DIY Felt Indian Headbands

For about five minutes I was sitting there thinking about it, if it was OK to write Indian or if I should rather use Native American. Seriously. Then I just decided to leave it be. I hope nobody gets offended by it.

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Liv is really getting into Role-Playing-Games lately. Indians, knights, princesses, ballet dancers, pirates, police,… anything, really.

One of her favourite (role playing) games is playing Indians with her dad, where they paint on their faces and catch some little toy animals which get to be tied to little poles with shoelaces. Ok, they’re not shoe-laces really, they’re actually meant for practicing putting beads on, but they look like it.

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So, you may or more probably may not remember, when I wrote about the Advent Calendar I made for Liv this (last) year… well, for this Christmas… I wrote I had the intentions to sew something for at least one of the packages. Of course, I was putting it off until a day or two before she was going to open it, but I did it. And since the above described game is such a favourite, I made two headbands for her (and us).

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I made them out of felt, since it is easy and quick to work with, you don’t need to finish edges or anything, it holds form well enough, but is yet something you don’t need to worry about when in use of little kids. It’s not easy to be crushed or damaged.

The colours I used were chosen on the go, really, whatever combination seemed pleasing to my eye at the moment. So one ended up being in earthy tones, the other one in a combination of blues and yellows. The lighter blue felts were too thin, though, so I had to put another one underneath. This way the headband is a little bit different from each side. The blue and yellow one is also Liv’s favourite.

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I topstiched each “feather” to add a little bit of the feather-like texture, not because it would have been necessary (except the thin ones I had to make double-layered, as mentioned). In a minimalistic sense, of course, as you can see.

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Liv has a head circumference that is 50cm/19.6inches. I used 20cm of elastic band (for each, of course), the rest is two felt stripes sewn together and the “feathers” in between. The feathers were drawn very much “from the eye” as I went, each a little bit different in size.

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I’m happy to say it was one of her favourite packages from the Advent Calendar. :-)

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And though, this little cousin is yet too small to play Indians with Liv, it’s surprisingly the only (usable) photo I have yet where you could see it on Liv’s head.

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DIY Stuffed Fabric Whale

The weather seems like it’s turning slowly towards spring, even though it would much more suit me to be winter for just a little while longer. I’ve been very busy (and tired) these last few weeks, so let me catch up on things I’ve wanting to post since December. Ok, since Christmas.

My nephew loves fishes. Loves is probably a bit of a mild word. I should rather say he’s obsessed with fishes. Although I’m not sure if it’s just me or if his obsession is getting weaker. Anyway.

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When I was trying to think about something what to give him for Christmas, it always came down to very few things I could think of he would really like and enjoy (and didn’t already have). And somehow it seemed so much more important to me to make something  (special) for him, rather than buying an expensive toy, even though he doesn’t know the difference nor can appreciate it yet since he’s not even 2 and half (and who knows if he ever will, since he may rather loose interest in it sooner than he might appreciate it). Still here I was, wanting to make something for him, and what else other than something to do with fishes.

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Quite by chance I came upon this wonderful DIY denim whale tutorial by Valaan Villapaita on pinterest while browsing through some random things, and it got me hooked right away.

So here’s my version of it.

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You might or might not find the fabric I used familiar. It’s the one I customized by dyeing when I was doing the little stuffed Rhino. I still had some leftover bits from that, which seemed just perfect for a whale.

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Unlike the tutorial, I stuffed also the tail and fins. The denim of the original whales might be thicker and less lacking in stuffing, but the thin cotton I used for my (nephew’s) whale just seemed too empty and lifeless without it. Also I just drew the eyes with a textile pen, because I didn’t want to sew it on, nor did I have a suitable button I could use.

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Well. He seems like he likes it, so that’s all I could ever hope for. And I’m glad.

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Liv seemed to be a little jealous, also wanting such a whale. Oh, my dear girl, I should kick myself in the butt and finish some of those things I’ve wanted to do for you for some time already too.

(I also made a Montessori ball for his little sister, my lovely little niece, but I don’t have a photo of that… But that I knew from the beginning I would want to do for her. I guess that might become a kind of tradition for new babies in our family. :-)

GIVEAWAY WINNER

I wish you a beautiful Sunday, everyone!

What a day to announce my winter-y GIVEAWAY winner… almost seems like spring is coming in these parts, but I kind of hope there will still be a chance to wear the Hooded Scarf I’m giving away today.

