my mood, my daughter’s mood, the weather and what we
are doing."







Having put Mama Peach in context, here is her extended comment about baby carriers from last week’s article:

Really your best bet is to head on over to www.thebabywearer.com and register for the forum. We are very nice over there and can give you a ton of recommendations.

[Replying to a user who suggested buying a cheap sling on eBay...] There is a reason even work-at-home moms have to charge the prices they do. It’s labour intensive to sew slings and Mei Tais that are SAFE. I mean this is your child you are carrying around. Buying from a reputable company (even work-at-home moms that are well-known in the babywearing community are reputable) will ensure some novice isn’t using craft rings when creating that cheap ringsling or is sewing the panel of a Mei Tai with the correct number of panels/stitches.

I have a rather large collection of carriers. My daughter is turning 3 in August and I STILL wear her daily. Mostly now in our Babyhawks, Kozys, or Didymos wraps (real wraps that you tie, not ringslings). I do still keep our ringslings in the car along with a Kozy and a wrap for emergencies but at toddlerhood Mei Tais and wraps (woven wraps that is) are your most supportive option.

I never got into soft-structured carriers like the Ergo or Beco, but some people like them because they have snaps and buckles.

Bjorns aren’t generally the greatest option for mom or baby…the weight distribution has baby hanging from their crotches, legs dangling, and away from mom or dad’s centre of gravity. Traditional baby carriers make the baby and carrier an extension of mom or dad, thus making carrying a toddler MUCH easier.

Some other links that may help you:
www.sleepingbaby.net — great work at home mom makes VERY affordable ringslings (she has a discount section for fabrics she manages to get cheaply). She does a pleated shoulder; I find it comfy but not everyone does.

www.comfyjoey.com — great pouches and the owner is really wonderful to work with.

www.upmama.com — wonderful ringsling / pouch hybrid, makes the learning curve of ringslings much easier and the sling is very poppable. It’s a bit tricky to learn how to thread it properly though, but Corrinne has great instructions on how to do it on her site.

And my personal faves: Babyhawks (I own 7), and Didymos wraps (I own 6 in different lengths and fabric weaves). I should mention all of my Babyhawks are reversible, so you could get a manly pattern on one side and a girly pattern on the other. They even have camo and snow camo.

Try to get to a local babywearing groups where you can actually try some of the carriers. My daughter liked being ‘arms out’ when worn, so it made using a large-bodied Mei Tai like the Kozy somewhat tricky. It may take you, your hubby, and your baby a few tries in different carriers (and different carries, my daughter loved being on my back but didn’t like any of the buddha or cradle carries) to find one (or two, or three) that works for your family!

Comments

10 Responses to “The Best Baby Carrier, According to Mama Peach”

  1. molly says:

    Oooh, this makes me want to get another carrier (or two or six!) It would be amazing to have such a lovely selection that you could pick the pattern depending on your mood — if only I had an unlimited baby budget!

    June 12th, 2008 at 4:05 am

  2. Mama Luxe says:

    I’ve tried dozens of carriers for my review blog.

    I’m itching for a BabyHawk this time around. Right now my faves are the Zolowear ring sling, SlingEzee padded ring sling, and the Rockin’ Baby Adjustable Pouch Sling.

    I also enjoy the Beco and think it is a nice alternative for people attached to their Bjorn who want to make the switch to something more ergonomically correct for baby and parent.

    June 12th, 2008 at 2:29 pm

  3. Mama Peach says:

    Wow thanks AJ! It’s really cool seeing those pics on here! :) I love spreading the babywearing love. And you definitely don’t need a super extensive collection like I have. Any carrier that works for you and your baby and keeps them close to your heart is magic. They aren’t little forevor, so I enjoy the moments like we had in that first picture while I can get them! :)

    June 12th, 2008 at 4:49 pm

  4. Mama Peach says:

    I had also wanted to mention that babywearing is GREAT excercise but like any excercise routine you need to build up those babywearing muscles. I put on 132 pounds during my pregnancy due to Gestational Graves Disease, and to prevent my daughter from getting Goiter and other Graves’ symptoms they had to shut down my thyroid. Even looking at a glass of water made me put on weight.

