Reusable Hand Towels Make An Excellent Housewarming Present

 

My big brother just moved into his new pad and I found myself a lot more excited than I probably should’ve been!  Yeah, of course there was the typical,”Yeah!  I’m so excited for you!  Wow this space is awesome!” type of feelings but deep down I was just so friggin excited to make him stuff!  A legitimate excuse to make all sorts of awesome sewing creations, and who better to make them for than someone you love?!  I mean, honestly, I am truly blessed to have two of the most amazing siblings in the world and I just LOVE making stuff for them!

I’ve made my sister some reusable paper towels before as part of a thank-you-basket for hosting my baby shower and my brother thought they were the coolest idea.  So, I promised him I’d make him his very own when he moved into his new place.

Reusable Towels
Reusable Towels

Though these towels can be a bit time consuming, they are so worth making!  I’ll be making some for my home as well.  I’ll be saving money on paper towels and adding style and decor to my kitchen and/or bathrooms.

Interested in learning how to make these?  Let me know and I’ll show ya how!  I could always document the next batch I make if that’s something you’d like to know.  🙂

Suzy

 

DIY Nursing Bra Tutorial

DIY Nursing Bra Tutorial
DIY Nursing Bra Tutorial

As if we don’t spend enough money on everything “baby” already, right?  Then here comes nursing bras, not cheap! Yes, I did cough up some money on them in the beginning because I was desperate for some ease and comfort but I refuse to continue to do so.  I have decided to turn a regular bra into a nursing bra and guess what?  At a fraction of the cost…

I’ve created this tutorial because the world wide web (and Pinterest) is in desperate need of a DIY tutorial on this.  Here’s what you’ll need:

Supplies:

  • Regular Bra
  • Hook & Eye
  • Cloth (Cotton or Knit): (2)  6×6″ squares
  • Sewing Machine
  • Thread
  • Seam Ripper
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Needle
  • Pins

Ok, so instead of converting one of my Victoria Secret bras I decided to go buy a generic bra (that and my boobs are bigger so I don’t fit into my VS bras anymore).  I found 2 bras for $7.99.  Super cheap and perfect for the tutorial. However, if you are going to buy a bra, I would recommend spending a few extra dollars because you truly do get what you pay for.  (I was not impressed with the quality of these bras as the stitching was not well done and I feel the bra looked a hot mess when I took the stitches out from the straps.)

DIY Nursing Bra: Regular Bras purchased for cheap! 2 for $7.99
DIY Nursing Bra: Regular Bras purchased for cheap! 2 for $7.99

I pulled out a nursing bra that I have on hand so that I could inspect and re-create it.

DIY Nursing Bra: Regular Bra vs Nursing Bra
DIY Nursing Bra: Regular Bra vs Nursing Bra

Carefully remove the stitches from the strap using a seam ripper.

DIY Nursing Bra: Remove Stitching
DIY Nursing Bra: Remove Stitching
DIY Nursing Bra: Strap Stitches Removed
DIY Nursing Bra: Strap Stitches Removed

After your stitches are removed, you want to get the material of your choice out.  I just repurposed a newborn shirt that we got for Silar.  He outgrew it and it was the perfect material and color for this tutorial.  You can use anything too, you may have pretty scraps laying around from past projects or even an old t-shirt that color coordinates with your bra.  (I used white for contrast during this tutorial.)

A safe bet is cutting (2) 6 inch squares of fabric.

DIY Nursing Bra: Find Material
DIY Nursing Bra: Find Material
DIY Nursing Bra: Cut Material
DIY Nursing Bra: Cut Material
DIY Nursing Bra: Fold Cloth Into Triangle
DIY Nursing Bra: Fold Cloth Into Triangle

Fold your square of fabric to form a triangle.  Folded edge is the longest side and facing towards the inside of the bra.  Place fabric on the edge of your bra and trace the side and bottom of the fabric.   The material does not need to cover the entire bra cup, see pic below.

