Baby car-seat blanket with tutorial

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We are expecting our next baby and he is going to be born (hopefuly not before) January. My three-year-old son was born in September which means we still have lots of warm winter-clothes for the little one but slightly in a different size, meaning bigger. So I am collecting warm babyclothing in newborn-size now. Also, our daily life-style is different now: I have to get into the car and pick up my older son from the kindergarten every single day at the same time. This got me thinking: how am I going to manage this with a newborn? It is something that many parent can manage, so I will, too. But to make it just a little bit easier, I figured out to create a couple things, like this car-seat baby blanket. It will be useful because the temperature in the house, in the car and in the kindergarten will never be really cold but on the street it might be. Yes, we used regular blankets with my first son but we also lost a couple of them. And we mostly used the stroller anyway, not the car seat…

To make this blanket, I needed a warm but not too thick fabric, so I choose the combination of fleece and cotton. I bought a 130x170cm big fleece blanket. I could have bought it as fabric, but I just didn’t have time to head to the fabric store. This way was easier for me and it only costed 3€. The other two fabric were already on hand at home.

Then I was searching online for DIY ideas but I couldn’t find anything that I liked. Or if I found something interesting, then it had no tutorial. So I came up with my own idea, made it, it turned out exactly how I wanted and now I am sharing the tutorial with you.

What you will need for one blanket:

– fleece ca. 130x150cm

– a cotton fabric of your choice for the inner side ca. 130x120cm

– an other cotton fabric for the bag-part ca. 50x50cm

I drew a “sample” or “plan” for myself and it looked something like this:

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I decided to make the rounded top but if you want to make a hoody, then make the square-kind top and at the end attache three pair of magnetic buttons.

First I took out the cover from our baby seat (maxi cosi) and layed on top of my fleece. I traced the edges and the holes with a pencil to get some idea how big this thing should be.

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In the car seat there are two sets of holes for the seat belt. Mark them both and the one down in the middle, as well!

DSC_0328Then comes the tricky part: I  just drew the whole shape following my “plan”. I folded it in half, so both sides will be the same, and then cut it out.

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Note: I could have made the bottom a bit wilder… next time.

Then I layed the leftover fabric underneath and cut around the bottom. Don’t have to cut farther then 5 cm from the corners. (Shown on the next picture)

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Then I took off the blanket and folded the leftover-halfcut fabric into half. Marked wher the top should be and then cut it.

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Now I had the two pieces I needed.

DSC_0333As the next step, I cut out the same shape from the baige cotton fabric, and the smaller fabric with the elephant pattern. I just simply layed the fleece pieces onto the cotton fabrics and cut around them.

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When I was finished with the cutting, I layed the two smaller parts onto each other, facing the right sides and then sewed just the top together. Then I turned it inside out and sewed it along the edge again.

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After that I was making a fabric-sandwich: put the cotton fabric wrong side down, then the smaller pieces facing the pattern up, then the fleece facing your markings down.

Babaules-takaro1Pin all four layers together and sew. Don’t forget to leave a gap somewhere to turn the whole thing inside out later.

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Then I made an other seam around the edge from where the bag on the bottom starts to the other end of it. I forgot to take a picture of this step but hopefuly you understand what I am trying to say. The important thing is to close the gap once the blanket is turned inside out. The good news is that your blanket is basically done. The last thing to do is to make those button-holes that you marked at the beginning. But before you do that, make sure to check if your markings are at the right place. Mine were not! I put back the car-seat together and put the blanket on top, just as we would use it. Then took a look at the seatbelt and made new markings.

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Then I rememberd, that there is somewhere a newborn addition/extension to the car seat. I was able to find it and tried the blanket out with it. I noticed that I had to make a third marking for the seatbelt-hole because it had a completely different size now. Don’t forget to do this!

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Finally I sewed the button holes for the seatbelts but only after careful measuring! And voila! The blanket was done! I am so happy with the result!

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My model was the huge teddy-bear once again. It is much bigger then a newborn (about 70-80cm) but I think you get the idea how the blanket works and looks in use.

 

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For me it was very important to have a cotton fabric inside of the blanket because my older son’s skin is sensitive to anything that is not cotton, so I had to make sure, that the little one has also cotton touching his skin, if possible. Just in case, you know.

I made some other great projects for the car that I will present in the next post. Not much baby-related but very practical things if you use your car a lot.

And at the end I still had lot of left-over fabric. My evening-project was to make a hat(again, with cotton on the inside) and a scarf for my older son. We call it the “elf-hat” and he loves it! (And as a bonus for me, I don’t have to pay an other 8-10€ for a new set of hat and scarf!)

DSC_0358What do you think of this project? I am very happy with the price. I gave only 3€ out, but with the cotton fabrics the hole blanket costs no more than 6-10€. If you buy something like this in a store or even online, you will at least have to pay 15-20€, if not more… But probably more. This sewing project took me about three hours which is not bad, I think. But my favorite  thing about this project, that I made it especialy  for our son, and that is priceless.

