DIY Breastfeeding / Nursing Top by poppysews.com

DIY Nursing / Breastfeeding Top 2

This is a really simple DIY nursing / breastfeeding top which combines an infinity scarf/ snood and a basic stretch jersey T-shirt..

In fact, you could even just use a scarf or snood you already have, but my aim here was to make one which looked colour-matched, more like a cowl-neck top i guess..

Here is what I started with…a plain black long sleeved jersey T-shirt (ideally in a stretch jersey fabric ), and some fabric with which to make the infinity scarf/ cowl neck out of….use any colour combination you like….

With the T-shirt, I simply tried it on, marked where I would need to cut down to for  ‘feeding access’ and then took it off and cut down from the neckline…as its jersey it won’t fray, trust me, and the slit should not be visible if the scarf covers it, although you can sew a hem in this if you prefer!

For the scarf..a good idea is to measure the dimensions of another infinity scarf if you have one, tried on over the T-Shirt, to make sure it covers well..otherwise my original material was 92cm x 50cm ……Although I think making it longer so it could wrap around twice could work well (I’m working on another version of this at the moment, update on the blog very soon!).

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I then folded it in half length-ways, with right sides together, and sewed a seam. At this point you might like to zigzag stitch the seam allowance.

Then I turned it right-side out:

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At this point its a good idea to try it with the T-shirt, and safety-pin the ends together to see if you need to shorten the infinity scarfs circumference (for optimum cover) …then adjust accordingly…

I then sewed the ends of the tube together, using the sewing machine, but hand finished the last couple of inches…

Note: A very good pictorial description for how to sew the ends of the tube together can be found on shrimpsaladcircus.com.. 

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The infinity scarf /cowl neck should now be finished:

Infinity Scarf by poppysews.com

Then just simply pair with the T-shirt..the scarf should cover the feeding slit in the top, yet is easily pushed up/aside for nursing / breastfeeding…

This DIY breastfeeding top was so quick to make, and very  versatile..you could make 2 or 3 so easily, and then mix and match the scarfs…also, if its cold, you can double up the jersey T-shirts..

And here is the finished top 🙂

 

DIY Breastfeeding Cowl /Infinity Scarf Top

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Homemade Christmas Cushion Cover poppysews.com

Christmas Cushion Cover

Since having bubba #3 at the end of September I have been a bit too busy for sewing but with a bit here and there I have just finished my Christmas cushion cover 🙂

I used the same method as for my London Cushion, but before sewing the front and back pieces together I appliqued the baubles, sewed a straight line for the string of the bauble, and sewed on some little ribbons (the little ribbons are optional).

I attached the cord edging in the same way as described in my London Cushion Cover, but I used a twisted cord for this one, which gave a slightly different look.

Homemade Christmas Cushion Cover poppysews.com

If you need help with applique, a great tutorial is found at mollyandmama.com.

There are loads of variations you could make to this cushion cover idea..different fabrics for each of the baubles, a matching fabric for the edging, contrasting colour for the edge of the baubles, and so on..

If I had a little more time before Christmas I would be making another one, it would make a great Christmas present,  but christmas shopping awaits…..!

Homemade Christmas Cushion Cover poppysews.com

Homemade Infinity Scarf Refashion by Poppysews.com

Refashion Infinity Scarf

I had this material I was looking for a use for a fair while (See below)  had saved it from the bottom of a dress that my daughter had grown out, and thought it would be great to use for a new winter infinity scarf for myself…

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The animal material rescued from an old dress…

 

But first I needed to find a matching jersey material for the other side..so i picked up a charcoal coloured vest-top, in a large size, as thought it matched pretty well…

note: if the animal print material had been deeper, i could have doubled it over, which would have meant i hadn’t needed a second material…but the anyway the stretch jersey is softer….

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I needed the same length as the circumference of the animal print material, and the same depth….so I cut two concentric bands out of the vest (of the required depth), and each band at the seam:

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I then sewed them together length-ways to make one long strip of fabric, and cut it to the same length as the animal print fabric (which I had also cut through the seam on, making it one long strip of fabric also):

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The two materials (folded in half!)

I then pinned them right sides together, and sewed a seam along the top and bottom edges. I then turned the resulting ‘tube’ right-side out..

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….and sewed the ends of the tube together, using the sewing machine, with right sides of fabric together,  for most of this, but hand finishing the last couple of inches…and here it is, a pretty quick-to-make infinity scarf!

