Crib Bedding

The fabrics I’m working with. They make me so so happy.

Bohemian Festival Medallion Yellow via threadbias.com

Kumari Garden Lalit Blue from fabric.com

Houndtooth Mint via Fabric.com

Baby Business Dots N Twill Yellow/Grey via Fabric.com

If you’re curious, I’ll be using two tutorials to make the fitted sheet and crib skirt, here and here.

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35 Weeks-We finally bought the crib!

35 weeks

How far along| 35 weeks and 2 days. Only 33 days left. But who’s counting?
Baby’s Size| About 18 inches long and as heavy as a honeydew. I think that comparison might be true. He’s feeling quite heavy. Especially when I lay on my back to read. It’s a no go from now on. Feels like I’m caved in.
Weight Gain| +10
Sleep| Great since Greg got back from Austin. Except this morning I woke up at 4:30 and couldn’t go back to sleep. I think I may have been a bit anxious about my doctor appointment? Can’t say for sure. Sadly didn’t fall asleep until 7:30 and had to get up by 8ish to get ready for the appointment. Boo.
Clothes| My clothes came in from London so I now have clothes to play with.
Cravings| Ice cream is still a favorite. I think I can do without a sandwich this week but I’m sure I’ll have one.
Food Aversions| Leftovers, same ‘ole, same ‘ole.
Symptoms| My left hip is still acting up (burning feeling from a possible pinched nerve) and for some reason I broke out like a teenager this week.
Movement| A clog dancer.
Belly Button| Still in.
Baby’s Sex| A wee boy child.
Highlight of the Week| Getting a few sorted for the nursery, like buying his crib and pack ‘n ‘play bassinet. And also washing his clothes. Next up, the hospital bag!
What I miss|My husband. He’s on a time crunch and working super long hours. I miss him. A lot. Unfortunately the overtime doesn’t come to an end until around our due date. Bugger

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We are swimming in boxes over here. We’ve managed to unpack quite a few. But it feels like when we empty one, a new one takes its place. Adding to the clutter is the stuff we bought for the nursery. They are not the smallest boxes. At least those will be dealt with this weekend. G will be putting together the crib and glider. And I’ll be cheering him on very enthusiastically. Nah, I will be tackling our bedroom. Since baby will be sleeping in our room for a bit I want to make sure the space is clutter-free and serene; the complete opposite of the rest of the house. I honestly thought I would be able to unpack and get everything sorted on my own but I quickly get stressed, overwhelmed, tired and distracted. In that order. If we had more storage space the unpacking would happen easily. But as of now we’re having to do some magic and make it work.

With the stress comes the need to de-stress, so of course I sew. I made Mr. Mix a pair of pants and a funked up onesie from a couple of my old T-shirts. Luckily he can wear it at home and no one will be the wiser 🙂

Upcycled an old T to make a onesie. It's wonky but it'll work.

Putting my old T-shirt to good use.

I have a few more T-shirts that will make some cute baby clothes. But I’ll leave them for later. For now I am going to work on making the crib bedding (a couple of fitted sheets and a crib skirt). That is, when I’m not tidying up 🙂

Week 31- What a difference a week makes!

31 weeks and standing in front of our neighbor's lemon tree.

I’ve finally hit that awkward pregnancy stage, you know: finding it hard to pick stuff off the floor, getting up from the bed, and struggling to get in and out of the car. I am also finding myself getting uncomfortably full quite quickly and frequently hitting the bathroom more than usual (reminds me of my first trimester). And finally I’ve been suffering from acid reflux quite frequently. Not cute.

This morning poor Chexie had the hiccups and my husband could see my stomach moving along rhythmically to them. Poor thing. I wish I could have rubbed his back or something. Too bad I have no idea as to how he’s positioned.  Maybe I’ll find out at my next appointment. Tomorrow I have a visit with an OB/GYN that works with the birthing center I registered with (Yay! It’s the one I visited last month). She seems really open to natural births but of course I’ll see how much so after I chat with her. I’m really hoping she’ll do an ultrasound tomorrow but she more than likely will give me an appointment for one later. I truly hope we click. I wasn’t pleased with my midwife in London. She was nice but overworked and not shy about complaining about it. We never got to build a relationship with each other and she never once asked me how I was doing or if I had any questions for her. I was quite put off by the experience. But again, she is overworked (midwives provide majority of the healthcare for pregnant women in the UK). Unlike the US, the UK is going through a baby boom. You can’t spit without hitting a pregnant lady (sorry for the visual). There’s not much time left for OB and I to become besties but that’s not what I’m after. I just want to trust her, know she will honor my wishes (within reason) and believe that she will have my best interest at heart the day of delivery.

