Monthly Archives: June 2015

Summer Baby Sewing: 3 Piece Outfit

Summer Baby Sewing: Peekaboo Bonnet, Applique Onesie, City Gym Shorts

A couple years ago I bought a fat quarter of this great pink floral border print fabric (now hard to find, Erin McMorris’ Urban Garden line for Free Spirit) and have been keeping it for a special project ever since! With some careful cutting, I had just enough fabric for a coordinated 3 piece baby outfit. I love how it turned out, and how the border print keeps everything coordinated but it all looks a little different too!

Peekaboo Bonnet and City Gym Shorts Front-Back

First I made the Made by Rae reversible peekaboo bonnet. It’s a lovely pattern that comes together quickly, has no raw fabric edges and includes some really cute piping details. Above you can see both sides of the bonnet along with a tiny pair of Kid’s City Gym Shorts (it’s a great free pattern from The Purl Bee available here).

The shorts pattern starts at size 2 so I redrafted the pattern for 9-12 month size. I used the 2T inseam length (to make sure they covered a diaper) and took off some width and height from the top and sides. They were small enough that I just unfolded the extra wide bias tape from the legs of the shorts and used it to create the casing for the waistband.

City Gym Baby Shorts

To finish off the outfit I made a little heart applique (tutorial here). After ironing the heart onto the onesie I used a blanket stitch on my sewing machine around the edges.

Onesie with Heart Applique

And I know you want to see the whole outfit together on an adorable baby with some fabulous baby legs, so here it is!

City Gym Baby Shorts with Baby

 

 

 

Make a Baby Onesie Quilt

Onesie Quilt

Recently, I was inspired to make a quilt from my son’s onesies! This is pretty surprising because A) I generally don’t like onesie quilts and B) I’m not wild about the process of making T-shirt quilts.

Onesie Quilt

Although I LOVED the idea of having a keepsake from his first year (let’s face it… I was having a hard time saying “goodbye to all those cute clothes), I just didn’t love the look of most examples I’d seen.

Until I stumbled upon this onesie quilt sewn by Kacia at Coconut Robot!

If you are new to quilting with knit fabrics, her tutorial is excellent. I made a few modifications to make the process quicker for me, which I’ll tell you about below, in this quick and dirty onesie quilt tutorial.

Make a Onesie Quilt

Materials:

– 28 to 42 onesies (sizes ranging from newborn to 12 months). Plan on more if you want a variety, and fewer if you want a more cohesive looking quilt with some repeats

– 3 yards of Pellon SF101 ShapeFlex (affiliate link)

– Binding and backing fabric

– 1 1/3 yard backing fabric and batting (should measure at least 40″ x 46″)

– 3/8 yard binding fabric

– Highly recommended: OLFA 6 1/2″ square ruler (affiliate link)

Onesie Quilt

Finished Quilt Size: 36 1/2 ” x 42 1/2″

Quilt Assembly:

Onesie Quilt

1. Cut a 6 1/2″ square of ShapeFlex with your square ruler. Since the ShapeFlex comes in a 20″-wide roll, you should be able to cut three squares per row.

Onesie Quilt

2. Use an iron to fuse the rough side of the ShapeFlex to the wrong side of your onesie, centering it on the design if needed. Unless the onesie snaps open like this one, you’ll need to snip your onesie open, usually cutting down one long side seam and sleeve.

Onesie Quilt

3. Once the ShapeFlex is fused to the onesie, use your ruler again to trim around the square. Adding some type of fusible interfacing to the back is very important for getting crisp, clean squares that will not stretch out of shape. You’ll notice that some of my stripes warped, which is due to squeezing too many squares out of a single onesie. However, I didn’t mind this because I REALLY wanted to repeat the majority of my prints for consistency and design.

Generally, you’ll be able to center the cutout and repeat with the front and back of the onesie to get two usable squares from each one. I was able to do this with sizes from newborn to 12 months! In a few cases, I had to include a bit of bulky shoulder seam, but only enough that it would be easily hidden in the seams of the quilt.

4. I used a total of 28 onesies (or baby items) for a quilt with 42 squares. I tried to get at least 2 usable squares out of each onesie (front and back). For the grey with yellow stripes, a 9-month jumper with shorts, I was able to get 3 out of one outfit! I also made creative use of a burp cloth (barely used) and velcro swaddle when I realized I needed a few more light-colored squares.

For some of the appliqued onesies, I needed to cut out the onesie and reapply it to another square. For instance, if a zipper or seam line would be in the way. Be creative!

5. Once you have your squares fused and cut, have fun arranging them. I went with a checkerboard layout (light and dark squares) and faced all of my stripes the same direction. I used a few plain, white blocks to break up the design.

6. Sew your blocks together in each row using a scant 1/4″ seam. Press the seams open and join together the rows. I joined the blocks in each row and then used my “tiny stitches method” to join the rows together and get perfect points! You can also pin, if you wish.

Onesie Quilt

7. Baste your quilt and quilt as desired. I used a free-motion quilting stipple pattern, creatively avoiding the appliques. I made my own 2 1/2″ width quilt binding from solid navy fabric. This was my third try, and it was the winner!

Onesie Quilt

A homemade onesie quilt would make a great gift for a toddler mom . . . don’t you think?

Onesie Quilt

I think Elliot likes it!

Onesie Quilt

Have you ever made a onesie quilt or T-shirt quilt? I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and it that inspires you to try something new!

