Friday, June 15, 2012

Baby Crib Bumper

Baby Crib Bumper

I want to show you how to make your own crib bumpers, but not only that, how to make your own crib bumper pattern too. It's really easy. Here's what you'll need:
  • 1 1/2 - 2 yards of fabric
  • cotton batting or foam sheets
  • ribbon
  • plain white printer paper or newspaper/pattern making paper
  • tape
  • pins
  • ruler and/or measuring tape
  • scissors
The first thing we are going to do is make a pattern for your crib bumpers. This really is pretty easy. First things first, measure the crib. You need to know exactly how long each side is. You will need to make your pattern 1/2 longer on each side. So whatever the length is add 1", whatever the width, add 1".

You also need to figure out just how deep you want the bumpers to be. This is entirely up to you. I made my bumpers for a very small crib that was somewhere in between a regular sized crib and a bassinet, so I made mine the width of the printer paper (8 1/2"). To create the pattern all you will do is tape the papers end on end. Trim them to make them the length of the side of the crib plus one inch. If you are making them width wise larger than an 8 1/2" sheet of paper then you will have to make two and tape them together to make the right dimensions. Repeat this step all over again for the width side of the crib. Now go back and hold them up to the crib and make a mark where the crib bumper pads ties should be. You need to hold it up to the crib so you know the tie will line up with the bars correctly.

Lay your fabric down on a flat workspace. You should fold the fabric in half so that the front is facing inwards towards itself. Now lay a sheet of cotton batting over this. The cotton batting can be whatever weight you want. It all depends on how thick you want your bumpers to be. You can also buy organic and natural bumpers for organic baby bedding.

Pin the crib bumpers patterns down over both the fabric and the batting. Use the patterns as guidelines to cut the fabrics and batting. Cut two sets for the sides of the crib and two for the ends. Pin them all back together.

Now to add the ribbons for ties. You could sew ties that match the fabric you are using, but I prefer ribbon as it is easier and I just like the decorative accent. Cut the ribbon into 7-10 inch lengths. Make them all the same length and make pairs of two at a time. all together you will have 12 pairs of lengths of ribbon.

This next part is slightly tricky to explain. You want to pin the ribbons in place where you want them to be sewed. The ribbons need to be laid inside in between the fabric pieces.

Pin one set to the top and one to the bottom where you marked off on the pattern for the ties to be sewed. About an inch should stick out from the top and bottom of the fabric but the rest should be tucked neatly inside. If you must, pin the ends in place so they do not accidentally get sewed in place.

Now all you have to do is sew the bumpers together! There are two ways to go about this. For an easy solution (what I did with my crib bumper pads) simply sew each piece together by stitching around the entire outside of each pattern piece, leaving a 1-2" opening for turning the fabrics inside out. Make sure and stitch 1/2 inch in from the edge to go along with the pattern you made. Remember, we added exactly 1 inch extra to each pattern piece. Turn each piece so the fronts are facing outside. Pin the openings shut and hand stitch them. To finish the whole project off all you need do is pin the crib bumpers together and hand stitch them carefully. When you place the bumper pads into the crib just have the hand stitched edges facing inwards and they will never be noticed.

For a much more finished baby bumper, first just the very tops of the crib bumpers. Open them all up, being careful to keep the ribbons pinned in place, and then sew each of the ends together all except one (so they do not actually form a complete circle). Fold them back in place and re-pin. Now sew the entire bottom edge of the bumpers. Sew the ends too. One end can be completely sewed shut, but the other must be left with a 1-2" opening for turning. Turn the entire piece inside out so the front is facing out. Now hand stitch the opening shut and hand stitch the last two ends together.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Fitted Crib Sheet

Fitted Crib Sheet


To make a sheet to fit a standard 52” x 28” crib mattress up to 5” thick, you’ll need:
- Pre-washed sheeting fabric 66” x 42”
- Thread
- Scissors
- Measuring tape or ruler
- Pins
- Approximately 2 yds of 1/8” elastic

1. Layout your fabric on a flat surface, right side up.
2. Cut 7” squares out of each corner.
3. Bring cut edges together for each corner with right sides facing. Pin and sew with 5/8″ seam.
4. To form casing for elastic, press ¼” along the end and down each side of your sheet bout 8″. Press edge in another ¼” and sew close to pressed edge. Repeat at other end.
5. Feed elastic through casing, tacking at one edge. Pull elastic to desired fullness and tack at other end of casing. Cut off excess elastic. Repeat at other end.
6. Press ¼” + ¼” on remaining sides and sew.
7. Try it on your crib mattress, stand back and appreciate all your hard work. You did it!
If you have a different size or thickness of mattress you can use the following guide to create you own custom pattern!