Homemade Infinity Scarf Refashion by Poppysews.com

Refashion Infinity Scarf by Poppysews.com

This was actually such an easy project I can’t wait to make another soon with a different patterned fabric….you can’t have too many scarves!

FYI: A great  tutorial on how to make these from a new sheet of fabric is on shrimpsaladcircus.com..and there is also a very good pictorial description for how to sew the ends of the tube together too!

 

DIY Nursing / Breastfeeding Top by poppysews.com

DIY Nursing Breastfeeding Top

Personally, I love wearing casual long sleeved t-shirts, especially as the weather gets cooler..but they aren’t so convenient for nursing/ breastfeeding…..so here is how you can make your own DIY nursing / breastfeeding t-shirt  for a lot less than one you might find in the shops ) ….

First I needed a basic long sleeved t-shirt and a vest top in co-coordinating colours (or any colour combination you like I guess!).. I also added a pocket to my plain grey top (see my pocket  t-shirt post for how to put one of these on, I think they definitely make a top more interesting):

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Although I bought two inexpensive new tops, you could also refashion vest and t-shirt tops you already have…

Next I tried on the long sleeved top, and marked (with a washable fabric marker) a line a couple of inches below my bust. I then added a cm for seam allowance.

Cutting off the bottom of the t-shirt, along my marked line, I then sewed a hem. As it was a stretch jersey fabric I used a ball point needle and a longer than usual stitch length for the hem (and as the jersey fabric doesn’t fray you don’t need to do a double fold hem, but I did anyway..by sewing a small hem first, then folding again and repeating) and it worked out pretty well.

I also added my pocket at this point too…

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The completed top half….

 

Now for the next part…I tried on the vest top, and marked, with a washable fabric marker again, how deep a slit down the front would need to be in order to give easy access for feeding…as long as it isn’t too low as the aim is that the slit doesn’t show underneath the upper top…

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I then cut down this slit line, and sewed the edges back by the minimum amount possible (just a single hem for this one!)… It doesn’t look like a very deep slit, but as the material is stretch jersey it works perfectly….

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….and that is it (really!).. So easy…and perfect for autumnal/cooler days and to give a change from shirts. Plus a heap cheaper than a special feeding top you might buy from a store…so more money for other clothes instead 🙂

DIY Nursing / Breastfeeding Top by poppysews.com

Update: Here is another version of my DIY breast feeding / nursing top that I have just made:

DIY Homemade Nursing Breastfeeding Top

 

 

nursing / breastfeeding vest top / tank refashion poppysews.com

DIY Nursing Vest Top Refashion

Vest Tops / tanks  are a wardrobe essential for me..they go under anything, and are particularly good for going under casual buttoned down shirts..and shirts make great nursing tops…so I thought I would DIY some nursing / breastfeeding vest-tops all ready to go, as all going well I will need a couple when bubba #3 arrives in a few weeks….

I looked at some ideas on pinterest, and quite liked this one from kokechic;  but I revised my version for a spaghetti strap vest top:

I used a similar refashion idea to my maternity vest top refashion post (but replacing the ties at the top with a button fastening instead.

I started with a basic vest top  (a lot cheaper than the nursing ones i had seen anywhere in the shops!) and some home-made bias binding tape (of width approx 0.8cm, but wider would work fine, or even better)…

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Then I simply removed the straps (on this occasion leaving the original white binding on the vest top…

I then attached my bias tape over the top of the original binding, from the top of one armhole, right around the back of the vest top, to the top of the other arm hole:

Although the bias tape over-hang looks a little long in  the above photo, bear in bind that this will be folded over by approx 0.5cm and a button needs to be sewn onto it…

I then attached the new (bias tape) vest top straps to the back of the vest top, and then tried on the vest top in order to mark where I would need to place the button hole on the strap, in order to give the required strap length.

Finally all I had to do was make the button hole in each of the upper straps, and sew buttons on to the lower straps…  and tidy up the ends of each strap by folding over and sewing (in my case I did this by hand as was afraid my sewing machine would munch up the thin strap…!)

If you are not too sure about sewing button holes with your sewing machine yet..there are some great tutorials around, such as this one by dearhandmadelife.com …although it kinda depends which type of sewing machine you have, but with a little bit of practice it becomes really easy…how amazing are sewing machines?!

Nursing / breastfeeding vest top refashion poppysews.com

And that was all! My first refashioned nursing / breastfeeding vest top all ready to go!

