Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Crocheted Pinafore and Diaper Cover

Since I have a baby girl coming shortly, I grabbed some pastel yarn I had in my basement and decided that rather than buying a cutsie outfit to bring her home in, I would make one. The beauty of baby clothes is that they are small, so whipping out something to fit a newborn isn't a super time-consuming project! I scoured the Internet for a girly, lacy, outfit that looked doable for my summer baby, and this pattern was perfect.

The Angel Wings Pinafore pattern is a lot easier than it looks. I would rate it an intermediate skill level. The lacy texture and ruffled sleeves make it look more complicated than it really is. I followed the pattern pretty much exactly, using sport weight yarn and a size H hook. It is crocheted in one piece, and I was able to complete it in one day.

Once this was done I really wanted to make a diaper cover to match and I came across this Newborn Diaper Cover pattern. I didn't follow the pattern exactly, but used it as a general guideline for my own cover. I "frilled" it up by going around the edges with picot stitches to create a ruffled edge. I think in retrospect the cover could have been wider in the straps and the backside, but overall I'm pretty happy with it.

UPDATE: My daughter has arrived! Here she is wearing her pinafore!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Need to Recover a Square Lampshade? Here's How!

Recovering a round lampshade is a little easier than a square or rectangle one, but the process is the same. The difference is that you will have a seam for every angle instead of one seam in the back. I'm having a baby girl and this gold shade just didn't work in her room. Rather than buy a new one, I got some scrap fabric from my stash and decided free is better!

1. Cut out your fabric. I like my projects to be really low maintenance, so I just laid my fabric on one side of my lampshade and cut out the general shape, leaving a pretty generous seam allowance on all four sides. I then used this piece as a template to cut out three more for a total of four pieces. Your pieces in no way have to be perfect because you will shape them in the next step. They just need to be big enough.

2. Pin your pieces around the lampshade, right-sides together, fitting them to the sides as closely as you can. You may go back and tighten it or loosen it in places to get as good of a fit as you can. You should have fabric sticking out from the top and bottom of the shade to fold over the edges later.

3. Slide the fabric off the shade. If you want, you can use tailor's chalk (or whatever!) to draw a line along your pins. This shade has a fluted shape, so my pins reflect the curve.

4. Sew the edges together on all four sides. If you cut your fabric to be a lot bigger than your shade, you can trim the seam allowance down at this time. If your lampshade has a substantial curve to it, you may want to clip the seam allowance. It will look like this when it is done, still wrong-side out. I placed it back on the shade and checked to make sure I was happy with the fit of the seams. You can always go back and tighten them up in places--I did!

5. Iron your seams out. It will look a lot better if you do this!

6. Fit your new shade over your old one. Once again, check the fit and make sure you are happy with it. At this point you can still adjust your seams.

7. Hot glue the excess fabric over the top and bottom edges of the shade. I'm sure there is other glue that would work, but I used hot glue. Fold the corners over as cleanly as you can. It's okay if the edges are a little uneven because you can over those up in the next step.

8. If you want a cleaner look on the inside, cover the raw edges. I used some bias tape for this purpose. Ribbon would also work.

 9. Enjoy your new-old lampshade!

This frog lamp doesn't really match the new pink lampshade yet, but we plan on painting the frogs to match as well. There's always another project waiting to happen!