A week from Tuesday I get to meet with a prospective doula. She sounds quite sweet in her emails. And she’s nice enough to come to my side of town to meet. With no good seating at the house currently, I am relieved when she was okay with meeting at a local coffee shop. Luckily for me I can walk there.

That brings me to another development happening this week-learning to drive a manual. We sold my car and kept my husband’s, a manual. We had intentions of buying me a car when we moved back but with G being able to take public transit to work there’s no point in getting another one. So yeah, driving stick… Holy crap it’s frustrating. It’s beyond me why anyone would want to work harder at driving. I’m not going to lie, I hate driving. I rather walk than drive, unless it’s rainy and cold outside. Today was lesson #2 and I only killed the engine 2 or 3 times. Big improvement from lesson #1. Unfortunately I don’t have a lot of patience for learning. I often have to pee as soon as I sit behind the driver’s seat, changing my mood for the worst. Ugh. But it has to be done. I’d hate to be stuck at home if there’s an emergency of some kind.

Other than the doctor appointment, I am really looking forward to getting reacquainted with my sewing machine. It’s been a while. I need to get some onesies cranked out soon! I’ll leave you with some cute clothes I purchased today. I’m hoping to use them as inspiration when I make Chexie clothes. I just need to find a good trouser pattern; I have a shirt one already. If anyone has any pattern suggestions let me know! I really want one for a baby blazer.

I couldn't resist the shirt with its a little double decker bus on the pocket. The trousers and hat needed a home, too. #ilovesales I spy with my little eye a red double decker bus.

Happy New Year!

Me-Made Maternity Clothes Costs

Sewing my own clothes has made me quite comfortable in my skin. When you sew you have to face reality, there’s no fudging numbers because the garment won’t fit if you do. You learn to accept that your bust measures this and your hips measure that. Those numbers are fact and help in making the garment, so I accept and embrace them. Learning how my body is shaped allows me to sew flattering clothes that can feature my assets well and make me feel good while doing so. And who doesn’t want to look and feel good when pregnant?

Sewing also allows you to save money at times, but not always. It’s all dependent on your materials and if you are okay spending time fitting and sewing your clothes. Labor aside, garments can be a bargain if you find your materials at a good cost. But sometimes it’s nice to splurge if you want to treat yourself, like I did when I made my first maternity dress using Liberty of London fabric.

Plus-size maternity clothes are now more readily available in stores and I’ve been tempted to buy them, just for convenience. But because I enjoy sewing, have the time/patience and energy I figure why not make my own. I have to admit, that I am quite curious as to how much I am actually spending on my me-made maternity clothes. Am I actually saving money or am I spending too much?

Here’s a very basic breakdown of costs per garment. I only included fabric and new materials purchased. I own a lot of notions (buttons, thread, elastic, etc) that I’ve bought at bargain prices over the last two years. I excluded them from costs because I use them for so many projects.

Dressing the Bump
Stripey Knit Skirt
Cost of fabric and materials: Free (the fabric was given to me and I had left over elastic from old projects)
Cost of pattern: £8 for a maternity skirt
Time it took to make: About 2 hours. Turning the waistband inside out took forever!
Total cost: You can argue £8 but I bought a new skirt to make the stripey one, so I say £4
Sew U Home Stretch Babydoll Dress
Jersey-knit Sleeveless Babydoll Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £16 for 2 meters of double-knit jersey fabric
Cost of pattern: Free! The Sew U Home Stretch book was given to me as a gift
Time it took to make: About 2 hours. A great simple pattern
Total cost: £16

Baby Doll Dress
Jersey-knit Babydoll Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £5 for 2 meters of remnant double-knit jersey fabric. Bargain!
Cost of pattern: Free! A Sew U Home Stretch pattern
Time it took to make: About 6 hours (grading/tracing the pattern and sewing)
Total cost: £5

