As with any new carry, practice with a doll, over a bed, or use a spotter until you feel comfortable. Always follow basic safety precautions.
A hip carry in a woven wrap is a great way to do quick ups with a mid-length or short wrap, but can also be done with a long wrap. With fabric on one shoulder and baby on the opposite hip, this can be another way to stay cooler while babywearing in hot weather. Many babies who want to “see the world” are happier on the hip than they are worn in front. When you begin naturally carrying baby on your hip (or when he/she has sufficient head and trunk control), it is a good time to try out a quick hip carry. Two popular ones are Poppins Carry and Robin's Hip Carry.
Like so many others, you probably get these two confused, and you may be wondering, What’s the difference? Actually, these carries are almost identical, with one major difference. Robin’s has two layers of fabric over your shoulder, while Poppins spreads two layers over baby. Both of these carries can be partially pre-tied, or wrapped around your baby; and both can be used for hip or tummy-to-tummy positioning. So let’s break them down. Ready?
Poppins Hip Carry
Begin by choosing which shoulder you would like your wrap to sit on (baby will sit on the opposite hip). Bring the wrap over your shoulder, leaving enough tail hanging in front of you to reach about mid-thigh. To keep this tail tight and out of the way, you can tuck it in between your legs from behind.
Spread the wrap across your back, bringing it to your opposite hip. Make sure there are no twists or bunches. Then spread the wrap across your belly and UNDER the tail coming down from your shoulder. Now you have a pouch to put your baby in.
Hold your baby in a high burp hold on your shoulder, and slide him feet first into the pouch. Reach between you and baby and pull the bottom rail up, scooping the fabric up to baby’s knees in a hammock-like seat. Spread the top rail up to baby’s shoulder blades or the base of the neck.
Keeping the shoulder pass tucked between your legs, take the tail that made baby’s pouch and pull out any slack on baby’s body. Spread the fabric back OVER the shoulder pass so that it folds back onto itself. You should now have two layers of fabric over your baby. This tail can go over or under baby’s leg (if you go over, be sure it sits at the knee, allowing baby full range of motion).
Lastly, pick up both tails and tie them in back with a secure double knot. Make any final adjustments and spread the wrap to cap your shoulder for comfort.
Watch on YouTube here.
Robin’s Hip Carry
Robin’s will begin the same way as Poppins. Start with the wrap over one shoulder, but this time allow more fabric to hang in front of you, with enough tail hanging down to the floor (or begin with the middle marker on top of your shoulder). Tuck the tail hanging in front of you between your legs to work with the rest of the fabric.
Spreading the wrap evenly across your back, bring it around to the opposite hip. Spread it across your belly. Here is the key difference between these two carries. Cross it OVER the shoulder pass. Place it high enough to sit at corsage level (about where your rings would sit in a ring sling).
Untuck the shoulder pass from between your legs and flip it back up over your shoulder, making sure it is spread evenly and not twisted. Tuck it in between your legs from behind. This should have pinned the other tail, creating a pouch for baby.
Slide your baby into the pouch, drawing up the bottom rail to create a knee-to-knee seat, and spreading the top rail up to the shoulder blades. Tighten any slack out of the fabric by pulling gently on the tail hanging down in front of you. Bring it straight down over baby’s knee.
Reach behind with your other hand and grab the tail behind you that doubled back over your shoulder. Spread it across your back to your hip and pass it (bunched) over baby’s knee. Tie both tails under baby’s bum with a secure double knot. Make any final adjustments and spread the wrap to cap your shoulder for comfort.
Watch on YouTube here.
Pick Your Favorite
Hip carries rock! Once you have it down, you’ll have a quick and easy carry you can use at a moment’s notice. So try them both, find which one is your favorite, and add it (or both) to your arsenal. Happy babywearing!