Corner Squares
Take the height of your mattress and add 2”.
Length of Fabric
Take the length of your matress and add two times the length of your corner square.
Width of Fabric
Take the width of your matress and add two times the length of your corner square.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Baby Magic - Quilt

Baby Magic - Quilt

What you will need:
  • 3/4 yd. Color A dark *
  • 1/2 yd. Color A light
  • 3/4 yd. Color B dark *
  • 1/2 yd. Color B light
  • 1 1/2 yd. Backing
  • 46” x 54” Batting
  • Embroidery floss, pearl cotton or crochet cotton
* If fabric is less than 45” wide, add 1/8 yd.

Color A dark
  • 2” x 45”, cut 7 *
  • 10½” x 10½”, cut 4
Color A light:
  • 10½” x 10½”, cut 4
  • 3½” x 3½”, cut 4
Color B dark
  • 2” x 45”, cut 7 *
  • 10½” x 10½”, cut 4
Color B light:
  • 10½” x 10½”, cut 4
  • 3½” x 3½”, cut 2
* If fabric is less than 45” wide, cut 9 strips.

Magic Nine Patch Directions:

1.  Seams are 1/4“ throughout. Place a Color A dark and Color A light 10 1/2” x 10 1/2” right sides together. Stitch along both sides. Cut into three 3 1/2” wide strips. Stitch individual strips to the stitched pairs, alternating light and dark. Press seams toward the dark.

2.  Turn blocks 90° and place right sides together. Stitch along both sides. Cut into three 3 1/2” wide strips. Stitch individual strips to the stitched pairs. Repeat for all 10 1/2” x 10 1/2” squares, pairing Color A light and dark and Color B light and dark to make 8 nine patches of each color.

Quilt Directions:
1.  Stitch four units of four Magic Nine Patches

2. Stitch all 2” Color A dark and Color B dark strips together to make sashing/borders.

3. Measure one of the nine patch units; cut five of the sashing/border units this length (approximately 36½” long). Alternating sashing/borders and nine patches, stitch together.

4. Measure the length of a nine patch/strip/nine patch; cut four sashing/border units this length. Stitch a B light between two sashing/borders; add an A light to each end. Make two of these. Stitch to quilt top at sides.

5. Cut backing slightly larger than quilt top. Lay the backing fabric on a large table or the floor, right side up. Smooth out and tape or pin so the fabric is very smooth. Lay the quilt top, right sides together, on top of the backing. Pin all around the edges. Stitch in a ¼-inch seam, leaving about a 10 inch opening to turn, backstitching at beginning and end of the seam. Trim backing fabric to the same size as the top.

6. Lay batting on a large table or the floor; smooth out all bumps and wrinkles. Lay quilt top, top side down, onto batting. Pin all around, again leaving the 10 inch opening free. Stitch, quilt side up, on the same stitching line. Trim corners diagonally and turn right side out. Hand stitch opening shut. Smooth the quilt, pulling batting into shape. Pin wherever ties will go. To tie, use embroidery floss, crochet cotton or pearl cotton to take a small (¼ inch) stitch at each pin; tie surgeon’s knots: right over left twice, then left over right twice. Trim threads to about ½ inch.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Frog Hooded Baby Bath Towel Pattern

Frog Hooded Baby Bath Towel Pattern

This hooded baby bath towel pattern is so simple yet so adorable! You can't go wrong with a frog for both boys and girls so it makes a great shower gift. Now that my son is a toddler we bring our frog towel to the beach to dry him off and keep him cozy after a splash in the waves.

You'll need at least a yard of green terrycloth for this hooded baby bath towel pattern and a tiny amount of black and white felt for the eyes. Tip: To save a ton of time you can simply buy two green bath towels from a discount store. One will be the body of the towel and the other one you will cut up for the head and eyes of the frog. This takes the guessing out of how big to make it (since I make mine standard towel size anyway) and all of your edges are already finished for you

Cut out 2 half circles for the frog's head, four almost circles (flat bottom) for eyes and two white and two smaller black felt circles for the eyes. For the head, you can just eyeball it or you can trace a large 5 gallon bucket or a small garbage can. The half circle should be at least 14" wide, make sure not to make it any smaller than that. It may seem huge to you at first, but test it out and you'll see! I test it out on my own head first so that I know if will continue to fit the child for a long time. For the eyes, either trace a small water glass or sketch them out freehand, just make sure they are at least 2.5" wide.

Layer your felt circles on one of the eye circles and sew as shown in red above. You can hand stitch or do it on your sewing machine if you like. Felt edges don't fray so it doesn't have to be perfect, you just have to tack them down securely. Next, you'll put the other terrycloth eye layer on top of the felt so the eyes are wrong side out.

Sew all along the outer edge of the inside out eye except for the bottom so that you can turn it right side out. Be gentle when you turn it right side out, it is a bit tricky with these small eyes and you don't want to tear through the terrycloth.