Nursing / breastfeeding vest top refashion poppysews.com

 

Nursing / breastfeeding vest top refashion poppysews.com

Here is another nursing / breastfeeding vest-top I made in exactly the same way….

 

Nursing / breastfeeding vest top refashion poppysews.com

A very quick way of wearing a vest top /tank with a maternity bra that I have seen a few times was cutting the vest strap and looping it around the bra strap, such as this one at iwantasqarepiece.com , but for outfits where my vest top /tank straps are visible I feel a bit conservative for this idea personally..but definitely a useful and quick idea I will be using for at least one vest top! 🙂

 

Baby leggings t-shirt upcycle poppysews.com

Baby Leggings T-Shirt Upcycle

How could i use up some jersey fabric cut-offs/scrap material? Baby leggings!  I have seen some great posts over the months for a t-shirt upcycle into baby trousers/joggers/leggings and was keen to give it a try…after all a baby can’t have too many leggings 😉

I also saw a great tutorial from sweet-verbena blog for making your own pattern from some existing clothes..so I started with a pair of 0-3 months leggings that had been my daughters when she was a baby…. I still have a feeling that I’m expecting a baby boy (5 weeks to go and then I will find out!) but I figured a baby boy wouldn’t be too fussy if the pattern came from girls leggings if they were in a more gender neutral fabric 😉

So using a sheet of paper (i used poster paper from a roll) I folded the leggings in half along the center seam and drew around them…

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These leggings didn’t have an outer side seam…so I just needed to add a seam allowance for the inside leg seams to my pattern, and also a seam allowance for the waist (which is the width of the elastic you plan to use plus the regular seam allowance…).

You may also need to add seam allowance for the bottom hem of the leggings..in this case, as my fabric already had a  hem on one edge,  I was able to use this for the ankle hem of the leggings. However, for future use, I added this seam allowance on my paper pattern anyway!

 

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I then folded the paper in half (along what would be the outside leg/left hand edge) and then cut the folded paper pattern along my seam allowance line (but not down the folded outside leg)….this was the pattern for each leg of the leggings:

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The paper pattern for both legs…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then I was ready to use my paper pattern to cut my fabric pieces:

My scrap jersey fabric...

My scrap jersey fabric…

 

 

 

 

 

 

I decided to make them a bit more interesting (and boyish) by adding some knee patches, so I cut these out of a contrasting scrap fabric (also jersey) and appliqued them on to the knees:

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Now I was ready to start sewing the leggings together…

As it was a jersey fabric I used a ball-point needle and a slightly longer stitch than usual (number 9 on my brother sewing machine) and I got a smooth seam….also, as it is a jersey fabric it shouldn’t fray so that makes it easier with regards to not having to zigzag stitch the seam…

I started by sewing the inside leg (no higher) together on each piece (with fabrics right sides together)…

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I then pinned the centers of each leg piece together (right sides together, trousers inside-out) , and carefully started sewing the seam…

 

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Sewing the center seam on the back of the leggings…

 

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Nearly there! All I had to do next was sew the elastic waist band..

I made it neat by first sewing under the raw edge of the fabric, before folding over again and sewing the elastic casing. I ensured I left a gap to insert the elastic when I had finished.

I then inserted the elastic using a safety pin attached to both ends of the elastic, sewed the elastic ends together, and finally sewed the gap in the casing closed…

(Note: Fold-over elastic is great for baby clothes..as it is nice and soft.  Also a good guide for elastic waist sizes for 6 months to 5 years guide is bitesizedbiggie.com.)

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…and ta-da…the finished baby leggings from an upcycled t-shirt! Hope baby will like them 😉

Baby Leggings T-shirt Upcycle Poppysews.com

Homemade boys baby bib by poppysews.com

Baby Bib ii (boys/unisex)

I wanted to make a baby bib in a boyish fabric (could be unisex though!) as a friend was expecting a baby boy any day and I wanted to give her something I had made…

I made it in the same way as i described in my first baby bib post 

Baby boys unisex homemade bib by poppysews.com

This time I used slightly wider bias binding than I had for my first baby bib (closer to 1cm width)….which, apart from the fiddly  neck-end bit,  was easier to put on than the thinner bias binding, but I think I prefer the look of the thinner bias binding….

Also, I didn’t have any applique for this one as the main fabric had pretty pictures on it 😉

Let me know what you think! Which do you prefer?

