Soft-structured carriers are like bras. You have to find the one that fits, and the one that fits you might not fit your BFF. That, at least, is what babywearing educators keep saying in the wake of the Tula craze. I like the jeans analogy better. You can wear lots of different brands. But there’s always one brand that fits you perfectly: that hugs your curves, that pulls you in where you need pulled in. SSCs are like jeans.
I found the perfect pair of jeans with an Action Baby infant carrier.
I tried the toddler carrier a few weeks ago. I liked it, but I had some issues: the chest clip pulled, and I got some muffin top. Sunny was supposed to be right on the border in regards to weight and size. The difference between the toddler and infant ABCs shows, yet again, how much you need your carrier to fit your baby.
There’s a trend, lately, of getting baby into a toddler carrier before he’s ready. People have come up with a lot of work arounds, including cinching bodies and rolling waists. The toddler ABC hit Sunny knee-to-knee; he was right on the border of the weight recommendation; the height worked all right. But because it was too biggish for him, it didn’t fit me.
Holy different fit, Batman.
I didn’t muffin top – at all. Sunny stayed tightly close to me; I had no issue with the chest belt digging or pulling. I used it so much that he started to prefer it: he fell asleep in it, and stayed asleep in it, through multiple car transfers. Clearly, the standard ABC had his seal of approval. This is a problem, because I am a wrapper, and now I need an ABC.
What did I like? The padding on the straps was adequate, but not overly bulky. The straps crossed, or can be backpack style – my serious preference for SSCs. The chest belt also didn’t migrate off the carrier (it’s not attached, so you can move it up and down). The standard fit much, much better for my 20 lb 17 month old. Owner Andrea says she tends to switch to toddler at about age 2.
- Waistband height 4′′
- Width of shoulder straps 3′′
- Main Body including waistband 18′′ tall, 13.5′′ wide
- Hip Strap 28′′ to 53′′ with 27.5′′ of padding
- Shortest possible length of shoulder straps 17′′ (plus size is 22′′) (not including buckle)
- Fits baby from 8-40lbs
Here’s one of the reasons why, and it’s something that sets ABCs apart: The shoulder straps go all the way through the body of the carrier, which creates a cradle for baby’s bottom and helps distribute the weight better. This also means that as you pull the shoulder straps in, you are pulling the entire body of the carrier in not just the part that’s sewn. The body buckle webbing also goes through the entire carrier.
My only complaint is that the strap pull is uni-directional, and I prefer the dual-directional pull of something like a Pikkolo. This isn’t great for small babies either, but will work up to larger kids (I put my three year old in it, and he fit fine).
I’d recommend it as an only carrier once baby is a little larger. Plus, you can’t beat the price: $98 for a brand-new, made-in-America-by-entrepreneurs carrier. From Detroit. Win all the way around.
I want to keep this carrier forever. However, I have to give it away to one of you lovely people.