I’m a day late but… in honor of “Small Business Saturday” I wanted to review a great small carrier business that just so happens to be local to me – Mei Tai Baby! Read on to find out what I love about this carrier…and to find out how you can get one of your own at a holiday discount!
Mei tais (a simple square of fabric with waist and shoulder straps that tie on) are a great carrier choice as they combine the sizing flexibility of a wrap with the ease parents look for in a buckle carrier – perfect for anyone sharing a carrier with someone of a different build, someone looking for a quick and easy back carry, or someone looking for a carrier that is compatible with a legs out newborn. I almost always recommend mei tais to parents looking for a first carrier because I think they offer a lot of baby/wearer friendly features without a big learning curve. Mei tais are also easier to use than buckle carriers with small babies since you don’t need special inserts for a newborn; you can back carry with them sooner than with a buckle carrier (really as soon as you are comfortable giving it a go) as they can be worn high on your back – and a high back carry is a must for a wee baby.
Elisabeth, the mama behind Mei Tai Baby, has put together a carrier that has been a quiet staple of the babywearing world for a number of years. MTB has several features that differentiate it from other mei tais on the market and make it an attractive carrier choice.
You can make it Zippy!!
One of the hardest parts of selecting a mei tai is choosing among all the great print options out there. MTB has the perfect solution – the Zippy panel! A Zippy MTB has hidden velcro along the sides of the front panel that allow you to switch out the decorative panel for a fresh look whenever you want. Zippy MTBs come with 3 panels; additional panels can be purchased as well. Want a solid look? Simply leave the panel out (or wear the carrier “inside out”). MTBs are also available with a traditional sewn-in panel if you need a more budget friendly option.
It has a built in cincher!!
I’m a big fan of wearing babies legs out from birth. In some mei tais, this can be tough to do if the waist band is very stiff or padded. Non-padded waist mei tais like MTB are easier to scrunch to accommodate a small baby’s legs. MTB has made this even simpler with the addition of a built in snap that narrows the carrier base. You can also get a snap extender to incrementally widen the base as your baby grows. Eleanor is no longer small enough to need cinching (sniff!), but this is a great feature to have for the first 4-6 months.
It’s a good deal and supports the local economy!! With models starting at only $84, MTB is a competitively priced mei tai. All of the sewing work is done right here in North Carolina as well. Better yet, you don’t have to stalk to get one; MTBs can be custom ordered through the website and are available through select retailers. And from now through December 31st, MTB is an even better deal –use coupon code BECOMINGMAMAS for 20% any MTB!!
Other things you should know…
As I mentioned above, the MTB is a non-padded waist carrier which means you’ll wear it apron style. It can easily be rolled to shorten the body to better fit a smaller baby. Eleanor is 7 months (about 16 pounds and 28 inches) in these pictures. I’m wearing it apron and it’s a perfect fit with room to grow. The panel size – 15 inches by 20 inches – will allow you to go from newborn to toddler (I’d say it shines as a 0-18 months carrier). MTB recommends 35 pounds as the upper weight limit for comfort.
The waist straps and shoulder straps are 72 inches long, so the MTB should fit most people comfortably. The top of the body is lightly padded, giving a headrest for a little baby or arms out padding for an older one. The shoulder straps are lightly padded as well. More information about MTB features can be found here.
The Final Word…
I think the Mei Tai Baby is a great choice for someone looking for a mei tai that can be used for the first year or two of babywearing. The construction is solid, the sewing flawless, and the Zippy panels are lots of fun. The built in snap cincher is a big plus for anyone looking to wear a newborn and a big reason why I’ll be suggesting the MTB to new parents – just sorry I didn’t know about them sooner 🙂