    In the first year after giving birth I lost over 80 pounds, (despite recovering from a rather vicious c-section) and another 45 the second year (and continue to do so heading into the third year!) the majority of which I attribute to majority of to babywearing.

    June 12th, 2008 at 4:55 pm

  5. Beckie says:

    AWESOME sling collection!

    I at one time had quite the collection myself, and the REALLY great thing about it was, as my son got older, and less likely to be slung 24 hours a day/7 days a week, I was able to GIVE my slings away to parents who needed them! I met a couple in the mail room of my apartment complex with a preemie, daddy was carrying the baby in the middle of his chest, so I ran to get my wrap style sling, and the video to make it easier for him to give his newborn kangaroo care! I have given ring slings, pouches and more to complete strangers, all of which were grateful (and hopefully continued using them!).

    Now I am down to one Maya Wrap, the same one I used for my daughter, and while he doesn’t ride in it as much as he used to, neither of us is ready to give it up yet. But, if we see a mom or dad struggling with their baby, we may just feel the overwhelming need to give them a sling and a helping hand :)

    June 12th, 2008 at 5:40 pm

  6. Pamela says:

    We love our Ergo. It is so handy and DD loves riding in it. She is very nosy so must be in the midst of everything at all times. Without the ergo, I’d never get anything done!! I also like my metromamma wrap that I have, it’s got crystals on it! hehe I’ve also got a couple slings but don’t like using them now that she’s a big girl as they strain my shoulder.

    June 12th, 2008 at 11:49 pm

  7. anjii says:

    I totally agree about different carriers for different moods, circumstances, etc.

    In the car I have a Babyhawk and either my hemp Hotslings pouch or my fleece Peanut Shell pouch, depending on season. Pouches are the easiest for quick trips in/out of places, and for Up/Down stages of toddlerhood.

    At home I have another Babyhawk, a solarveil Mei-Tai for summer/water, a Moby stretchy wrap, a Bundleboo woven wrap (this has leg holes to make it easier/safer to learn), a WAHM Mei Tai, and a Blue Celery system (also look at the Baby Buddha… the Blue Celery’s great, but there are a few reasons I wish I would’ve spent the extra for the Buddha instead). I tried a couple ring slings, but they weren’t for me. And in the first few months with my first baby, I tried a fancy “ergonomic” Snugli, as well as a Bjorn, but both of these had my back scraming in pain within 10 minutes. And he was a tiny baby too!

    After being in a car accident a few months ago, my ribs were far too bruised to wear any of my carriers for a couple weeks, and it was awful! I couldn’t do anything while I was holding my baby… I’m so used to having my hands free while I carry him, I don’t know how people with babies or toddlers do anything without having a carrier!

    I also agree with the weight loss aspect. With my first, I only started wearing him at about 6 months, and by 10 months I wa 20lbs LESS than my prepregnancy weight! My second is now 9 months and I’ve still got a couple pounds to go, but he was a 2lb 10 oz baby, who’s only 12lbs now, so he’s not as much work to wear yet, lol.

    June 15th, 2008 at 9:54 am

  8. genevieve says:

    heh, i think these slings would all drive me nuts. i can’t handle wraps and straps. how have pouches not been mentioned in the original write up? My favorite resource: http://www.kangarookorner.com — got a fleece pouch from there that my 4 month old practically lives in. he loves it.

    June 20th, 2008 at 4:08 am

  9. Sherri E. says:

    I think I’ve commented on another post about how much I love my various ring slings, wraps and Ergo. But I also wanted to chime in about the weight loss: I lost 50 lbs last summer by going on loooong walks pushing my toddler in a stroller and strapping my baby on my back in the Ergo. It was the BEST exercise, and my kids loved it.

    June 22nd, 2008 at 3:57 pm

  10. angie says:

    I am trying to find which wrap/sling to buy. I own the baby bjorn but it hurts my shoulders too much. I’ve been looking at the buddha baby, blue celery and moby. Anyone have suggestions as to which one to buy?

    September 30th, 2008 at 8:59 am

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