Crib & Toddler Bed Sheet Tutorial with Guest - Dana from "Made"

it has been killing me to keep our next guest blogger under's so exciting to welcome one of my all time fave lady bloggers - the gorgeous and talented dana willard from "MADE"!!!

she was one of the first bloggers i started chatting with and i like to call her my friend as well. we share some fun late night chats and i like to drool with jealousy over her lovely blog, gorgeous photography, fabulous sewing skills & pattern design and the fact that she gets all this stuff done with two kids running around!!!! i'm constantly amazed by her and truly mean it when i say she is well on her way to becoming the next martha stewart or amy butler. this girl is gonna make it far, mark my words!

i know i don't need to tell you who she is, or what her blog "MADE" is about.....but let's just take a second to ogle some of her lovely images and projects from fashion, home decor, crafts, recipes....never mind the goodies in her shop "joon bug", the list goes on:

doesn't it just make you feel so cheerful and inspired? i just love it & i love her! so let's all welcome dana over here for part of the babyhood bonanza!!!

now let's hear from dana:

Hello friends!

It's Dana from MADE and I'm thrilled to be joining you for Babyhood Bonanza with Shannon! I keep hoping that I'll hop over to luvinthemommyhood and Shannon's not there because her post says "off to the hospital!". Soon, very soon. I'll be patient. After all, she's the one that has to push the little babe out. Good luck Shannon! We can't wait to meet her!

Okay. So, I'm really not a girly girl when it comes to chick flick movies, music, getting gushy, sharing feelings, etc. I rarely cry in movies. I've seen only 10% of the Sandra Bullock films that exist. I (yikes) think John Mayer can be a bit cheesy? (did I really just say that? Sorry). But that all changed when I got pregnant with Lucy. No, I didn't start buying John Mayer albums (though I do think Heartbreak Warfare has some clever lyrics) but I found myself watching shows about child birth, adoption, etc and just getting teary-eyed over it. I had this immediate connection to motherhood and feeling love for children. They seemed so precious. Such innocent little people, eager to learn the ropes of life. I would see a picture of a child and found myself saying "awe" much more than I had before. I felt a new love for children in general, even if they weren't mine. And my heart went out to those children who would go through hard challenges in life or never have a place to call home.

The days that Lucy and Owen were born were two of the most amazing moments of my life. It is definitely a miracle every time a life comes into this world. A creation and feat that can never be matched with another earthly experience.

Though there are days that they challenge me beyond patience (and I cry for different reasons), they bring an even greater amount of joy to my life. They each come with their own personalities and funny ways of doing things. I see bits of me in them; I see bits of Casey. They show me the world through their 36-inch tall perspective. And I learn more about myself, as I learn to be their mom.

As far as sewing goes, my kids are most of my inspiration. And sewing for a baby is one of the easiest things. Make a set of burp cloths, a simple receiving blanket, embellish a onesie. It took me a while to realize, you don't have to settle for what you see in the store. You can make (almost) anything! And this was one of those duh moments when I discovered (after both kids had graduated from a crib) that you can make your own crib sheets! At least Owen's still in a Toddler bed, so he gets to reap the rewards.
The concept is simple, I just cut up an old crib sheet and went from there. Here you go!.......

Crib sheets don't need to be plain and white.

And if they're for a boy, they probably shouldn't have teddy bears on them. I'm just sayin....

Make your baby crib or toddler bed more exciting by creating your own sheets! This is a great project for any level of sewer, especially a beginner.

Okay, let's get started!

You'll need:
* 2 yards of fabric
* 80 inches (204 cm) of skinny 1/4 inch elastic

* Cut out a rectangle that's: 45 x 67 inches (114.5 x 171 cm)

* Fold that into fourths (fold it in half and in half) and cut an 8 x 8 in (20.5 x 20.5 cm) square out of the corners, so that your fabric looks like this:

Another way to do this (if you're making multiple sheets), is to cut out a pattern piece that's 1/4 the size of your sheet. It looks like this (or the state of Utah):

Then before cutting anything out, you can fold your fabric into fourths, lay that on top, and easily cut it out.

Okay, with your fabric cut, let's start sewing.

* Take the two sides of one corner and bring right sides together. Pin them and sew down the side. This is creating a "pocket" of sorts, to go around the corners of the mattress. Do this to all four corners of the sheet:

* Serge the seams,
zigzag or leave the seams raw.

* Serge around the entire outside of the sheet. This makes is easy to create a casing for the elastic. If you don't have a serger, just iron your fabric over 1/4 inch all the way around and then continue to the next step....

* Iron under the entire edge of the sheet. You are creating a casing, to string very skinny elastic through.

* Sew down the casing.
You don't need to pin around the entire sheet before you sew (that takes too long) but DO pin a start and stop point so that you leave an opening to get the elastic In and Out. Start sewing from the START point, all the way around the STOP point:

* Insert the elastic.
Taking your 1/4 inch wide elastic, attach a safety pin to one end, and pin the other end to the sheet. Start stringing it through the casing, all the way around till it comes out the other side:

* Overlap the ends and sew them
together a few times with a zigzag stitch:

* Then sew your casing closed.

And you're done!

Try it on!

And then make them in all sorts of colors:

Because even boys like options, right?

Sleep tight, little babe.

dana - thank you so much for being part of the celebration and i cannot wait to email you saying "she's here"!!!!! i will definitely be making some fun new sheets for the kids, i'll just add it to the 20 other fantastic projects of yours i need to get sewing! big hugs!!!

stay tuned for our next guest blogger later this week....there's more fun to come!!!! don't forget to grab our button off the sidebar to the left :)

p.s. if you're looking to find out more about dana, check out our interview with her as part of our "moms in the mommyhood" series from last year!

all images are copyright dana willard