And… that’s all I’ve got. Good thing we let Katie (edu-blogger extraordinaire) do the informative posts! Take it away, Katie!!
A chill is in the air! The good natured rivalry as to what qualified as “cold” in Central Texas has returned! Regardless of whether you find yourself on Team Parka or Team Shorts, we’ve assembled tons of tips on babywearing comfortably when the temperature drops!
Safety first! Two very important things to keep in mind when wearing in cold weather is keeping baby’s face uncovered, visible, and kissable at all times, as well as resisting the urge to overdress (or underdress) baby.
Avoid zipping baby’s head under your outerwear or obstructing fresh air from circulating around their face. You should have a clear view of their face at all times and be able to monitor their breathing and airway.
Secondly, dress your baby appropriately for the weather. Your body heat will provide additional warmth so keep that in mind to avoid dressing in too many layers, but also be aware that babies cannot regulate their body temperature like adults. So while you may be perfectly comfortable in shorts, baby may need additional outerwear to keep warm.
Whether you find yourself experiencing our mild winter here or a snowy winter wonderland elsewhere, there are a wide variety of babywearing outerwear options to help you enjoy the season with your baby.
Layers. A shirt and jacket. This is a good place to start for dressing your child for an outing in a carrier on a chilly day. You don’t want them to be too hot and you as the wearer can add layers to help protect them further. More on that in a minute, but a long sleeve shirt and a zipper hoodie or jacket would provide protection and not over bundle them.
Hat and leg warmers or tights under bottoms. As most babywearers have found, those little pant legs can ride up! Also, it is the one part of their bodies that cannot be tucked into the carrier. Legwarmers to the rescue! Cute and functional? Win! Thick tights are also a good option and avoid the dreaded socks slipping down little ankles. Hats and mittens are fairly self explanatory. Ear flaps and fun tassels are a bonus.
Snowsuit. I hesitate to even say it as Austin winters are fairly mild. However, it is an option and some of our northern babywearing friends may be reading this. Fleece snowsuits with built in hoods and foot/hand covers make dressing easier. Be mindful about underlayers to avoid overheating. Thinner, cotton layers underneath are often best depending on the type of weather you’ll experience.
For the Wearer
There are a lot of things on the market you can buy to help keep you and baby toasty as winter sets in. Check out our Babywearing for the Weather Pinterest page. But wait! You do not have to buy a fancy new coat, cover or vest to get out and enjoy our fine winter weather!
Fashion your own babywearing coat. No don’t worry, I am not suggesting you get your sewing scissors out (though if you want to you certainly can – check out our pinterest DIY page for instructions on a babywearing coat and a no-sew babywearing coat). If you have a
Be inventive. Use a shawl, scarf, blanket, or a ring sling to wrap around baby on your back as an additional layer of warmth. Stroller blankets can be a fantastic outer layer
because they can be wrapped around baby and tied to the shoulder straps of the carrier. Scarves/shawls/ring slings work in a similar fashion by either wrapping and tying around you or tucking the edges under the carrier to keep it in place. Please note the above comment on safety. If you use a blanket or scarf to help keep baby warm, make sure their faces are not covered!
Pre-tie your carrier at home or use a quick carrier. Choose a carry that is easily prewrapped so you do not have to worry about standing in the cold trying to wrap baby up or potentially drag the tails of the wrap on the wet ground. If you are planning to hike in the chillier temps and want to use a wrap for the extra layers, just keep an eye on your little one to make sure they don’t get too chilly in the wrapping process. Many hikers prefer a buckle carrier for the winter months.
Dedicated Babywearing Outerwear
The market for babywearing outerwear has exploded! There are so many babywearing outerwear items out there. We’ll highlight a few notable options.
Baby Carrier Covers
Covers that attach directly to the carrier and provide coverage to baby. Many feature hoods, pockets for caregivers, and elasticized pouches for feet.
Ergobaby Winter Weather Cover – Snaps to carrier shoulder straps. Has a water resistant outer layer with fleece inner layer and hood.
Jolly Jumper Snuggle Cover – Features a water repellent outer and fleece inner as well as a hood. Can be used as a stroller blanket.
Designed to be worn by the caregiver with specially designed, pleated panels and head openings to accommodate baby.
Boba/Peekaru Babywearing Vest – Constructed from Polartec fleece and available up to size XL/16-18.
LennyLamb Fleece Vest – Available up to size XL in a wide variety of colors.
Kowalli Fleece Cover – Polartec fleece in a variety of colors. One size fits most. 57 inches in circumference.
Designed to be worn over the wearer and baby with panels and head openings for baby.
Suse’s Kinder – Offers a wide variety of babywearing outerwear including ponchos, vests, fleece jackets, and Winter coats.
Kowalli Joey Jacket – Water repellent outer with fleece inner. Available up to size L for front carries only.
Twiga – Based in Poland but ships both fleece and water repellent babywearing coats worldwide.
LennyLamb Babywearing Coat – Available in both softshell and fleece lined varieties up to size XXL/14.
Liliputi 3-1 Babywearing Coat – Based in Hungary but ships worldwide. Water repellent outer with fleece inner available in a variety of colors up to size XL.
Mamalila Babywearing Covers and Coats – A German company offering a variety of babywearing coats and covers shipped worldwide.
Japanese Weekend 3-1 Mamacoat – For front carries only. Available up to size XL.
There are so many options to stay comfortable all season long! From DIY outerwear to makeshift covers, as well as retail options such as covers, vests, and coats. No matter if you’re part of the Winter Boots Brigade or on the Socks with Flip Flops Squad, we at Babywearing International of Greater Austin hope you feel inspired to enjoy the weather with your little one in tow!