Wednesday, June 30, 2010

make your own baby legs (legwarmers)

These were a bunch of knee high socks I bought last Fall, intending them for one of my younger girls to wear to school, but they were misplaced until recently, so I decided to put them to better use and make something for the new baby since I am due in the Winter after all. So baby legs they will be. (These will fit both babies and older children alike as I have made these for my 5 & 9 year old and they love them, so these are not limited to just babies!)  I found a great selection at Smith's Marketplace in a 2-pack in the girl's section for $8. I have also found that there were more knee high socks with prints and colors that would work for boys in the womens section as opposed to the girls, so make sure and look if you want to make some for your little guy.


You can use a serger or a sewing machine to make these, and they are totally easy and work up incredibly fast.


-1 pair of knee high socks

-serger or sewing machine


-a pair of sharp scissors

Ok, let's start. First, pick out a pair of either girls or womens knee high socks, they both work just as well for this.

 Lay them out flat and cut off the foot just before the "bend" starts, cutting them straight across.

Next, cut off the rounded end at the top where the toes go. Try to keep the rectangular portion in the middle about the same size as the other.

 It should look something like this when you're done. The rectangular piece you cut out from the foot portion will become your cuff.


 Take the cuff piece and fold it inward onto itself, in half, wrong sides together, matching the raw cut edges up with each other. You want the right sides of the print facing out. It should look something like this.

 Slip the cuff over the cut edge of the sock, making sure that the raw edges from both the cuff and the sock match up.

 See, the sock is inside the cuff, and you just slide it up to the raw edge and even them up as best you can.

  Here are the raw edges of both the sock and cuff lined up.

 I don't even bother to pin them, I find it easier not to when I serge/sew them, but you can pin them if it makes it easier for you, it really doesn't matter.

 Here they are, all ready to be serged or sewn. I did one of these with my serger and one with my sewing machine so that you can see an example of both.

 I just hold the edges together and run it through the serger all the way around.

 And here it is, all done. I know it looks like the edges are all stretched and ruffled from being serged, but once the cuffs are turned out, it doesn't matter. And after being washed once, it looks even better, so don't sweat it.

  I stitched this one on my sewing machine using a simple zig zag stitch. I kept the aligned raw edges close to the edge of my presser foot for a guide and stitched it all the way around.

  Here it is all all stitched, and it looks pretty similar to the serged one, doesn't it, and it too seems a bit ruffled after being sewn. Also not a big deal.

  Turn the cuffs up and you have a great little pair of baby legs for your little one that took you all of 10 minutes to make.

 Here is a close up of both cuffs. Can you tell which one was sewn with a serger and which one was sewn with a sewing machine? Neither can I.

 So there you are. Easy as can be.

 Now go crazy and make a bunch more. It took me less than 30 minutes to cut and serge all of these, and just like that I had 9 pairs of baby legs.

  Like I said, they're incredibly fast and easy to make.

And just for a reference, the last three pairs of baby legs on the end at the right were all made from women's knee socks (gray with rainbow pinstripes, navy & white stripe with green edge, and gray & white stripe with pink edge). The first 6 (starting from the left) were all made from knee socks from the girls section.

*Variation*-You can also use a pair of tights to make baby legs if you would like. Just cut off the foot portion the same as you would if using a knee high sock, except you will need to cut a second piece about the same size as the first cuff from somewhere on the leg portion of the tights to make a second cuff for each baby leg. So you will then sew a cuff to each end to finish them off since the tights don't have a pre-finished edge like the socks do. This is a great way to use up outgrown tights you might already have on hand.

