Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Diaper Changing Pad Tutorial

Among the many other necessary items stuffed inside for baby, my diaper bag needed a coordinating changing pad. I devised this fold-up model with a handle to solve some of the issues I had with commercially available changing pads, and to avoid the fun of attempting to grope for several paper towels to line the changing table while wrangling a squirming child. It uses Velcro so the baby won't be laying on a bulky plastic buckle. There are two ziperless inside pockets, for diapers and wipes, inline with the mat so they won't drag it over the side of the changing table and onto the floor. I didn't want part of the mat that touches a public changing table to directly touch where my baby lays when the mat is folded.
6" of 1" Heavy Duty Strap
3" of 3/4" Velcro Strip
Fusible Batting (Cut into 11" x 31" rectangle and one 1 1/2" x 7" rectangle for the handle.)
1/3 yard Laminated or Regular Quilting Cotton for Outside (Cut into 12" x 32" rectangle.)
1/3 yard Quilting Cotton for Pockets and Handle (Cut into two 12" x 14" rectangles and one 8" x 3 1/2" rectangle for the handle. )
1/3 yard PUL Fabric (Cut into 12" x 32" rectangle.)
Center the fusible side of the batting on the wrong side of the Outside fabric. It should be 1/2" from each side of the Outside fabric. Press to attach the batting to the quilting cotton.
Press the 3 1/2" ends of the 8" x 3 1/2" rectangle over 1/2" toward the wrong side.
Fold the rectangle that now measures 3 1/2" x 7" in half, right sides together, matching the 8" sides.
Unfold the 8" x 3 1/2" rectangle. Align the 1 1/2" x 7" rectangle with the center fold and the two side folds on the wrong side of the fabric. Press to attach the batting to the handle with the fusible side down.
Refold the 3 1/2" ends over the batting. Refold in half with right sides together. Sew down the 7" side using a 1/4" seam allowance.
Flip right side out and press. Pin the handle to the right side of the outer fabric so each end is 2 1/2" from the longer sides of the Outside rectangle and centered between the 12" sides. Measure 1 1/2" from each end of the handle. Secure to the Outer fabric by stitching a box with an X in the center.
Sew one side of the Velcro strip to one end of the strap material. Pin the end of the strap without the Velcro 10" from the short side of the the right side of the Outside fabric and centered between the long sides. The Velcro should face the Outside fabric and extend away from the handle. Attach the last 1" of the strap to the Outside fabric using a rectangle and X.
Sew the remaining side of the Velcro 11" from the short end of the Outside fabric's right side that doesn't already have the strap attached. The closer end of the Velcro should be 8" from the short end. Attach by sewing a rectangle with an X.
Fold the two 12" x 14" rectangles in half wrong sides together in half, bringing one 12" side to the other, so it measures 12" x 7". Press.
Align the raw edges of one pocket to each end of the right side of the outside fabric. Stitch around the three raw-edges sides using a 1/4" seam.
Align the PUL fabric on the Outside fabric with right sides together. Pin the long sides and sew each using a 1/2" seam allowance.
Flip right sides out and press. Pin the short sides and sew with a 1/2" seam. Sew a diagonal line to secure each corner; then clip to eliminate bulk.
Trim the seam allowance to 1/4" using pinking shears.
Flip the pockets over to the PUL side to hide the seams.
Fold each short end to the middle.
Then fold in half and secure with the Velcro.
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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Baby Lovey

Making a baby blanket leaves me with some odd scraps that certainly aren't big enough for another blanket. Fortunately, these furry Minky pieces don't have to go to waste. It's pretty quick to transform them into a lovey.
First, cut two pieces of material the same size. Since Minky sheds like crazy, I use a pinking blade on my rotary cutter to minimize the flying fluff. Cut pieces of ribbon 5" and fold them in half with the decoration showing. At this point, stitch the ribbons closed if you are concerned about them being a safety hazard. Pin these evenly spaced along the sides of the right side (side with the pattern that you want to see) of one of the fabrics, with their raw edges matched up to the raw edge of the fabric. Align the other piece of material on top, right sides together, and pin.
Sew around the edge, leaving a 3" gap in the middle of a side in a spot without a ribbon, using a 1/2" seam allowance. Then reinforce the corners by stitching a diagonal line just outside the originally sewn line.
Trim the corners without cutting past the line of stitching.
Flip so the right sides are facing outward, one corner at a time. Pin the hole shut, and topstitch 1/2" from the edge.
Tada! You're done!
As for some additional options, you can add crinkle material. Just place it on top of the wrong side of one of the squares before sewing.
Another idea is to place a link for attaching a toy inside the ribbon before folding it over.
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Saturday, August 19, 2017