 

UPDATE: The blanket has been in use for six weeks now and it is really great. Here is a picture with our son (and no more teddy bear):
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One more baby quilt

The last piece that I sewed before the Lothringair Street Festival was a beautiful yellow and green baby quilt. It’s made from stripes so it is kind of an easy project but this time I quilted it a bit differently: with waves. I think it turned out very nicely.
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For the back side I was finally able to use that beautiful flower-printed fabric which I bought very long time ago.  I love the fresh colors and the fact that it’s unisex.

I would have been very happy if I got something like this blanket on my baby shower (if I had had one).

 

By the way a notice for all: I will go on vacation and get back to you with the results of the monthly give away sometime in July. Until then: have a great and creative time!

Elephant Baby Quilt

Last week I worked on an other baby quilt. I wanted to use my newest elephant-print fabric that I found in Hungary on our last trip. I find it very cute and perfect for baby/kids projects, so I decided to make an other blanket. After a long consideration I choose a geometrical quilt pattern and I am happy with the results.

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It wasn’t a difficult project but with my very simple home sewing machine I am not able to make advanced quilts. Anyway, my elephant baby blanket is soft and cozy and kids will love it. I can’t wait until my next craft fair where I will be selling this one, too.

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The binding is hand-stitched which takes a bit longer time but considering that this blanket is only 1x1m, it wasn’t that bad. I really like the fact, that even the backside looks very neat.

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Who wouldn’t want a blanket for his kid like this?

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Fabric baskets

I tried to make fabric baskets previously but I couldn’t really say that I succeeded. Until now! And thanks to a great tutorial on THIS site.

So I made these three fabric baskets in about one and a half hours but after the first basket it’s gotten much easier.

IMGP8805The good thing about fabric baskets that you can find many purpuses to use them. Let me show you two. This way they keep things organized on your baby’s changing table:

IMGP8804(great giftidea for baby showers!)

Or later you can use them as toy storage like here:

IMGP8807Or you can use them in the bathroom, for storing craft supplies etc. You can also make bigger ones for ex. throwing your magazines into it. Or for Christmas or birthdays for using them instead of paper gift wraps. Reusable, washable, practical, good.

Elephants

IMGP8782As I promised in my previous post, I am presenting the newest babyblanket that I sewed. I used the same technique (sewing together stripes) but I also applied three elephants on the front and one more on the back. I tried to make this blanket “unisex”, so it would be good for boys and girls, as well. What do you think? I always love most the project that I just finished, so this one is my favourite right now.

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A colourful babyblanket

A tried something new again: a babyblanket made out of stipes and let me tell you, I loved this project! I loved it because it was very easy to make, quickly done and it contains so many colours! It’s like a rainbow but even better because the colorful stripes can come in any order. I can only recomand this project to beginners and for those, who need a quick present for the next babyshower.

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And I am already working on the next, similar babyblanket that I will spice up with a couple of elephants! Are you curious? Well, it’s not done yet but here is a sneak peak:

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An other babyblanket

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This babyblanket was an other step for me learning new techniques in patchwork. Assembling triangles was new for me and I really thought through every little step of it, I was careful and watched some tutorial videos on youtube. Take a look at this picture below, it shows you the steps how I created this pattern. Yes, it does take time but at the and it will be worth it.

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Now I am proud of the final product.

IMGP8333It’s a 1x1m blanket with thicker batting, so it’s even better for those little crowling babies. I hope a little one will enjoy this blanket for a long time!

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I will be seeling this blanket with all the others at a three-day long maket in Aachen in December. (12. 06-08. Nikolausmarkt in Marienhospital)

Plans

As I mentioned in my previous post, recently I sewed two baby-blankets using new techniques. I didn’t have pictures of the second blanket but I do now and I would like to share them with you. Unfortunately I did not take picture during the sewing process, therefore I can’t give you a step by step tutorial. But if you look very closely, you’ll see that this blanket is actually a visual illusion because I sewed only squares together. Each square has four little triangles on its side using the other color.

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Put two squares next to each other that are “negatives” or “opposite colors” and the pattern will turn out very neatly!

IMGP6954I feel like all the math-classes in school were after all worth it because finally I can use that knowledge! Yeay!

This blanket it approximately 70x140cm, so it would perfectly fit to a same sized baby bed to cover it when it’s play time and not sleep-time. For the back I used the darker, deep-red fabric.

And it’ll be for sale soon on a website, called dawanda. It’s very similar to etsy.com or meska.hu in Hungary. Anybody with a payPal account can use it. And yes, I am planning on starting a small business. This is the reason why I don’t have so much time now to write: I am busy planning and researching but hopefully soon I will be able to introduce my own online business. Fingers crossed!

Notebook cover

In Germany every child has a notebook which contains medical information from birth until they turn 18. In German it’s called “U-Heft” which is short for “Untersuchungs-Heft” and that means “examination notebook”. I don’t know if in other countries there is something similar, probably yes. At least for keeping records of the child’s vaccinations.

Having a baby sower and getting tons of presents is very common also in Germany (I think). So why not make a nice and practical cover for the “U-Heft” what the parents will receive right in the hospital? There is no limit, the variations are endless: you can put an image onto the front, decorate it with ribbons, sew the baby’s name onto it, use different shades of one color, etc.