Nursing / breastfeeding vest top refashion poppysews.com

Maxi Dress to Maxi Skirt Refashion

Maxi Skirts are great in the summer, but have been liking the idea of having one in the winter too..thinking it would look good with a slim fitting sweater, or denim jacket (love my denim jacket) and a pair of boots..

So I picked up this maxi dress from a charity shop (its not a bad maxi dress, but I’m not one for dresses..and looking for winter wear), thinking the fabric and colour would be great for a winter maxi skirt..and for the remainder of the summer too, especially in the last month or two of pregnancy (comfy!)….

The original maxi skirt….

This is actually a pretty simple refashion…The lower hem stays in place, so I only had to deal with the waistline…

First i measured the length of the skirt required…this can be done by trying the dress on and marking with safety pins, or washable marker..or by measuring the length of a maxi skirt you already have…

You will then need to add enough length for the elastic casing: This will be the width of the elastic, multiplied by two, plus another 0.5-1 cm for the seam…

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I then folded over the top of the skirt fabric to make the casing, folding the raw edge under to make it neat and tidy and stop any fraying, and pinned and sewed…leaving a gap wide enough to insert the elastic….

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Finally, i measured out and cut the length of elastic required for my waistline…and using a safety pin attached to one end of the elastic I fed it through the elastic casing, being careful not to lose the other end (it helps to pin the other end to the opening when feeding the elastic through)…

I then joined the two elastic ends together securely, and sewed up the gap in the casing….and that was all! Winter or summer maxi skirt ready to wear!

 

Maxi Dress Skirt Refashion poppysews.comMaxi Dress Skirt Refashion poppysews.com

Maxi dress skirt refashion poppysews.com

DIY Applique Muslin Burp Cloths poppysews.com

Applique Muslin Cloths

So I am even more sure I am expecting a baby boy in the autumn now..I was out the other day and a lady we got chatting to (didn’t actually know her…) asked if i was expecting a boy..and she went on to say that it looked like I was from “the lay of the land”..presumably my bump…

Yeah I know, what does she know? I don’t even believe that old wives tale about the bump out front means a boy or whatever…but it was a bit weird as she sounded so sure! So anyway, I will need some muslin cloths, and I am still feeling bored by the overly boyish things in the shops..and since I LOVE applique I decided i would applique some muslin cloths with a baby boy in mind, just in case 😉

This was my first version, i used a gorgeous bear applique from Freeapplique.com

(note: a great tutorial for applique is found at Molly and Mama)

DIY Applique Muslin Cloths poppysews.comDIY Applique Muslin Burp Cloths poppysews.comDIY Applique Muslin Burp Cloths poppysews.com

One thing I realised as I was sewing on the first bear applique was that the muslin material is too thin and the needle was pulling on it too much and so it needed some ‘backing up’.. so from then on I used applique backing fabric ironed on to the reverse side of the muslin cloth before zig-zag stitching the bear on to the fabric…

Here are the other two applique muslin cloth designs:

Would love any feedback as to which you think looks cutest (or suggested improvements!)…

DIY Applique Muslin Burp Cloths poppysews.comDIY Applique Muslin Burp Cloths poppysews.com

 

Vest Top Maternity Refashion

Summer sales everywhere, happy days! I found a £1 vest top in a sale, in a very large size so far too wide across the chest and back although not so much on my growing bump 😉 ….I liked the colour, I needed some more pink clothes…and so I thought ‘maybe i can do something with this…”

So I decided i do a maternity refashion with it, and start by making it (even more) summery by adding some floral bias tape straps to it…

I started by cutting the original strap off the arm hole and front, and then cutting in to the neckline by a few cm each side (making it narrower at the chest) …

I then made some bias tape out of some floral fabric (a good tutorial for making your own is found at stop staring and start sewing , and for attaching bias tape at Cailamade.com , and I attached it to the armhole, over the raw edge, and by enough length each side to bring up the bias tape and tie into a knot or bow. (start with plenty, up to a metre each side, then you can decrease if necessary…)

At this point, as I kind of went blindly in to the project, I realised the back had not been dealt with, in that it was still way too wide at the back (I know, I know..)..what i should have done was taken it in at the side seams before attaching the bias tape…

So anyway..I did the following instead..I cut out a large triangle from the back of the top, and prepared a much smaller triangle of my floral fabric to put in its place, thus taking in the back by enough to make it fit better….

 

At least it makes the back more colourful 😉 if a little imperfect….

And the finished maternity refashion vest top was ready just in time for the start of the first summer heatwave.. 😎

Vest Top Maternity Refashion Poppysews.com