Monday, June 28, 2010

well what do you know…

I had another OB appointment yesterday, and since I'm 17 weeks along my Dr. went ahead and did a quick ultrasound so we could see the gender and just make sure all was well in general. I have had zero problems, issues, or complaints with this pregnancy (yes, I know how lucky I am) so it was doubly wonderful to see the baby in there doing a gymnastics routine with a lovely and strong little heartbeat. Oh, and my funny little pattern of alternating genders with my children? (ie. boy, girl, boy, girl, boy, girl, boy) Well who would have thought. It has held strong. Because we're having a little girl.  Yes really. I thought for sure we were having a boy and that the pattern would break for good this time. Well what do I know. Nothing apparently. So there you go. My pattern is complete.

summer pajamas and nighties

With the warmer weather finally here, I decided it was time to get myself in gear and make the girls some summer pajamas and nighties. I bought some plain white tank tops at Wal-Mart for $3 each along with several yards of a classic cotton print, and in no time I had them sewn up. For the nighties, I used the same basic idea from my tutorial for the long sleeved tees into nighties, cutting the tank top off at the bottom, attaching the gathered skirt to it, and then adding a ruffle to the bottom edge with the same fabric as the skirt. These work up so fast, I love it.

For the pajama pants I just used one of the simple pants patterns I always keep on hand, except I cut a few inches off the bottom edge to make them a cropped pant, and hemmed the bottom edges. Then I cut two strips of matching fabric that were about 2 inches wide and about twice the circumference of the bottom edge of the pants, serged both of the edges to finish them and stop any fraying, and sewed the short edges together, right sides together, to make a continuous circle. Then, using my longest stitch length I ran a gathering stitch directly down the middle of each one on the right side of the fabric, pulled the bobbin thread from the wrong side of the fabric to gently gather them, and evenly pinned them to the pants, wrong side of the fabric on the ruffle against the right side of the fabric on the pants, matching the bottom edges of the ruffle to the hem edge. Then, I sewed down the middle of the ruffles, using the gathering stitch as a general guide, and stitched them in place using a regular stitch length.

Haven loves them and they make the perfect summer pajama pant, as they provide very light and airy coverage for the warmer nights. In the end I was able to make 3 nighties and 1 pair of pants, with 3 more nighties and 3 more pairs of pants left to sew. Now if I can just stop obsessing about sewing cloth diapers long enough to finish them...

Friday, June 4, 2010


It was the last day of school for my kids, and already one of them is crying and mad at me for making them clean their room before they can play with their friends. Meanest. Mom. Ever.

Dylan graduated from High School on Tuesday, and we are so proud of him. It was a great day, but don't even get me started on how long the graduation ceremony was. Seriously? 2 1/2 hours? Oh for the love.

Finley had a fast moving infection in his right leg that came on very suddenly, causing his little leg to swell up at his ankle and calf, with a huge red patch that was burning hot to the touch where the infection was located. The Dr. immediately gave him a shot of a strong antibiotics, a Rx for more antibiotics to start at home for 1 week, and then he had me take a sharpie and trace around the edges of the large red, hot spot. If the red spread anywhere outside of the line I was to bring him back into the office at once for more serious measures, but thankfully the first shot, along with the liquid meds worked, and the swelling has subsided, the red is almost all but gone and his leg is no longer burning up. I am one grateful mama for antibiotics in our day and age.

I have zero motivation to sew right now. I sat at my sewing table yesterday looking over several projects I would love to work on, and some piles of fabric I am stockpiling for a quilt, but I just can't seem to take the next step and actually start. Lame.

 I am hopeful though that our unusually cool/cold Spring is an indication of a cool Summer this year, although our backyard has never looked better thanks to the copious amounts of rain and Craig's tireless work. We have even made serious headway and we are winning the war in the battle against the thorns in the back. Craig (and his chainsaw) cleared the back right portion of our yard to further our plans for a mini orchard, and as of right now we have 1 pear, 6 apple, 2 peach, and 2 plum trees. I would love to add a few more peach trees and 1 or 2 apricot trees, but we will have to wait and see.

I want a set of these...


And one of these...

Metal stamping and plastic snapping fun!

As soon as my friend Jodee gets back from her family trip, she and I are planning some fun outings with our kids this Summer (she has 5, and I will only have 5 since Dylan and Ciel are busy with their friends), and we are trying to keep it all low cost/free and not too far from home (no more than 2 hours in the car with children, thank you very much). Are you planning anything fun with your kidlets?

 I can hear a very sad little boy that has come in from outside, soaking wet from playing with the hose, and in desperate need of some dry clothes, and his mama. Yep, it's Summer allright.