I wrote this post back in April and never hit publish because I was lost in baby land and it just wasn't quite perfect. Well, perfect or not, there's some good info in here for any one looking to wear their babies! I am not an expert on baby wearing, this is solely my opinion!
When I was pregnant, I knew I wanted to try baby wearing, but I had no clue how much I would fall in love with it. It's a total addiction, and there is a whole world of baby wearing groups on Facebook, dedicated to learning about it, and to buying and selling carriers. Like cloth diapering, there are so many different brands and kinds, and I sort of want to try them all! (But for obvious financial reasons, I've had to choose)....
Here's what carriers I have and what I've learned so far...
I registered for the Ergo 360, and the infant insert to go with it. This is a more structured carrier, and I really am not a huge fan of it... yet. We've used it a few times for walks and needed the infant insert because Holtan is a small guy. The straps seem to hit me in the wrong spot on the back of my arms, so it's not the most comfortable for me, but it's possible it just needs to be adjusted. I'm not in love with how stiff it is, but I think if we used it more and broke it in, I would like it a little better. Dave has used it a few times, and it seems to be a more "masculine" carrier, and I could see him using it in the future for front forward carriers once Holtan gets more head and trunk control. It will maybe also be nice for back carries when we are hiking or out for walks.
I bought a moby wrap off the MC Buy/sell/trade site for $15. I'm glad I did. It was black, so was covered in fur and the fabric was thicker, and harder to manage than I liked.
But had I not tried the moby (and watched the videos on how to wrap) I maybe would not have discovered the solly wrap. This thing is my favorite. The fabric is light, and its comfortable. The only downside is it's a long piece of fabric, so putting it on outside is difficult if you don't want it to touch the ground. I usually put it on before we leave the house and just wear it as part of my outfit. The was perfect for when Holtan was really little, and I still use it for around the house, when I know he needs a nap, but won't sleep on his own. He usually falls asleep within minutes of being put in it. This is the wrap I use most often.
After falling in love with the solly wrap, I knew that I wouldn't be able to use it forever... as he is getting heavier, the fabric stretches a little more and you can only use it for front carries, where baby is facing you. I know as he gets more alert, he is going to want to face out to see what's going on. So I started looking into other options.
Which brought me to the ring sling. I discovered the Wildbird Ring Sling from Instagram, and it really is kind of like a cult. In a good way of course. There are different types of fabrics, double and single layer. I spent a lot of time watching you tube videos and reading their site, and finally decided to get a single chambray ring sling (Magpie). It is a definite learning curve, but this is my favorite way to wear him for short burst of time, and on the go. The other day we went to Target and little man was NOT HAPPY on the way there. I put the ring sling on, dropped him in it, and he was asleep the whole time we shopped. It was a quick and easy way to make him happy, and didn't take forever to get on.
Which brings me to the last 2 styles and brands of baby wearing devices that I have purchased. Since I love wrapping some much, but wanted something a little more structured, but still soft, I landed on a Moby brand, Baby Hawk mai tei wrap. I have tried it once, and I think Holtan is a little too small yet. but I think this will be a nice thing to use when he gets a little heavier and bigger and the solly isn't supportive enough.
And last but not least, I found a used Tula carrier on Facebook and just got it last week. I have been using it a lot. I've had my eye on the Tula for awhile (after I discovered the Ergo wasn't very comfortable for me), and knew I wanted to buy a used one (so that it would already be broken in). I am very happy with it. It has buckles (vs ties like the mai tie) and is quick and easy to get him in. He seems to really like it too. This may be my go to carrier this spring because I can get him in fast, and he seems well supported.
So, as you can see, I'm addicted to baby wearing, and have spent some money getting a stash of carriers. The good news, I can use them for any other kids that we have, and I can sell them and get my money back on most of them. I have used all of them and each carrier has its advantages. Holtan loves to be snuggled up on a carrier, its a great way for me to snuggle him, but still have 2 hands to get some things done. I hope that he continues to like it even as he grows.