Thank you all for your lovely comments and likes on this! Since nobody else enlisted for this, though, the winner is quite clear this time and the hooded scarf goes to the lovely Miriam’s niece.

Congratulations! I hope it will bring her joy! :-)

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Woolen Hooded Scarf GIVEAWAY

Hello everyone and a belated Happy New Year to you all!

I hope you had a good start into this new year.
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Mine is much more tired than I would like it to be. My pregnancy has turned to its last trimester, my body is getting big, my energy is way lower than I would even like to admit and my mind would like to do so many things yet before the new little addition to our family will come and mix up things at home. Not to mention I might start thinking slowly about adjusting things at home to a new baby and getting things for him together. But I still feel like there’s a lot of time for that ’till April.
While it is still winter and it’s something you might want to use, I am announcing my next GIVEAWAY!
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I´m giving away this cute little hoodie-scarf with ears!
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So I admit, there is one pretty much just like that (probably) walking around the world. I hope nobody minds it is not quite a one-of-a-kind thing.
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I got a little crazy before this Christmas and suddenly decided I would make a lot of our Christmas presents. I am not sure I should or really want to admit this here, but it was partly because we were not in a good financial place and I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on presents, especially on which I didn’t know they would bring really joy or be useful. So I decided to make as many as possible. Some things I had to buy fabrics for, but some were made out of my stash of fabrics. And in the end I was actually glad I did DIY them. I’m not sure how they were perceived by those they were given to, sometimes I wonder if they weren’t seen as “cheap”, but to me they actually felt like they had a bigger value in the end. At least to me as a giver, because I did after all spend more thought on what and how to do them, given the energy into them to actually make them, put much more hope into them that the one it was given to would hopefully like them at least a little bit.
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So anyway. Back to this hooded scarf.
I made one as a Christmas present for my 10 year old niece  I have not really seen in 4 years. I actually had no idea what to give her. And then I thought.. Well, this would be fun. Even I would think it’s fun to wear and I’m a grown up. Though I’m not sure if girls of 10 think it’s still fun. But hey, she doesn’t have to wear it if she doesn’t like it. I never got to hear if she does, we don’t live very near each other.
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I bought this dark violet woolen fabric, which is kind of serious on it’s own, and for the inside a fluffy soooooft white plush, which breaks up the seriousnes and makes it pretty playful. Also, as you can see, I added those bear-ears, which makes it even more playful.
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You might’ve noticed it’s a bit wonky on the front on the photo, but I already took care of it and fixed that, if you wonder.
I used the hoodie part of this Bimaa hoodie pattern which also has an additional ears pattern template you can download here, If you want.
Then I just made the sides of the hoodie longer to make a shawl out of it.
I added about 80 cm/ 32 inches to length and made them about 15 cm/6 inches wide. I wanted it to be long enough, so you could wrap it around nicely if you wanted to.
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So when I finished the present, there was just enough fabric left to make another such. I thought I´d make one for Liv, but it is somewhat too big for her yet. Though it looks cute on her even big, I thought I´d rather give it to one of you who would like to make use of it :-)
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Liv will be 3 years in two months and her head circumference is 50cm, just for approximate size reference. But since I made it originially for a 10 year old, there should be a wide enough range for anyone who might be interested in this little piece.
So let me know in the comments section here or on my Facebook page if you’d like to be the owner of this hoodie-shawl! You have time until the end of this week, that is until SATURDAY, 4.2.2017, on Sunday we will announce who the winner is of this GIVEAWAY.
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Oh and just so you know. Even though it’s a bit big on Liv, her head was nice and warm when I took it off, even though it was an icy and windy day when I was making those photographs. So don’t worry if it should be big for your little one.
Have a beautiful winter!

Red Pencil Skirt Pattern HACK

I have quite fallen in love with Delia’s Pencil Skirt Pattern from Delia Creates.

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Especially the knit version of it… well, since I didn’t do the pleated version yet. It’s on my long-term to-do list, only it’s not quite the best time to do a pleated pencil skirt when you’re pregnant and your figure is going to change a lot in the next year or more. So that’ll have to wait a bit.

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Anyway. The knit pencil skirt is a dream to do. It’s super easy, fast done, looks great, feels great, is comfortable… what else is there to say?

