Another one crossed off the list

Remember this?

Fleece pieces for monster soft toy

Unfinished: Monster soft toy ready to be sewn.

Well. I FINALLY got around to finishing it. Nothing to do with the fact that we will be seeing the little boy that we need to give this to tomorrow. No, not at all. But the point is, it’s done. And he’s pretty awesome I think.

Green Monster SoftieDoesn’t he just make you wanna pick him up and give him a big squeeze? Squish sure thinks so. As soon as she saw him she was giving him huge cuddles and carting him around the house. Not sure how she is going to go tomorrow when she has to give him to her friend. I think I’m going to have to make her one of her own, might be a tutorial involved if you’re lucky.

He is made from leftover pieces of microfleece from Squish’s nappies and stuffed with polyfill. The teeth are only sewn on by the stitching around the edge of the mouth. I know they will eventually get pretty ragetty and probably rip off but small, thin pieces of microfleece are hard to sew with and I couldn’t be bothered I think that will just add to his charm over time. He has nice long arms and legs which will be excellent for giving the biggest hugs ever.

Green Monster Softie closeupAw, doesn’t he look all cute there with with his legs crossed…

Anyway since he is a gift, I need to wrap him up along with the pencil case for some lovely little boys we know (who’s birthdays were in January… hey, we haven’t seen them since late last year!)

So, to continue on with the vow, I didn’t buy any wrapping paper or anything, just used what I had lying around. Luckily for me I had some kid-friendly wrapping paper leftover from last year anyway. Not cheating, isn’t it better that I use it up instead of throwing it in the rubbish? Yes, yes it is.

Not sure what I’m on about?

But anyway, here’s them both wrapped up in some wrapping paper I bought for my husband’s birthday about 3yrs ago and have been reusing it for little kids ever since:

Along with some gift tags cut from a colourful cardboard box and tied on with some random ribbon. Done.

Nicola x

Tutorial: Scrap Buster Blocks

There are many great tutorials out there for using up fabric scraps. MANY. But they all seem to involve what I consider rather large scraps. Am I the only one that keeps all the tiny pieces? Probably. But I just can’t throw out those gorgeous little bits and figure they will be good for something one day, so into the scrap box they go.

Of course because of my hoarding, I’m always on the lookout for projects to use them up. So when I came up with this idea I was very pleased with myself! Behold, the first in what I like to call “The Ultimate Scrap Buster Projects”:

This project is an Ultimate Scrap Buster because it uses those tiny little strips that you thought were no good for anything but were too pretty to throw away. The smallest piece I used was approx. 1.5cm x 6cm (the skinny blocks in the picture above).

I made these a few months ago, so for the tutorial photos I’ve used a random piece of wood from my husband’s scrap pile. It’s a piece of treated timber (see how it’s pink?) that I definitely wouldn’t give to my child to play with. The wood I used for the actual blocks is some untreated knotty pine from Bunnings (of course you’d need to be in NZ to shop there!) that I got for a few dollars each. Also, because you are smothering these things in glue, you probably don’t want to give them to children who are likely to put them in their mouths.

Let’s get on with it!

Stuff you will need:

  • Bits of wood – any suitable offcuts you have around, or a few lengths from your local hardware store
  • Sandpaper
  • Fabric scraps!
  • Watered down PVA glue (Elmer’s glue for my American friends) – 1 part water to 1 part glue. Or Mod Podge if you have it. I didn’t, glue works great.
  • Paintbrush
  • Scissors

Step 1:

Cut your bits of wood into block-sized pieces. This could really be whatever size you want. If you are like me, you pester your husband until he goes and cuts them for you. Sand the rough edges.

 

 

 

 

Step 2:

Brush a little glue on one of the faces that you want the fabric (you will do the other side later, unless you wanna be tricky and do both sides at once). Just a thin layer. Lay the fabric on top and press down. Let dry. If you are making a whole bunch, by the time you have done this step on all of the blocks, the first ones should be dry enough.

 

 

 

Step 3:

Trim the fabric as close to the edge as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

Step 4:

Brush some more glue over top,  paying special attention to the edges. Let dry.

 

 

 

 

 

Repeat for all of the faces that you want fabric on, and all of the many blocks that you want to make. After all of that hard work, you will end up with a beautiful, unique, handmade set of blocks for your child or someone elses. Or for your husband to build things while your daughter just bangs two together to make loud noises.

Enjoy!

Nicola :)