Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pencil rolls

I own far too much novelty fabric, I just can't help myself. A lot of it gets used to make hairclips and buttons, but the rest just sits there prettying up the cupboard. So I was thrilled to be able to put some of it to good use this week by making kids' pencil rolls using the free tutorial over at Little Munchkins.

It's an easy, satisfying project that you can make up very quickly, and the end result is so lovely and perfect to give as a gift.

I made two - a boyish one for my nephew and a decidedly girly one to give my daughter for her 2nd birthday this week. I used Kokka's Toyland in 'natural' with a coordinating yellow cotton canvas for the boy one, and I have no idea of the fabric I used for my daughter as it was a gift and there's nothing to identify it on the selvedge. It's cute though - a black base with flowers, rainbows, animals, trees etc. I don't normally like black for little girls so used contrasting pink thread to stitch it up.

I made up the boy roll according to the instructions but included a layer of thin fusible fleece to the girl's one. I did this because the black fabric showed up through the pink lining. I was worried the fleece would be too bulky but it turned out really well and the roll has a nice feel to it.

I'll definitely make up more pencil rolls in the future. I had fun picking out the fabric combinations and ribbons (green grosgrain with cream polka dots for the boy, and cream grosgrain with black stitching for the girl) and they're so quick and easy to make.

The end products! I adjusted the number of pockets for the yellow roll as the set of pencils I used only had 10 in the box.

I used Kokka's 'Toyland' fabric in Natural. This photo is a bit dark but you get the idea...

Contrasting pink stitching to brighten up the black basecloth.

All rolled up and ready to go. The ribbons still need to be cut to size.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Sweet and simple bloomers

I have Spring and Summer babies, so they spent many of their early days in nothing but a nappy and a singlet (in fact that's all my son is wearing right now). A couple of friends have recently had babies so I decided to make them some cotton bloomers to cover their nappies and keep them cool.

The pattern is from Lotta Jansdotter's book Simple Sewing for Baby. The projects in this book are sweet and very basic, so suited to a beginner. More experienced sewers would be able to whip up most projects in an afternoon or less.

The bloomers turned out well, although I think next time I will adjust the pattern slightly to widen the crotch.

I used Sandi Henderson's Ginger Blossom fabric for the girls' bloomers. The orange boys' bloomers are from a scrap I found in my cupboard (!) and the blue fabric is from Amy Butler's Belle collection. It also happens to be one of my all time favourite fabrics.

I'll use any excuse to make button clips, so I made a couple of pairs to match the girly bloomers.

Just love, love, love that blue fabric. I have metres of it!

Bloomers and matching clips using fabric from Sandi Henderson's Ginger Blossom collection.

Taking them for a test drive! Bloomers by me, cute tush by my son.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Baby blocks

I've had an unfinished project sitting in the cupboard for months and finally managed to pull it out and finish it yesterday while my son was asleep. I'm cranky at myself for not finishing it sooner, but I procrastinated on the hand-sewing.

It's a Christening present for a friend's daughter. I used prints from the Moda Urban Chicks collection with a coordinating pink and green solid. The pattern is from Amy Butler's Little Stitches for Little Ones. The pattern was straightforward, although it took me a while, having never used a rotary cutter before.

The blocks are stuffed with cubes of medium-density foam that I had cut at Clark Rubber. They worked out at about $1 per block which I thought was a pretty good price. The foam is a few centimetres bigger than the fabric 'shell', which gives the blocks a nice rounded look.

Hopefully they'll keep little hands busy this Summer!