Monogrammed Velour and Flannel Baby Blanket

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It seems like everyone we know is having a baby or just had a baby. Luckily for me, many of these babies have been boys. I never sew anything for boys, so it’s a treat to get to pick out boy fabrics once in awhile.

I have a little stash of adorable boy flannel prints. I stock up on flannel every year during the Black Friday sale at Joann’s on any and every cute print I can find. It’s the best price you can find all year and it’s perfect for baby blankets and pajama pants.

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This velour and flannel blanket is a standard sew right sides together, leave a little hole for turning, flip right side out, and edgestitch the perimeter kind of blanket. To add a little personalization, I added the monogram using the flannel backing material. Funny enough, I made another of these blankets about a year ago, I just used a different flannel but the same velour, and it was for a little boy whose name also started with a G. Maybe I’ll find some pics and share…

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For the monogram, I found a font I liked on Microsoft Word, printed it out in a size I liked (not too big, not too small), cut out the pattern, and then traced it onto the flannel. To get the letter to stick to the fabric without having to use pins, I used my spray ‘n bond fusible adhesive, which worked pretty great. With the iron on kind, it can feel a little stiff. A quick zig zag stitch around the edge of the letter, and there you have it, a soft and cuddly monogrammed baby blanket.

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I also cut and serged some quick flannel receiving blankets. Most flannel blankets sold in stores are not big enough to swaddle. To make a swaddling blanket, cut off just enough on the sides of the fabric to remove the selvages and then make the blanket at least 36″ long. This size is great for swaddling. And there you have it, easy and adorable baby gifts.

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Welcome, Baby Katie!

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On March 11th, we welcomed our beautiful little Katie into the world. She has been such a dream baby and I’ve enjoyed every minute since she arrived! I can’t believe that she is already 7 weeks old today.

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My biggest worry was how the adjustment would be for Hannah. After all, it is a big change to go from almost two years of uninterrupted mommy time to suddenly having to share mommy with a newborn who needs to be fed, changed, and held round the clock. But Hannah has been an amazing big sister and absolutely loves little Katie.

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It’s been such a smooth transition that I’ve actually started to sew again! Throughout the later part of my pregnancy I was just too tired and unmotivated to sew most of the time, and when I had the energy and the desire to sew, I was too lazy to take pictures and write up a post.

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This dress was the first outfit that I sewed for Katie. I used the Geranium Dress pattern from the blog Made By Rae. It was so much fun to work on this dress (one of the best patterns I have ever used!) not long before she arrived and to think about what it would look like on her. Thankfully I did get this dress sewn up before she arrived, otherwise I’m not sure what she would have worn for her one month pictures!


Burp Cloths for Baby Sis

We’re having another girl! I’m so excited to go further overboard with the pink and the frilly. Hannah has barely anything that isn’t entirely pink or where pink is not a prominent color. At least my husband adjusted quickly and jumped on the girly bandwagon right away with Hannah. Now he’s really starting to get outnumbered! The funny thing is, he’s the youngest of three boys. He’s a quick learner, though, and a wonderful dad for daughters.

Now that we know what we’re having, I’ve caught the sewing bug! I can’t stop pinning baby tutorials on Pinterest. I’m obsessed! But the good thing is, that means new posts! The first thing I decided to make were these super cute burp cloths using this tutorial at Made. Love that blog! Instead of using regular fabric for the backing, I decided to use snuggle flannel instead. That way they are nice and soft on both sides.

Originally I planned to use white chenille like the photos in the tutorial but all they had at Joann’s was pink. I think the burp cloths turned out great with the pink, though, and it definitely complements all of the snuggle flannel prints I used. One of the great things about this project was that I was able to use some large flannel scraps and small cuts that I already had on hand but that were too small to make new pj pants for Hannah. So if you have some flannel lying around needing to be used up and you have a baby on the way or a friend or family member with a baby on the way, this is the scrap buster project for you!

We’ll see how well they work in action in just a few short months, but for now I just admire the girly cuteness!


It’s a Girl!

I’m so excited for my pastor and his wife who are expecting their first granddaughter this December! Their daughter already has two sons and was convinced that she was having another boy, but surprise, it’s a girl!

With some leftover fabric from Hannah’s birthday dress, I made my very first Janey Jumper to give to my pastor and his wife as a gift. I bought this Cottage Mama pattern forever ago and have been meaning to make one of these adorable dresses for so long but have never gotten around to it until now. And honestly, it was the perfect excuse to test out the sizing to see what would fit Hannah, since I’m thinking a Christmas themed Janey Jumper would be really cute.

The ruffle down the front is different than the one in the pattern since I only had one coordinating fabric to go with the main print. I figured out approximately how wide I wanted my ruffle to be, cut my fabric double that and added seam allowances, sewed the raw ends together with rights sides facing, flipped the fabric tube right side out, and then ironed my fabric with the seam in the center back of the tube. After running a quick gathering stitch up the middle and then gathering the fabric, I sewed it to the front of the dress following the pattern instructions.

The dress was pretty quick and easy. The only difficult part was figuring out how to sew the bottom hem. That took me a little while to wrap my mind around, but I figured it out and had no problems in the end. The  reason it was a little tricky is because the Janey Jumper is completely lined, there are no exposed seams. And so to be able to sew the bottom hem and turn the dress right side out without it getting twisted, takes some creative maneuvering. I’m glad that I read the pattern carefully and only sewed when I was convinced I had completely understood the step. Anything to avoid the dreaded seam ripper!!! Anyway, I highly recommend this pattern. Such a cute dress and it comes with a variety of different embellishments so that you can make endless Janey Jumpers for the same girl and she’ll have a variety of different looks.


