Gear Review: LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    • Rating:
    • Reviewed by: Amelia
    • Price (MSRP): $135-$149
    • Category:
    • Best Use: Day Hiking
    • Where to Buy: Lillebaby Site
    • Testing Location: Yellowstone National Park
    • Testing Environment: All Conditions

    I’ve been eyeing the carriers by Lillebaby for a while now, so was excited to have an opportunity to try out two different styles this summer: The Designer Organic and the All Seasons.  I also used two other friends to help me test them out – both have different baby wearing philosophies and enrich this review.

     

     

    Lillebaby stands by the fact that they have the most complete carrier on the market – because of all the different functions and carrying positions it fulfills.  It works for newborn through toddlerhood (45 pound maximum).  The Lillebaby has more “bells and whistles” than most other carriers on the market.  To be perfectly honest, it takes a little time to figure everything out and get it adjusted so it is right for you and your child.

     

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

     

    The Lillebaby can be worn in the following positions:

    – Front carry with wide seat

    – Front carry with narrow seat

    – Hip carry

    – Back carry

    – Front carry facing out

     

     

     

    What makes the Lillebaby unique:

    – Ability to make the seat wider or more narrow (see more on this below)

    – Cross straps behind your back in a front carry or wear them “backpack style”

    – Included option lumbar support pad

    – Neck support panel makes back on carrier higher without just using a hood

    – Comes with a safety strap for use with an infant.  Note: This is required by law (though many companies do not comply.)  It’s removable and I never used it or felt that it was necessary.  That said, it is a nice feature to have just for extra security.

     

    Bridging the Gap

    One thing you don’t hear too much about in the baby wearing world (and often don’t realize it until you are in the middle of it) is the dreaded “gap months”.  This is the time when your baby is too big to be held in the fetal position (and are pushing against their legs) but are too small to span the wider seat of most carriers.  This is usually somewhere between 3 and 6 months and is exactly what we are in the middle of right now.  If you have shorter/smaller babies, those gap months will be longer.  For P they were really long because he just is a smaller-built kid.  I thought I was doing something wrong – only now do I know different.

     

    As a wearer, it’s extremely frustrating because Baby can’t get comfortable and starts to reject being worn.  And it’s obviously just not comfortable for Baby and not good for their legs to be spread too wide before their hips are ready.

     

    The solution is the ability to make the seat of your carrier more narrow.  There are a few on the market that allow this.  L is nearing 6 months old now, and while she is really close to being able to sit on her own, there is no way that she can span the wide seat of most of my other carriers.  I have no qualms about putting her on my back (which is super freeing), but I can only do that safely by myself in the Lillebaby.  Note: both the CatBird Baby Pikkolo and BityBean also have the option for a narrower seat.  However, they are less supportive and I have a really hard time getting her on my back in them by myself.  

     

    For this reason alone, I find myself reaching for the Lillebaby more than any other carrier right now.

     

    This video is nothing impressive – it’s filmed by my (giggly) 5 year old.  However, it shows how I put my kids on my back by myself (this one with L in the Lillebaby):

    What I love:

    – It eliminates any gap months and allows me to wear my petite 5 month old (with excellent head control) on my back

    – Newborns/small babies can be worn with either the wide seat (with a blanket propping their bum up for support with “froggy style” legs) or with a narrow seat with their legs hanging down.  I found that this is one area that the babies let you know how they are comfortable.

    – It is comfortable and ergonomic for safe wearing in all positions

    – The straps are long and allow for wearers between 5′ and 6’6″

    – It has the option to wear straps crossed behind or “backpack” style.  I think that crossed-strap front carry is much more comfortable in any carrier so appreciate that option.

    – All the buckles have tabs under them to avoid you or your child from being pinched in the buckle

    – The padded straps are comfortable, even for extended wearing.  A few of us wore the carrier under our regular backpacks while hiking and didn’t have any issues.