Simplicity 1998
Jersey-knit Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £6 for 2 meters of remnant ponte-knit jersey fabric
Cost of pattern: £2
Time it took to make: About 8 hours (grading/tracing the pattern, fitting and sewing). This dress was a pill to fit by myself
Total cost: £8

Muslin #1 for Simplicity 8670 (vintage 1970)
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £12 for 2 meters of cotton poplin, £.80 for a zipper
Cost of pattern: £7 for a vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: About 6 hours (grading/tracing the pattern, fitting and sewing)
Total cost: £ 19.80

Muslin #2 for Simplicity 8670 (vintage 1970)
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £12 for 2 meters of black poplin, £2 for remnant red mystery remnant fabric, £.25 zipper
Cost of pattern: £0, re-used vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: 4 hours
Total cost: £14.25

Final version of Simplicity 8670 (maternity pattern) in Liberty cotton and Japanese lace
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £36 for 3 meters of Liberty fabric, £2.25 for half a yard of Japanese cotton lace, £.25 zipper
Cost of pattern: £0, re-used vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: 4 hours
Total cost: £38.50

So I have to conclude that my costs aren’t nearly as high as they would be if I had purchased similar maternity clothes. And I hope the costs continue that way.

Do you keep a maternity clothing budget? Any thrifty tips to keep costs low?

Week 23-Going stripey

Stripey Maternity Skirt 2 I made this skirt this morning. It’s a winner!

How far along| 23 weeks
Baby’s Size| Chexie is 11 inches long and weighs just over a pound.
Weight Gain| Down 1.5 pounds. This fluctuating weight might be due to so much walking I’ve been doing, maybe? I went on a long walk this past Saturday and I felt great but it took me all of Sunday to recover. I was BEAT.
Sleep| I’ve been sleeping well except for recently. The last three or so days I’ve had a pinched nerve in my left shoulder and neck. Sucks donkey balls.
Clothes| I am still wearing my regular clothes with some maternity bits thrown in. And my wedding ring is still on. Huzzah to no swelling!
Cravings| Chocolate, with a side of chocolate and a touch of chocolate sprinkles.
Food Aversions| None.
Symptoms| Growing pains. I know Chexie is going through a growth spurt every time my lower back starts hurting and those darn round ligament pains show up.
Movement| We have quite a kicker. He’s active in the mornings and late at night. I find it very comforting.
Belly Button| So in. I doubt it will ever pop. I have the inniest innie ever.
Baby’s Sex| Un nene lindo.
Highlight of the Week| Testing negative for preeclampsia. I had a scare in that it tested positive. But two follow-up tests came back negative. My blood pressure is fine and I have no signs of swelling. So fingers crossed nothing changes in regards to that.
What I miss| Sleeping on my stomach. I have a bad left shoulder so it only leaves me being able to sleep on my right. Not comfortable so I wake up to adjust twice or so a night.

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I’ve failed at my yoga challenge! I set myself up for failure when I decided to start it two days before going on vacation. What was I thinking? I definitely need to regroup and start again. But at least I haven’t been sat still at home. I am definitely going out and about here and there, which is great. I am finding it a bit uncomfortable to walk for long periods on some days but on others I am a real trooper and can go the distance. Who knows what’s that’s about.

I am set to see a GP next week instead of my midwife. I am not scheduled to see her until after I leave the country. Guess I won’t be attending that appointment (reminder to self: must cancel!). The doctor is supposed to measure the bump and see if baby is doing well. Fingers crossed all goes well. I’m now dreading peeing in a cup ever since that false positive. I’d hate for something to come up right before we’re scheduled to leave in December. I imagine a complication would make the trip harder and more stressful. I chatted with my mother last night and she assures me she didn’t have high blood pressure when pregnant with me or my siblings, so that’s a bit comforting. I’m hoping I take after her in that regard.

What more is to come? I’ll be learning to crochet with my friend Joanne this week. Maybe then I can keep busy making granny squares on our transatlantic flight. That would be awesome because I need distractions for this flight. I am so not looking forward to it. We’re breaking up the flight by visiting my family in NYC before heading on to San Francisco. By the end of it all we would have flown 14 or so hours. Crikey! I haven’t wanted a drink all 23 weeks until now. Ugh. Flying is the pits.

