Friday, March 7, 2008
i'm back... mostly. i'm still not back to normal (whatever that means in your third trimester), but i'm not stuck prone on the couch all day, so that's a major improvement. the best part is that i have enough energy to work on some projects again! first on my list was to finish up the baby projects for my sister, whose first baby will be arriving pretty much any day now.
i'll leave the more elaborate projects for later -- i don't want to post them before the box arrives at her door -- but i think it's okay to show off the sling in advance, it doesn't need to be a big surprise. i whipped up this pouch sling in a few hours. it's made of home dec weight fabric and lined with a thin cotton -- a basic cotton sateen or something with a tiny bit of stretch is probably preferred, but i like the prints you can find in the home dec fabric. i don't line the slings i make for austin summer babies, but i think it will work okay for a northern climate (even though it gets hot there in the summer). the benefit of the lining is that now it can reverse to solid brown, in case there's a day when she's not wearing blue (but no worries, she wears blue most days, so we're good.)
i put a loop at the bottom for clipping on her wallet/keys or for a toy for the baby, and since it was lined i also was able to add an in-seam pocket. that's a great place for a few wipes or some cash or something small (bulky items would be uncomfortable for the baby). i like the idea of adding these ways to carry a few items, because (once the baby is a bit older and not potentially needing a fresh diaper or spitting up everywhere every 10 seconds) you can just leave the diaper bag in the car, especially for quick errands.
i've made several pouch slings for myself and friends, basically through trial and error. rather than write it up here, you can find some great directions on jan andrea's site (along with directions to make lots of other baby-related gear).
for the uninitiated, i can't say enough positive things about babywearing. you don't have to carry the heavy awkward baby seat around, your hands are free, you can nurse the baby while you get groceries and no one can even tell, and you can even keep a young baby away from germs if it's flu season. but best of all, it's great for the baby and he or she will be far more content -- what mama wouldn't love that? all this for a few dollars worth of fabric and a few hours of time. (i will warn, however, that correctly fitting a pouch sling is tricky business, so read up on proper fit and be prepared to adjust the size if you make one as a gift. other options include a ring sling -- which is adjustable -- and a mei tai style carrier, which can be worn like a backpack or baby bjorn, but less bulky to lug around and holds the baby in a better position.) lots more info can be found on the baby wearer site, among other places.
oh, and sorry the pouch sling photo doesn't show it in action... it's a bit awkward trying to model it over my big belly! but below is a custom mei tai sling i made back when i thought i might sell them as a business. ooh, silk...
i can't wait to share the other baby gifts! next week...