Now lay your eyes upside down on the right side of the terry and tack them down by sewing. In the image shown above, the black & white part of the eyes are facing towards the table. This part is a bit confusing if you've never sewed from the inside out before, but look at the next step and it should make sense.

Lay your 2nd frog head half circle on top of the one that has the eyes sewn on and sew all along the rounded edge only. In the second photo above, you can see the eyes on the inside. So when you turn it right side out, the eyes are perfectly sewn in place!

Turn right side out and the adorable froggie hooded baby bath towel pattern emerges! Next, find the center of your rectangular towel (if you are not using a pre-made towel and are using fabric like I am, be sure to finish all raw edges first by turning over and sewing) and lay your frog hood on it.

Sew the hood onto the towel body as shown in red above. Make sure to sew securely here, especially at the outer edges as this is the main place for the hooded towel to tear. I like to use a zigzag stitch here and go over it at least twice. Finally, you have an adorable frog all from this super simple hooded baby bath towel pattern!

All done? Now go splash in the tub, pool or beach and then bundle up your little frog!

Baby Dress Patterns - Easy Baby Sundress

Baby Dress Patterns - Easy Baby Sundress

Baby dress patterns don't need to be complicated! This simple one uses only three different pieces yet the dress is an adorable little sundress with shoulder ties. This is the base of so many sundresses you'll see come spring and summer and can be embellished and given your own finishing touches.

Try lace edges, colorful trim, patch pockets, a layered skirt, embroidery and different fabric selection to give the baby dress your own style.

As always, we provide the basics for your jumping off point, you provide the oomph in your own details and customizations that you'll add! Take this basic idea and turn it into your own style. Our instructions show a lined bodice but an unlined skirt, you may choose to line the skirt if you like. Lighter, quilting weight cottons work well for this dress.

1) First, cut out all of your pieces. Four rectangles for straps, four bodice pieces and two skirt panels for an unlined skirt. If you need sizing help (who doesn't! I can't freehand sizes accurately!) a good tip is to lay down a baby shirt in the size you need and use that as your size guide for the bodice, only be sure to add an inch all around for seam allowance. The straps are about six inches long and the skirt is about nine inches long. The dress shown fits a six month old. Fold over your straps and sew, right sides together.

2) Use a pencil or chopstick to help you turn your straps right side out. You should have four straps.

3) Now lay down and pin your strap to the right side of two bodice pieces, pointing inward. Next, lay down the second layer of your bodice piece on top, right side facing in. This means that after sewing the edges, you'll turn it right side out and the straps will be sewn in place.

4) Sew along the top edges as shown in the above photo in red. You can see the straps on the inside with the right sides of the fabric facing each other in the second photo. Repeat with the other two straps and bodice.

5) Now turn them right side out and you should have two complete bodice parts (front and back) with the straps securely attached. Now sew your front and back together at the sides, under the armpit. Again, place right sides together and sew, then turn right side out.

6) Next, get to work on the skirt. Place right sides together of your skirt panels and sew sides together. Turn and press the bottom inch of the hem under and sew the hem all the way around the circle of the skirt.

7) Finally, you'll sew the top bodice to the skirt of the baby dress! This again, is working from the inside out so be sure to pin all the way around and even turn right side out while pinned to make sure you have it done correctly. Turn your skirt inside out and then lay the bodice down inside of the skirt as shown. The blue fabric shown will be the inside of the bodice, against the baby. Pin and sew all the way around.

8) Now the exciting part...turn it right side out and see your beautiful and simple dress! The shoulder ties should be long enough to make little bows at the shoulders. I like to line the bodice with a contrasting color as shown below, but you certainly can just use the same fabric for both sides

Enjoy! See? Baby dress patterns do not have to be hard, this one is easy and very quick to sew once you've got your pieces cut out. Our dress shown is very simple, don't be scared to get funky with it and add trim, pockets, embroidery, patches...and more

Friday, June 1, 2012

Cap for Newborn Baby

Cap for Newborn Baby

Medium weight cotton knits are best for these caps

Cut out twice, stitch together along long sides to make tube (good sides together), both ends should still be open. Turn good side out, fold 'tube' into itself and close remaining gap using serger or zig-zag stitch.

Itty Bitty Baby Dress

Itty Bitty Baby Dress

This little dress is designed to fit a preemie or small newborn (about 7 pounds) right from birth. I have also included a template for a slightly larger baby.

 M A T E R I A L S :
*yard fabric
* ready-made piping and bias tape
* " yard fabric for lining (optional)

I N S T R U C T I O N S :

1. Print out pattern templates, cut out, and tape together to make one pattern piece for the bodice of the dress.

2. Pin pattern to fabric, cut 4 of fabric (or 2 of fabric, 2 of lining). These four pieces will make the bodice (front and back) and two lining pieces (front and back). If you want the front and back to look different, cut the neckline of the back two pieces slightly higher than the front two. Note: The bodice pattern is REALLY small – if you’re not sure how big the baby will be, add an extra  inch to the side seams or enlarge the pattern slightly.

