Our little man, Pookie (a nickname obviously) was born in May 2013, weighing in at a minuscule 3lb 15 oz. He was whisked off to special care. The first time I held him he was placed down my tshirt, skin to skin, and I knew that’s where I wanted to keep him, close to my heart.
I have nothing against pushchairs and prams. We bought a three wheeler pushchair with big off road tyres…think Landrover for babies. It’s great, it will honestly go anywhere, and has been. But with two dogs to walk and a newborn baby you really need your hands free at times and so I started researching babywearing. I made a stretchy wrap from a length of jersey material I bought for a fraction of the price of a branded product. Pookie suffered from reflux and fed often. Getting anything done around the house was impossible until I started wearing him. I could feed him in the wrap…anywhere, I could make cups of tea…and drink them while they were still hot. Slowly a version of normality began to come back. I was hooked and have carried him ever since.
Through buying second hand from eBay and joining countless forums and groups online I have experimented with woven wraps, ring slings and structured carriers but it was the mei tai that ticked every box.
On a day trip to Oxford while Pookie’s dad was at work we wandered the city for almost 8 hours from coffee shop to landmark, along winding streets and canals, through the city centre and the park, all with just a second hand mei tai for transport. It was wonderful. Literally nowhere was inaccessible to us. We were invincible…almost! All but my poor aching shoulders…I really needed the comfort of a wide woven wrap but without the umpteen layers of fabric they come with.
The chances of winning a wrap conversion mei tai on ebay were slim to none, not without a lottery win anyway. I scoured the internet for an alternative within my budget but nothing hit the mark. And so, I decided to make my own. Several prototypes, miles of test walks and one new sewing machine later The Little Patch Mei Tai was born. Since making my first one, I’ve often been stopped in shops and on the street and asked where I got it and so, I’ve decided not to keep my ideas for myself, I’m going to share them with you all.