Thursday, May 5, 2011

Homemade Baby K'Tan

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If you're not familiar with the Baby K'Tan, it's similar to the wrap, but without all the wrapping. Once I saw them, I knew I wanted to add one to my baby wearing collection! The only problem is the PRICE! They're quite a bit more than I'd like to spend on a baby carrier, especially when I already have more than one.Once I priced out the fabric, though, I figured I could make one for MUCH cheaper.

What you'll need:
2 yards of stretchy knit fabric
1 fat quarter

My knit fabric came in a loop, instead of being folded in half like most other fabrics are. I had to cut it lengthwise so I could lay it out flat.
Cut your fabric into 3 strips. My fabric was about 44-45 inches wide, so the strips were about 15 inches wide and 2 yards long. Now, the fabric will be a little narrower than a wrap that you'd buy, those are probably closer to 18 inches wide. I found that this is just as supportive though. (And it doesn't matter if your lines aren't exactly straight. You can't tell the difference with mine.)
Set one of the strips aside for later use.
Take one of the other strips, and measure it by wrapping it across your chest and over your shoulder. I started out with my strip being 57 inches long. I made sure to keep it longer in case I wanted to bring it in (which I did, twice).  Cut two of the strips to be the same length.
Fold each strip in half, and sew the ends together with a good tight stitch. Do this with both strips, to make two loops.
To test the sizing, put both of the slings on to make an "x" across your chest (check out the baby K'tan photo gallery to get an idea of how to wear it). Put your baby in the carrier, with the two loops crossing between his/her legs. Spread the material out over his/her bottom and back. You want the baby to sit high enough up that your shoulders won't droop forward. I found that being chest to chest felt most secure. Once I tried it on, I realized mine was a little too loose, so I brought it in about 2 inches, making it roughly 55 inches. (After wearing it off and on for a day, the fabric stretched out a bit, and started sagging. I brought it in another inch to compensate for the fabric sagging). Once you're sure about the sizing, cut your fabric close to the seam, and seal it with a zig zag stitch, to look something like this. You don't NEED the zig zag, but I think it gives it a better final look. 

The last piece of fabric is the sash that will be wrapped around you and your baby. This helps give extra support, not to mention a fashionable flair!
Take your fat quarter and lay it over the middle of the strip of fabric. Fold the edges under, and over the back, pin it in place, and sew it on.

Depending on the fabric you use, you shouldn't need to do any hemming to the edges. The knit fabric I bought doesn't fray, so I decided to skip that.
Once I was done, I ended with with 2 loops, the same size, and one sash.

Note: All of these pictures were taken before my final adjustment. Now that I've brought the seem of the loops in another inch, when I wear Charlie, he sits up higher, closer to my chest. That is the proper fit. When I took the pictures, the fabric was already beginning to sag.
I took some more pictures since bringing it in an inch. He sits higher up, closer to my chest. 
Facing out
This is how it should look without the sash.

11 comments:

  1. That is the most beautiful smile on a baby I've seen since my son.. WOW!! those dimples!

    Hi, I'm your newest follower, I would like to invite you to post this and anything else you would like to share with us, on our Crafty blog hop. Here's the link :Purple Froggie Clay Stuff

    I hope that you have a great Thursday!

    Cindy

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  2. What a cute idea!!! I am now following you through Thrilling Thursday Linky Party! Hope you will follow me at http://kingstongirlie.blogspot.com. Thank you!

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  3. Great tutorial. I'm going to try this for my little one on the way. Thanks!

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  4. Thanks for the tutorial! I'll have to try this for my next little one!

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  5. THANK YOU. I had a Moby with my 2nd baby, and loved it for the first three months. After that I had a pouch sling, and I wore her for a long time, in a variety of environments. I passed it on to a friend, and have regretted it ever since. I am definitely going to do this b/c she is 18 mo now and mobile, but still loves to be held in a store.

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  6. Can't wait to try this sometime! As soonnnnnn as I figure out how to work that darn sewing machine again!

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  7. I found your post this morning and had one made by dinner time ;)
    so easy and so much cheaper and it felt the same as the real K'tan that I had tried on

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  8. Awesome tutorial! Wish I'd seen it before I bought one! I'll be making one next time around. I linked you on my blog, www.cuzbabiesdontkeep.blogspot.com .. your tutorial was too useful not to share!

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  9. Can you get the same low back support that you can with a wrap?

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  10. Thanks so much! I can't wait to try this for baby #3, still to come. And I just got gifted lots of knit..so it will be perfect!

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  11. I have a K'tan. You're missing the small loop that holds the two bigger loops together. Not only does it hold them together, it acts as an adjuster. The X in back should be in the middle of your back and the small loop allows you to bring it down to where it needs to be. Otherwise, great job! I love the contrasting fabric in front!

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