Hi there, folks! I’m so excited to be sharing a fun repurposing craft with you today at Homemaker on a Dime, and I want to say a huge thanks to SJ for having me by for a visit!
My name is Abbie from Five days…5 ways and Secondhand or Bare Bottom. Yes, that’s right. I run not one but two blogs. Because being a mama to three children under 6, teaching fitness classes, trying to keep my house reasonably clean, knocking out a few DIY projects now and then, and spending time with my amazing husband doesn’t keep me busy enough.
Here’s a quick peak at some of the things that I’ve been up to at Five days…5 ways, my primary blog where I write about a different theme for each day of the week (Move-it Monday—fitness, Try-it Tuesday—tutorials, Wardrobe Wednesday—fashion, 5 Things Thursday—a linky party where you can join me in posting a list with pics of 5 items on your mind, and Feature Friday— what/whomever I want to feature that day):
Today, I’m going to show you a “green” way to take those cute reusable tote bags that are popping up in every supermarket and even retail stores and repurpose them in a fun, functional way for your baby. Even if you don’t have a little one, these make for super-simple custom baby gifts.
So what is this repurposing stroke of genius?
Think about it—the tote bags are usually made of sturdy recyclable plastic, and they often come in fantastic patterns, prints, and colors that would cost $$$/yard from a fabric store. Instead, you pay $0.99 for about a yard of “material,” which is just too good for a bargain-shopper like me to pass up!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Plastic tote bag
- Ribbon (mine is 1 1/2” because I loved how this pattern coordinated with that adorable owl print on my tote, but 7/8” would also work great)
- Scissors (obviously)
- Sewing machine (optional…you could definitely sew this project by hand)
- Bib template (click for the one I made/used, or you could certainly create your own)
1. Cut out your template or bib-shape of your choice and layer it over both your tote material and your terry cloth. Pin the corners.
2. Cut around your template until you have the desired bib shape in both materials (P.S. I apologize for the funky coloring in the rest of my photos; life gets a bit harry with small children and a husband getting ready to leave for a week-long work-trip, and I’m afraid I lost my good light).
3. Pin your ribbon to the top of your terry-cloth (because my ribbon was so thick, I cut 18” streamers for each side, but this could be shortened considerably for thinner ribbon).
4. Lay your tote material over the ribbon, right sides together.
5. Fold the ribbon up several times to avoid stitching through it. You can even pin it in place to keep it from flopping loose once you start sewing.
6. Stitch around the edge of your layered materials, leaving at least 1/4” seam allowance (I wouldn’t got any higher than 1/2”, though, since this is not a large bib to begin with).
7. Continue stitching your edges together, leaving about a two inch gap so that you can turn your bib right-side-out (hopefully your stitching is less wobbly than mine can be sometimes…this is what happens when you sew while your five-year-old feeds the baby and you’re constantly looking over your shoulder to make sure there’s more yogurt getting in her mouth than on her face)
8. Bit by bit, pull your innards so that they become your outwards (helpful hint: don’t shove your finger inside without looking unless you really like the feeling of a pin being jabbed into it…I don’t).
9. Close the gap with your needle and thread, and…
10. Find an adorable baby-model to try your cute custom bib on.
Ooooh. Look at that pretty bow!
And there you have it, folks. A great way to think outside the fabric box so that you can have boutique-style goodies for your tykes without the high-end price-tag!
(P.S. I find the best tote-bag prints at Marshall’s. I looooove practically every single one they carry!)
Thanks again, SJ, for introducing me to your awesome readers, and thank you, awesome readers, for coming along with me on our little crafting jaunt today.
I hope you come join me on my blogging journey. Coming soon in November: a huge giveaway which could not only win you 1 of 3 really great prize packages but could also buy the materials to build a classroom for a group of orphans my family helps to support in Uganda. Stay tuned for how…
Hope to see you soon!
Thank you, Abbie, for such a well-written and informative tutorial!