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2171  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / My Mei Tai thingummy (inc a very pic heavy tute) on: February 21, 2008 10:44:26 AM
I decided to make a back carrier to put my squidge in because she gets bored in the buggy, but she still has very little legs and gets tired easily. I figured, even if she hated it it'd keep me sane for a while AND I've just found out my uncle and aunt are expecting so there'd be someone for it go to!
I liked the tutes I'd seen on other sites, but thought  could improve on the design/ease of making a little. It's taking ideas from Scandis and Mei Tais mainly, with a little bit of me thrown in to boot lol!!!

Select your materials, a decorative outer, a heavy duty inner (it will eventually be folded double) and some medium heavy material for straps. I used home tye-dyed cotton, cotton based upholstry canvas and calico. Plus a little decoration in the form of a flower.

I made the straps according to another tute I found online, 12" x 90" for the shoulder straps and 10" x 90" for the waist ones.
For the body piece I used inner material (the red canvas) which was the same size as a standard UK/US pillow case.
the cotton was slightly larger for seam allowances. This body piece will be folded in half and end up double layered and about 18" x 12" approx.

I started off by covering a stain on the dyed fabric with a flower and did my first bit of machine appliqu.

it's a bit wonky but not all that bad.

Place the canvas on the cotton so it is centred. fold over and tack all edges. check it's all even with no rucks or creases, then sew. I sewed all sides first, leaving about 1/2 cm gap where corners were, then folded them in and sewed them separately.

you should have something like this:

I then set about hemming the shoulder straps. I originally tried to use my hem rolling foot on the machine but it's not keen on frayed fabric and raher than painstakingly trim it, I decided to make a feature out of it by using decorative but structural sewing, and a double needle on the machine.

Now take the end of the shoulder strap which will be attached to the body piece and fold it like this:

then sew to hold. I used a triple running stitch. which is incredibly strong.

Now do that again with the other shoulder strap. once done, put aside, have a break.

fold a waist strap in half lengthways. sew along long side.

do this with both. Now to get them the right way out, I was going to use my normal trick of concertina-ing it all down onto a surgical clamp... but there was just too much material so I had to resort to something else...

my kitchen roll holder.

if you knwo a better way to do this, or don't have a similar holder, don't panic- this is just what I did.
I inserted holder into waist strap thus:

concertina'd waist strap down onto holder, pinned the two sides together and pulled.....

then I pressed them flat and hemmed one end of each.

to attach the shoulder straps, position them against the top corners, put them against the side of the material which will be the INSIDE of the backpack... Sew an X box (not the console lol!!! if I could do that I'd be the best wife in the world to my hubby lol!!!) ok so mine turned out more of an X Trapeziod but you get the idea.

I did my X box in the really strong triple running stitch again. bugger to unpick if a mistake happens, but it rocks on safety.

surgical clamps have many uses

now you should have a rectangle with cut off corners and 2 long ties attached to one of the short ends.
fold up the other end until it matches the end with the ties sewn on. I do hope this makes sense, my camera batteries started to die!!!

place a pin  or mark with chalk where the fold is on both edges and unfold.

line up your waist straps with this mark so that what will be the bottom edge of the waist straps is in line with the marks. overlap the straps, and pin in place. tack, again making sure they will be sewn to the INSIDE of the carrier.

I overlapped my waist straps and sewed a couple of centimetres of just straight stitching to hold them in place a bit more.

Sew an x box on each side just before the edge of the body material.

you should now have an oblong with blunt corners which is this shape, including the straps:
(my camera gave up the fight for battery life and died...it takes 45 mins to recharge)

if it looks like this you went wrong somewhere:

fold up the bottom (strapless) half to meet the top, align and overstitch. This time I only used the double running stitch rather thn the triple. still strong.
this is what shape it should now be.

you're ready to try it on... I used these instructions: http://www.freehandbaby.com/wear-baby.php

this was just a quick tie and Fluff's feet were tucked under her 'cos she didn't want to be photographed.
please ignore mess and flabby arms lol!!!

I love this thing. already today we have been for a walk and Princess's really happy in it.
2172  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Re: Shower Curtain Hoodie? on: February 21, 2008 08:35:20 AM
you are the hoodie god.
2173  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Re: wee corset dresses (much pics) on: February 21, 2008 01:31:20 AM
once again you have astounded me with both your talent and your monkey's gorgeousness.... and choice of temp tatoos lol!!!
2174  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Re: how to sew different sizes on: February 21, 2008 01:26:30 AM
I use wide baking paper. and  sharpie.
2175  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Re: need help for inspiration! on: February 21, 2008 01:24:54 AM
I have a paper pattern for a whole baby/toddler dress, but I'm only planning to use the bodce on one of them and make the skirt using patchwork... just not sure if I have the patience.

also, my mum says: if you find a pattern you like, trace it onto baking paper, then cout out of calico. you'll have a reusable pattern which will keep forever- my mum's now making stuff for my little girl from patterns she has from my childhood.
2176  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Re: MUTTons on: February 21, 2008 01:19:59 AM
Well they are basically rectangles, I am terrible at knitting and can't shape knitting either lol!
2177  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Re: Mei Tais, Bei beis, Scandis..... on: February 19, 2008 02:06:12 AM
thanks, i meant to clarify on the decorative tea towels bit lol!
well, searching through my material box i have enough heavy canvas for a safe butt-support but need to go buy material for the straps.... wish me luck!!!!!
2178  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Re: sewing gifts for b-day parties - I have anxiety! on: February 18, 2008 11:30:35 AM
you could try something interesting like wierd animals... take material, cut into bits and sew into a strange shape. add eyes.

you can adfd eyes to anything and make it loveable.
2179  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Mei Tais, Bei beis, Scandis..... on: February 18, 2008 11:26:40 AM
1. would a wriggly 2 year old (28-30lbs ish) be happy in one?
2. instead of heavy duty fabric can I use funky teacloths/teatowels? they look about the right size!
3. how long should the straps be? some say 72", some 90", some say shorter...Huh
4. what's more comfy, round the shoulders or crossed betweem the boobs?
5. I'm only 4ft 8, can I pull this off??!?
2180  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Re: Why?? Do you sew for your children? on: February 18, 2008 11:23:48 AM
I am anti name brand, i am cheap, i find funky vintage materials in jumble sales and finally i think my daughter would look cute in a flour sack lol!!!
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