Posts tagged sling

kiddo and baby sewing

I told you I would show you some of the details of the items I made at the sewcial retreat, so here we go! One of the items that people commented on most were the dresses I made for two flower girls. If I had been thinking, I would have snapped a couple pictures of the girls wearing the dresses because the wedding was yesterday afternoon! These pillowcase dresses were inspired from this dress here. I used kona cotton ‘grass’ and some brown damask fabric that we found at JoAnn’s.

flower girl dresses

From an Igloo’s dinosaur hat has been on my ‘to sew’ list since last winter. I finally got around to it at the last sewcial! Looks like Jude has a new winter hat for this year – good timing to go with his dinosaur fascination.

Dino Hat

He’s pretty cute in it, isn’t he?

My little dinosaur

My good friends are still having babies! These sets were for two of my landscape architecture classmates from college! I finished two new mama survival kits while I was at the sewcial retreat as well. Pretend like they are ironed. 🙂

The first is Patty Young, Flora and Fauna, Dandelion in Stone and Michael Miller, Citron Gray, Spa Scallop in Citron.

Sling Nursing Cover

Bibs and Burp Rags

This set is Free Spirit, Designer Beads, Beads in Apple and Patricia Bravo, Modern Affair, Royale in Sea Foam.

Sling Nursing Cover

Bibs and Burp Rags

And don’t worry, I did end up sewing a couple of things for me! That’s up in the next post. 🙂

baby land

And the babies just keep on coming! I went to a baby shower for a friend from high school this past weekend who is having a little girl very soon! I decided that this little girl needed some handmade clothing items for next summer (9-12 month olds need handmade items too!)! I made a version of a pillowcase dress (minus the pillowcase), with a shirred collar and bias tape lined arm holes that tie into bows to secure the dress. I didn’t use a pattern for this – just borrowed a friend’s daughters little dress to get the sizing appropriate. And because little girls often show their diapers, I thought a fun little set of matching bloomers was in order. I used the tutorial from MADE but instead of creating casings and threading elastic through, I just used fold-over-elastic. A little faster and probably easier to put together. And that perfect little bow? I used a fork to make it. The fabric is Alexander Henry’s Entertaining Elephants.

Pillow Case Dress Bloomers




And speaking of baby showers, I am hosting one this upcoming weekend (pictures will be coming of this – I am super excited about the theme!). But part of my gift is a handmade necessity – the nursing cover in Patricia Bravo’s Bohemian Soul, Rhapsody in Day.

Rhapsody in Day Nursing Cover



An old coworker of mine is expecting her first little boy so I sewed up a nursing cover and sling (with teal interior) in Michael Miller’s Metro Living Ring Dot in black.

Metro Living Ring Dot Nursing Cover Metro Living Ring Dot Sling

It’s raining babies!

In my little corner of the world, at least! I have been busy making many a baby item lately. Especially slings!

For my friend Heather, expecting her second little boy:
Heather's Sling

For my friend Kim, expecting her second child, a boy this time!
Kim's Sling

And for a good friend from college, expecting her first little girl!
AJ's Sling

AJ's Nursing Cover

AJ's Bibs

AJ's Burp Cloths

Can I just say how much I adore Patricia Bravo’s new collection of fabric! The purple is from the collection, Paradise and is Pond in Twilight. The green is from the collection, Oval Elements and is called Oval Elements in Green Apple.

I’m pretty sure that you guys are going to get tired of all this baby sewing that’s going on around here! Eventually I’ll sew other items . . . I promise!

This just in . . .

the shop, I mean! A deluxe New Mama Survival Kit for mama’s of little boys (or girl I guess, but I was thinking boy when I was making it)! And I am so tempted to just keep the quilt from this collection. I love the way the back turned out. Those grey polkadots are my favorite.

Fabrics are Michael Miller:: Giraffe Garden, Zoology Lagoon and Citron & Lagoon Blue Surf.

