Well, never fear, less-than-crafty-babywearer! I have a quick, easy, and inexpensive solution for you - a dog costume.
Yes, you read that properly...a dog costume.
Turns out size large dog costumes fit very well over many structured baby carriers. Here, I'm using a Lillebaby Complete, but many carriers will work. What's great about the Lille specifically is 1) that the shoulder straps can unbuckle and 2) how the hood attaches. Any carrier that has arm straps that are not permanently attached to the body of the carrier (any soft structured carrier that has the ability to unbuckle the arm straps or any mei tai) will work easily. If you have a SSC that the arm straps are fixed, you could make it happen, but it will take more work.
Step one - Unbuckle everything.
Step two - Attach the hood.
So this is super simple in a Lille because they don't use snaps; I was able to take the chin strap of the "hat" part of the costume and feed it through the plastic slide. If you have a carrier with a hood that attaches with snaps, you could always add snaps to the "hat." If you don't already have a snap press, that isn't exactly an economical option. If all else fails you could either ignore the hat completely or just put it on your kid's head directly. I promise, I won't tell anyone your kid is wearing a dog hat.
|I just put each strap through the plastic slides used to hold on the hood|
Step four - Pull the front/head end of the costume over the carrier like you were putting a t-shirt on it. Your baby will not be in the costume at all, only the carrier will. Pull the arm straps through the arm holes.
If you have a carrier with straps that are fixed to the body panel this won't be possible. Instead you could cut open the front/arm holes of the costume and pin or use tape to wrap the "arms" of the costume around the arm straps of the carrier. This isn't ideal, but hey, it's a cheap and adorable costume. Some dog costumes are actually velcro around the neck, so obviously that would be easier.
If you were able to attach the "hat" as a hood, pull that through! If not, don't worry about adjusting the costume to try and hide the head hole until it's actually on a person with a baby in it.
And that's it! You're done!
Oliver doesn't really tolerate hoods (or hats of any sort) so when he's not wearing it I'll just shove it in the head hole of the costume. I actually used a safety pin to attach the tag of the costume (on the body) to the base of the hat/hood so that there wouldn't be a gap when he was wearing it. There was no pinning to the carrier just one piece of the costume to the other.
Lucky for us babywearers - people are obsessed with their dogs so there are tons of dog costumes to choose from! Don't want to be a skeleton like us (which, I got this costume for $6 at Target with a 40% off Cartwheel offer #justtakemymoneytarget)? How about baby is a banana and Dad dresses as a monkey? Or mom is a web and baby is the spider? What about Dad is an apple (or any of the other snacks from The Very Hungry Caterpillar) and baby is the caterpillar? Let me know what you pick in the comments below!
All pictures are my own and none of these links are affiliate links. I don't make any money off this post, just trying to spread the word!