DIY Nursing Bra: Trace Bra Outline
DIY Nursing Bra: Trace Bra Outline

Cut your outline, stitch leaving a small opening to turn your fabric inside out, then stitch that opening closed (I did an invisible stitch but you can just as easily top-stitch.  Not really a biggie.)  Then pin the fabric to the bra as shown below.

DIY Nursing Bra: Cut Cloth, Leave Small Opening, Flip Inside Out, Pin to Bra
DIY Nursing Bra: Cut Cloth, Leave Small Opening, Flip Inside Out, Pin to Bra

Top-stitch as close to the edge as you can.  I went over my stitch again to secure it because there will be a lot of tugging going on when you are getting ready to nurse.

DIY Nursing Bra: Top Stitch Cloth to Bra
DIY Nursing Bra: Top Stitch Cloth to Bra

Next pin the top of the cloth to your strap and stitch them together. I went over twice again, just to be sure.

DIY Nursing Bra: Pin Strap to Cloth
DIY Nursing Bra: Pin Strap to Cloth
DIY Nursing Bra: Top Stitch Strap
DIY Nursing Bra: Top Stitch Strap

Next up, the hook and eye.  I bought my hooks and eyes from Jo-Ann’s.  They were just a couple of bucks and came with quite a few!

DIY Nursing Bra: Hook & Eye
DIY Nursing Bra: Hook & Eye

Sew the hook onto the bra, with the hook facing down.  Test where the bra should hook on to the strap and mark where the eye should go.  Then sew the eye onto the strap. (I used the straight eye since I want to be able to unhook it easier.)

DIY Nursing Bra: Hook & Eye Attached
DIY Nursing Bra: Hook & Eye Attached
DIY Nursing Bra: Attached
DIY Nursing Bra: Attached

As I mentioned earlier, a better quality bra would’ve given me a cleaner seam when I seam-ripped the straps but alas you do get what you paid for and since no one will be seeing my bra I’m not too worried about it.

Please make sure you use thread that matches your bra, so you don’t see all the hand sewn stitches.  I used a light color for tutorial purposes.

DIY Nursing Bra: Wearing the Bra
DIY Nursing Bra: Wearing the Bra

Repeat this process for the other side and you’re done!  I spent less than $5 total on this, and that’s only because I wanted to buy a new bra and needed to purchase hooks and eyes.  You may have all these materials on hand!  If you try this tutorial, I’d love to see your project!  Feel free to email me or post a link in the comments.  🙂  And if you love this tutorial, please link back to me.

DIY Nursing Bra: Ready to Nurse
DIY Nursing Bra: Ready to Nurse

 

A Baby Ring Sling With Pockets!

DIY Tutorial: Baby Ring Sling with Pockets

After reading how convenient and easy it is to make a ring sling, I have been so excited to make my own for baby Silar.  He just loves to be with me all the time, and I absolutely adore it but sometimes mama needs to get things done around the house!  So a ring sling was the perfect solution.  Not to mention that you can nurse the baby in a ring sling!!  What?!  That had me sold immediately!

Baby Silar having a little tummy time!
Baby Silar having a little tummy time!

I bought this beautiful material from my mom-in-law who is also an amazing seamstress.  She gave me an incredible deal on the fabric and what I love best about it is that the “wrong” side of the fabric looks just as beautiful as the “right” side.

Ring Sling Materials
Ring Sling Materials

I bought my sling rings from slingrings.com.  They are thoroughly tested to withstand a ton of weight and they come in all sorts of colors and a few varieties.  I would highly recommend them!  Here’s how I completed my sling:

First, I measured two and a quarter yards of fabric. (Side Note: 2.25 yards was a good length for a sling with no pocket, it could’ve even been shorter.  However, I decided to add a pocket AFTER my sling was done and I wish I had cut 2.5 yards of fabric so that I could fold the tail of the sling up and add the pocket at the end without having to top stitch it on.  That would’ve been a lot easier.)

