Follow these step-by-step instructions to make a baby carrier for a toddler. Just like mom’s!
I had hopes of having this project completed for my daughter’s birthday. But it’s good she’s so young, because she had no clue that her mom ran out of time or that her birthday present was late.
With my daughter, you really never know if she’s going to want to wear or use what you give her. Basically, you have to make it seem like it was her idea– that she is the one making the decisions.
Do you want to wear these pants? I’ll just lay them down here on the floor… they’re right here… just slip your legs in… you know, if you want to…
For her birthday party, I really wanted her to wear a pretty dress she had been given the night before. It was the perfect party dress for a little tea party with her friends, and I know her grandmother gave it to her with that in mind. So I laid it out when it was time to get dressed for the party, but she was on to my schemes and picked out a little denim dress and shirt instead. Oh.well.
For all her stubborn willfulness, she’s delightful, helpful, adventurous, and always ready to dote on her baby dolls.
Watching her care for her babies is heartwarming, to be sure. Seeing her with a baby carrier takes that to a new level. She’s a natural, and I can’t wait to see how she takes to a new baby brother in our home this Spring.
The moment I gave my daughter this little baby carrier, I knew that stubbornness wasn’t going to be an issue. Which was a huge relief, because I needed pictures. #bloggerskid.
She wore it immediately around the house and then around town as we enjoyed some family time. I wasn’t the only one with the heart eyes. People were commenting and smiling at her all evening.
Today as I was taking a few more photos of the carrier, her eyes lit up and she ran back to her room calling for her baby. With a phone tucked in the pocket and the pacifier looped to the strap, she was ready to go.
I tend to think that most of my tutorials are simple and do-able for beginning sewers. This one isn’t an exception. With all straight lines and easy directions, I am confident that any level sewer can follow this baby carrier tutorial. Even if you feel it’s a stretch for you, give it a try. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with what you can do!
Make one for your child or give one as a gift. Any little mother (or daddy since my son is wanting me to make him one too!) would enjoy using this carrier to be just like mom (or dad).
Toddler Baby Carrier Tutorial
- >1/2 yd main body fabric
- >1/4 yd lining fabric
- 5″ Piping
- 1 yd bias tape
- mid-weight interfacing
- 1yd webbing
- 2 buckles (I chose center-release buckles because my toddler can do them)
- coordinating thread
1. Cut the pieces. (See picture below)
Main fabric pieces:
- (1) 7″x 8″ -front panel
- (1) 5″ x 5″ -pocket
- (2) 18″ x 3″ -shoulder straps
Lining fabric pieces:
- (1) 7″ x 8″ -front panel
- (1) 5″ x 5″ -pocket
- (2) 6″ x 7″ -front panel
- (1) 5″ piece for the pocket
- (2) 15″ x 1.5″ -shoulder straps
2. Attach interfacing to front panel pieces.
Iron the interfacing pieces to the wrong side of both the main fabric and the lining fabric front panel pieces, centering it so there is a 1/2″ border around the perimeter.
3. Make the pocket.
Place the piping piece on the top edge of main fabric pocket piece. The piping should be on the right side, with the raw edges lined up with the raw edge of the main fabric piece. Baste the piping onto the main fabric piece with a 1/4″ seam.
Place the lining piece on top of the main fabric piece with the right sides together. Pin in place. Starting at the bottom edge (the edge opposite the piping), sew around the perimeter of the pocket with a 3/8″ seam. Leave a small opening for turning on the bottom edge.
Turn the pocket right side out and press. Press the opening on the bottom edge neat and closed. Topstitch the top edge of the pocket.
Pin the pocket on the main panel piece, 3 inches from the top and centered in the middle. Sew around the sides and bottom, attaching the pocket to the front panel.
4. Make the shoulder straps.
Take one shoulder strap piece and fold in half widthwise, right sides facing out. Press.
Sandwich the batting in the middle so that the batting is tight against the folded edge and there is a 1/2″ left on either end of the strap. Pin in place.
Sew down the side of the strap with the raw edges, securing the batting in place. Trim any excess batting sticking out the side. Sandwich the bias tape down the raw edges and sew it in place. Sew one more line down the middle of the strap.
Repeat steps above for second strap.
5. Assemble the baby carrier.
Cut a piece of webbing 4″ long and attach the female piece of the bucket to one end of the strap by slipping the end through, folding it over an inch, and zigzag stitching the raw edge to the strap. (See picture below).
Cut another piece of webbing 15″ long.
Pin the straps to the main panel piece. Pin the shoulder straps at a slight angle on the top edge 1″ from the sides. Pin the other end of the shoulder strap to the side edge 2 1/2″ from the bottom. Pin the waist straps 1/2″ from the bottom on the side edge. Tuck the extra length of the long waist strap in the front pocket. (See picture below).
Baste the straps in place on the main panel piece.
Lay the lining panel piece on top of the main panel piece with the right sides together. Starting at the top edge, sew around the perimeter of the panel pieces with a 3/8″ seam. Leave an opening at the top (in between the straps) for turning.
Clip the corners. Turn the baby carrier right side out and press the front panel. Topstitch around the perimeter of the panel, closing the opening at the top.
Press the shoulder straps.
6. Attach the waist buckle.
Slip the longer waist strap through the male end of the buckle. Fold the end of the strap over 1/2″ and secure with a zigzag stitch. (This makes the waist strap adjustable. Alternately, you can measure your child and make the waist strap to size).
7. Make & attach a back strap.
This step is last because it was not something I knew was necessary at first (hence the ribbon in some of the pictures). But this strap is important to keep the shoulder straps in place.
Cut one piece of webbing 4″ and attach the female end of the buckle, same as you did for the waist strap.
Cut another piece of webbing 5-6″ and attach the male end of the buckle, same as you did for the waist strap.
Attach both pieces of the back strap to the shoulder straps, 9 inches from the top ends of each shoulder strap. (See picture below).
Please let me know if you have any questions!
And definitely show me your finished work if you make one!
More projects to check out!
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