Babies. Maybe it’s just because I’m at that ripe old age now where my friends and past classmates are having children, but babies seem to be everywhere right now, don’t they? If I had enough time, brain power, and creativity I would forever stay away from the “boring” gift. I love giving gifts that are out of the norm. Something handmade, unexpected, or meaningful just has a bit more oompf after that fancy wrapping paper is gone.
I’m pretty close with my cousin, so when she told me she was expecting I knew that I wanted her gift to be more than just something I pulled off their registry. And it definitely had to be useful! I scoured the internet for ideas and found several pages that suggested adding a personal touch to onesies or burp cloths. Those are two things that are universal for all parents and babies and sounded like the perfect gift idea! Never mind the fact that I haven’t sewed since the 7th grade…when it was mandatory. All of a sudden I was pretty sure I’d be the next Martha Stewart.
Once my cousin found out that her bundle of joy is blue, I decided to applique 3 different patterns onto various sizes of onesies. I went with a super cute tie that I found on Crap I’ve Made, a star, and a ducky . (I found those last two on google image search.) I used the pictures on the links as a rough template for my applique. You can also click on the link for the tie for a different explanation of how to make these adorable little onesies. I read her tutorial, wrote virtually nothing down and headed off to the brand new Joann Fabrics store with a very limited amount of time. Bad.idea.
Number one, Joann Fabrics is intoxicating. I could get lost in those aisles for days…and this was a new store.
Two, baby things are freaking adorable. I’d find a fabric and geek out at all the things I could do with it. I think I finally reigned myself in at 5 different fabrics.
Three, what the crap is Wonder Under? What does it look like? Where amongst all this sewing stuff do I find it? And finally, why are there 900 different types of fusible fabric?!
I made all my purchases and headed on my way only to later realize that I, of course, purchased the wrong type of Wonder Under. Turns out I should have purchased one that would have allowed me to just iron my fabric applique right to the onesie. Mine only fused to one side of the fabric, so I guess I just stiffened my fabric up a bit. I just used some spray adhesive instead.
1. Decide on shapes to applique and print off and cut out templates.
2. Trace the shapes onto fusible fabric and cut out. (Or lazily attempt to hold the template onto the fabric while cutting.)
3. Iron the fusible fabric to the wrong side (the side you won’t see) of your fabric to be appliqued. Then cut out your shape.
4. Iron the onesie so that you have a nice flat surface to work with while sewing.
5. Spray applique with spray adhesive and attach to onesie exactly how you’d like the finished product. It’s a good idea to play around with this BEFORE you spray it down.
6. Take a break because you are terrified to start the actual sewing portion of this project.
7. Come back the next day with a fresh outlook. It’ll be a piece a cake! These designs are mostly straight lines!
8. Locate your instruction manual for your older-than-dirt sewing machine. Read a little bit and think to yourself, “I got this!”
9. Remove the bobbin to check thread color. It’s white! Score! Put bobbin back in and try to get the thread up into the machine.
10. Try again… and again… and again.
11. Curse yourself for removing the bobbin in the first place. Allow your hubby to be “the rescuer” and “take a look at it for you”. Pick up the instruction manual and finally figure it out.
12. Begin sewing until the machine jams. Put down whatever object you were about to throw and walk away.
13. Call in a friend to sit there with you and figure it out. (Thank you, Katie!!)
14. Stich around the entire applique and you’re done!
My finished products aren’t to Martha standards, I’m sure, but I think they turned out pretty great for my complete lack of experience. Check it out!
I also spruced up some burp cloths. I bought 6 ply padded diapers from Target. I had previously purchased some from Wal-Mart, but the ends on those diapers are more rounded. All I did was sew some ribbon onto one side. I messed my first one up pretty good. (That whole reading directions thing got me once again…) On my first one I did also try to add ribbon to both sides. I didn’t love the way it looked with lots of stitching, so I stuck to just one side. Go ahead and check out Felt So Cute for her burp cloth tutorial,too! She was my inspiration, here!
1. Cut a piece of ribbon long enough for one end of the burp cloth, but leave a little extra length.
2. Fold the end of the ribbon under (make a hem) and line up with the end of the burp cloth.
3. Pin the ribbon in place all along the burp cloth. Make sure to fold over and pin the other end of the ribbon as well.
4. Sew along all 4 sides of the ribbon. That’s it!
In hindsight, I should have done these first. A straight line would have been a nice way to ease me into this whole sewing thing. Regardless of my mishaps, I’m looking forward to doing a bit more sewing! Someday I would like to make myself some new curtains!