Monday, 23 November 2015

Maternity Makes

There were various factors behind my rationale for starting my maternity leave earlier than most; how it fitted with the 'busy season' at work, how much I was already struggling with the 1-2 hour hour commute, and most of all how much I wanted to just 'be at one' with my bump.  I was met a couple of times with, 'but won't you get bored?'

The answer, a resounding no!

If you love crafting and creating, you are never bored, and with a baby on the way there was suddenly plenty to do.  Here's a list of my top 'maternity makes' for home, for baby and just for fun...

1. Patchwork curtains for the nursery

From reading about various blessing and celebration traditions associated with pregnancy, I was particularly inspired by the tradition of making a patchwork quilt to be presented to baby on their first birthday. And this seemed the loveliest idea. However, lacking the need for a quilt, I went for a variation on this theme by making some bespoke curtains for the nursery out of all the scraps of fabric I've built up over the years (and, truth be told, there was a desperate need for me to get my fabric stash down given that my sewing room needed to fit into a sewing corner to make space for baby).

The result, a really unique set of curtains that reminds me of my many makes over the years, from fabric I've had since I was a child being given various craft kits, through to left-overs from presents and dresses I've made. A real labour of love (it took forever), but I'm pleased to have created something truely unique for baby.

2. Granny square throw and cushion cover

I started this one ages ago when we first bought our house, but the arrival of kittens put the whole project on hold (I think I've mentioned before, yarn + kittens = a chaotic combination!) So here at last was an opportunity to finish it. If you'd like to learn how to crochet a granny square, there is a fab tutorial by Sarah Jane from Bella Coco which you can find by following this link.

3. Up-cycled cushion cover

I had a sun-dress made from the most lovely fabric, that didn't actually look that lovely when wearing it. So, loathed as I was to give it away, I converted it into a simple cushion cover. If you'd like to know how, there's a link to a tutorial here.

4. Christmas cake
I felt very virtuous making my cake this early (although have to admit I'm struggling to remember to keep feeding it!) I used this recipe by Delia Smith both this year and last, and it's worked well both times (and I'm not the best baker so it must be pretty fool-proof!)

5. Train picture

When I worked as a community musician many years ago I created a book of story songs to sing to children at the end of our music making (a kind of musical jakanory). One particular hit was my train song - enjoyed by so many children over the years, I always planned to convert this into a picture when I had my own family to share it with.  And ten years later, at last, I had my chance. So I was really keen to finish this particular make, and I'm so pleased I did!  If you'd like to know the words to the song (a real hit with the under 5s), you can find them on an earlier blog post by following this link.

So maternity leave for me was a real opportunity to make and create. Would love to here how you spent your time waiting for baby to arrive!

You Baby Me Mummy


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