diy

Knit Breastfeeding Poncho Tutorial

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When Mila was born I made my own traditional nursing cover, and I was also given a nice one as a gift. However, in practice, these nursing covers posed many challenges- if Mila wiggled or if it was windy the cover would move and expose me. And let’s not forget that it didn’t cover my back, so if I was wearing a top that I had to lift, then I would expose my back to everyone. And have you seen what a cotton nursing cover looks like after it has been stuffed in a diaper bag for a few weeks/months? Just a little wrinkly….

Before Teegan was born, I  ran across several different variations of nursing ponchos made out of jersey knit on Etsy and I instantly fell in love.

Nursing with Mila was never easy because I didn’t make a lot of milk (because of lupus), but I managed to breastfeed her until she was 10 months old and I found out I was pregnant with Teegan. Unfortunately, when Teegan was born, my lupus was much more active and my body was in general a lot sicker, and I didn’t make any milk AT ALL. I pumped and pumped and cried and cried, but eventually realized that it wasn’t going to happen. Teegan wouldn’t even be here if I hadn’t taken so many medications to keep my lupus controlled, and so, it wasn’t that surprising that my body was tired and just couldn’t do anymore. And then when I broke my leg I realized it might have been a blessing in surprise because my body needed the calcium to heal.

I’ve been able to gift some of my breastfeeding ponchos to friends who recently had babies. And you never know, maybe I’ll get to use one if we have a #3 someday.

Look at that precious baby!

Look at that precious baby!

So, here’s how I made my new nursing poncho:

Most jersey/knit fabric is 57-62 inches wide (as compared to your standard quilting fabric that is 44 inches wide), which makes it about 30 inches wide when folded selvedge to selvedge.  I recommend getting a lighter weight jersey, especially if you live in a warm climate, because your baby may be under this material for a considerable amount of time while nursing and we don’t want him to overheat.

1. Buy 1 yard of your favorite jersey/knit material.

2. Lay out your yard of jersey material on the floor folded right sides together, with selvedge edge to selvedge edge. The cut sides should be about 30 inches and the folded side should be 36 inches.

3. For an average/tall size woman, cut your jersey at 31 inches (if you are petite I would recommend cutting it around 29 inches, but remember you can always go shorter- you can’t go longer).

NursingCover14. On the right side mark 15 inches up from the folded edge and place a pin. Continue to pin the material together from this mark out to the selvedges.

NursingCover25. Sew a 1/2 inch seam where you have placed your pins (from the selvedge edge to your 15 inch mark). Turn the poncho right side out and you have a nursing cover that stays put!

YES, there is only one seam to sew to make this poncho! And because of the nature of jersey you don’t have to finish the other seams. This might be one of the easiest things you ever make.

HAPPY NURSING!

– Erica

 

Throw Pillows

SMTD | Throw Pillow (1)

Mila’s room also doubles as my sewing room and our guest room (yes, we live in Los Angeles and only have a two bedroom apartment). Mila is actually sleeping in a bassinet in our room so right now her room is actually for changing her diapers and relaxing on the pull out couch.

Her room is pink and grey and before she was born I decided I needed to make pink throw pillows to match her chevron rug. The pink in her rug is very hard to match (it’s kind of a blush/rose). The closest color on my Kona card was blush pink.

When I lived in Boston, I made a throw pillow with an invisible zipper, so I kind if remembered how to make it. I ended up using this tutorial by Schlosser Designs to refresh my memory and help with the details. And, whoop, it turned out pretty great!

SMTD | Throw Pillow (2)

I cut my pieces the same size as the pillow forms (18 inches) because I wanted the pillows to have a tighter fit.

The cotton was too thin to make a good pillow cover so I spray basted the kona cotton to an old curtain panel I had. Then I sewed the squares together with parallel lines, one inch apart, using one of the fancy stitches on my machine. I have to say that I really like how it turned out. (I marked the parallel lines with a hera marker– Have I talked about how great it is?- You need to get one!).

-erica

Crib skirt

I decided to make our baby girl’s crib quilt rather than buying one. I wanted to be able to control the length of the skirt so that it would skim the floor (allowing me to store baby stuff discreetly under the crib). I picked a grey print as her room is pink, white and grey.

SMTD- Crib Skirt

Fabric: Stardust in Grey by Lonni Rossi, Winters Kiss Metallics collection.

I didn’t have a pattern so I just measured the dimensions and sewed 4 pieces together to a large panel that was the size of the bottom of the crib.

SMTD- Crib Skirt

I added inverse pleats to the corners because I wasn’t sure how the skirt was going to fit, but in retrospect I wish I had not added the pleats on the corners. I think I would prefer it if there were pleats/gathering along the entire skirt or not at all. I’m not a huge fan of the extra fabric just in the corners. If I had been really thinking I would have made a prototype out of muslin before making the actual skirt.

– erica

Car Seat Cozies

Last weekend we put the car seat in our stroller base. One of our friends who recently had a baby helped me with suggestions for our baby registry and she recommended car seat strap covers with a comment that she thought I could probably make my own.  So, of course, I had to make them. It would be a total disappointment if I just bought them.

They were really easy to make, and I might even write up a tutorial. I used pink “minky” on one side so they will be soft against little baby’s skin and then a brown print on the other side. They are technically reversible.

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One step closer to being ready for baby girl!

– erica

 

Masquerade Ball

Last weekend we were invited to a masquerade ball. We thought about buying masks at a party store but then we thought it would be fun to make our own.  We googled masquerade masks online and then headed out to Michael’s Arts and Crafts store. We ran around the store picking up supplies and very quickly an entire hour passed!

We brought our goodies home and started our construction. I covered my mask with a Tula Pink fabric: The Birds & the Bees Bees Knees Lapis.

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Can I just say that I love Tula Pink’s designs?!

I added pearls, ribbons, and a peacock feather.

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One of my favorite parts (that you can’t see in the picture) is we added wristlets to the bottom of the “sticks” so that our masks could dangle if we needed to free up our hands.

Jake’s mask had a much more masculine feel. I love the simplicity of his mask.

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We actually didn’t even plan to color coordinate our masks, but I guess our creative juices were inline with each other!

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And here we are…

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We had a lot of fun designing our masks. Arts and crafts are fun. We are hoping we’ll get invited to another masquerade ball because we have a lot of ideas on how to make our next masks.

(if you look real closely you can see the beginning of my little baby bump….)

– erica

The Handmade Movement.

I am loving the DIY/ handmade movement going on right now. Jake and I have been talking about it and this year we are going to try and make or buy all handmade gifts. I took the pledge at Buy Handmade. So if you are a friend or family who will be getting a gift… you are subject to this:

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-erica