Thursday, November 4, 2010

Handmade Gifts- Soft Block for Baby

For Christmas this year I'm hoping to go as homemade as possible. Store bought gifts are fun, for a while, but homemade ones are heart to heart! Homemade gifts are sentimental, personal. They just mean more. :)

My nephew just turned 1 and I made him one of these for his birthday. He had a ball (pun intended) tossing it around, and since it is soft there were no bonked noggins and no sad faces. :) Now I'm thinking of making these for Christmas for all the babies on my list.


Step 1. You'll need to cut out 6 squares of your selected fabric.
Make sure they are as close to perfectly square as possible. You will have to zigzag or serge the edges of each square so it doesn't unravel if you do not use pinking shears. It doesn't really matter how big your squares are, as long as they are all the same size. You probably want them to be at least 4" though. 6" would make a nice big block and be easier to work with.

Step 2. Sew ONE side of each of 4 of the squares to EACH side of 1 of the squares, leaving the 6th square unattached for now, as shown:
The square in the middle will be the "bottom" of your block and the 4 attached to it will be the "sides."

Step 3. Sew the SIDES of the SIDE BLOCKS to each other to form a box:
Remember to always sew with the right sides of the fabric facing each other so your pretty seam is on the pretty side of the fabric.

Step 4. Now you're going to put the "lid" on. You can press open the side seams to make it easier to work with.
Now sew your 6th square onto your "box," leaving one side open:

Step 5. With block right side out, iron all the seams as shown to make the block more square.
Then iron under the edges of the open side to make it easier to sew up later.

Step 6. This step is optional, I just like to do it because it helps the block to be more block-y looking and then I can use the machine to sew the hole closed after stuffing instead of hand slip-stitching it closed. It also re-enforces the seams to help prevent them from coming unraveled with rough play.
Sew as close to the edge as possible along all the seams as shown in the picture above. Do not sew the block closed accidentally or you won't be able to stuff it! ;)

Step 7. Stuff your block with polyfill, making sure to arrange the stuffing in the block with your fingers as you go in order to make it most block-like. Don't stuff it too full if you plan to machine sew it closed! In fact, if you plan to machine sew it closed, leave enough room near the hole for the block to fit under the sewing machine's foot. You can pinch and squish the polyfill around to "fix" the empty spot once the block is sewn closed.

Step 8. Pin the hole closed and sew it closed as shown.
If you skipped step 6 then you'll want to hand slip stitch it closed instead.

This was only my second one so the seams are not real pretty... I need more practice! ;) It didn't help that my 2 year old kept reaching up and pushing buttons that would adjust the tension, needle placement, etc. as I was trying to sew. Lol! I'm sure it would look a lot fancier if I didn't have any "help"... hehe... But it's cute in a handmade toy sort of way anyway I think.

This post is linked up to the following where you can find more handmade gift ideas:
4 Moms, 35 Kids; Christmas Craft Linky
AND
Click to see other posts in this blog carnival or add your own!
AND
Raising Homemakers; Homemaking Linky

4 comments:

  1. For some reason, the pictures aren't showing up; only the links to pictures. Maybe this is just a glitch or something~?

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  2. For some reason, I'm not seeing any photos. just html code.

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  3. I can see the pictures and they look great. I love homemade gifts. It is nice to have some time to stop in at your blog.
    Blessings to you!

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  4. Thank you for dropping in! I'm sorry that some of you were having problems with the pictures! I noticed Bogspot was acting glitchy in the photo department when I uploaded them but afterwards the post appeared normal so I hoped they had resolved the glitch!

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