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I have done a “simple” version, when I was making an outfit for myself to my cousin’s wedding. That turned out great. So I had to make another one. Except I played around with the pattern a little bit and made my own little hack.

Basically I took the pattern and cut it into smaller panels, only to sew them back together. That’s all there is to it, really.

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I also added some pockets. Though it might not seem as the best idea with a narrow pencil skirt, I just like to have pockets. Even though, I don’t put much in them. But I don’t wear a watch, so I like to have a place to have my phone around me, most of all when I’m not at home. Also it’s nice to have a place to put a tissue or a headband for Liv, to have them around… That’s why.

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I had plans of adding some closure to the pockets to keep them from standing off a bit at the hips. Those plans came right after I made the skirt and tried it on. It’s been a while since and I never got to do them… not sure I ever will. Maybe with the next one.

I used a deep red jersey for this skirt. It’s similar to the off-white one I used for the skirt I wore to the wedding, except it’s a bit thinner. Still thick enough though to make a good skirt fabric. I also bought it at the same time as I bought the off-white jersey. It was just a thing in the moment, and what a good moment that was!

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Yep. What else is there to say… I love those skirts. I’m sure there are gonna be more, whether in the original pattern or hacked ones.

So I’ll just add this awesome GIF my sis made. Ouuiiiii!

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Easy DIY Advent Calendar

Can you call something a tradition if you have done it once? But then again, everything has to begin somewhere. I have started a tradition in our home last year, by making our own advent calendar.

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I was not entirely sure I would make one this year. Due to the joys of a long lasting intense nausea of an early pregnancy, followed closely by very low energy and some work related duties (not to mention those of trying to keep our household at least in a more or less usable shape), I was putting any thoughts of it off. Yes, if you’ve been wondering- or not- that is indeed, why it has been so silent around here since summer. I am getting back to life, though. Finally. Slowly.

Only after talking to a dear friend, who asked if I was going to make an advent calendar this year too, by which time it was end of November, I realized I had only a few days left to make something. And that I would be sorry if I would not do something and leave this “tradition”. That’s a thanks to you, my dear, for that kick in the butt!

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Suddenly in those coming 3 days, I got surprisingly many ideas how to make the calendar, each one totally different. Probably too many ideas. That only meant in the end that I couldn’t decide what to make. So again, I put it off. Until I decided last minute (oh, those last minute projects!) to just go with what I have at home and stay low-key.

So I re-used those brown paper bags from last year, which I decorated simply with strips of Christmas wrapping paper.

Liv is not yet 3 years old and she does not know numbers yet. Ok, she knows a few and she’s quite interested in what is what. But numbers don’t have quite such a big meaning yet as they do for us (beyond 3 or 4, it just gets a lot). So I didn’t want to just paint numbers on the bags, but incorporate also a visual that I think would be more interesting for her. (Actually, it’s still in a similar sense as to why I added the animals last year.)
That’s why I printed some nice pictures with numbers I found on Pinterest on hard paper and added those to the bags.

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After opening a bag we tear off the card with the number and put it back up. The pictures make a nice decoration and it also helps Liv to see how many days have gone by since we started and how many days (packages) left to Christmas.

It’s all very simple, relatively fast done… and it looks nice, even though they’re just hanging there on a string.

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I even already came up with the idea that we will leave the strings hanging there after Christmas (just take down the packages and numbers, of course) and hang there Liv’s paintings and creations. I wanted a place for that anyway for long, just never got to do it. And also I always tend to think of more complicated ideas how to do something, overlooking just the plain simple things that are actually around you which can do the job just as well. So I’m already looking forward to that!

Of course, Liv asks to open more than one package a day at once, but so far she’s done well and accepted if I say we open the next one tomorrow… we do have to talk about it sometimes 10x a day, but she has not opened more at a day yet. Sweet girl.

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I do admit though that it helps that she got another advent calendar from her grandmother, which has tiny books for each day. This way she can open one bag and take out one book each day, which is quite a help in negotiating with Liv.

If you’ve been wondering what I’ve put in those bags… I will tell you. Funny that there’s tons of inspirational pictures of advent calendars, but (almost) nobody wants to share what they put in there. I guess it becomes kind of a bit personal. Of course, you can put in there anything you like. I will share though what I’ve put in there, just in case it might help someone to get a kick as to what the content might be.

