Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Baby Gift from Older Sibling- DIY

As you may have seen in my most recent post, we welcomed our sweet little girl into the world a few weeks ago.  Things have been a whirlwind as we adjust from 1 to 2 and try our best to survive solely on coffee and love.  Even through the exhaustion and normal adjustment, I have the urge to craft and blog.  It's my one thing that is "just for me" so I really feel like I need to make time for it if I want to stay sane (kidding... mostly.)

Although I haven't gotten much crafting done since she arrived, I did want to share a craft that my son and I made just before she was born.  I kept hearing that it's helpful to have your older child give a "gift" to the new baby as a way to help them transition (and to give them a little something too so that they don't feel left out).  I understood this idea but I didn't want to just buy something from the store and then tell my son to give it to the baby- something about that just seemed off.  So here is what I came up with instead...

I let my son make a gift for the baby.  This way he would (1) have fun crafting and (2) feel more involved in the process than simply having to give an item that he liked in the store to this new intruder!

This was so easy to do but if you are working with a 2 year old, I do recommend giving yourself plenty of time.  Although my son loves coloring, I had a feeling that (probably because I actually wanted him to do this) he wouldn't be interested in it for long enough to complete it.  I was right.  We had this fabric out for over a week and every day or two he would color a few new spots and then walk away.  It got finished though.  Slow and steady wins the race...

{Here's how to make it}

You only need a few materials:

- Scribbles Fabric Crayons

- Cozy Flannel Fabric- solid color (I get mine at JoAnn Fabrics)
   *good swaddle blankets are between 44x44 inches and 47x47 inches.  Go smaller for receiving   
     blankets or larger for crib sheets (do not put blankets in cribs with sleeping babies or while
     unattended as it poses a suffocation risk) Cozy flannel does shrink a little when washed.

- Sewing machine/thread and needle or pinking shears

(Step 1) Wash & dry your fabric then cut to desired size.

I used another blanket we had as a template but to measure it out, see my notes above.  If you don't want to sew, pinking shears will help keep the edges from fraying.  However, I highly recommend sewing the edges if you are able with this type of fabric. (I did both)

(Step 2) Tape down the edges of your fabric to a table so that the fabric is taut.

This is important because the fabric will move when you try to color on it. Making it taut lets your little one draw on it without getting bumps and wrinkles (and thus...frustration).  I used washi tape to hold it down so that it didn't damage the wood in our bay window but every day I had to re-tighten it because the fabric would pop loose over night!

(Step 3) Give your little one the fabric crayons and let them create!

*Optional: Include your child's name on the blanket so that it continues to be a keepsake for years to come.  We didn't know the sex of baby so we just wrote "to baby" (that's what he called her anyways).

(Step 4) When finished drawing, follow the ironing instructions on the back of the fabric crayons.  This step is critical if you ever want to be able to wash the blanket (and I am more comfortable knowing that the wax is sealed in a little).

(Step 5) Fold over the edges and sew.  This helps keep the blanket from fraying and just looks nicer.  For a thicker blanket, feel free to add a second layer of fabric and sew together.

(Step 6) Give the blanket back to your older child to give as a gift to the new baby.  Make a big deal out of it and emphasize how proud you are of them and how nice it is that they made this for their sibling!

I love these fabric crayons!  The colors are surprisingly vibrant and the instructions are easy to follow.  Did you have your older child buy/make a gift for their little sibling when they were born?  I always take advantage of the opportunity to make a gift, especially when it lets my toddler get creative too!

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