Tuesday, May 05, 2015

A Comfy Conveyance for Laddie -- the Homemade Baby K'tan

I didn't have much in the way of carriers for Little Man when he was small -- I made a Mei Tai, but that was only useful when he was a bit bigger (and he never really loved it). I also had a ring sling, but just didn't like the way it fit. I wanted a Moby wrap, but didn't want to pay the money. Yes, they are easy to DIY, but they still require five yards of jersey (unless you incorporate a seam or two). Plus, I had seen people trying to put them on, and couldn't quite envision mummifying myself in 5 yards of fabric in a parking lot. 

Then I found out about the Baby K'tan -- two big "loops" of fabric connected by a little loop in the back, with a sash for extra support. It had the coziness of the Moby without the excess fabric. They're still a bit pricey (though you can pick one up on Ebay for around $20), but I found a tutorial and made one in brown knit for Rosa. I loved it, and so did Rosa! There's a bit of a learning curve when you first start wearing it, but I dare say it's no more (and probably less) than the Moby. 

But brown knit is rather dull, wouldn't you say? So for Laddie (and future babies, Lord willing) I remade it in my beloved Flight organic knit in "Mineral" by Birch Fabrics. At first I didn't make the sash, because I found I rarely used the sash with my brown carrier. But after wearing Laddie once or twice in this carrier, I realized he was sagging too much and needed the extra support.


Too bad Laddie napped for the entirety of his first nature hike! I'm wearing him in
"Kangaroo" position in this picture, but have since moved on to the "Hug" position.


Of course, by this time I had used up all but one piece of my Flight knit fabric, and I didn't like the idea of covering up most of the carrier with a solid sash. So I squared up the edges of my last scrap and used an incredibly soft and thick thrifted charcoal-colored tee as an accent fabric. I love how it turned out! The dark grey of the accent fabric blends with the lighter grey linen I used for the rest of my "Flight" items (stroller canopy and accessories).

Details? I used French seams and hemmed the edges of the actual carrier (not necessary with knit, but my patterned fabric is white on the underside and looks better this way), and also made a small loop of fabric to connect the larger loops -- just like the actual Baby K'tan (the tutorial I linked to doesn't include this step). The sash has tapered ends, because it's easier to tie on that way. I've been using my Flight knitting bag to store the carrier, because it's easy to grab and throw in the car on my way out the door. Which means I'll need to make a new knitting bag. Poor me... *wink*

8 comments:

  1. Hi Shannon - thanks for sharing. I'm due with number 2 in December - I never used a carrier or wrap with Clem but I can imagine they become really useful with a toddler! There are so many to choose from - I watched the promotional video for the K'tan and it seems really easy to use....but then I guess they all claim that! I love your version, lovely fabric!

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    1. Rachel,

      Congrats on your wonderful news! I'm so excited for you! I'll be praying that the rest of your pregnancy is healthy and uneventful, and that this little one's arrival will be a little less dramatic than Clem's!

      Yes, having two hands free has been exceedingly helpful -- even more so than last time. And yes, there are a million carriers out there now. It's nice to have selection, but sometimes there's *too* much choice! I felt a little wasteful making a new carrier when the old one was perfectly functional, but I'm glad I did because I really love the new fabric!

      Blessings,
      Shannon

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  2. LOL -- mummifying yourself in five yards of fabric is just about right! I like my moby, but it sure is a pain to put on! I've heard of K'Tans but not tried one myself, but I intend to investigate (and possibly make one) before any more babies join our family. ("My" moby is actually my sister-in-law's, which she's lent me for my last two babies, but as she will soon have need of it again I will relinquish it to her!) I'm sure I'll be coming back to this post, for reference!

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    1. Laura,

      I haven't technically tried a Moby, but I think the K'tan is quite simple to put on. It looked confusing when I first watched videos, but it soon becomes second nature! The only downside is that it isn't adjustable for different sized people -- that wasn't a problem for me, as my husband isn't the baby-wearing type, but it might be for some.

      Blessings,
      Shannon

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  3. That's came out so cute! I love my K'tan carrier too!

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    1. Thanks, Natalie! :-)

      Blessings,
      Shannon

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  4. That came out so nicely!! I didn't use wraps with Juanito, but for Rosie they were a life saver when chasing Juanito. I found a brown moby for $20 and was so excited! But now we've moved onto a woven wrap... I like it because I can back carry. I used a ring sling for a little while but the wrap is my favorite. I might have to try this in the future!

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    1. Thank you, Hannah! I was especially careful with finishes and such, because I loved the fabric so much. :-)

      Yay for two hands with toddlers! I just wish the knit carriers (Moby, K'tan, etc.) were more useful with bigger kids. I've seen pictures of people wearing toddlers in them, but I think it would be a bit awkward. We just got an Ergo with some of the monetary gifts we received for Marcus, and I'm looking forward to using it when he's a bit bigger! I heard great things about them.

      Blessings,
      Shannon

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