When I saw our daughter trying to put on the Baby Björn I use to carry her, I figured I'd make a doll carrier for her. I wanted to make something simple and cheap, and easy for a little kid to work with, so I grabbed some leftover fabric and some velcro, and got to work.
This is a pretty simple project, I left it with one size for the arm straps, and one size for the pouch. It would be pretty easy to make it adjustable, by using a belt slider to the arm straps or extra velcro on the main pouch.
If you go the extra-velcro route, however, be sure to extend the length of the soft (loops) side, not the rough (hooks) side. If you leave the rough side of the velcro open, it can snag on the doll's hair.
Step 1: Materials
- Fleece - Barely used any, remnants should cover it fine
- Cotton - For the backing, same amount as fleece
- Straps - I used some leftover bias tape from another project, size to fit your child
- Velcro - The sewing kind, NOT the sticky-backed kind, I used about 8" worth
- Newpaper - for the pattern
- Needle - Could hand sew if you like, it's not huge, but I used a machine
- Sketched with Autodesk SketchBook Pro (Trial version)
- Real-life Baby Carrier
Step 2: Body
Use some newspaper to make a form around your doll. It will basically just be an hour-glass shape. This will be the pattern.
Fold the pattern in half lengthwise, this will help you make sure your cuts are symmetrical.
Fold your fabric in half the same way, and cut one piece for the fleece liner, and one for the cotton backing. Leave a little room (1/2 inch or so) for seams.
Open up your fabric pieces and lay them on top of each other, making sure the good side of the fleece is facing the inside.
Sew around the edges, leaving a few inches open to flip the entire thing inside out. Then, close up the body with some hand-stitching.
Next, we'll add the velcro.
Step 3: Straps
Velcro will keep the carrier closed, and keep the arm straps on. I went with velcro because it should be fairly easy for our daughter to open and close, and it should give way if she manages to get it up by her neck.
I did worry about the hook part of the velcro getting caught in the dolls' hair, but that hasn't been an issue so far.
Make sure the velcro you use does not have the adhesive backing, that will gum up your sewing machine.
Lay out your velcro pieces (about 2" long each), making sure that hooks (scratchy side) will match with loops (soft side) when you are finished.
Sew the velcro onto one end of each strap, and onto the body of the carrier as shown.
Finally, sew the straps onto the back of the carrier to act as shoulder straps.
That's it! Put the doll in there and take a walk.
It should be machine washable, just be sure to leave the velcro parts closed to help keep down the lint. Putting it in a delicates mesh bag will also help keep it from opening in the wash.
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