 

Dining Room Chair Covers: Sew or Staple

 

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Recently my husband I bought a set of Ikea Borge chairs for our dining room. The chairs looked great but I knew the white canvas seats the come with wouldn’t last long in a house with two little boys and frequent dinner guests! I did some searching online and came to the Harts Fabric website. After looking at their amazing selection of fabrics and laminated cottons, I contacted Harts to see if they’d be interested in partnering with me for this post. Luckily they were and I chose this great Riley Blake BPA Free Aqua Hexies. That fabric is now out of stock but they still have the yellow in stock along with a huge selection of other laminated cottons! Here’s an image of just a small selection of the ones they have.

HartsFabricLaminated

I tried covering the chairs two ways so I’ll lead you through the process for either stapling the fabric directly to the chair seat, or sewing a slipcover with elastic. These instructions include measurements specifically for the Ikea Borge chairs, but they could be modified for whatever chair you have.

Stapled Seat Cover

Let’s begin with the easy one, stapling! I used a staple gun with 1/4″ staples. For each seat, cut a rectangle 22″ wide (the fabric total width is 44″ so you can get 2 widthwise) by 20.5″ long (this measurement is along the selvage edge). These measurements give you 2″ to wrap around the back of the chair and 2 1/2″ for the other 3 sides.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

To begin, lay the top of the seat against the wrong side of the fabric. Position the 22″ side of the fabric just beyond the screw holes at the back of the seat and place one staple in the center. Then put 2 more staples to either side of the center one for a total of 5 staples about 1 1/2″ apart. Hammer down any staples that are sticking up at all. Any of the photos in this post can be clicked on for a larger view.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Stretch the fabric to remove any wrinkles and staple it to the front of the chair with 5 staples starting in the center and moving out to the sides 2″ apart. Then stretch the sides and do a row of staples on each side, starting in the center and moving out to the sides for a total of 5 staples 1 1/2″ apart.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Next staple down the front corners. On the back of the chair, first fold one piece of fabric tight toward the corner and staple down. Fold the other flap toward the corner and staple down. Next take the triangular flap you’ve just created and pull it tightly toward the middle of the chair and staple it down. From the top it will look slightly rounded and have 1 small fold on each side of the corner.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Last, staple down the back corners. This is a little tricky as there is a notch cut out for the back of the chair. From the back of the chair, fold the fabric from the back edge of the seat toward the middle of the seat and staple in place. Then fold the fabric from the side of the seat toward the middle until it’s nice and tight. Staple into place. Then take the triangular flap you’ve just created, pull it tight and move any wrinkles into the center of the notch in the seat. Staple into place. When finished your fabric will look nice and smooth with no wrinkles! If you’d like, trim off any excess fabric corners that are sticking out.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

 

 

Sewn Slipcover Seat Cover

This method took a bit more work. If you are using non-laminated fabric it’s nice that it can be removed to wash, but for these particular chairs you would have to remove the 4 screws holding the seat down before you could remove it. To use this method, first print out my free pattern (this link will open a pdf in a new window you can save or print). Pattern was designed using Ikea Borge chairs purchased May 2015, just in case they change the style in the future! Match up the stars in the pattern and tape the five pattern pages together. To use this pattern your fabric will need a small amount of give so you can stretch it tightly over the corners of the chair. It’s a little tighter than the slipcover that comes with the chair so you’ll have a nice smooth top with the laminated cotton. If you use the pattern, try making just one cover first to make sure it’ll work with your fabric!

To stabilize the fabric, either use a serger along all the edges or a sewing machine to do a zigzag stitch close to the edge. Then fold the fabric on each side (but not the corners) under by 5/8″ and sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance. This will form the casing for elastic. In the photo below you can see I used a roller foot to help the laminated cotton glide more smoothly through my sewing machine. If you don’t have one, you can try putting matte finish Scotch tape on the bottom of a regular sewing foot to keep it from sticking to the fabric.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

On the wider side of the fabric (the front of the seat), bring right sides of the corners together and sew with a 1/2″ seam allowance from the fold to just before the casing and backstitch to secure.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

On the two remaining corners (the back corners), bring the notched out section of the corner right sides together and sew from 1/2″ away from the edge on the fold, down to the edge of the fabric.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Thread 3/8″ elastic through the casing on all 4 sides. Use a nice firm elastic with  around 50% stretch (a 4″ piece will stretch to 6″ before it starts to resist). Start in the back corner and leave at least 5″ sticking out at both the start and finish. Fit the cover around your seat and pull it snug in all directions. Smooth out any wrinkles, pull the elastic tight and then tie it in a knot. If you don’t have firm elastic, string will also work if you tie it in a tight bow so you can un-string it later to get the cover off.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

 

Comparing Both Methods

Both methods worked well and the final seats look nearly identical. Personally, I preferred the staple method as it was faster, easier to get a nice smooth seat with no wrinkles, and uses less fabric. And, with the laminated cotton I’ll never have to take it off to wash, just wipe clean, so laundering isn’t an issue! I also think the stapled seats may also be a bit more stable as I’m a little concerned that all of the thread holes in the sewn version may make it more prone to rip with heavy usage. But, again, these differences are minor enough that in the final chair no one can see a difference! So far we’ve used both versions for the last week with a birthday party and house guests and they look great! The fabric hasn’t stretched to show any wrinkles and the tops all look nice and shiny.

IKEA Chairs with Laminated Cotton Covers: Sew or Staple? | Craft Buds

Thanks again to Harts Fabric for supplying the laminated cotton for this project! Make sure to check out their selection of not only laminated cotton, but also quilting cottons, apparel fabrics, patterns and more. If you’re in the Santa Cruz, CA area you can go check out their store in person!

 

HartsFabric

 

 

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