My very good friend Raffaella just had a very cute little bambino. Raffaella is my best friend from my study abroad year in Spain–she is Italian rather than Spanish, but we always talk to each other in Spanish anyway. Perhaps it was a little funny at times when I visited her in Rome and she visited me in the US (in particular, when we were chatting away in Spanish in the US where there are plenty of native speakers around to wonder about what was going on there…)
So of course I had to inflict my new sewing hobby on little E’s new Italian cousin. It’s been embargoed on the blog until I knew that Raffaella received it. I made the Snuggie Wrap Blanket from Amy Butler’s Little Stitches for Little Ones. I used Amy Butler fabric (of course) from the Midwest Modern collection that I bought at Fabric Corner in Arlington (a really nice shop where they were very helpful and friendly–I’ll be going back). Since the new baby lives in Italy, rather than use fleece per the instructions for the lining of the wrap I used flannel. I had meant to make the largest size but misread the cutting instructions and cut the 0-3 month size! (That put a little time pressure on).
The project was pretty easy. I made a lot of other silly mistakes (no fault of the pattern, all mine–this is because I only sew late at night after a full day of work, generally!) but they were all easily correctable. You sew on the borders and then sew the front and back panels together. You also make a curved hood at one end using a plate to help you draw the cutting line. (It really works!). Finally, you make two buttonholes for the strap to thread through. They are meant to be 2″ long so that you can easily adjust the strap. My sewing machine’s automatic buttonholer only goes up to 1″ so I was about to say “so much for adjustable!” I then decided I might as well practice and see if I could do it. I used the instructions in Sew U which gave me a little more confidence–after a few practice runs (on practice fabric of course!) I decided I could give it a try. (After all, I’ve messed up a buttonhole before and had to rip it out so that didn’t scare me quite as much). They aren’t perfect looking, but they came out pretty well! I was really pleased with myself that I managed this ..I’ll be using the automatic buttonholer whenever possible as it is much straighter sewing and makes a tighter and more regular hole than I managed to do freestyling it, but at least I know I can go without! Sew U also suggests putting clear nail polish over the cut hole to seal it–that lessens any worries about raveling.
So, without further ado here are some pictures (sadly I’ve had to substitute a little frog in as a model as I don’t have any pictures of the new arrival using the wrap just yet!)