My fabric was 60″ wide, wayyyy too wide.  In fact, if I cut it in half length-wise I could make TWO slings!

Now that I’ve got the fabric cut, I hemmed both long edges and one short edge.  The other short edge I left raw because that will be where I thread my sling through.  I then pleated the end with the raw edge and pinned them.  I then basted (running the sewing machine straight across without reverse stitching so the baste is easy to take out later.) the pleats and removed the pins.

Basting pleats to remove pins.
Basting pleats to remove pins.

After that I turned it over and pressed the raw edge.  Now, my fabric was thinner because I cut it earlier and my material was also pretty thin, so you may not be able to this with thicker fabric.

Folded raw edge so that the sling has a nice hem.
Folded raw edge so that the sling has a nice hem.

Then I threaded the sling through both rings, turned it over and matched the fabric side to side and stitched along the edge, and twice more for added security.

If you don’t want to add a pocket to your sling, then you are ALL DONE!! 😀 You can also watch the video below for a more in-depth look at how to make your sling, including the pleating and how to wear your sling!

Adding a pocket:

Ok, so as I mentioned earlier.  I cut 2.25 yards and decided to add a pocket after I completed the sling.  So the instructions I’m including are for a top-stitched pocket.

So after I finished the sling, I cut about a 7″ x 30″ piece of fabric and a 3″ x 30″ piece of fabric. I pressed in the edges to hem it nicely.  I then top stitched the side that would be open on the pockets to seal the hem and pinned the pocket fabric piece to the tail of the sling.  Followed by top stitching all three sides of the pocket onto the sling.  Voila, your pocket is attached!  After that you can create your compartments. I chose three, one smaller one and two larger ones.  I top stitched them to the sling and created my compartments.

After that I pinned the pocket cover to the tail, overlapping it slightly over the pockets so that I can attach snaps later.  I repeated the top stitching for the pocket cover.

Top stitched pocket cover onto sling.
Top stitched pocket cover onto sling.

Next up, I chose to add snaps to the pockets because I didn’t have any zippers handy.  I think it would be pretty cool with zippers too!  Maybe I’ll try that on the next one.  🙂

Choose where you want your snaps, and pull out a marking pen, spool of thread, hammer or mallet, and the snaps and get ready to rock and roll. (I also used some tools that I had on hand with the heavy duty snaps that I have but they really weren’t necessary.)

Tools to add snaps to pockets.
Tools to add snaps to pockets.

Once your snaps are fastened, you are all done!  😀  Now it’s time to wear your baby like I’m wearing mine now!  If you make the sling, feel free to let me know and show me your pics!  I’d love to see them!

 

Sew Crafty!

When I was a little girl my cousin taught me the ropes around a sewing machine.  I remember her giving me a ton of fabric and me creating a quilt.  I worked on that quilt for days and days.  I wish I still had that quilt.  Anyhow, it amazes me how something that happened so long ago can stick with you for so long.

Fast forward to 2012,  my hubby and I were expecting our third child!  It was starting all over again since my youngest at the time was still 8 years old.  As my pregnancy progressed I got the urge to start making things for the little bundle of joy we were expecting.  As I discovered the wonders of Pinterest, I got brave enough to whip out the sewing machine again.

I have made so many cool things that I figured, “Hey!  Why not document the fun along the way!”  I think one of my fave things to have made was the nursing cover and burp cloths for me and my bestie (who was also pregnant at the same time as me).

suzy-and-heidi
That was me on the right! My bestie was about a month ahead of me!
My completed nursing cover and burp cloths.
My completed nursing cover and burp cloths.
My bestie's cover and burp cloths.  Pretty fabric right?
My bestie’s cover and burp cloths. Pretty fabric right?

Since then I’ve done some other fun projects like a really cool casserole carrier and completely reupholstering the nursery glider.  I can’t wait to share my projects with you!

The next project I’ll be working on will be a sling for my baby, Silar.  He loves to be with me at all times so it’s about time I start wearing him with a custom made baby sling.

Stay tuned!