Stretchy wraps are one of my favorite ways to carry a newborn because they feel like everything a new baby needs in the fourth trimester: soft, gentle support that hugs a tiny baby close without feeling stiff or like the carrier is overwhelming the baby. However there are a few common complaints about stretchy carriers. For the stretchy wraps (Moby, Boba, Solly Baby, et all), the amount of fabric and the task of wrapping it on properly can be intimidating, and it takes some practice to get the position and tightness of the wrap both comfortable and supportive. A pre-formed stretchy carrier like the K’Tan solves that problem, but it is important to get the correct size for a proper fit, so it’s best to try before you buy, and it might not be possible to share the carrier between caregivers in a household. I have also noticed a tendency to assume the extra piece that ties on to provide the third layer is optional because it is not attached, when in fact that third layer of support is important in a stretchy carrier.
The Infantino Together is an interesting hybrid, because it actually addresses most of those common difficulties with knit carriers! It is preformed, so you simply pull it on over your head like a shirt, but it has a slightly structured back and adjustable waistband, so you don’t have to figure out what size you need and it can be adjusted between caregivers. Plus the third layer is attached to the waistband and is simply pulled up over baby’s back and tied.
Infantino kindly donated a Together carrier for our library, so our educators have had a chance to test it out and you can stop by a meeting and try it for youself! Here is one of our volunteer educators with her daughter at about 3 months old:
We’ve also had the chance to try this carrier with smaller infants with great success, and it’s easy to tuck baby’s head into one of the shoulder straps if she falls asleep or if baby is younger and lacks head and neck control.
Here’s a picture of the back. It is structured but still soft, and the straps that adjust the waistband/shoulder straps pull forward, making it easy to tighten. The way the stretchy shoulder straps are sewn into the structured back panel make it possible to cup the fabric over your shoulders for comfort, but they don’t slip all the way down your arm as sometimes happens with stretchy wraps.
A couple of our volunteers found getting out of the carrier a bit difficult once baby was removed, but as the strap adjusters are used more, the straps will soften up and make it easier to loosen and remove. The downside to this carrier is the upper weight limit of 25 pounds. As with other stretchy wraps and carriers, you will likely find that it does not provide enough support as baby gets heavier, so it’s more of a carrier specifically for the newborn and infant stage, not an option for a carrier that will take you from newborn through toddlerhood. However at around $40 (at the time of posting this), it is on the more affordable end of the carrier price spectrum, so you might find it’s both possible and worth it to have a separate carrier for those early months.
If you like the idea of a stretchy wrap for a new baby but want something simple, the Infantino Together could be just what you’re looking for! Here is a demo video from Infantino if you’d like to see more:
This carrier is tagged and ready to join the library for trying and lending, so if you’re interested feel free to join us as a meeting! Many thanks to Infantino for providing this carrier for our library!!