Posts Tagged 'crafts'

Handmade for Baby Swap

Handmade for baby swap

I forgot to mention this, but I’m hosting a swap on swap-bot called Handmade for Baby – Useful. The signup ends today, but here is the listing description if anyone is interested…

Find yourself making all kinds of handmade baby items? This is the chance to share your talent!

Each swap partner will make something handmade (and useful) for their partner’s baby. This could be burp cloths, handmade disposable diaper, onesie or t-shirt, bib(s), booties, quilt or blanket, diaper changing mat, etc. The important thing is that the item is handmade with care in some way – sewn, embellished, knit, embroidered, etc.

In the comments section (on the swapbot page), you can state if you have a boy or a girl and provide their name, if you’d like. Partners may not make a specific request, but can include one thing that they WOULD NOT want to receive. If you choose to make something that needs a specific size (clothing or diaper), then it is important that you message your partner.

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Sewing Baby’s Blanket


Here’s a peek at our new Ikea dresser and bookcase. Holding up the lamp
and shade is Louis the lion, one of our many wonderful shower gifts.

I finally sat down to sew baby’s blanket. The print side is leftover Alexander Henry Kleo fabric from the lovely crib skirt my mother-in-law made, and the back is pink dot minky. At the baby shower, we received two pink and white minky quilts, so I was able to return one and buy a yard of plain pink minky fabric instead.

I noticed the price of minky varies widely at our local shops. I first saw it for $20/yard where we purchased the Kleo fabric. Then I bought it elsewhere for $15, and used a coupon. Later I found it at Joann’s for $12.99/yard, but their pink wasn’t the right match.

The other thing about Minky is that it is a little hard to work with, as my mother-in-law warned me. Plus I’m a newbie sewer and had never made anything with stretchy material before. Knowing this, I tried to put in a little more effort – smoothing out the material, pinning it more often to keep creeping to a minimum, using a longer stitch length to keep the edges from buckling, decreasing the tension, and sewing it with the minky side down.

I started by cutting out matching rectangles from both fabrics. With the right sides facing, I stitched the perimeter with rounded corners, leaving a small open section at one end to turn it right side out. I trimmed and graded the raw edges, turned it right side out, and then top stitched it about a half inch from the edge. The finished size is about 30″ x 40″. I think it looks pretty good, considering.

Now, onto other baby projects…

Check this out!

My hair clip tutorial was featured on the front page of Whip up yesterday! That is so exciting! Thanks to everyone who is stopping by and leaving such wonderful and supportive comments. Yay!

Crafting in Miniature


Matchbox Dresser Drawers 2.25 x 1.5 x 2 inches (shown with mini pink post-it notes)

I have been so bad lately about making things for swaps and not photographing them. I get all wrapped up in sending them out and don’t think about it until too late. This little chest of drawers is the only thing remaining from craft time this week. It’s made up of 6 matchboxes, based upon this matchbox dresser tutorial. I used paper instead of paint, brads for the drawer pulls, and felt rounds for the feet. Each drawer contains little surprises. Tomorrow it is on its way to Sweden.


Bottlecap Pincushion 1.125 x 1.75 inches

I also made two bottlecap pincushions, which I forgot to photograph. Here, however, is one that was sent to me. Isn’t it darling? There is a little yellow bird with a beaded eye on both sides, so it’s uber cute in every direction. Thanks Crystal!

Teapot Button

I picked up this button the last time I was at Mill End. I’ve never really been a button person A) because they usually look too old-fashioned, or ornate to me and B) because I don’t know how to sew a button-hole yet. But I browsed the racks on my way out and came across this elegant little teapot novelty button by the German manufacturer Dill Buttons. I actually walked away, twice, but I knew I’d regret it if I came back and it wasn’t there.

The thing is, what am I going to do with it? Where could I put it and make it look like it belongs? Probably not a large project, which would just swallow it (it’s not quite an inch tall). Maybe something asian? And smallish? A clutch, maybe? Or does the teapot shape look too food-y to be put on an accessory? Not to mention I could never carry a clutch. I would put it down and loose it in a heartbeat. So… anyone willing to share some ideas?

Babyness – Cutest Baby Shoe Tutorials

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Spring Fever: Tokyo Tie Bag


Tokyo Tie Top Bag in Lotus by Amy Butler for Rowan fabrics

The past several days have been so beautiful. Sunny, breezy… almost warm. It inspired me to do some spring sewing this weekend–when we weren’t outside enjoying the weather, that is. Meet my new Tokyo Tie Bag, from Sew Everything Workshop.

In search of suitably spring-like fabric (and to broaden my search for a solid grey to match another fabric I already have, that I want to make a larger bag with later. You would not believe how hard it is to match greys!), I checked out Fabric Depot for the first time. It’s over on the east side of town, where I rarely wander. They bill themselves as “the largest, most complete retail fabric store in the west” with 73,000 square feet of shop space. The place is huge, seemingly a sea of fabric bolts, including some of my favorite designers, organics, and even bamboo material. And they were having a 30% off sale!

For this new little bag I found a pretty flowered pattern and a matching heavy canvas for the lining. This was a good project for me to learn some new techniques – grading seams, clipping curves and adding a snap. Actually, I decided to use a magnetic snap instead, and was happy to find this tutorial for a little help. I didn’t machine sew the hole (since I don’t know how), but I did reinforce the sides by hand. Also, I couldn’t get the prongs to lie flat on top of each other properly, so I bent them outward instead. I hope that doesn’t cause too much of a problem later on.

Because I can’t leave anything well enough alone, I altered the shape of the pattern from the original sizing specified in the book. Instead, I made the straps just a little longer and the bag body a little wider. You can download my template here, but it has to be tiled onto two sheets.

I actually remembered to wash and iron the material before getting started, but I’m thinking it was a mistake to wash the canvas. It came out of the dryer a hard, wrinkled mess. I tried stretching, ironing, re-wetting and hanging, and even used some dreaded Downy Wrinkle Releaser (why do they make it smell so strong?!), but never got it very smooth and flat again. I could swear it said it was machine washable.

Next time, I think I’ll make the straps longer, so it’s more of a shoulder bag instead of a handbag, add an inner pocket, and maybe choose an even heavier weight canvas for a slightly more structured body. Either way, it’s pretty cute. 🙂


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Other Things I Make

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