Crib Rail Teething Guard Tutorial

(It’s so hard to get babies to hold still for pictures! Please ignore the strangely blurred baby hand!)

Supplies You’ll Need

fleece (I used a fleece blanket from Ikea)

sewing stuff

As shown in the picture above, you’ll need two rectangular pieces of fleece to cover the rail and a bunch of fleece strips to use for ties. So let’s get cutting!

For the front rail of my daughter’s crib (Davinci Kalani Crib & Changer), the rectangular pieces of fleece to serve as the main body of the teething guard measured roughly 50×16 inches. I figured out these measurements by draping the blanket over the crib rail. Luckily the length of the blanket was pretty much a perfect match to the length of the rail.

To determine the width I needed, I lined up the edge of the blanket with the bottom of the rail (see above were my fingers are holding the edge of the blanket in place) and then marked with a pin on the other side of the blanket that was draped over the rail where I would need to cut for it to line up with the other side of the rail. I then took the blanket off the rail, laid the fabric flat on my cutting mat, and measured the width I had marked. I added about an inch to the width for seam allowances and then cut out my two rectangles of fleece according the dimensions I had measured. (If this is confusing, which I’m sure it is, feel free to ask questions by leaving a comment!)

The above picture shows how the two sides of the rectangle meet about half an inch below the rail once it has been cut to the correct size.

To make the ties, determine the size and number of strips you’ll need. My strips initially measured 8×2 inches, which was a little on the long side so I trimmed off about 2 1/2 inches from each strip after I had sewn everything together. Because I wanted ties between each of the crib slats, I needed a total of 30 strips—15 for each side of the teething guard.

Now that you have everything cut out, it’s time to start pinning the ties in place. To do this, I took one of my rectangles of fleece and draped it over the crib rail. Then I started pinning ties so that they were spaced between each crib slat. (Sorry that the persective is a little off in the picture above. One of my goals is to get much better at photography!)

Once I had all of the ties pinned on one side, I laid the fabric flat on my cutting mat and set–I did not pin–the remaining ties on the opposite side of the ties I had pinned. Then I removed the pins holding the other ties in place.

Now you’re almost ready to sew! Place the second rectangular piece of fleece on top of the other making sure that the ties are tucked in. So that I wouldn’t sew my ties on the ends into the side seam, I moved them about 1/4” away from the edge. Since fleece has some stretch, it won’t affect the way the teething guard fits the crib.

Pin around the edge making sure to secure each tie in place. To remind myself not to sew around the entire perimeter—which I’ve done many more times than I care to admit—I put two pins about two inches apart on one of the ends.

Sew around the perimeter, making sure to leave a small opening. I used a 1/4″ seam allowance on each end so that I wouldn’t catch the ties in my seam. (The reason this was a problem for me was because the length of the blanket I used didn’t really give me much room for seam allowances on the ends). I used a 1/2 seam allowance for the lengths.

Turn right side out.

Pin the opening so that the unfinished edges are turned under.

Sew around the entire perimeter with a 1/4” seam allowance.

Tie your teething guard onto your little one’s crib and pat yourself on the back for saving a ton of money!


Crib Rail Teething Guard

*For tutorial, see this post.

Now that the little one can easily pull herself up in her crib, she has developed an appetite for crib rails. She loves to gum them. So far I haven’t spotted any tooth buds, but it’s only a matter of time until she has teeth and starts taking chunks out of her crib. You should see the pics on google images of what kids can do!!! This inspired me to make a crib rail teething guard.

A couple of months ago, I bought a light blue fleece blanket from Ikea for $2.49 and tucked it away for a future project. Since it matched the blue accents in Hannah’s crib set, I used it to make a teething guard for the side crib rail. It was super easy, didn’t take very long, and used very little fabric. A good combo if you ask me! I will probably make a teething guard for the front rail too. We’ll see how the side one works first. Happy chomping, little one!


Nursing Covers

Usually nursing and pumping are not a problem for mom’s at home, especially if you have only one little one, but when you go out into public, when you have visitors in your home, or when you visit someone else’s home, a nursing cover is definitely a good idea. Since my husband and I are traveling to see his parents for the holidays, I thought it would be the perfect time to use a wonderful nursing cover tutorial that I found on the blog, made by the mama monster.

Since I’m a fan of black and white–it matches everything and could work for both a boy or a girl–I went with a white with black vine print fabric for the main part of the nursing cover. For the straps, I used a black with white swirling dots fabric. I think it turned out really well. The only thing that I’m not so crazy about is that the straps seem a little limp. I wish that I would have used interfacing to give the fabric a little more form. It didn’t say to do this in the tutorial and I didn’t think to do so until I was done. I could redo the straps…we’ll see if I can find the motivation to rip a bunch of seams and resew the entire top of the nursing cover….somehow I just don’t see it happening ; )

I made a second nursing cover for my friend, Charlene, who recently had a baby girl. I decided to use a brown with white dotted floral print fabric. Like black and white, brown matches most things and could work for a boy or a girl. I couldn’t find a coordinating fabric I liked enough to use for the straps so I just used the same fabric for both the main body and the straps. I really like how it turned out! Also, I used interfacing for the straps on this one. Much better!

*Please excuse the shadows and strange lighting in the pics. The lighting in our apartment is florescent and since my blog pics are usually taken in the middle of the night when the little one is fast asleep and I have time to sew, there is no natural light : (