    – The hood is removable (and can be easily stashed in a pocket)

    – I can safely and comfortable wear all THREE of my kids (though not at the same time ;)) – even my 45 pound 5 year old is comfortable (though at the max of the weight limit)

     

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    Maggie and her 3 week old (note the small blanket rolled and placed under her bum) – wide seat option

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    Wearing my 45 pound, 5 year old

     

    What I am not so crazy about:

    – It’s a LOT of carrier.  A lot of buckles and straps and safety features (some of which I think are unnecessary).  It just does a LOT – instruction manual required!

    – When you make the seat narrower, it leaves a button that sits right under Baby’s bum.  The truth is she probably doesn’t even know it is there, but I swear it has to bug her a little (though I can never be sure.)  I wish that area was somehow smooth and no extra bulk for Baby.

    – The carrier doesn’t come standard with feet stirrups.  You would think with all the other bells and whistles that would be just included (instead of paying an additional $13.50).

     

     

    Organic Designer Carrier

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons ReviewsThe organic line really is softer than any other carrier fabric I have felt (on any other carrier.)  While I personally don’t think it’s a necessity, it sure is nice!  The designs are beautiful too.  Again, not necessary, but fun when you are wearing your child ALL the time.

     

    It also comes with a removable pocket that attaches to the waist band (not shown in this stock photo to the left, but is visible on the photo at the very top of the post).  The pocket is a little tough to reach, barely holds my iPhone 5s and can be a bit awkward.  However, it is a handy place to keep small things you need and I like that it is removable.

     

    Available in a variety of designs and colors (and non-organic options too).

     

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    Organic carrier showing in the narrow seat mode

     

    All Seasons Carrier

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons ReviewsThe All Seasons is unique because it has a mesh interior that can be exposed by unzipping a front panel.  The mesh makes it cooler for Baby in warmer weather, but still allows the option of covering that mesh for colder times.  My other testers and I agree that while it does seem to keep Baby cooler (especially if there is a little breeze), it doesn’t necessarily keep the wearer any cooler.

     

    The All Seasons also has a pocket, but it is built into that unzippable panel.  Therefore, when you have the panel unzipped, you have the choice of either rolling it up and making the pocket unusable, or letting it hang down.  I found that it hanging down isn’t a huge deal, but it still isn’t the perfect pocket situation.

     

    Currently the All Seasons is available in Black, Stone (shown) and Sand.

     

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    LilleBaby COMPLETE Organic Designer, All Seasons Reviews

    Panel closed

     

     

    Wearing the Lillebaby in a Front-Facing position:

    My personal viewpoint is that babies should never be worn facing out.  It’s not comfortable for you and it isn’t safe for them.  You can read all about my thoughts here.  That said, Lillebaby DOES allow for a front-facing ergonomic hold (meaning the knees are higher than the hips and the weight is off Baby’s crotch.)  One of the other Mamas tested it out for me and thought it was very comfortable for longer periods of time that other front-facing carriers.  Lillebaby also has the option of adding a Lumbar Support pad (which can be used for any front carries) that makes it dramatically more comfortable, especially for people that struggle with back pain.

     

    Lillebaby has a bunch of informative videos on their YouTube channel, but this one is particularly important as it shows how to change from a wide to narrow seat.


    The Bottom Line

    The Lillebaby has grown on me over the months as I perfected how to wear it and it has allowed me to wear my smaller baby on my back sooner (and bridging the "gap months"). It is well-made, very versatile for both child and wearer, and is very comfortable.

    While it has a bit of a learning curve because it DOES offer so many options, once you figure it out (and there's lots of online sources to help you do so), it's incredible.

    Per our request, Lillebaby generously provided us this gear in order to facilitate this review.  However, as always, the opinions expressed here are completely and honestly our own. You can find my full disclosure here.  
     

    © 2014, Tales of a Mountain Mama. All rights reserved. Republication, in part or entirety, requires a link back to this original post and permission from the author.

