From the moment I conceived my 2nd child I knew that I wanted to carry them. I was already following a few 'baby wearing people' on social media and couldn't wait to try out all of the beautiful carriers is was seeing. But as a women who would be considered 'plus sized' and with very large breasts, I was worried that I wouldn't be able to find carriers to fit my body, and if I did, they certainly wouldn't be the pretty ones all the slim influencers were using.
So I booked my consultation with Lysanne and hoped that we would be able to find something that fitted my body.
I was not disappointed!
There were tons of options, and they were pretty too! So in I dived down the rabbit hole, trying out as many carriers as I could get my hands on until I ended up where I am now, working with Lysanne at MotherRucker as a Carrying Consultant.
Here is my review of some of our popular library carriers, and how they fit on my body. For reference, I am 5ft 6in, and wear clothing size UK 18/20/22 (depending on where I shop) and have very large breasts. I am using a demo doll who is in 3- 6 months clothing for reference.
(I have included either our own YouTube Videos or the manufacturers videos to show how the carriers go on, but the people in the videos are not all plus size, they are for reference)
Integra carriers have long been a popular option in our library. They are a fantastic option for people of all shapes and sizes and the cross straps create a custom fit each tine you put it on. The straps are super long and I have plenty of webbing left over on both the shoulder straps, and the waistband. The dual adjust buckles on the side mean I can move the buckle to a position that is comfortable on my body, and pull it forward if I'm having difficulty pulling it backwards. Integra baby carriers come in a fantastic range of beautiful designs and patterns to suit most styles, as well as 3 different sizes to fit from birth to around.
Ergobaby Omni Breeze
Out of all the buckle carrier in our library I do find the Ergobaby Omni 360s and the Breeze the hardest to get a fit I'm happy with. Although they are very comfortable and support my baby well, the bulky shoulder straps don't sit flush to my body and I feel there is a lot of space around the top half near my breasts, and no matter how much I try to adjust I cannot fill that space without compromising my babies curved spine.
In terms of size around the waist belt I have a fair amount of webbing left over so this carrier could fit a person a few sizes above mine. The Ergobaby Omni Breeze states it can be used from birth (7lbs) however they can be tricky to get a good fit for a new born and tend to fit better from around 3 months.
Half Buckles (buckles waist, tie-on straps) or Meh-Dais (tie on wait and shoulder straps) are by far the most versatile of the 'structured' carrier in terms of who they fit. Pictured is the Didymos Didyklick which has a buckled waist, (this fits me well with plenty of webbing left over) and beautifully long woven wrap straps. The brilliant thing about the long woven wrap straps is that they mould to your body, creating a custom and comfortably soft fit. You can spread the fabric out so there is nothing digging in any squishy bits and they sit perfectly on my body. There are lots of different brands of half buckle on the market, so I would recommend trying some before buying so you can get a feel of how long the wrap straps are and how they work on your body. A popular one is a Tula half buckle, which has padding on the shoulders and thinner straps made of cotton canvas which I personally find more 'diggy', they are also shorter so I can only just do a double knot behind my back
The Mamaruga Zensling has always been a favourite of ours here, great for new borns' and made out of super soft stretchy fabric, it is a the comfort of a stretchy with the ease of a buckle. The older versions of the Zensling have quite short straps, and I could only just get them around me to clip them in . So I wouldn't have recommended these for anyone bigger than a size 22 at a push. HOWEVER, the new Zenslings have been made with longer straps, meaning I have p l e n t y of left over webbing and would be confident to recommend this to plus size people. The Zensling is suitable from birth and will fit until you child is in age 2-3 clothing.
Wrapping is the most versatile and adjustable off all of the ways of carrying your baby. They come in all different sizes which determines what you can do with it.
Finding your base size
A good place to start is to find your 'base' size. This is the size of wrap (1-7, 8, 9+) that you can tie off a Front Wrap
Cross Carry with, comfortably. This base size will determine what carry you could try with different sized wraps. There are tons of resources available on line where you can find out what carries you can do with your 'Base -1' wrap or your 'Base + 1' wrap etc. Check out our woven wrap playlist on YouTube here
The possibilities with woven wraps are endless, I would definitely recommend booking onto our next 'Beginning Woven Wraps' workshop if you are local, or finding your nearest sling library to find out more and have a play.
You can read more about the different types of slings and carriers and how they work here.
A final word....
I hope this has given you an insight into my carrying journey as a plus sized mum. I appreciate that every body is different and as with any body shape/size/type I'd recommend you try as many as you can and see what works for you, there is almost always something for everyone!
There is an amazing Instagram account Plus Size Babywearing, that we absolutely love, give them a follow for lots of slingy/plus size mum loveliness.
One thing I have learnt about the baby wearing community (in the UK), is that everybody is friendly and full of LOVE. We are all 'helpers' and want to do everything we can to enable you to carry your baby confidently, so if there is something you are worried about, please just ask :)
Stella | MotherRucker