How to Make a Baby Carrier Out of a Scarf

make a baby carrier from a scarf

You’ve got a little baby or a toddler and you get tired of carrying him around in your arms all day. It’s even worse for a toddler because he or she is starting to gain all those extra healthy pounds and mommy’s not growing any stronger.

To make it worse, you have to use your arms to carry the baby and that pretty much makes them unavailable for anything else you want to use them for, such as work around the house.

Is there a solution to the problem?

Well, you could go and buy a baby sling, or a more elaborate baby carrier. They’re made specifically for the job and are both strong and durable. You can carry the baby at your front or at your back, and both you and your baby will be comfortable. There is one downside, however: they cost money. In fact, sometimes, they cost a lot of money.

Wouldn’t it be great if there were some inexpensive do it yourself solution you could work up when in a hurry around the house without having to spend any extra cash? Of course, there is! You can easily create your own baby carrier in a few minutes with nothing more than a good piece of fabric, such as a large scarf.

So there you have it! No need to spend money buying a premium baby carrier when you can put one together yourself for free. Enjoy!
large scarf

Step 1

The first step is to find some fabric. Now, here, there are some rules if you want to make a good baby carrier. First, you need at least 2 yards of fabric. This is to make sure the fabric wraps around you and the baby well enough and is capable of forming a tight knot. Make sure it is also wide enough. At least 3 feet will do. Second, the fabric needs to be woven. The reason is that it needs to be strong enough to carry the baby’s weight without tearing apart. A woven cotton fabric, such as the kind you see in regular scarfs, should do just fine.

Step 2

The next step is to spread the fabric across your back. You need to make sure it is straight, flat, and tight across your back so the following steps are much easier to carry out. While you do this, one tail of the fabric should go over your dominant hand’s shoulder, usually the right shoulder, while the other tail should go under your other hand’s armpit, usually the left armpit. If you’re left-handed, the order will be reversed, of course. For this tutorial, we’ll assume you’re right-handed.

Step 3

Take the tail that went over your right shoulder and pinch and gather it at the shoulder. To do that, you simply make little even folds in the tails as you slowly gather it up into a sort of rope. Try to do it as evenly as possible so you can easily adjust it later on.

Step 4

Now take the tail that went under your left armpit and pinch and gather it as well. Again, try to do it as evenly as possible. While you’re doing all of this, check that the fabric is still flat and tight around your back. Try to avoid letting it slack.

Step 5

Take the two tails that you made into ropes and tie them into a slipknot. It’s pretty easy, actually:

  • Let the tail that went over your right shoulder hand vertically and the one that went under your left armpit will go over it horizontally.
  • Now, let the horizontal tail go behind round the back of the vertical one and up through the top.
  • Once the vertical tail is up through the top, let it drop straight down.
  • Take the tail you just dropped straight and take it underneath the vertical tail. It will form a kind of loop.
  • Pull the tail through its own loop to finish the knot.

You have a slipknot! The beauty of this knot is that it is very easy to adjust up and down. Once it’s at an acceptable level you can simply pull the horizontal knot to tighten it.

Step 6

Great! You have the makings of a baby carrier now, but your work isn’t finished yet. You now have to loosen all that fabric you had pinched and gathered to make room for the baby. If you had done it evenly, this should be pretty easy.

Step 7

Grab your baby and place him or her high on your shoulder. Slide your hand underneath the fabric, grab your baby’s feet, and slide their bottom down through the sling. Basically, you now have a top rail and a bottom rail.

Step 8

Tuck the bottom rail of the fabric underneath and between you and your baby. Make sure that fabric goes from knee to knee.

Step 9

Now pull the top rail all the way up to your baby’s neck. Your baby carrier is likely to have some slack at this point. Tighten it so the sling feels comfortably snug for both you and the baby. It might be easier if the fabric is multicolored so you can easily see the top and bottom rails.

Step 10

Now, for your own comfort, you can pull the fabric down to form a nice shoulder cap. That way it doesn’t eat away into your shoulder blade and make it uncomfortable for you when the baby starts to weigh down on the baby carrier.

Your no-sew baby carrier is complete!

Check out this video for a visual aid in making a baby carrier from a scarf:

Benefits of the No-Sew Baby Carrier

  • The most obvious benefit, of course, is that there is no sewing involved!
  • It’s affordable. Actually, it’s completely free if you already have a scarf or other suitable fabric lying around the house.
  • It’s pretty easy to make. You can do it in a few minutes.
  • It’s an excellent solution for small babies.

Risks of using the No-Sew Baby Carrier

  • If you choose a fabric that’s not strong enough, it may rip
  • You can’t use it forever. Regular use causes the fabric to wear down after a while.

Ring Slings

Ring slings are an excellent alternative to regular no-sew baby carriers. You can buy the rings separately and thread them with the fabric of your choice to make another kind of no-sew baby carrier. Alternatively, if you have a sewing machine, you can sew a ring sling together yourself. The beauty of ring slings is that they are very easy to tighten and slacken and strong enough that they can even carry toddlers.


So there you have it! No need to spend money buying a premium baby carrier when you can put one together yourself for free. Enjoy!

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