      Comments

      1. Stoked to have found your blog – wish I’d found it 2 years ago!!! (bub has just turned 2)
        So far all the reviews/info I’ve read is great – well presented and well thought out…and I only wish we could get half those items over here in Oz!
        I thought I’d point out another carrier which you may not have come across – the Stokke ‘My Carrier’ was my sanity saviour when bub was newborn, and I still use it now! I had already used several others before it, none of which were comfortable/supportive for both me n bub. The stokke however is amazing – I have regularly worn it for up to 4 hours straight on technical hikes etc, and the only part of me sore the next day is my legs – I literally do not feel it on the shoulders. And Bub loves it, it was great ergonomically at all stages, and did everything – inward facing, outward facing, on the back. THe only downside (theres always something isn’t there!) was that it was/is a bit tricky to do/undo the catches (kind of like carabiners) when getting bub in, and out … but I didn’t mind that – it was worth it for all the other advantages – and I figure the type of people (active outdoor types I’m guessing) reading this blog probably could deal with that hitch too?!

        Anyway, just thought I’d throw that idea into the ring, and again – thanks for the blog – I’m looking forward to delving deeper into it! (came looking for bike info – so very happy to get the link to two wheeling tots too )

        🙂 Cheers, Rosi

        • Hi Rosi,
          So glad you found us!! And Thanks for the carrier tip – I’ll have to look into Stokke. We have one of their chairs and love them 🙂
          Cheers!
          Amelia

      2. i live in a hot and humid area in summer, will the organic be too hot in a temperature around 95F, or the all seasons will be the best choice?

      3. Hi!
        Great blog and info:/) I am torn between the organic and all seasons. I don’t care for the mesh airflow. We live in Co Springs CO. Just moved here in October so not sure about how hot it gets but thinking 80s in the summer. I didn’t know how much a difference the mesh panel makes in the all season….
        Which would you recommend?
        Thanks!
        Sara

        • Hi Sara – If you don’t care for the mesh airflow, I’d go with the organic. It is noticeably softer 🙂 Welcome to CO! 🙂
          – Amelia

      4. Hi Amelia,
        We are drawn to the Lillebaby for how ergonomic it seems for both baby and parent and are debating between the fabric options. I am usually very hot, especially while hiking, ect; so the all season or airflow are very interesting. I am concerned about the 3D mesh being uncomfortable or irritable to the baby or our bare shoulders. How does it feel? Is it really cotton or poly/nylon? I don’t think I have ever seen cotton like that.

        Thanks very much for the review and any insight about these fabrics,
        ~Tim

        • Hi Tim,

          So the Organic Lillebaby is MUCH softer than the all season. However, on the All Seasons the mesh part touches the baby, but wouldn’t touch your shoulders. To be honest, I haven’t found a great carrier (besides a mesh wrap or sling) that keeps YOU cooler…the All seasons is better for keeping BABY cooler. Make sense? We haven’t experienced any irritability. If it helps, both myself and the gal that was helping me test did a lot of hiking in it in hot conditions, and neither one of us like being hot! 🙂

          Sorry I can’t help more!!
          Amelia

      5. Hi there! Great blog:) I have a really hard time finding the perfect carrier for me because of my height. I’m just about 5 feet tall and weigh around 100 pounds and all that seems to fit comfortably are the wraps carrier because they are so versatile. Unfortunately, they are not the best for my heavy baby(18 pounds at 3months). Would the lillebaby carrier be to big or long for my size and height?

        • Hi Dana, you know – it might be….it’s honestly a lot of carrier. Have you tried a Boba 4G? My mom is your size and she can wear that one easily (and does often with the grandkids!) Feel free to email me too!

      6. What do you think of the Airflow? I just ordered one that should arrive today, and am so excited for it! (I live in the hot Arizona desert.)

