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Sunday, 20 May 2018

Boy patterns (1) - Baby boys

Someone on a Facebook page gave me the idea of doing something on free PDF patterns for boys. There are so many for girls, but given that the birth rate is approximately equal between the sexes, it's surprising there's such an inbalance of free patterns.So, in this post, I'll list and review some of my favourite patterns. I treat them as unisex, of course, because only one of my 4 grand-daughters is a girly girl. Thank you to all the authors of patterns who have been generous to share. Some of them also have patterns for sale. Please recognise that I put a lot of work and research into these reviews, so please don't just copy them all onto your own web site without acknowledging the source. Thank you.

Here are some shorts I made last summer from a free pdf pattern. These were for one of my grand-daughters, but they would work equally well for a boy.  



Please note that these patterns have all been generously shared, and you should not use them to make things for sale. But you can contact most of the authors through the links.

To see my suggestions for free PDf patterns for baby boy clothes, read on.

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Super-quick child's quilt for the weekend

This isn't the first time I've made children's bedding in a hurry, and it may not be the last. The previous time, I threw together two quilts by two different methods.

This time, I had about an hour and a half's notice that I was going to need one extra junior quilt, for a grand-child who would be sleeping on a cot bed mattress on the floor. Last year's quilt was much too small for her and was to be 'demoted' to the smaller cot mattress for her sister. It had been agreed that their other grandfather would be staying over at ours, as well as the rest of the gang, which meant everyone needed to move round a bed - musical beds. I did actually know about this, but in all the rush to get ready for having a houseful, it had slipped my mind, and it was only my daughter's timely reminder that saved the day.


To find out how I made a really fast quilt, read on.

Quiet books - a technique for making pages removable

I enjoy making quiet book pages, but there is always a question of how to bind them, how to display them etc. In the case of single pages, I would prefer to do them back to back (after sewing each page) and using grommets to attach them into a file, or using a set of ties etc. That way, they can be taken out of the book to play with.

My problem was that so many of the pages I liked (and wanted to copy) are actually double page spreads. For example, many of the pages which come with templates by Imagine Our Life. (For more ideas, see below.) So removing those meant removing two separate pages. And if the designs on the back are also double page spreads, you can end up with multiple pieces. (Also tricky if there are lots of loose bits.)

So I came up with a plan, which works for me, and might work for you. To find out more, and for links to other useful pages, read on.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Quilts for boy and girl twins

It's a while since I made baby quilts - almost a year! I've written about how to make baby quilts a number of times - here, here and here. I've also written about methods of making super quick quilts in a hurry, here. So I won't spend more time here repeating the tutorials. But I did want to make sure I put my latest efforts on the blog. It's become easier with practice!

Now, I had two to make. My husband's niece the other side of the world had twins recently, a boy and a girl.  A bit earlier than expected, so I had to get a move on - espeically as they would take a while to arrive in the post.

Here's the boy's finished quilt.


For a little more information, read on.

Monday, 7 May 2018

Quiet book Mr Potato head, abacus and cooking breakfast

For my general thinking about quiet books, and more ideas, please see this earlier post. Most of my efforts have been double page spreads with two singles, so they can be removed as a set from the book so they can be doled out. I've described how I did this in a separate post, together with some links to other pages I really like, and other pages I'd like to have made, if I'd ever had time!
This double page spread has at its centre a cooking hob and a breakfast table. Again, this comes from Imagine Our Life, with only minor alterations. The person who runs this web site generously provides not only pictorial ideas and tutorials, but templates for many of her ideas.


To see how mine differs, and to see the other single pages in this set, read on.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Quiet book - garden with bee, weaving and tic tac toe

For my general thinking about quiet books, and more ideas, please see this earlier post. Most of my efforts have been double page spreads with two singles, so they can be removed as a set from the book so they can be doled out. I've described how I did this in a separate post, together with some links to other pages I really like, and other pages I'd like to have made, if I'd ever had time!


The next double page spread is a bee visiting the flowers in numbered orderThe idea from this is also from Imagine our Life. (Stephanie is so prolific and makes such beautiful and elaborate pages that I can't imagine she has much time to do anything else at all!)  

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Tartan dresses for a little Scottish girl

One of my grandchildren, Jane, was born in Scotland, although she moved south near to London soon afterwards. For her fourth birthday, I made her two little tartan dresses to recognise her heritage. Here's the green one. I also made a classic red one.

They were made from two different patterns. To find out about the patterns and how I made these dresses, read on.

Birthday girl dresses

For Jane's fourth birthday, I made dresses. This is a girl who loves to wear a dress, even when the occasion would make trousers more practical. So I made her a couple of more practical dresses in a lightweight tartan, to be worn with leggings or trousers when it's not so warm, for nursery school. Those are on this post.

But I also made her a more flouncy dress for her summer holiday - much to her parents' dismay, he loves pink frills and bows.

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

Another quiet book set - road scenes and pizza restaurant


For my general thinking about quiet books, and more ideas, please see this earlier post. Most of my efforts have been double page spreads with two singles, so they can be removed as a set from the book so they can be doled out. I've described how I did this in a separate post, together with some links to other pages I really like, and other pages I'd like to have made, if I'd ever had time!
This post covers a set of four pages, one double page spread and two singles. The double page spread is a small town scene or road layout. This is to my own design, but is loosely based on Peatblogger's design. (There are several other versions of this, so I don't know if Peatblogger's is the original.) To the basic street layout, I added a river and two bridges; a station and railway line; a hospital and supermarket with its car park; a playground with a swing and slide; a park with a duckpond; a petrol station and a car wash. With the possible exception of the car wash, these were all places I thought the girls would be familiar with and would want to take one of my little cars to. (More about the cars below.)
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Quiet Books - mainly laundry

For my general thinking about quiet books, and more ideas, please see this earlier post. Most of my efforts have been double page spreads with two singles, so they can be removed as a set from the book so they can be doled out. I've described how I did this in a separate post, together with some links to other pages I really like, and other pages I'd like to have made, if I'd ever had time!

This post is all about a particular set, which as shorthand I'll call the 'mainly laundry' set.

This folds in half so that the washing machine and socks form one double page spread. On the 'back' of this are the dolls and the washing line. To find out how this works, see my earlier post. For more details about this double page spread, read on.