3. Cut two rectangles, each 9” x 18.” These are the skirt pieces.

4. With right sides together, sew the two skirt pieces together along the 9” sides with a seam. Trim and iron open seams (fig 1).

5. Using a long stitch, sew around top edge of skirt away from the edge. Gather skirt.

6. With right sides together, sew bodice front to lining front ONLY ALONG THE TOP EDGE (translation: along the curvy side only) with a seam (fig 2). Clip seams at curves, turn inside out, press (fig 3). Repeat for bodice back and lining back.

7. With right sides together, sew front to back bodice. Turn right side out, press.

8. Sew piping to bodice by lining up raw edges on both piping and bodice pieces. Fold piping over at beginning as shown (fig 4).

9. Turn skirt inside out. Line up top of skirt with bottom of bodice (right sides should be facing). Gather skirt so that side seams match on bodice and skirt. Pin together; sew just outside of gathered seam.

 10. Sew bias tape over bottom edge of skirt.

Swim Diaper Tutorial

Swim Diaper Tutorial
If you want me to make this for you, please email me and tell me your choice of fabric - $25.00

With plenty of summer swimming opportunities coming up, it’s the perfect time to sew up a couple  Swimmers reusable swim diapers.

They are surprisingly easy to sew, and since all your supplies can be found easily there’s no reason you couldn’t make some today. Let’s get started.

Download the PDF pattern Swimsuit Pattern PDF. Make sure page scaling is off, and butt the paper edges to one another; for proper sizing do not overlap.

Approximate Sizing
    Extra Small: 7-14 lbs Small: 12-22 lbs Medium: 18-28 lbs Large: 24-40 lbs Extra Large: 35+ lbs
    Here’s the only hard part of making the Swimmer– You have to decide whether you’d like a pull-up or snap-on version. Some prefer the ease of sewing and usage that comes with the pull-up version, while others like the ease of snaps in case of a poo accident. Unfortunately, you’ll need use poly resin snaps and a snap press as metal snaps won’t work in pool water and those can’t be had locally, but if you are lucky enough to have a press, here’s another use for it.
    Pull-Up Swimmer Cut one of each fabric layer with the squared edges.
    Since you’ll be stretching around the entire edges. Ignore the elastic marks for this pull-up version of the Swimmer.
    Starting in the center waist back, (1) Place the FOE around all three layers of fabric making sure to include a 2″ tail to finish off your FOE. (2) Grab all three layers with your right hand, and stretch the FOE with your left. Sandwich the layers in between, and (3) Switch holding the FOE to your right along with the fabric. (4) Sew a 3-step zigzag helping the layers through a bit with your left hand behind the machine foot. If this is your first time using FOE, take it slow and work in small sections until you are more comfortable with it.
    When you are approx. 2″ from your starting point, stop sewing. Dry “fit” the FOE ends to each other following the edge of the diaper, marking the meeting point with your fingers. Flip the FOE right sides together, lining up the FOE neatly from edge to edge. Straight stitch the two FOE ends together. Trim the seam allowance close to the sewing line, flip right side out and pin to the edge of the diaper. 3-step zigzag the remaining length. Repeat the same process for each leg hole. Voila! Your Pull-Up Swimmer is complete! Good Job. Snap-On Swimmer Now that you have some experience sewing FOE (or if you already do and you also like snaps), it’s time to try the Snap-On Version!
    You’ll want to pay attention to the elastic markers and extended tab on this version. Be sure to cut out the PUL and athletic wicking material on the smaller, front edge.
    Stack the athletic wicking material right side down, hidden inner PUL shiny side up, and the outer layer right side up on top of that. Starting in the front right edge– level with the top– 3-step zigzag the FOE to the elastic marker, and then start stretching as you sew towards the end elastic marker. Stop stretching and 3-step zigzag the FOE to the top right edge. Trim even.
    Start the FOE again on the underside of the front right wing. 3-step zigzag FOE to the first leg elastic marker and then stretch as you sew to the end of the elastic marker. Stop stretching and 3-step zigzag the FOE, sewing relaxed around the back wings to the back elastic marker. Sew around, stretching FOE between elastic marker until you are at top left edge. Trim FOE so that it is even with the open edge.
    Finish off the front tabs by (1-2) Folding over, and (3) Folding a second time. (4) Stitch along the top edge to secure. Repeat, securing stitch to the bottom edge.
    Apply snaps to front and back wings where indicated.
    Congrats! You’ve just made the Snap-On Swimmer. Now go out and start swimming!
    If you want me to make this for you, please email me and tell me your choice of fabric - $25.00