Crib Rail Cover Tutorial

Those of you that are moms will laugh at me when I say this. I never though H would chew his crib. I figured it was something some babies do when they teethe so I made sure there was always a chew toy in his crib. My little beaver has 6 teeth and likes to hang off the rail waiting for mommy to save him from solitary confinement, so in the space of about a week my crib went from pristine to this….

Beavers AttackAnd not just this section, the whole darn length of the rail! What is he doing in there?? It really can’t taste good. Or be very good for his teeth, though I guess babies need to file those sharp little chompers on something other than Mommy’s hands, or the cat……

Presenting the Crib Rail Cover Tutorial!

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My bumper pads were the inspiration for this project. Its took me a week to get around to it (in which more chewing ensued). I put H down for a nap, sealed the last envelope for the 3×6 Bee blocks, and pulled out this gorgeous Amy Butler Lark print in Gypsy Cobalt I bought a while back with nothing in mind, and a half yard of Kona Black. As I drafted out the sizes, I realized I forgot to measure H’s crib! Yikes! It was either wait until he woke up and try to find time again to sew later, or sneak into his room with a tape measure and be as quick as a bunny! You can guess which option I chose.

Okay, on to the instructions!

You will need a half yard of Print for the cover, a package of bias tape (or make your own), and a scrap of batting at 5 1/2″ wide by 53″ long.

Crib Rail Tutorail

Cut 3 strips 5 1/2″ x WOF (width of Fabric) of the main fabric. Sew them together with a 1/4″ seam, and press. From this long strip cut 2 strips 53″ long. Trim your batting scrap to the same size. Blog 002

Make your ties.

For store bought bias tape: edge stitch the tape closed across the entire length. Cut 4 strips 12″long and 2 strips 25″ long.

For Make Your Own: cut 3 strips 1 1/2″ wide x WOF. Sew raw edges together with a 1/4″ seam. Cut 4 strips 12″long and 2 strips 25″ long, turn right side out using a  turning hook. Press flat.

From here on out the instructions are the same for either.

Fold the raw edges of the tape under 1/4″, then under again. Stitch across to finish the edges of the tape.

*Helpful Hint* take a thick pin and pin straight through the layers of bias tape, just catching the folded edge so the tape lays flat. Use the pin to push the fabric under your presser foot and keep your stitching even.

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Fold the tie in half lengthwise, matching the seam side by side as shown. The fold will form a little triangle. Measure and mark 1″ from the bottom of the triangle. Set ties aside.

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Take your first fabric strip and place it right side up onto the batting, matching the raw edges. Baste the short edges using a 1/4″ seam. Treat this as a single piece, with the print as the right side and the batting as the wrong side. This is the bottom strip.

On the wrong side of the strip mark 14″ in from the ends, making sure to mark evenly on both sides of the long raw edge. Place your folded ties at these marks, with the fold at the top, matching the mark to the raw edge and the seams on either side of the pin. Pin and baste. Repeat for second tie.

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Your strip should look like the picture above.

Now turn the bottom strip right side up. Fold the tie over the raw edge and pin to keep it out of the seam as shown. Be careful not to curl the raw edges of the strip.Blog 018

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Now fold the tails into the center of the bottom panel as well, again taking care not to curl the raw edge of the strip. Pin in place as shown. Repeat both steps for the second tie.

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Take the 12″ ties and pin them to the right side of the bottom panel, raw edges matching the raw edge of the ends, with the seam of the tie 1″ from the corner as shown. Baste them in place and pin the tails to the panel.

*Please note I sewed the seam and forgot to put in my end ties, so there are no pictures for this step. Just make sure the raw edge of the ties match the raw edge of the short end and the long tails are pinned to the center of the bottom panel to keep them out of your final seam. Blog 031


If your like me and forget to add ties to something you are sewing, instead of ripping everyhtign apart, here is a quick little tip for you. Measure and mark where your ties were supposed to go. Open the seam only as wide as the width of your tie. Take your turning hook and feed it into the center of the tie, gathering at the handle until the hook reaches the seam. Use the hook to push the tie into the seam until the raw edges line up. Remove the hook and stitch over the tie ends! Phew!