Gridster Bee: August and Strip Piecing Tutorial

This month Debbie Gomes of Little Bird Quilts requested that each bee member make a different 2016 Moda Be My Neighbor quilt block in brights with a cream, low volume background. I was assigned #12. Instead of cutting all the tiny squares for the two 9-Patches separately, I used strip piecing. I figured today I'd show you this time-saving method.
I noticed I would need four rows of red-cream-red and two rows of cream-red-cream. To figure out my cutting measurements, I cut a strip the required width for each block. For the length, I multiplied the length by the number of units I would need plus a little extra for wiggle room. Since each square was supposed to be 2" unfinished, I made the strips for the red-cream-red units 2" x at least 8" (2" x 4 units needed). For the cream-red-cream rows, I made the strips 2" x at least 4" (2" x 2 units needed). I sewed the strips together in the appropriate order.
Then I crosscut into the number of needed units using the unfinished length measurement which was 2" in this case.
After rearranging into position, I sewed the 9-Patch blocks together.

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Nursing Cover Tutorial

For those who are unfamiliar, a nursing cover is for breastfeeding when a mother prefers to be a little less exposed without hiding away in a bathroom. You put the strap around your neck so it will remain in place over a nursing baby without being held in place, as is necessary with a blanket. The boning is so that the mother can peek at her baby from straight above, making it much easier for her to position her baby. 
Supplies (May contain affiliate links.):
Washcloth ( Cut into 6" square keeping two edges intact.)
1/2 yard Boning (Cut to 16" with fabric sleeve extending over the plastic insert 1/2" on each end.)
2/3 yard Outer Fabric (Cut into 24" x 36" rectangle.)
2/3 yard Lining Fabric (Cut into a 21 1/2" x 34", 3" x 24" and a 3" x 9".)
3/4" D-Rings
Steam-a-Seam 2 1/4" Web
Place the washcloth square in the lower left corner of the right side of the Lining Fabric, aligning the raw edges of the cloth with the raw edges of the fabric. Pin and sew using an 1/8" seam around the sides and bottom, leaving the top open to create a pocket.
Press all sides of the Outer Fabric rectangle 1/2" toward the wrong side of the fabric using a Clover Hot Ruler
Press the sides and bottom over an additional 1/2".
Press the top over an additional 1". Open the most recent fold on each side back up so all sides are now folded over 1/2".

Lay the Lining fabric wrong sides together on the Outer Fabric, aligning with the inside creases. If the Lining Fabric isn't fitting properly, trim slightly to accommodate.
On the right side of the Outer Fabric, place 1/4" fusible webbing tape along each raw edge.
On the sides and bottom, remove the paper and press the Outer Fabric back in place. Stitch around the two sides and bottom with a 3/8" seam.
Center the boning along the raw edge of the top of the Lining Fabric with it curving away from the fabric. Pin in place.
Stitch the last 1/2" on the right and left sides (the fabric encasing the boning) down to the Lining Fabric.
Press the 3 1/2" rectangles in half, matching up the longer sides.
Stitch the long open side and one shorter end using a 1/4" seam allowance. For the 24" rectangle, taper toward the folded side at one end.

Cut the seam to 1/4".
Flip right sides out using a Dritz Quick Turn.
Top stich around each side of both strips 1/8" from the edge.
Slide the D-Rings on the 9" rectangle and fold in half. Sew a line to secure the D-Rings in place.
Pin the 24" tapered side of the strap beside the left side of the boning, matching the raw edge of the strap to the top of the Lining Fabric, with the strap extending onto the Lining.
Align the D-Ring side with the right side of the boning with the D-rings extending onto the Lining Fabric and the other ends aligned with the raw edge.
Press the Outer Fabric back over and stitch in place using a 7/8" seam.
Flip the sides of the strap the opposite direction, away from the Lining Fabric and over the 1" fold. Stitch in place.
There you have it--all ready for a customized baby gift!
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