A good old friend of mine used to have this giant stuffed toy tortoise called Fred, who was loved all the way through childhood and into adulthood. When my friend, now married and with a darling new baby boy, posted her first baby pics on Facebook, sure enough – there was Fred, still propping her up as a trusty pillow! Without further ado, I tracked down this lovely fabric covered in Freds (‘Turtle Parade’ by Patty Sloniger for Michael Miller) and made a taggie blanket, backed with a soft white muslin and with an extra layer of white cotton inbetween. The ribbons were a mixed bunch of what I had already – mostly grosgrain (which I heat sealed to prevent fraying) and a few random silky and cotton ones thrown in (my favourite is the blue one that says ‘tiny hands and tiny feet’ – so sweet). I double topstitched it to make sure it withstood the intense washing anything baby-related tends to need. I hope he (or at least, his mother!) likes it!
For another friend, expecting at about the same we were expecting The Smidge, I attempted Amy Butler’s Cutie Booties from her ‘Little Stitches for Little Ones’ book of baby patterns. Now, since this friend had been dropping plenty of hints that baby might just be a boy, I felt pretty confident in picking out a pirate fabric and coordinating check (Pirate Flags and Pirate Grid from the Monkey’s Bizness collection by Alexander Henry). I then wrestled my way through the 0-3m size of the pattern while I was on holiday, including more hand sewing than I usually care to do and another barrage of bristly pins (see my kimono shoes!), and finally ended up with these little gems (photos taken hastily in the five minutes I had before dashing out to the hospital to meet her and her new arrival!):
I love the style of these, and the velcro opening is clever and satisfying:
The main hiccup I had with sewing these had nothing do do with the sewing! About a week before the due date, and with the well-named cutie booties ready and waiting, my friend’s daughter started talking about the imminent arrival as a “she”…! Now, there is nothing at all amiss with giving pirate booties to a little girl, but they are not *exactly* a match for the tidal wave of pink that tends to accompany the arrival of most baby girls. 😛 Happily for me it was a false alarm, and baby (boy) sported his pirate apparel with aplomb that spring. Phew!!