Who’s a Pretty Polly?

Blue Peter fans you’re in for a treat, a toilet tube parrot!

Loo Roll Parrot

This cute handmade parrot was made to go with Henry’s swashbuckling pirate hat! I love that you can turn a simple toilet roll into something like this. Mum’s don’t let your lovely toilet roll tubes go to waste, here’s some inspiration to get you making some amazing toilet tube makes of your own!

Furniture Makeover: 1 Chest, 1 Morning…

I picked up a hideous pine chest of drawers aaaages ago from a local second hand shop. I’m a sucker for quality, no matter how uuuugly, and this was a solid piece of furniture. The drawers actually have dovetail joints. Yes my friends, I am talking dovetail joints here. Here’s a reference for all those who missed that Design & Tech class…

Furniture Makeover

It was a steal at £25 and with a smidgen of DIY attention, I’ve transformed it into a nice piece of furniture for Henry’s room. Do you like before and after shots? Good. I knew I liked you for a reason… I love before and afters too!

Furniture Makeover Furniture Makeover

It took me one morning to do. No lie. I used Rust-Oleum Chalky Finish Furniture Paint in Sage Green on the drawers and Rust-Oleum Chalky Finish Furniture Paint in Mustard Yellow for the handles.

So, what do you think?

Still Knitting…

Last year during #WoolWeek, I cast on 32 stitches on a size 6 needle and started a blanket for Henry. Well it’s progressed a bit…

DIY Knitted Blanket

When I say a ‘bit’ I mean 11.4 squares…

Now I’m no knitter, I taught myself to knit using a magazine. I didn’t have a plan for the blanket when I started it either, I just jumped straight in thinking…

Meh, who needs a pattern?

And started knitting squares using a garter stitch (the only stitch I know). But it seems I’ve made a hot mess of it… my squares are more like rectangles. Oops. And my knitting is slower than evolution. 11.4 squares in four months?! Say whaaat? Is that all you got Kellita? I told you, I’m no knitter…

Even now, I don’t have a real plan for Henry’s blanket. It needs to be at least double the size though and I’m seeing lots of fringe tassels around the edges. Abit like this one…
Knitted Blanket InspirationOnly greener, with rectangles instead of squares. Squares are so, so… overrated. I’m hoping if I knuckle down and do a bit every evening it will be finished soon… I’ll keep you posted!

Matchy-Matchy PJ’s

Look, I made Henry and Carmen PJ bottoms. And as I’m an unashamedly huge fan of all things matchy-matchy, they are indeed matching!

PJ Pants Boys

PJ pants baby girl

They wore these to bed on Christmas Eve. Yay for matchy-matchy Christmas awesomeness, which they can’t object to on account of being too small!

Roll Up Chalk Mat (A Toddler Essential)

Planes, trains, restaurants…and toddlers! That’s the stuff nightmares are made of. Or at least it was until I made this simple little roll up chalk mat! It’s a chalk board on one side, ideal for drawing and scribbling, and a place mat on the other. Perfect for a busy toddler on the go. And the best part is that you don’t need to be a sewing genius to make it.

Chalk Roll DIY

You will need:

  • Chalk board fabric
  • Backing fabric (I used a wipe clean fabric)
  • Bias binding tape
  • Ribbon
  • Adhesive glue spray (I used a carpet/vinyl spray adhesive from my local carpet retailer)
  • Usual sewing supplies (thread, sewing machine, etc.)

Chalk Roll DIY

How to do it:

  1. Cut out the chalkboard fabric to the desired size and use this as a template for the backing fabric
  2. Glue the wrong sides of chalk board fabric and backing fabric together
  3. Pin bias tape around all edges. Tuck under ends to conceal the raw edges and stitch through all thicknesses

    Here’s a tip: Test your stitches on scraps of fabric before you begin, adjust the thread tension if necessary until the stitches play nicely.  This is a lesson I learnt the hard way.

  4. Sew a ribbon on the edge of the place mat
  5. Prime the chalk board fabric by rubbing chalk all over the surface and then erasing it

Give it to your toddler, and enjoy some peace and quiet, yay!

How to Make a Toddler Pillowcase

There never was a child so lovely, but his mother was glad to get him asleep
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

Today I made Henry a new pillowcase to match his drawstring bags. Who knew that one little pillowcase could make such a lot of difference to his life. He couldn’t wait to get into bed this evening!  If you’re having toddler bedtime battles, try making a new pillowcase… It’s so much cheaper than counseling. Here’s how to make one…

Toddler Pillowcase Tutorial

You will need:

  • One piece of fabric 150cm x 45cm
  • 1 x Cot bed pillow (40cm by 60cm)
  • Usual sewing supplies (thread, sewing machine, etc.)

