Some of the most common questions I get when wearing my baby in a ring sling in public are, "Where did you get that?" and "Did you make that?" (The other FAQ is usually "Is that comfortable?" and the answer is, yes! the fabric distributes the baby's weight across your shoulder and back if you spread it out correctly!)
There are two ways to get yourself a ring sling. You can buy one, or you can make one (or ask a friend or family member who sews to make one for you). If you make one, be sure to select a good quality fabric, and think about whether it is something you'll want to wear a lot! Also be sure to order safety tested rings. "Craft rings" are NOT strong enough! A good place to order rings is SlingRings.com - they have an excellent selection of colors and you can choose either classy metal ones (I love the bronze!) or sleek plastic. I've ordered from them twice and been very happy with both the product and service!
If you are going to buy one, I would recommend the Maya Wrap or a similar sling. Regular priced Maya Wraps are 65.95 each, however, if you check their clearance section you can find gently used or discontinued slings for less. The one pictured is in a discontinued fabric and is priced at $59.95... not much less than the full priced Maya Wrap, but isn't it pretty? I love this color!
Maybe you're thinking that $60 is a lot of money to spend for a baby carrier, especially one that is basically fabric and rings. Well, yes and no. Yes, it is expensive, and yes, this is something that someone with sewing skills and a sewing machine can do on their own. However, if you can't make one yourself, this is a bargain. Would you pay this much (or close to it) for a stroller?
A ring sling is much more versatile than a stroller!
It makes it easier to tote a baby up stairs, escalators, through uneven terrain, through crowds, on grass, at the park, at the playground, while chasing an older sibling, while taking a small baby shopping... and the list goes on and on. You can look at the Maya Wrap photo gallery for some great images of happy babies (and toddlers!) being worn in ring slings. A ring sling will be able to be used for a longer period of time than any bouncy seat or bassinet, your baby will most likely be more content in the sling anyway for long periods of time, and in addition to all this, after you've been babywearing for a while you'll probably be able to figure out how to breastfeed your baby in the sling, so that you can discreetly and conveniently nurse wherever you and baby are.
So whether you buy or make a ring sling, this is an excellent and versatile carrier that you and your baby can enjoy together for a long time. It adjusts easily for different parents and other caregivers to use, & when you're done babywearing, if it is in good shape, you can sell it or share it with a new mama! :)
Important Note: Make sure to read the safety tips over on the link list, or go here for some specifically for ring slings.