Calyx Baby Carrier: Designed by a Mama… Obviously!

01/03/2009 at 10:00 AM ET

I wear my daughter a lot. Almost all the time, really. And the Calyx Baby Carrier by Mama Design ($129) has been a favorite around my house since it arrived. Capable of holding children 4-months-old right through to toddlerhood, it’s a wonderful go-everywhere carrier option.

It’s clear that this carrier was designed by a mama who knew how to add what many carriers are lacking. I could feel the effect of the contoured shoulder straps as soon as I put my daughter onto my back — where some carriers leave me feeling like she might lean out, this one hugged her right in close to me. The super-soft, padded straps are incredibly comfortable and don’t dig in at all. And they have the added function of going over the baby’s thighs to support from underneath.

The most interesting feature of the Calyx (though admittedly, it was the hardest part for me to get used to) is the internal harness. It folds up over the baby and buckles on either side. You click your baby into it, then put the baby and carrier combo on as if putting on a backpack. The backpack maneuver is a bit tricky but there are instructions here that help.

One more little bonus…you know that bulge of belly that seems to like to poke its way over the buckles of some carriers? (Or is it just me?) Well, it’s barely noticeable with the Calyx.

I had to invest some time exploring and experimenting with my Calyx before I felt I completely understood it, but now it’s a breeze to use and it’s incredibly comfortable, to boot. Add to that the fact that it’s gorgeous (and it doesn’t make my belly stick out!)…well, you see why I’m a big fan.

— Stephanie

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Showing 13 comments

Nikka on

I like the design, and the colors, but the baby looks little uncomfortable, like where does he put his hands? Im looking for a carrier too, so what do the babies do with their hands? I m looking for some help, if the babies have somehwere to put their hands, id buy this one cause i really like it

wavybrains on

I’m so happy to see this awesome carrier get more press. This is my favorite carrier, bar none. We started using this when our daughter was 5 months old (it’s designed for older babies with good muscle control) and we’re still using it at 15 months. It’s fabulous for traveling, and it’s my go-to carrier for shopping. I love that they have different sizes for different types of parents–no need to get an ugly extender like with the Ergo. We have a standard size and fluffy me, thin DH, tall uncle, and short grandma have all been able to wear her. I’ve tried many other carriers–Ergo, Beco, BabyHawk, etc, and this blows all of them out of the water. If you need help adjusting your caylx, forums have great tips about getting the perfect fit. This one was worth every penny. A bonus is that this is USA made.

wavybrains on

Nikka–the baby can put his/her hands inside or outside of the carrier. The Caylx has toy rings that you can clip a toy, binkie, etc to for him/her to play with. My DD plays with my hair, or we give her something to hold. She even has had snacks back there. She often takes a nap too. The Mama in the picture could bounce her toddler lower if she wanted the carrier to come up higher on the child’s back. There is so much to see for a baby when he/she is being worn that they don’t really get bored and need a place for their hands most of the time.

Shaunie on

This carrier somewhat reminds me of the Ergo, except more stylish!

Megan on

I own a Calyx and am a seasoned carrier user. I love my Calyx. Nervousness kept me from carrying my other kids on my back but this harness in the Calyx has allowed me to carry my 5 month old on my back. Its really a necessity in my life with two other kids to care for.

I cannot recommend it enough.

sara on

sounds like the beco butterfly they have a built in harness thing.
sounds nice and I love ssc’s. I love my beco 4th gen and have no problem putting my child on my back. maybe when the new baby comes I will look at them closer.


I love that you baby wear, sounds like a good carrier!

jen on

Great but how do you get your kid off your back?????????????

tammy on

i’m worried that buckle is right on his leg and looks uncomfortable. did you find that a problem?
i love baby carriers but still vote for all cotton!

wavybrains on

I get my daughter off my back in two ways. If I am alone, I sit back against a couch, bed, or car seat–whatever’s handy, and I just take her off like a backpack–unbuckle waist and chest straps and slowly slide her off. Very safe. If someone else is around, thanks to the internal harness, I can just unclip and they can lift her up and out. We can even transfer her between us this way.

There is thick padding between the buckle and the leg. The baby never feels the buckle at all.

Kelly L-G on

I’m the mama of the baby in the photo and she was definately very comfortable. In fact, we used a carrier to put her to sleep for her naps up until she was almost 18 months old! It was much easier than trying to convince her to go to sleep As far as the hands go, she usually puts her hands in, but this was in the middle of a photo shoot with a whole bunch of Calyxs, so she didn’t spend that much time getting adjusted to each one. Many babies prefer do their hands out though.

Baby Carriers Backpacks on

The way it secures the child in the carrier is nice…it would be nice if there was a way to insert the child with someones help while you were standing.

Jennifer Rosenberg on

It’s easiest to get this on without help, for me. The seat makes getting the baby on your back so fast.