Reversible Pocket Sling Tutorial (with padding)

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Alright, the time has finally come for me to share this tutorial. I really feel that this sling has made it so much easier for me to calm Jude and just easier to keep myself sane! A new mama needs both her hands from time to time! The nice thing about this method of sling making is that you will have enough materials to make two slings. This tutorial only covers making one sling.

You will need:

2 yards of cotton fabric – exterior
2 yards of cotton fabric – interior
1″ thick upholstery foam (two 9″x2″ rectangles)
coordinating thread

Make sure to pre-wash all of your fabric in baby friendly detergent and then iron everything so it lays nice and straight! Also, you want 100% cotton fabric – nothing stretchy – you don’t want the sling to stretch out of shape. This could be dangerous.

Step 1: Preparation
Fold exterior fabric in half lengthwise and iron a crease. Cut down the middle of this crease.

You will end up with two pieces of fabric that are 2 yards by approximately 22.5″ (depending on the width of your initial yardage). You will only use one piece to make the sling.

Repeat on interior fabric. Again, you will only need one of the two pieces.

Cut 1″ thick upholstery foam into two 2″ x 9″ rectangles. This is your padding. For newborns, it pads their head from bonking on door frames and such. As they get older, it can be flipped to be worn on the bottom, padding their dangling legs!

Step 2: Sew edges
Right sides together, line up the edges and pin.

Now is a good time to trim off any excess if the fabric doesn’t line up properly.

Back-stitching at each end, sew the long sides with a 1/2″ seam allowance.

Turn fabric so that the right sides are facing out and iron flat.

Top stitch up each long side with a 1/4″ seam allowance, back-stitching at each end.

Step 3: Sizing
The best way to determine sizing is to take a piece of string and wrap it from your shoulder to your opposite hip and back to your shoulder. It will form a loop around your body, mimicking how the sling will lay. Don’t do this too tight though! Cut the string so that it hits the top of your mid-hip; you don’t want the sling to hit below your hip and you don’t want to be too far above your hip. Match your length to the chart below to get your correct size. Round up if you fall between sizes.

X-Small – 52″
Small – 56″
Medium – 60″
Large – 64″
X-Large – 68″

Step 4: Create the curve
Fold fabric in half width wise

and then again length wise.

Using the chart below with your determined measurement:

Long Edge (along fold)
Short Edge (open)

Measure from the short folded edge, mark the long folded edge:

Measuring again from the short folded edge, mark the short open edge:

This is going to make the pocket for the baby’s bottom to sit in.

Use a ruler to draw a straight line with a fabric marker between these points.

Freehand a gentle curve between the points referencing the straight line as needed.

Cut the curve out through all layers. The remnants are great to make matching burp clothes or bibs!

When you are done, unfold it and it should look like this:

This is the overall shape that we’re looking for:

Step 5: Padding
Insert padding inside sling, one on each open side. Eventually the padding will lay against the straight seam, but for now, it’s just going to float freely until we sew the sling shut. Make sure it’s far enough back that it won’t get in the way of your stitching.

Step 6: Flat felled seam
Fold in half longways and match up the curves. Pin in place.

Sew a 1/4″ seam along the curve, back-stitching at each end, shutting the tube of fabric.

Trim the seam allowance to 1/8″.

Flip the fabric the other way and iron the curve so the seam you just sewed is on the inside. We’re going to encase this seam.

Following the curve, sew a 1/2″ seam around the curve, back-stitching at each end, encasing the raw edge of the seam inside. It will look a little weird because it will be sticking out (at this point, it’s called a French seam). No worries, the next step sews the edge that’s sticking up, down.

Lay the flap of fabric down and sew 1/4″ from the edge, back-stitching at each end, laying the seam down.

You might want to pin starting from the middle to help minimize any bunching. This is a sturdy seam and it needs to be! It’s holding the weight of the baby!

