Monday, October 3, 2011

DIY "Moby wrap"

I am an ardent baby carrier and have enjoyed carrying all three of my children in infancy. With my oldest I made a pouch carrier and used it for the first few months but found it too inflexible and switched over to the Baby Bjorne for most of her carrying.
When my son came along I discovered the ring slings and the flexibility that I was missing in the pouch. I made myself a beautiful pink striped carrier and used it often for carrying my son and then it continued to be used when daughter #2 came along. I was able to carry on taking care of the older two with baby in the carrier. Nursing in public was never a problem as the carrier came with built in coverup. The only issue I had with it is the majority of baby weight is on one shoulder and the back. Having been rear-ended a couple of times has messed up my neck and I'm more prone to soreness there and in my shoulders. I found extended carries could exacerbate the pain.
Seam in middle
This pregnancy I have seen the "latest" carrier - the Moby wrap. It's basically a long (6 yd) piece of fabric ( usually knit cotton jersey) that is wrapped around your waist and over both shoulders. Baby is tucked in the middle and it seems weight is evenly distributed across both shoulders and your back! Sounds like a solution for my sore neck.

tapered end hemmed

finished , just needs pressing
So I googled info on how to make one, decided to go with a woven (more support) rather than knit (more give). I used a flat cotton sheet for fabric. Cut it into 26" strips. It wasn't long enough for the full 6yds so I cut two 3yd strips and seamed them together with a French seam and folded over and sewn down the edge. So, although a seam is not recommended for baby carriers, I feel pretty comfortable with this as it's a very strong seam. I hemmed both edges and ends. I was going to leave like that but on more research found that the Moby wrap actually has tapered ends so there is less bulk. So I went back and tapered the last three feet on each end to a point and re-hemmed the tapered edges. It feels like it fits well, even over my big 37 week belly, so it should be plenty long. I may go get some knit fabric later after seeing how this one works. Knit is so much easier, no sewing required as it doesn't fray. Just cut and you're done!
Wrap on, with preggy belly sticking out the bottom!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Crayon crafts

Did some fun crayon crafts last week with the kids. The first was, you collect some smooth rocks, heat them in your oven at 350 for 15 minutes. You can then paint with crayons on the hot rocks. The way the wax melts on the surface of the hot rock, I found mesmerizing. The kids really enjoyed it and you can do two art projects at the same time by having paper under your rock. My eldest enjoyed drawing on the paper with the melty crayons (kinda like pastels). We found the lighter colored crayons gave the best results. Also don't try to draw pictures, abstract works best with runny wax!

The second crayon craft was fall leaves made from grated crayon melted between layers of wax paper and then cut into leaf shape.  I was out of wax paper so I used a cereal bag. I tried several different crayon colors across the bag mixing some of them and trying to get some colors a little isolated. The brown and orange kinda took over most of the color.  Grate crayon on half the bag or on one sheet of wax paper, cover with other half. Place in between paper and iron on medium low temp, just enough to melt the crayons and melt the layers of wax paper together. While it's still hot, you can smoosh colors around a bit then let it cool, trace your leaf shape and cut it out. I haven't hung mine up yet, but you can thread them with needle & thread or tape them up or however you desire.  We've just been enjoying them scattered on our table!