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Blankets, Handmade, Product Stories

Avocado or avocuddle? Flannel Baby Blanket

Ever see something and know you need it but not sure what for? That’s exactly how I felt when I saw this avocado couple flannel I tossed it in my cart. While I was still shopping for other material that was actually on my list, I decided I wanted to love on the traditional flannel swaddle. It is a classic baby blanket that has stood the test of time, used by mothers from all over.

Most of the mommas I’ve spoken with complained that the flannel swaddles they had were too small and difficult to use. Simple solution: make it bigger! The final dimensions of this baby blanket ended up being 35″x40-something… naturally, I can’t remember now that I’m writing this. I will, of course, remeasure it before uploading it to the shop later tonight. *settled deep into our big comfy chair watching the most recent episode of The Bachelorette so I can’t do it right this moment.

Baby blankets are strange things. Sometimes they mean more to mom or dad than the actual owner. Others are deeply loved by a tiny human and cherished forever. What an amazing feeling it is to know that something I made could be loved so deeply by someone so gentle and pure?

*pulls self together…
So my thought with the avocados was 1. the halves make a whole – precious 2. avocados make guac and who doesn’t love that?! Just kidding. I can understand how someone may not love guacamole, but only if you’re a texture person. The flavor is too wonderful to dislike.

With guac on my mind, tacos follow closely behind. I destroyed four classic corn hard shell tacos tonight. It was magical.

If you know a soon to be momma that’s been craving tacos and or guac, can I make a suggestion? Shower her with this adorable avocado swaddle and toss in the taco bout awesome burp cloths!

Handmade, Product Stories

My Many Mistakes Making My First Skirt and Headband

I remember seeing pictures of my friends as little girls in adorable matching outfits. I was the challenging child of my four siblings so I’m pretty sure my mom was happy if I was dressed when we left the house. I never imagined I would be a mom who would enjoy dressing her kid. I was so wrong. I love shopping for tiny clothes. I love putting together tiny coordinating outfits. What seems odd is that while shopping, it is difficult to find a matching skirt and headband. I’ve seen plenty of coordinating headbands but what if you want that same adorable floral on the booty and noggin?

Apparently, I’m not the only one looking for a reasonably priced matching set. A gal I ran track with in high school asked if I was able to make leggings or skirts with a matching headband. While I was still slightly traumatized by my swaddle struggles, I let her know leggings were scary but I had saved a pattern for a skirt from Pinterest.

Her daughter has beautiful red hair and momma has a hard time finding colors that work well for her. We decided an olive floral was the way to go.

Pinterest fails have been a regular occurrence in our house. Rest assured that it typically revolves around cooking rather than sewing. Any time we associate something with failure, it can make us timid. Like many of my other projects, I decided to just dive right in. The faster I start the less time I have to overthink.

The skirt went fairly smooth. Only a few oops here and there, but overall it was simple enough. I was disappointed that I didn’t’ find a cute lace trim that went with the material I chose. I guess I’ll just have to make more!

Now the headband.
Ugh. Mistake after mistake.

I had to recut a few pieces after trimming back accidental stitches or needing to pull poorly executed stitching. I was trying to replicate one of my favorites from Ivy’s collection. Looked simple enough. Maybe my brain wasn’t functioning well that day and that’s why I was driving the struggle bus. The second time I tried this same style, it went so much smoother!

After struggling through the tiny complexities, I do believe we came out with an adorable matching skirt and headband!

You can follow photographer momma Abby on Instagram!

Blankets, Handmade, Product Stories

Blanket Gift Set Swooning You Have Needed In Your Life

I’ll start by saying I totally believe in signs. I also love every baby blanket. While shopping for some other fabric last week, I saw this adorable donut and sprinkle cotton material that I fell in love with. I typically try to stick to my list when shopping and didn’t have delish donut cotton listed, so I reluctantly left it behind.

Within a few days, a good friend requested a donut themed baby blanket and headband set.

Happy Jennifer Aniston GIF

Our original plan was to find a knit material and pair it with a burp cloth she had seen and wanted. Unfortunately, I wasn’t finding what i wanted in the knit section so I asked for some creative freedom with the project. Bless her heart, she let me run wild.

I knew those tiny sweet colorful donuts were coming home with me! I decided to duplicate the blanket my sister had gifted to Ivy the day she was born. It’s a beautiful black base cotton with yellow floral cuteness backed by a soft yellow minky.

Naturally, I thought the minky wouldn’t be too much to handle. I was almost right. With a few hiccups and “dang it’s”, the blanket is completed. Now for the sprinkles on top; the headband.

Ivy refused to wear bows and headbands when she was tiny. Now she’ll pick out headbands herself and bring them to you randomly throughout the day. One of my personal favorites is light denim with white polka dots.

I measured the three segments and went to work. My first duplication, beautiful olive floral material for a sweet redhead, was slightly off but still functional. The second round of noggin decorating cuteness called for a few changes. I’m quite satisfied with my new changes. I think I can say I’m ready to go to town on these bows!

The size I based the design off fits Ivy’s average 15-month circumference measurement. She’s also been wearing that original design for a few months so I’d be confident saying it’ll fit a wide age range as it still has plenty of elastic expansion left.