To make the pillowcase:

  1. Turn in a double 0.5″ (12 mm) hem at each short edge of your long rectangle of fabric and pin. Machine stitch the hems.
    Toddler Pillowcase Tutorial
  2. Now fold (and iron) one hemmed edge down about 20 cm down. Then, fold the fabric in half (right sides together) and pin.
    Toddler Pillowcase Tutorial
  3. Sew (straight stitch and zig-zag stitch) along two of the open edges using a 1cm seam allowance, leaving the edges you hemmed earlier open.
  4. Finally, flip inside out and stuff with a pillow.

Just like that, you’ve made your child a new pillowcase. Sewing projects don’t get much easier than that. If you make one using this how-to, please send me a photo. I would love to see it! Oh, and If you’re planning to make a matching duvet cover here’s a how-to I made earlier.

Homemade Christmas Stocking

68 days until the big day. Yes, I’m talking Christmas again. Despite living in shoe string alley (AKA maternity leave), I’ve never felt so excited about Christmas. Being broke forces creativity and, like blondes, creative people have waaaay more fun! How fun and festive is my handmade stocking? If the white pom poms don’t attract Father Christmas, I don’t know what will.

handmade christmas stocking

I made it using the free pattern and how-to from Sew Scrumptious. The step by step instructions are easy to follow and it’s a super quick sew, it’ll take about an hour. The stocking is lined so everything is nice and neat on the inside too.

Homemade Christmas Stocking

The how-to doesn’t include any embellishment. I chose to add the white pom pom trim but you could embellish the cuff with anything that takes your fancy. There are so many, many possibilities! Do share your own ideas for embellishing Christmas stockings in the comments below.

Homemade Christmas Stocking

For more inspiration, follow my Christmas board on Pinterest and stay tuned for my take on more homemade gifts in the run up to the big day. 

 

 

Mastering the Dark Art of Knitting for #WoolWeek

It’s UK #WoolWeek, seven days dedicated to celebrating wool, and a perfect excuse to conquer my fear of knitting. I’ve always had a massive fear of knitting. Those of you who’ve looked at a knitting pattern will understand why. They’re literally as complicated as algebra. These naughty knitters have actually developed their own language, knit-speak. It’s their way of ensuring that their knitting remains a dark art, reserved only for Grannies. Knitters, you can’t pull the wool over my eyes, I’m on to you.

So, you’re sitting there and wondering how did I get on? I won’t lie. It hasn’t been easy. I read a lot of books on knitting, cover to cover, and still didn’t get it. Until, by chance, I came across the first issue of a magazine called Simple Stylish Knitting that explained how to get started (in plain English).

First Knitting Project

Hooray for Simple Stylish Knitting. I’ve cast on my first knitting project and I’m as happy as a sheep in neeps.

First Knitting Project

It’s the start of a blanket to go with the duvet cover I made for Henry. And I think it’s safe to say that knitting and I are going to be good friends from now on. You can do it while relaxing in front of the TV, what’s not to love? And if you think knitting is only for Grannies. Think again. Forget twerking, according to the HuffPost, knitting is where it’s at!

Any tips for a novice knitter are welcome in the comments below. Thanks!

Homemade Kid’s Apron

I made an apron as a birthday present for my nephew, Alfie. Not only will it make baking even more fun for him, but it’ll also protect his clothes from cruddy food stains. Happy nephew and happy parents = double brownie points for Auntie Kellita! And it was so easy and quick to make that I made one for Henry too. Aww, matching cousin aprons everybody. Throw in some baking supplies and this really is the perfect present for any budding toddler chef, so with Christmas just around the corner –  yep, the C-bomb already – I thought I’d show you how to make one too.

BeFunky_IMAG0417.jpg

Henry modelling his apron.

To make the apron you will need:

  • Cotton fabric 40cm wide x 42cm long
  • A metre and a half of 30mm twill tape
  • The usual sewing paraphernalia

Step 1:  Fold the fabric in half lengthways and cut a small curve across the corner, from approx. 10cm in from the top open side to approx. 23cm down.

Step 2: Fold over 1cm hem twice all the way around, press and secure with pins.

Step 3: Cut the twill tape into three lengths of 50cm.

Step 4: Tuck a strap into the hem on either side of the waist (at the bottom of the curve) and secure with a pin.

Step 5: Tuck the end of the neck strap into the hem on either side of the top of the apron and secure with a pin.

Step 6: Top stitch all the way around the apron, close to the edge, stitching through all thickness as you reach each strap. Repeat further in, so you have two rows of top stitching, and press.

Step 7: Hem the ends of the ties to stop them from fraying.

Tadah! Done!

Alfie's apron.

Alfie’s apron.

Here’s another great idea for a present and, if you enjoyed this post, I’d be very grateful if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend, or sharing it on Twitter or Facebook. Thank you.