Sunday, 22 July 2012


I entered the world of babywearing slowly. I knew I wanted to carry my baby. I never believed any of that ridiculous nonsense about leaving babies down so they get used to it. So while pregnant, I bought a mainstream sling-carrier. I tried it on in the shop and it seemed great. But lots of things seem like a great idea before you have an actual baby.

She never felt fully secure in it, so I always had a hand behind her (defeats the purpose of hands-free) and though it was supposed to do until she was about 9 months, she was too tall for it by 4. So I put it away and thought I would have to use the pram instead. I have since learned that these types of carriers are particularly bad for babies' hip development as they are hanging with the weight on their crotch, not knee-to-knee. They also aren't particularly comfortable, and are sometimes disparagingly referred to as "crotch danglers". I am personally not a fan of this term. They are the ONLY carriers available in most baby shops and most people's introduction to babywearing and the term suggests an elitist babywearing group reality, which I hope isn't the case.

My next foray into babywearing was an ergo when Ruffian Child was about 10 months old. Or at least, I thought it was an ergo. Serves me right for trying to get one on the cheap - I ended up with a fake. It's a decent fake, so it's hard to tell the difference, and thankfully nothing bad ever happened on all the miles I have walked with the baby/toddler in it. Info on fake ergos and the tell-tale signs can be found here. They are one of the most copied sling brands so there are tons of fakes about, and as I learned the hard way, if it's cheap it is probably fake.

Shortly before I realised it was fake, I realised Ruffian child was outgrowing it.  She wasn't knee-to-knee anymore, her legs are particular long for her age. So it was time to invest in a toddler carrier. But which one???

Thankfully this time, I had  experienced and knowledgeable babywearers at my disposal, via the Babywearing Ireland Facebook group and page; as well as the website and forum.

I borrowed from the sling library, which is a marvellous way to try slings out for a small fee before shelling out for an expensive one. I almost bought a huckepack, as I thought they looked fabulous, but luckily I didn't as although it is a fabulous carrier and very popular, it just didn't work very well for us.

We have instead bought, after trying, a Toddler Tula Folk Birds (it's beautiful). I got it preloved but hardly used from the babywearing Ireland forum. It is wonderful, though the one thing I don't love about it is the straps don't come off so it can't be used for a hip carry. So I also recently acquired an EllaRoo Mei Hip - the Tula is great for long walks with the dogs, but sometimes she just needs to be up in arms right around that time that I need to cook dinner. So although it's slightly too narrow for knee-to-knee, I am ok with using it for short periods, it's only for 5-10 minutes at a time.

There are beautiful slings out there. If I have another child, I will learn to use wraps, and ringslings. And especially coveted (by me) are the Melkaj Mei Teis.  Beautiful!

Babywearing - fun, best for baby and toddler who get cuddles and contact, and fashionable...

1 comment:

  1. thanks for the positive comment about Babywearing ireland
    i really appreciate