I think this may be one of my favorite items to make now that I figured out the little details. Keep an eye out for more headbands to come!

Blankets, Handmade, Product Stories

The Swaddle Struggles Are Real

I’ve swooned over many floral swaddles since 2016 especially with a matching headband or hat. Something about a sweet little nugget bundled in beautiful colors just melted my heart. The way in which I had viewed swaddles was purely for their aesthetics. I foolishly ignored the articles about how many newborns prefer snuggly swaddles over loose limbs. Even as our wonderful nurse took the time to show us before we left the hospital, I smiled and listened. I didn’t practice while I had the mind and hands of experienced swaddler right there to give all the advice and guidance a new mom could want. I’ll blame hormones and sleep deprivation. That’s reasonable right?

After two weeks of miserable sleeping decisions, my husband resorted to swaddling. Magic. We went from a baby that refused to sleep anywhere but our chest or arms to a knocked out nugget of swaddled cuteness. We had two go to blankets. One was pink flannel hand me down. No idea where it currently is. The second, a handmade cotton and minky floral blanket gifted by my sister. Neither were specifically designed for swaddle but were totally functional.

After realizing the vitality of a swaddle in our home, I wanted to venture into the swaddling world as a maker. During the research process, I found there are quite a few different opinions on the best size for a swaddle. So I’ll be trying a few different sizes and material types. For my first attempt, I wanted to try using a stretchy knit material. When I came across this yellow floral design I couldn’t resist! Most of the complaints regarding swaddles seemed to be that they were too small making it difficult to finagle. I decided to go big or go home! I find that saying funning considering I love being home, going to my original home (mom & dad’s) as well as visiting the in law’s and my sibling’s homes. Back to business – I cut my material to be a solid 48″x48″ square. It was one of the first items I posted on my social media and it was the first item to be spoken for! A beautiful little lady will get wrapped up in this later this summer.
*Yes, that is indeed a bath towel that I swaddled. Ivy was sleeping at the time so I didn’t have access to any cute teddy bears.

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Although there were many learning opportunities that arose during this project, I still love the final result. If one was to look closely at the edges you would see the realness of a first timer. The buyer was made entirely aware of the lack of perfection. Which I think is a great place to start as a new mom.

There are so many blogs and articles we expose ourselves to as expecting mothers. With good intention we read and try to apply someone else’s thinking and values to our own lives because that seems to be what is best. I stopped reading shortly after I started. I felt pressured to believe and do the exact same thigns as these women who live entirely different lives. While other mothers are fantastic resources, be sure to not compare your family to others. Its entirely unfair to yourself.

Just like with the yellow swaddle, learn and made adjustments. For me, the yellow floral material was too challenging so next time I’ll use another material type. In my almost 16 months of parenting, I have already learned it is all about making adjustments!

 

Handmade, Product Stories

Headwraps – I Think I Can…

A good friend asked if I could make her a few headwraps after my initial rejuvenated craft life Instagram post. My friends seem to have more confidence in my skills than I do. Seeing how I had never worn a headwrap myself, I went to good old google to do some research. I needed significant guidance from established crafters. I found there to be a variety of sizes and styles as well as different material types. After exchanging a few messages, we chose a size, roughly 27″ x 48″, and off to the store I go. Just kidding, I was already going because there was a huge three-day sale. I may have gone twice. I will brag on the fact that my total savings listed on the recent doubled my actual total so its fine.

After finishing the edges, I wanted to share the result. Who wants to just look a picture of a rectangle of fabric? What kind of friend am I if that’s the only means of display I can muster?

I had simultaneously been speaking with my sister in law about making a “momma and me” set for her and my niece. I had been thinking about trying to find one for my own daughter but was intimidated by the idea of needing to be able to style the knot. She sent me a few websites to look through for ideas as well as some tutorials. Thank goodness for supportive, understanding family. Having a can-do attitude one evening, I dove into the world of knots I’d never experienced. Quickly fear washed over me as I realized the sizing of the wrap I made was significantly shorter than those in all the tutorials. After a moment of panic, I told myself “wing it!” As long as you have a half decent knot, in the end, its good enough. *Remember, I’m just trying to show my friend how her material turned out.

Here was my result:
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If it were an exam, I think I would have passed.

To continue my winning streak, I dove into the “momma and me” set. What could stop me now? I’ve self-taught (via tutorials) myself into a decent knot with a first round project, just do it again. Totally underestimated the size of a toddler’s head. Toddler wrap estimated length – substantially too short. Again, mini internal meltdown [must avoid adult tantrum in front of my own toddler when possible]. I decided to grab a hair tie and tie it around the ends of the mini wrap. At that point, I had hope and even convinced myself this would be more practical for small girls as they squirm and resist. Maybe that’s just my child, or maybe it is not. In a selfish moment, I held poor Ivy’s noggin and wrapped that tiny cuteness and attempted to fluff up a knot. Fail. She was not having it. So I used my thigh instead as it was a much more willing participant. I will say, I can’t wait to see this set on my sister in law and her munchkin.

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