      7. Amelia I really really need you help in deciding on a carrier,,, I see you have reviewed every carrier that I am considering.. I have a 8 month old boy, he is 20 pounds and 29 inches tall. I am deciding btw Lillebaby All Season, Onya Baby Outback or cruiser. I LOVE all the bells and whistles of the Lillebaby.. but there is one HUGE concern for me, and that is, that the canvas or cotton panel only goes up to 14 inches. Is that correct? I currently have a very old snugli carrier, and when I measured the panel(not including waist panel) it is 14 inches tall. It is too short for my 8 month old, and he lunges backwards really easily… So that is my biggest concern with the all seasons carrier. Because of that, and only because of that, I am thinking of the Onya carrier, either the outback or cruiser. I need the carrier to be: good for humid weather, is able to cross in the back, have sufficient storage pockets so i can fit a diaper and a few wipes, keys, and cell phone. I would also like for it to be padded enough to help with my lower back pain, and the ability for the baby to face out if possible. Does that exist outside of the Lillebaby? I am so sorry for such a long post, but I really need to get a carrier as fast as possible.. Do you have any suggestions?

        • Hi Inessa,

          So, the main panel of the Lillebaby goes up 14 inches BUT you can lift up the flap and get an additional ~5 inches to make it taller for bigger kids. When you look at the photos on the review, you’ll see me wearing my 5 year old in it with that flap up. So I think he would be just fine! Does that help??

          =) Amelia

      8. I am deciding between the lillebaby and a tula. So far I lean towards the lillebaby for it’s longevity in age range and because my husband appreciates it’s less frilly look:) I am just concerned about it’s safety for hips and that desired deep seated squat or “m”. Is the lillebaby safe for baby’s legs and hips? Thanks for your review!

      9. Hi:) Thank you for all of the helpful info on the baby carriers! I Can’t decide on the complete or the conplete all seasons. I like the look of the original complete best but I’m not sure if baby gets too hot in it? We live in Maine so not a very long summer but I also don’t want to have a miserable baby in the summer. What do you think?
        Thank you!!

        • Hi Willa,
          To be honest, I don’t know it it makes a TON of difference. Baby definitely gets a bit more air flow, but I don’t think it makes much difference for you, as a wearer. I would suggest getting the carrier you like and using cold packs if needed! 🙂
          Amelia

      10. Hi Amelia, I love how informative your review was. I am really wanting to get a good carrier with this baby, I had the bjorn and moby with my first, and neither were quite right for us. I am so torn between a lillebaby and an ergo. My first child was a very petite little guy, and for that reason the lillebaby seems more beneficial because it will help with the gap, but being an amateur to carriers it seems like it may be a bit overwhelming compared to the ergo. (We ditched the moby because I could just never figure out the wrapping properly) Thank you so much!

        • HI Kodie – I would recommend the Lillebaby. It’s not THAT complicated once you get it set how you like it and there is a great instruction manual with photos. And I second ditching the wraps – I always struggle with them too! 🙂
          =) Amelia

          • I went with the Lillebaby, and I am so happy I did! It worked so well for us while I was pregnant and carrying my son, and it is just so amazing with my newborn as well. Thank you for the advice. So happy we found this and went with Lille!

      11. Hello! Thank you for running such an informative site. Your blog is the only one I’ve found that has detailed reviews of the two carriers that I am considering for my 22 lbs., 34 in. tall little one: the Lillebaby All Seasons and the Onya Outback. I realize that neither carrier will make the parent feel cooler while wearing, but from your experience, which of the two is better at keeping the baby cooler? Also, how do the back panels compare in terms of height? Do the straps of the Onya “dig” into the shoulders (I’ve seen pictures where the straps seem to angle inward into the parent’s shoulders). Thank you for sharing your experience and thoughts!

        • Hi Grace,
          You’re welcome! Glad it’s helpful for you!
          So, the Lillebaby All Seasons will probably keep the baby a little cooler.
          I am traveling and don’t have both carriers to compare, but I would think that the extended LIllebaby and the Onya are about the same height. The Onya just has a wider back so would keep a bigger kid more comfortable (I can put my preschooler in it no problem).
          When you see the Onya with the straps angled in, it’s because (most likely) the child is on the front and the straps are crossed in the back. I know it looks a little uncomfortable, but the weight is really even then and it’s SUPER comfortable. I just had my 32 pound 4 year old in it the other day (on the front) and hiked with that for quite a while.
          Feel free to ask if you have other questions!
          =) Amelia