I basically had most of the things gathered after a visit to a stationery shop and to a sweet danish shop called Flying Tiger, which by the way the same friend I mentioned before recommended to me. I didn’t know it before, but I have to say it became probably my new favourite shop soon after entering it. They have a lot of cute stuff, lots of DIY aids, a sweet -scandinavian- style, low prizes… No, I am -unfortunately- not getting anything for praising and recommending them.

So, here’s my list:

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  • a castanet (percussion instrument)
  • kaleidoscope
  • chocolate egg
  • stamps (with stamp pillow)
  • a new toothbrush (she needed that anyway)
  • striped socks
  • band-aids (what kid doesn’t love band-aids?)
  • fun stacking pencils (number 8, if you’re wondering)
  • DIY play figures to colour
  • stamps
  • hair-bands
  • wooden stamps for painting on fabrics
  • a lollipop
  • a candle in the shape of an owl (actually I cheated there and took out a leftover candle we used last year as our advent wreath)
  • blowing markers
  • sticky bookmarks
  • washi tapes
  • stickers which you can paint on
  • more stamps
  • a little red suitcase with white dots… what else is there to say except it was too cute not to take it…
  • a hair clip in the shape of a butterfly
  • and more stamps
  • Progresso colouring pencils
  • still to add: something I will sew. Probably clothes for dolls or an Indian headdress.

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Ok, I know there are a lot of stamps in there. That was of course no intention. I first bought the wooden ones to work with fabric. Then I bought a package of 9 stamps which were cute and I divided them into 3 days… since they were each 3 red, 3 green and 3 blue ones. I also might have divided them into 9 days and covered more with one bought thing. But I thought that would make it too many days seem the same. And then I bought the stamps with the ink pillow, which were just too cute not to take. As I think of it, I might have done a stamp advent calendar, where each day there would be just one stamp. Hah. Maybe next time. Year.

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I have to admit, I spent a bit more than I initially wanted for the advent calendar. I got a bit carried away in the stationery shop and the flying tiger. You could easily take the things I got and divide them even more into more days. I also had the intentions of adding more stuff I would yet do for Liv myself. But since I got more things than I meant to, I don’t have to make them anymore, or I will just save them and give them to her for Christmas.

BTW, Liv’s reaction on December 1st, when she found the hanging bags was simply cute. “Does anyone have a birthday?” she yelled excited. :-)

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Oh, and I also made a kind of reverse advent calendar for myself. I took out an empty box and I will put inside something each day and donate it somewhere at the end. I still have to figure out where, but that’s the least concern, really. It’s been bugging me that we have a lot of unused stuff around at home anyway, so this way it will at least help get rid of some of it.

Have you done a DIY advent calendar? I would love to see your versions!

Have a beautiful December!

White Cardigan for Toddler

Let me yet continue on my last post, to add one more thing on the theme of summer. And weddings. And last minute sewing. Because THIS was really something sewn last minute.

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So you have seen the dress I made for Liv to wear on my cousin’s wedding?

If you have, you know, it is indeed very much made for summer. A light dress, with a lace-y top. After all, the wedding was taking place in summer and all the days before were very hot.

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Except when we woke up on the morning of the wedding. It was still hot, but really thick, grey clouds came up. And it looked like it might not be that hot that day after all. Like it might rain, with a light wind in the air. It might still clear away during the day and be hot. But it also might not.

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I am not a person who has to have everything stylish and beautifully matching with each other. I mean, of course, I like it (and most of all the designer part in me) when something looks good, and stylish and pretty… But I am also phlegmatic enough not to care too much about it, especially when it comes to kids. I mean, they look cute in anything really anyway, right?

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But then again, we were going to a wedding. And the only appropriately sweater-something I had for Liv at that time was her Hippu sweater. Not exactly something to go very well over a mint dress. Not to mention, if she had to wear it all the time in the end, she might as well have worn jeans with it and I might not have made the effort of making a dress that no one would see in the end. Sooo…

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Still having a few hours in the morning before the wedding, I whipped out an off-white jersey I had in my stash, took out the pattern of the before mentioned Hippu sweater, made a few quick alterations as I went… And made a little cardigan for Liv.

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And if anyone wonders, the weather was changing the whole day, but basically she wore the cardigan for most of the day in the end, so I was glad I did it.

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And the looks my husband threw at me telling me I was crazy to sew something else so last minute before the wedding were worth it, ha.