Another of my July finishes. I have three friends who’ve had babies in the last five months and although I had some pretty awesome plans for baby gifts, I could never seem to talk myself into actually making any of them. Or I’d get something cut out, but would be too scared of sewing them because of techniques I wasn’t familiar with. So finally I decided I just needed to do SOMETHING even if it wasn’t quite the thing I had originally planned or wanted to do.
Bibs are easy, but they’re also really useful, so that’s what I went with. I had done bibs in the past for other friends but never really liked the pattern I’d been using (I believe it came from the Michael Miller website, but I could be wrong) because it used bias binding (eek!) and the sizing felt wrong, but I also never had any babies nearby to try the bibs out on. In June or early July I bought a new-to-me book Simple Sewing for Baby: 24 Easy Projects for Newborns to Toddles by Lotta Jansdotter, and it had a different bib pattern that I liked a lot more.
Jansdotter uses laminated cotton/oil-cloth and builds in a pocket to catch spilled foods, but I just used regular quilting cotton with a layer of fusible batting in the middle and skipped the pocket in favour of displaying a great big monkey on the front (of at least some of the bibs). Her pattern just requires one layer of the fabric, which is stitched with an overlock stitch or just a zigzag, but of course I couldn’t do that with my regular cotton, so I added a seam allowance to the bib and sewed it all together with right sides facing, leaving a gap to turn it right side out, and then stitched around the edges, about 1/8-in from the edges. It all turned out beautifully (except for the times I forgot to put in the velcro and then had to go back and unpick things so that I could add it without having to stitch through all the layers).
I only took photos of two, but I used the same two fabrics for all the ones I made. The fabrics are both from IKEA. The last time I was there they were selling little mini-bolts of children’s fabric for pretty decent prices, so I picked up the crazy print and the green hippos (they also had red hippos, which in retrospect, I wish I’d bought too) .
My favourite animal on the print was the monkey with the spiral on his belly, so I wasted a bunch of fabric to fussy cut that into the bib fronts – the backs are just whatever happened to land under the pattern piece when I made my cuts.
Then the hippos.. well, front and back they’ve got the same print, but I did a dumb thing and cut them out with the fabric folded in half, so the fronts have right side up hippos and the backs have upside-down ones. Oops.
Anyway, I think they turned out really cute, and I’m really pleased to have them done. The longer I left getting the baby-gifts finished, the guiltier I felt about it, and somehow the more paralysed by indecision I became. It felt good just to get it finally done.