      12. Thanks so much for the reviews! I’m debating between the toddler Tula, Onya, and Lillebaby so I was glad to find all your reviews. I’m still having a hard time deciding and was wondering if you have an absolute favorite that you would recommend? I have a 23 month old who is 29 pounds and 36″ tall. We hike a lot, but I don’t often carry him for more than a mile or two at one time (he wants to walk on his own a lot). I just need something bigger/more supportive for him than the ergo. The lillebaby was recommended to me by a friend, but I have other carriers for those “gap months” and really want something appropriate for a bigger kid. Thanks so much! Sorry for the novel 🙂

        • Hi Rosie – if you have the “gap months” covered, go with the Onya, hands down. It’s awesome for bigger kids and perfect for hiking, especially because it transfers weight to your hips well 🙂 Hope that helps!!

      13. Hi Amelia,

        As beginners to baby carrying, we hit upon Lillebaby after much research. I need suggestions as to which of the Lillebaby product is better.. The Airflow or the CompleteAll Seasons or the Original.. ? I guess the Embossed doesn’t offer much padding.. We wanted to go with Airflow..Right now we’re in Texas.. so is the Airflow better or the All Seasons..?

        • HI Sudarsana, If you are truly in hot weather conditions all the time, I’d go with the Airflow. If you want the ability to have LESS flow, go with the All Seasons. But, you can always dress Baby up or down too for changing seasons 🙂 Hope this helps!

      14. Thank you so much for all the reviews you have done. It’s been very helpful. I still can’t decide between the Lillebaby all seasons and the Onya Nexstep. Can you tell me your advise on which one you would go with? I love the idea of “bells, and whistles” for the Lillebaby, but I love the idea of the Onya converting to a baby chair. I also love the padded back buckle on the Lillebaby but I hear how wonderfully comfortable the Onya is. I’m petite, I’m 4’11 100lbs, but my husband is 6’1 230lbs. We have two children a four year old 36lbs, and a ten month old 20lbs. I’m still not sure which one to go with? Any advice would be so appreciated.

        • Hi Natasha – sorry for my delayed response – newborn brain still over here! So, as you know, both carriers are great. However, I think because you are so petite, I would go with the Lillebaby. The Onya DOES work for petite carriers, but not quite as well. That said, if your kiddos tend to be tall…the Onya seems to be better for that. The chair feature is nice on the Onya, but I honestly don’t use it quite as much as I thought I would….
          Does that help at all? Let me know what you decide!
          =) Amelia

      15. Are you using the narrow seat for back carrying?

      16. Hello, loved your review on the Lillebaby. Just have one question, the lumbar support in the back..does it provide good support? I get lower back pain so never have given carriers much consideration but with now having a newborn and 2 older kiddos I’m thinking this is the time to get one. I have been trying to decide between the Lillebaby Airflow (live in a hot climate and for the lumbar support) and an Ergo. Any advice from the back support perspective?
        thanks!

        • Hi Sheili – yes, the lumbar support really does help! I would definitely go for the Lillebaby over an Ergo for a variety of reasons…but if you are looking for lower back support, that is a no-brainer!

      17. Maggie Ashburn says:

        Hi, I just stumbled upon this site while researching carriers. I have 5-week old twins and I have a Baby Bjorn from my first child (7yrs old now) that I’ve been using. I would like to find a carrier that I can use on my back for one twin while carrying the other twin on my front in the Bjorn. Is there a certain carrier you would suggest for this? If the Lillebaby would work, which model would be best? I like the idea of lower back support and live in a hot climate in coastal NC.

        • HI Maggie – If you want to keep the Baby Bjorn, then the Lillebaby would work just fine with it…but truthfully, I would suggest investing in something like a TwinGo (review here). It just simplifies the whole process….

      Trackbacks

      1. […] varying degrees of success.  Amelia of Tales of a Mountain Mama has an excellent post about these “gap months” and reviewed some carriers that can help solve the problem.  Once E outgrew this phase, the Boba […]

      Speak Your Mind

      *