How many bibs does it take?

I’m no expert when it comes to babies. The last baby I was around was my sister and she’s 22 now, so that was a long time ago. When I decided to make Chexie some bibs I didn’t have a clue as to how many I should make to start with. Some people say loads (20+) and others say a handful are fine (5  or so). The number comes down to how often you will do laundry, if you have a spit-upper on your hands and how often baby feeds. So I decided to make 12 and go from there. The best part about making these was how fast they came together and how cheap they cost me (not including labor, of course).

Chexie's bibs

With scraps and two fat quarters in hand I set out to make my bibs using this tutorial. I purchased some towelling fabric and in hindsight I should have just used towels we are no longer attached to. Oh well. You live, you learn. At least I bought some vibrant towelling that gives the bibs a bit more umph.

Chexie's bibs

Bibs make a great beginner’s project in that it’s fast and easy. But don’t fear if you are not a green sewer, you won’t be bored to tears making these. You get to work on your top-stitching skills and get comfortable sewing round edges. Win, win!

Chexie's bibs

So here’s the breakdown of costs. Initially I thought they each cost me £1.53/$2.46 a bib but after using cheaper snaps, it brought the costs down.

Towelling £6.74 (used 3/4 a meter)
Two Fat Quarters £5.60
Scraps (10 pieces) Free
Snaps (12) £1.00
Total £13.34 or £1.11/$1.78 a bib

Not too bad considering I get to use up my scraps and match baby’s bibs to my existing garments. Is anyone making anything for their baby or kids at the moment? I’ll be working on some blankets next.

Week 18-Where’s my bump?

Week 18 and still feeling quite chipper

How far along| 18 weeks and 2 days.
Baby’s Size| My baby is officially the length of a bell pepper. The cutest little bell pepper ever.
Weight Gain| Minus 4 pounds since I found out I was pregnant. I keep gaining and losing the same 1-2 pounds.
Sleep| Still meh. I have started sleeping through the night but I do wake up to toss and turn a lot. I just can’t get comfortable. I am considering investing in a maternity pillow. Trying regular pillows for now.
Clothes| Some clothes are snug around the bust and middle section but otherwise I can wear most of my clothes except for a few skirts and pants. Sporting maternity jeans in the photos.

Shouldn’t I have a bump by now?

Cravings| I would love some tea cakes or Mallomars. I blame it on watching the TV show, Great British Bake Off.
Food Aversions| Leftovers. Blergh.
Symptoms| Growing pains. I know Chexie is growing when my lower back starts hurting. And boy has it been hurting these past few days. Chexie is due to double in size between week 16 and 20.
Movement| During a scan I had yesterday they measured Chexie’s hand and it’s 1cm across. Can you imagine?! Chexie is still so tiny. But definitely quite powerful. S/he has gotten quite active. I think s/he will be quite the dancer.

A little something, something

Belly Button| Inside.
Gender| For a while I thought it was a definitely boy. But now I am wondering if it’s a girl. I blame a dream I had with the sweetest wee baby girl in it. But funny enough I still use male pronouns when referring to it.
Highlight of the Week| Being told this pregnancy is going A-Okay.
What I miss| Big cups of coffee. Although I still drink coffee here and there, it doesn’t compare to the 2 to 3 cups I was having a day. Coffee makes me happy and keeps me warm.

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This week I officially started getting together all the supplies to start making baby stuff. I’ve been in a sort of a dream world, thinking I had all the time in the world. In actuality I am almost half way through my pregnancy and haven’t made baby a thing. I guess I wanted assurance from the midwives and doctors that things were going well before diving into making mode. So far I have bought fabric for Chexie’s quilt, toweling for bibs, and snaps for onesies/baby-grows. I’m hoping to crank the onesies, booties and bibs in a week or so. Just one long assembly line.

As for the quilt…I just can’t decide on what I’d like it to look like. It has to be easy and stress-free. Here are some of my inspirations.

Well that’s all for now. Looking forward to possible sharing some things I’ve made soon. Hope those fabrics get here soon.