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How To: Mei Tei Carrier

This isn't exactly a true "How-To" since I can't show you the patterns, because they aren't available for free, I'll just be giving tips and explaining how it works.
I initially wanted to make a carrier that would be easy to reproduce, and could be made for front or back carrying, since my ring sling just wasn't cuttin' it since Anikka's getting big. My shoulder and lower back were killing me after awhile and I wasn't able to take her & Lukka on long walks. When I decided we'd go to the Omaha zoo with a friend (who sells tutus!), I knew I had to hustle and work something out.
Add that to a buy one get one free sale from Sew Liberated, some really cute nautical print fabric from Jo-Ann's (first pic is from another blog, but that is the fabric) and I was set!
This was an incredibly easy pattern to follow and I'm so glad, because I have never worked with a pattern before. I have always been able to imagine it in my head (inside out and all) and figure it out on the machine from there, but this would have just been too confusing.
In the top picture (A. was sleeping so the pics are without baby) I am wearing it in the front, and the "criss cross" is in the back, adding the support so taht your hands are free while carrying baby.
Here is what the back looks like if baby is in front:
It is a system of one large rectangle shaped panel (where baby's back is next to fabric, baby is always facing you) has a lower tie that wraps around your waist, then there is a "criss cross" sewn into the back panel and out through the top of the panel are the two long "arms" (read: fabric) that you can tie criss cross around before also wrapping around your waist (and underneath baby's bottom) twice before tying securly.
That sounds very confusing. I know. But it's not that hard when you try it on yourself!
There is a bit of a learning curve to knowing how to wrap it without a second pair of hands, but just make sure the "long arms" that go around your shoulders and back aren't twisted, and it is VERY comfortable!
The only thing I would change the next time I make this: If making for a large -extra large size person, make the long straps longer, for my petite friends who will be receiving this as a present, the size it was made for will work perfect, but for me, I wish I had about 4 inches more.
I'd also add batting to the insides of the "long arm" and sew securly. This would just help the straps not to get twisted, and would add just that little bit of comfort for someone who has a bad back.

I truly love this pattern and Sew Liberated is one of my favorite daily reads. She is always making something beautiful, and being a Montessori teacher, has awesome recommendations and viewpoints on bringing up a Montessori child--something I am very excited about when I start to homeschool, already making a few Montessori products myself!
If you are in need of a carrier but don't want to spend $60+ dollars, this is an excellent buy, and it makes a great baby gift, too.
Total cost: pattern + fabric + thread = $23!
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Comments

julie k said…
This is awesome. It's so cool that you made it yourself!

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