My beautiful old carrier, the one that carried Piper, had a big rip in the front. It didn't effect the integrity of the carrier but the carrier itself was starting to do a number on my back. Piper had not wanted to be worn much past six months whereas R loves being carried and loses all kinds of cool in the stroller. I wanted to start walking as well and since that is only likely to happen with R I had to figure out a way to carry her that wasn't going to destroy my back.
Enter the structured carrier. I have friends who swear by them but I didn't care for the look. They seemed too bulky and too...well, structured. I was a big fan of rolling my Mei Tai into a ball and tossing it into my diaper bag. I felt like they were more like the back pack carriers and that they would feel awkward being worn while doing dishes.
But then came R's escape attempt. My dear baby managed to get her foot on one of the straps that go around my waist, and using that as leverage she pushed herself up and out of the carrier. Luckily Umberto was behind me and held onto her while I got the sling off. It really freaked me out and I didn't use the sling with any kind of comfort afterwards. I asked for recommendations and kept getting "Becco." A structured carrier.
After looking at the Becco it was clear that it was designed to keep a baby inside. I knew I'd feel secure having her in a back carry (by far my favorite carry). There were other structured carriers out there but I like the looks of the Becco Gemini. It has several attractive features including a side carry option. It is designed to work from newborn to toddler. It has this option head rest that can be snapped down in case baby wants to check out the world. I swallowed deeply and ordered the carrier (it wasn't cheap).