Monday, March 28, 2016

queens of scraps

First of all, a belated happy easter to all of you! I hope you're having a great weekend. I have very fond memories of celebrating easter as a little girl at my parent's house: all the flowers in and around the house, the egg-hunt in the garden, the lovely breakfast (breakfast is my favorite meal) and of course eating yourself sick from all the chocolate eggs.

This year, we passed that tradition on to my two little nieces, who were staying the weekend at my parents' place. I of course didn't want to miss out on the amount of chocolate eggs, wine (and dirty diapers..), so I also paid them a visit. I hadn't seen my nieces in a while, and wanted to bring them a little gift. Since my oldest niece ( she's three) is fond of dressing up as a princess, I decided to make them little crowns, made from scraps of fabric!

What you'll need for this

- two scraps of fabric from at least 10 x 35 cm
- a sheet of news paper
- some ribbon.

I started with two pieces of fabric. A pink piece of fabric that used to be a pyjama-leg, and a piece of grey fabric left over from making cushion covers.

pretty in pink and grey!

I cut a long piece of newspaper and wrapped it around my head. I didn't know the head span of my nieces, so I just measured my own head and took about 10 cm off. It doesn't matter too much, since there will be ribbons to tie it into place. As soon as I has the size about right. I folded the piece of paper accordeon-wise in 6 pieces, and cut a point at the top. When I unfolded it, I had a  simple pattern for a crown.

I pinned the paper onto both layers of fabric and cut around it with a bit of seam allowance.

it's a pointy situation.

... aaand simply sewed around the edges! ( I didn't really bother with removing the paper before sewing)

under the needle it goes! 

on one of the short ends, I sewed a piece of ribbon of approximately 20 cm into the seam. The other short end stays open in order to turn the whole thing inside out.

Now, here's a little trick: turning long and narrow pieces inside out is usually not very easy, especially not with thicker fabrics. But there is a way to make it easier, especially when you sew in something like a ribbon, like I'm doing here. If you don't sew in a ribbon, you can mimic the process by adding a ribbon with a strong(!) safety pin or just cutting the ribbon when you're done.

This is how you do it: sew the ribbon on one side in the seam, with the long end in between the two pieces of fabric. make sure you don't sew over it. when you're at the point where the ribbon would disappear between the layers of fabric, pull the ribbon gently ( the part that you've already sewn together will bundle up a bit) towards the open end. Secure it there with a pin. Then, proceed with sewing everything together, as is shown in the picture.

a secured ribbon in the middle.
When you get to the turning part, you can simply pull the ribbon and the whole thing turns itself inside out!
easy breezy! 
When I was done with the turning, I added a second ribbon in the open side, folded the raw edges inside, and sewed it together. If your ribbon frays a lot, you could add some nail polish or something alike on the ends. And I was done!! Two little crowns for two little princesses.

looks quite royal for something that used to be an old pyjama...

I'm quite happy with how it turned out! And the ribbon is not just practical, I also think it looks quite cute.

I took the crowns to my parent's place to celebrate easter with the girls. We had a blast playing with them! My youngest niece -Eefke- was still a bit to small for it, and the crown ended up around her neck, making her look like a cuddly dinosaur with fabric teeth ;) Well, she is only ten months old, so I guess she'll grow into them.. ;)  But Jinthe went dancing through the house, pretending to be Elsa, or Rapunzel, or.. well, whatever the favorite princess of the day was.

And even my own big head fitted in them! Heck, even grandpap's head fitted them ;)

Since I think my nieces are not old enough to decide if they want to be photographed for my blog (and I'm keen on that aspect),  you'll have to stick with my face this time ;)

A nice little extra is the fact that you can turn them inside out for a different color.

today she'll be the princess in pink, tomorrow in grey!

I know, this post sounds a bit cheery, which might clash with your post-easter hangovers.. but I really enjoyed making those things, not to mention seeing the imagination of my nieces playing with them. And hey; I made my nieces happy with the legs of my old pyjama's! what's not to like? If you prefer my sarcastic posts a little better, don't worry: I'll be back to my grumpy old self tomorrow;)



  1. You came up with a very cute idea. I love toys that help children play creatively.
    Please don't think I'm being critical but if I had a mistake in one of my posts I'd want to know about it... I think you meant to say accordion fold rather than harmonica. If not a harmonica fold is something I've never heard of.

    1. No offence taken, I'm happy you pointed it out! :) As a non-native speaker with a mainly academic/medical English vocabulary, crafting terms can be quite puzzling for me, so it helps when readers help me to improve it. It will probably take a while before I've correctly absorbed all the crafting-jargon.... I've changed it in the original text:)

      ps: I completely agree with you on the kind of toys! I noticed that the simpler the toys are, the longer my nieces play with them.