One of my friends organized a baby shower and she asked me to sew a cover for her friend’s “U-Heft”. Well, take a look at my version below!

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As you can see, I used two fabrics and one ribbon for the cover and one neutral linen fabric for the inside because the yellow fabric was too thin and transparent.

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IMGP6220The front may seem a bit “empty” for some but it’s because once the baby is born I will sew her name onto it. I hope you like it. And the great thing is that you can make this simple covers for any kind of notebook! Get creative!

Diaper Bag/Playing Mat

I read many other blogs and I just realized that my English is very poor, so I decided that I will post more pictures until I improve my language skills. This way you may understand better how things were made and help you even more. Unfortunately I don’t have many pictures of my old creations but in the future I will pay more attention to that. I promise.

My latest project was a 2 in 1 present for my dear friend Marta who had her first baby a couple of weeks ago. The present contains two peaces: a folding diaper holder and a playing mat that you can fold in and wear it as a bag. This way you can put the diaper holder in it and for example a few toys, too. It wasn’t very difficult to sew them but you need to be a little better at sewing as a beginner.

Here is the final product:

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Let’s get started. I will show how you can make it step by step!

1. You will need for the playing mat/bag:

– 80x85cm cotton fabric with patter on it (mine was blue with cute worms)

-80x85cm filling fabric (I still don’t know the proper English word for it)

-80x85cm plain cotton fabric

-60cm zigzag ribbon for the worm

-20x30cm blue fabric for the worm

-black and red stitching yarn for the eyes and the mouth of the worm

-2 pieces of 7x60cm cotton fabric with pattern for the handlers

-2 pieces of 7x60cm plain cotton material for the handlers

-2 pieces of 4,5x60cm filling material for the handlers

-6 pair of snap fasteners (13mm)

STEP 1: Put the (80x85cm) filling fabric on the wrong side of your plain (white) fabric (85x80cm) and pin them together on the edges and in the middle as well. With the edge of an old soap draw a couple of lines on the right side of your white fabric. Something like this:

It might be a good idea to pin the two fabrics together along  these lines, too. And if you do so than pin across those lines so your sewing machine will sew through the pins and you can take them out when you are done with one seam. Now it’s time to sew together the two fabrics along those lines. I suggest that you sew one line/seam vertically and then one horizontally this way you’ll have a better chance that your seams stay nice flat. When you are done don’t forget to take out all the pins!

STEP 2: It’s time to cut out the worm from the blue fabric. You just have to be creative and drew it yourself because I don’t have a pattern for that but it should look like something like this:

Now you have to cut in every 1,5-2cm along the side and fold it back. Even better if you iron it down. Before you sew this little worm onto the other fabric you must hand-stitch its eyes and mouth with the blue and red yarn. If the face is ready then turn the worm on the right side and place it in the middle of your white plain fabric (what you had just sewed together with the filling) and of course you’ll have to pin it down again.

Now get back to the sewing machine and sew your little worm onto the white fabric. When it’s done take the zig-zag ribbon and sew it onto the worm covering the edge of it.

STEP 3: Place your colored fabric and what you’ve made so far onto each other facing the wrong side of the colored fabric and the filling! Now comes a little bit of a trick. As you sewed together the filling and the white fabrics the edges may have become a little uneven. Pin this now together with your colored fabric just on a few places and then cut it straight: 5cm from the edge of the colored fabric. Careful, don’t cut your colored fabric!

Now it should look like this:

With the help of your iron fold 1cm up from your colored fabric all around. Then fold the now 4cm wide edge onto the white fabric and pin it down. The corners are a bit tricky but just fold it as you would fold a wrapping paper. Next you’ll have to sew all the way around the folding. Basically the playing mat-part is done now.

STEP 4: Making the handlers. Take the 7x60cm colored and white fabrics facing the right side. 1cm from the side sew them together on one side. When it’s done turn it out and iron your line and also the other side: fold in 1cm along the edge:

Now put the 5x60cm filling into it, pin it and sew down on the other longer side on the right side of the fabric.

STEP 5: Attaching the handlers. Now you pin down the end of the handlers on the shorter side of the playing mat and on the “outside” where the colored (blue) fabric is. Make sure they are even from the middle line. The length between the two end of one handler should be not wilder then 30cm. Follow the drawing below:

Of course you must turn 1-1,5cm from the handler underneath itself to make it look nice. Attach it to the playing mat where the “frame” runs and don’t go onto the white fabric. Sew it down on all four endings. Now it should look like this:

It is very pretty now and you are almost done! You have a good idea how it will function.

STEP 6: Fold in the two longer side of the playing mat. They should overlap in the middle as wild as the “frame” is (about 4cm). On the inside you will have to sew on the one half of the snap fasteners and on the outside the other half.  So when you fold the playing mat the two sides stay together. I hope you understand what I try to explain.

And this is it. Your playing mat/diaper bag is done! If you fold the whole thing in half you’ll have two packets what you can fill from above and carry the bag on the shoulders.

If there is one person who understood my description and liked my idea, please, let me know!