Meh Dais have been very popular in our chapter lately, and questions about tying on at the waist are popping up frequently in the Facebook group and at meetings. We have had some members mention that they have been doing it “wrong” because their technique is different than the one used in a photo that gets a thumbs up from the VBEs. Actually, there are two different but equally correct ways to tie the waist straps of a Meh Dai! One or the other may work better for your particular carrier or baby, so always check the manual for your Meh Dai for best practices.
The two techniques are referred to as “apron style” and “non-apron style.” Generally, apron style is recommended for unpadded waist bands and non-apron style is recommended for padded or structured waist bands. However, the Lenny Lamb Meh Dai used in this tutorial has a padded waist band and still is great tied apron-style, so there are no hard-and-fast rules unless directed by the manufacturer.
On the left, you can see how to hold a Meh Dai before tying on apron style. The entire carrier is upside down, with the outside on the panel facing your body. If this were a non-reversible Meh Dai, the side showing would be the “wrong” side, possibly with the safety warning labels or tags. Notice that the bottom of the waist band is on top, and the side of the waist band that attaches to the panel is on the bottom. The photo on the right shows how you would hold the carrier if you wanted to tie on non-apron style. The “wrong” side of the panel is still facing out, but the waist band is flipped over once so the side that attaches to the panel is on top, and the bottom side of the waist band is facing down. If you are a soft structured carrier user, this looks familiar because it is the same technique you use to buckle the waist band with your SSC.
Once tied on, apron style will look like this from the front and the side. Remember to tie snuggly behind your back with a double knot.
Here are the same views of non-apron style. The waist band is covered by the hanging down panel. Once again, tie on snuggly with a double knot behind your back.
Putting your baby in and tying the shoulder straps is the same no matter which waist tie-on method you use. Hold you baby in front of you and spread the panel up over their back, supporting baby with one hand at all times. Bring each strap over the shoulder and cross them behind your back one at a time. It helps to pass the first strap to the hand that is supporting baby and hold it there while you work on the second one. When both shoulder straps are in place, take one in each hand and do a little bounce and pull; the tension from holding both straps will support baby while you do this. Once the panel is snug and baby is high and supported, you will cross the straps over their bum and under the opposite leg, tying off with another double knot behind your back. If your straps are not long enough to tie behind your back, you can tie under baby’s bum instead. For more visual help with using your Meh Dai, this is a great video with tips for adjusting it to fit your baby. If you are using your Meh Dai with a newborn, this is another great video. Happy wearing!