Step 7: Sew padding in place
Maneuver the padding so that there is a piece on either side of the flat felled seam. It should be as close to the top stitching and flat felled seam as you can get it. Pin in place. Starting from the flat felled seam, sew around the padding, back-stitching at each end, to keep it from moving around. Repeat on the other piece of padding on the other side of the flat felled seam.

One thing I’ve thought of several times but never followed through on, is that you could add a zippered pocket if you choose not to make the sling reversible. Could be nice to have a place to hold keys, a cell phone or a pacifier!

You’re all done! Click here for a pdf on how to use your new sling!

Much thanks goes to Whitney for letting me take pictures as I taught her how to make a sling! 🙂

A Sewing Saturday (and Sunday)

I haven’t sewn anything since Jude’s Kimono two days before he was born. That’s about 2 months now. Quite sad if you ask me. Well, we had another SEWcial this past Saturday, Jason and Jude had a ‘Daddy Day’ and I got to sew with the ladies! I took this opportunity to catch up on making some slings as gifts for several coworkers and friends that will be having their little ones soon (and one was for Jason too)! I finished up all six that I had set out to make and felt quite accomplished:

You might also notice the lovely lady in gray that is showcasing the slings. That was a craigslist deal that Jenn found for me. $15. . . crazy what people give away! She is an adjustable dress form. I’m pretty excited to stick her in my new craft area at the new house. I’m pretty sure she needs a name. Any suggestions?

And the Sunday sewing (it was started on Saturday but didn’t quite get finished before we needed to get to bed). Since I’m still not down to my pre-pregnancy weight, I have only be able to wear my maternity jeans. And it is HOT here in Austin. It’s been at or near 100 degrees outside since Jude was born. So, I’m determined to make a few skirts so that I am not sweating every time I step foot outside. So here is the first:

It’s a little girlier than what I typically go for, but I couldn’t get the thought of having a ruffle with this Alexander Henry fabric out of my head. So I went for it and I like it. 🙂 I used Sew What Skirts to guide me through the process. Hopefully there will be several more skirts being made soon.

So yay, with this post I can call this a craft blog again! 🙂 There will be more to come!

The New Machine.

Isn’t she beautiful?

I took her on some test drives this weekend, finishing up a couple of baby projects for me! I finished the diaper changing pad (from Little Stitches) and the baby sling.

What I’m most excited about? I finished sewing together all of the blocks for the baby quilt.

Does anyone else think the the light blue squares look a little weird in the grand scheme of the composition of the quilt? Or do they provide balance? Or is it the orange squares that are throwing things off?

UPDATE 4:05 pm: OK, based on the comments, what about something like this?

5 Months and more

Just in case you have been anxiously waiting, month 5 is already here (yeah, that’s the hair w/o the blow dryer, I kinda like it!):

It’s really crazy to me how quickly all of this is going. I’m so excited now because I get to start on the baby quilt and various other baby items since we know it’s a boy! Hopefully I have enough time to get everything done. . . It’s full steam ahead from here on out. I’m thinking I got a good start on some fabric for the quilt because some of my sewing friends and I hit up a craiglist posting for a lady that was liquidating her fabric supply. She was selling some amazing fabrics for $6 a yard. Well, what she didn’t mention was that she had a closet full of ‘scraps’ that she let us stuff into paper bags for $15 a bag. Talk about a score:

I may be going back for another bag of fabric! I think my favorite may have been the sock monkey fabric (upper left). Who knew such a thing existed! And now it’s out of print! Sunday I finished up a pouch sling for a good friend of mine from college – she’s having a little boy too and is due in March. I love the combo of zebra and solid green:

I’m making her husband a sling as well out of camo fabric (he was a ranger in the Army) but I’m waiting on his measurements because he’s a big guy and I make to make sure the ‘extra large’ is indeed large enough for his broad shoulders! And my final sewing project for Sunday evening was patching some jeans for Jason:

Somehow he manages to tear the knees out of his jeans much quicker than it seems like he should be able to! I used this tutorial and I think it turned out pretty well. We’ll see how they hold up. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be doing this on several other pairs of his jeans here shortly!