A good baby carrier is a big investment. You may not have the cash or the desire to invest in #AllTheAccessories. I’ve come up with some inexpensive hacks that you can pick up at Walmart, Target, Costco or online.
1- Use fitted sheet clips to secure your coat around baby.
These clips are sold in packs of four (for each corner of your mattress), so you can use more than one if necessary. If you’re tired of your coat flapping around in the wind when babywearing, this is any easy way to keep it closed. Since Little Miss Cub is still pretty small, I knot the elastic to shorten it. You’ll find these clips in the bedding section of most department stores!
2- Use a wrap sweater to wrap up baby.
I bought this wrap sweater at a local boutique, Calgary’s Luna Blue, where it’s called a Crossover Drape Cardigan. (Note that Luna Blue is currently closed for renovations, but you can still shop online!) I spotted one at Target online which will surely do the trick. I didn’t size up or anything, the generous drape is just part of the look, and makes it perfect to secure around baby! I also love this style of cardigan for breastfeeding, which is what I originally bought it for.
3- A “Fashion Wrap/Poncho” makes a great cover to get you out to the car.
My Popo (grandmother) received this “Fashion Wrap” from Costco as a gift, and she shamelessly re-gifted it to me. As soon as I saw it, I knew it was going to be my favourite babywearing accessory. It’s two layers of thick fleece, and I find it sufficient to head out to the car even in minus 10 C weather in Calgary. I actually prefer this to a pull-over sweater or babywearing coat for short errands because it is so easy to take on and off. It also works great as a car seat blanket! It’s $14.99 at Costco.com, and I think it was maybe $25 at the Canadian Costco in store when I saw it.
4- Use baby leggings as drool pads.
Just unbuckle the straps of your carrier and slide a baby leg warmer onto each one. Tada! You’ve got cheap and easy-to-wash drool pads in a pinch. Double up if you have a super drooler. This is a really inexpensive way to dress up your carrier, too. Note that this only works on baby carriers whose straps unbuckle completely. My Chimparoo and Onya Baby do this, but not my Tula.
5- Target has an “Open Back Leisure Top” that is basically a babywearing sweater.
Babywearing Facebook groups have been blowing up over this bizarre sweater from Target. Apparently, it is leisurely to expose your shoulder blades. Babywearing Mamas quickly realized you could totally use this sweater as a cover! Tuck the hood in for a front carry, wear it as it is designed to be worn to do a back carry.
Kristina, who generously allowed me to use her selfies, says: “I’m 5’10 195 lbs and I went with large. Medium was tight on my arms. Extra large was super long.”
6. Turn an over-sized Old Navy fleece into a babywearing sweater
Big thanks to Jackie for sharing her tip! She bought the Go-Warm Max Cocoon-Neck Fleece Pullover for Women from Old Navy. Since fleece doesn’t fray, she just cut a slit at the chest for baby’s head. She recommends buying one size up, and adds that the sweater is also available in plus and maternity sizes.