Product Type: Tomy baby products
Newest Review: ... to offer comfort when wearing. I was able to bend down but every time I was bending down I had to use my other hand to hold my son in... more
Carrying in comfort and style
Tomy Freestyle Classic Baby Carrier
Member Name: cg1anon
Tomy Freestyle Classic Baby Carrier
Advantages: closeness, hands free
Disadvantages: hugs chin when facing outwards
I used the pushchair for a while, until he was three months old and we planned a trip abroad to visit relatives. It was going to be a struggle travelling with the baby and all the other things, as well as the relative we were visiting being in a wheelchair. I was worried about my son's safety, too, and decided that the best thing to do was buy a very supportive carrier and use that for the week instead of taking the buggy. It would save on space, and keep my son safe with me constantly. So I took a trip to Mothercare. A very helpful salesperson helped me try on every type of carrier there, and I tried putting my son in them to see how it felt. I knew I wanted something supportive, sturdy and that would last. He was already about 15lb, so I didn't want to buy something we'd only get a month's use out of. The Tomy Freestyle carrier had a large, padded velcro strap around the waist and back as well as an adjustable clip, very thick shoulder straps, and velcro around the baby's legs as well as a plastic clip so that he's safe in there but can be taken out easily. My decision was made, and I paid my £24.99 to the cashier happily.
With a little practice I was able to slip the carrier over my head whilst holding the baby, get him into the carrier myself and do up all the neccessary clips. I left one leg hole closed each time (alternating sides, as the adjustible clip that went over the velcro seemed to loosen slightly, and also he was growing so quickly the holes needed widening!). In order to get him into the carrier, I put one leg in the already velcroed leghole, then strapped the other leg in. Then I supported his back while I
clipped each shoulder strap on. It was very easy once I figured out where all the clips etc went. The carrier has a small bib attached by poppers, where baby's head rests on your chest. This is realy useful as young babies sick quite a lot! There was a sparre bib in the box, too, which came in useful.
I tried it out the next week on the 1.5 mile walk to the bus stop, took the bus to the town and met up with my mum who happily had the car seat in her car to take us home later! Once on the bus I was easily able to take my son out of the carrier and sit him on my lap. It took just a minute to get him back in at the end of the journey. At the end of the day I felt good, no back pain whatsoever. It also helped with Joshua's reflux to have him upright, as he used to cry a lot when laying down in the buggy.
I used the carrier often around the town and at the supermarket. But the next real test was a day out at the zoo. Joshua spent a few minutes facing outwards (hadn't done this before), so that he could see the animals more easily. The button that holds the top down (where the back of the head would rest when facing the other way) kept coming open, and even when it didn't the material kept curling up, hugging his chin. For this reason he was quite uncomfortable facing outwards and much prefered being carried facing me. I hoped this would change as he grew, but unfortunately we always had the problem so he never much liked facing outwards. By the end of our zoo trip, I was a little tired and was feeling the strain of having had a baby strapped to myself all day.
These little trips out were all well and good, but the main reason I bought the carrier was for our week-long buggyless visit to Grandpa's. Getting the train to the airport was quite painless with my son in the carrier and our large wheeled suitcase. After checking in, we sat down for lunch and I had my first try at breastfeeding with the baby in the carrier. Apparently this is possible, but I couldn't figure out how. I had to remove the carrier completely in order to feed. Getting on and off the plane was easy, and I must say I felt quite smug watching the other parents quibbling with folding buggies and screaming children who didn't want to relinquish them. We walked on past and I was able to use both hands to hold onto the rails as I boarded (useful when you get a little dizzy with heights). I sat down in my tiny EasyJet seat, took off the carrier and stowed it under the seat, and cuddled my sleeping baby.
During the week we spent hours walking, all the time with my son strapped to me in the carrier. Being able to use both hands was very useful, even if only to hold my son's hands as we walked, and I never felt as though he was in danger of falling. I did support him with my hands most of the time but if I needed to I felt confident letting the carrier take the full strain. I was able to do almost everything I needed to (including use the toilet - the joys of being a single mum!) with my son securely attached to my chest. The only thing I struggled with was eating, but that was only once when I wanted an ice cream but there wasn't enough space in front of my face to hold it!
The first day or two were not too bad. By the middle of the week all I wanted to do was sleep or soak in a hot bath, but we plodded on. Carriers are most definitely not a permanent buggy replacement! I did manage to get through the week, but was very glad when Mum met me off the train with a buggy and a waiting car!
I continued to use the carrier until my son weighed about 20lb, at around 7 months. I washed it in the machine in a mesh bag at 30 degrees with no problems. I had hoped it would last longer than that, but he grew very quickly! By this time he was struggling to fit into the carrier, was far too wriggly and my back couldn't cope with more than half an hour of carrying. He was also able to sit up well in his buggy like a big boy, so didn't want to spend so much time cuddled on Mummy's chest.
I enjoyed carrying my son in the carrier. It saved a lot of space, especially as I didn't drive until he was 6 months old so used the bus a lot. It enabled me to be very close to my son and comfort him whilst doing other things. If I had my time again I'd buy a Tomy Freestyle carrier straight away, it's certainly worth the money.
So in short,
- One person only needed
- Neutral colour
- Easy to get baby in and out
- Sturdy and safe thick material two fastenings
- Adjustable leg holes and shoulder straps grow with the baby, waist band can shrink with your baby bump!
- Can go hands free when needed
- Saves on space
- No carrying buggies up and down the stairs
- Supportive and comfortable around the shoulders and back
- Baby can see the world if carrying outwards
- Not quite so comfy facing outwards due to material curling up to chin
- Gets heavy after a while
- Not easy to breastfeed (but not really an issue as you can remove easily)
If a baby carrier is what you want, this is definitely one of the best. Don't scrimp and buy a lower quality one especially if you're planning anything more than a quick trip around the supermarket. The only reason it drops a star is because of the curling up when facing outwards.
also on Ciao under the same name
Summary: Definitely one to consider
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