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Now take your 2 panels and place them Right Sides Together. Sew a 3/8″ seam all the way around, leaving a 4″ gap for turning. Trim your corners.

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Keep an eye on where your pins are on the inside. I broke 2 needles because I put them too close to the seam allowance!

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Turn the panel right side out. Be careful of the pins, remove them as you find them. Your hands will thank you.

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Push the corners out and press the entire panel flat. Your ties will be through the main seams. This will prevent the ties from ever coming out from the body of the panel and your determined little beavers from pulling all your hard work apart! Genius!

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Stitch 1/8″ around the edge of the panel, closing the gap used for turning. Stitch a second seam 1/4″ to the inside of the first to make a nice finish.

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Voila! Your finished Crib Rail Cover!

To attach, put the cover over the top of the rail so that the loops are to the inside of the crib and lines up with a vertical rail as best as possible. Take the tie tail and pass them through the loop under the horizontal rail (one on either side of a vertical rail if they lined up) then back around the vertical rail and tie. This secures everything. Then tie the ends to the edges of the crib. Again, I forgot to take pictures and I don’t dare while the little guy is sleeping, so you will now all be subjected to my talented Paint diagram. Yay me!

8-bit instructions

You get it right? Good. I will put up full pictures if/when I remember =)

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Enjoy your newly protected crib and as always,

Happy Quilting!

Fabric Gift Bag/Scrap Bin Tutorial

After making the toy bins for my little guy’s toy ( and saving my feet from the inevitable midnight toy stomp), one very smart commenter thought that a smaller version would make a great scrap bin! I thought that was a great idea, and took it a step further. Presenting the Fabric Gift Bag……

Fabric Gift Bag

…that turns into a scrap bin!!

Scrap bin!

The bin finishes at 5″x5″x5″ ( who doesn’t like perfect squares!)



An 8″x20 1/2″ rectangle of the outer fabric and heavy weight woven fusible interfacing

An 11 3/4″x20 1/2″ rectangle for the lining

A square ruler ( no larger than 6 1/2″) or a hard piece of template material 2″x2″ square.

Your various sewing paraphernalia ( scissors, needles, thread, band-aids, coffee…)



1. Fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the outer fabric.

2. Match the shot raw edges and stitch a 1/4″ seam across, backstitching at either end.  ( all seams will be 1/4″)

3. Sew the bottom raw edge from the fold to the seam, backstitching at either end. Trim your seams to 1/8″ and set aside.

4. On the short side of the lining make a mark 3/4″  and 1 1/2″ from the top. Stitch from the top to the first mark and stop. Move to the second mark and resume stitching your seam to the bottom. Press this seam open.

Leave this open. This is the TOP

5. Stitch the bottom seam of the lining ( furthest from the opening in the seam), backstitching at both ends.


6. Take your outer fabric with the interfacing side out. line up the 2″ square line with the stitched seams as shown and mark a line around. If using the template line up the corner of the template to the stitching lines on the inside. Mark your lines. Repeat for the opposite side, lining up the fold  and the stitched line with the 2″ line.

Lined up for marking

Marked Lines

7. Cut on the marked lines. Repeat the steps for the lining. It should look like the picture below

Cut out

8. Bring the raw edges of the cut out squares together on either side, matching the center fold and bottom seam on one side and the bottom seam and side seam on the other. Sew the raw edges and trim the seam allowances. Repeat for the lining.

Match the raw edges of the square

Match the bottom seam to either the fold or the side seam and pin.

Sew a 1/4″ seam along the raw edges

9. Turn the outer bin right sides out and place right sides together inside the lining bin, matching the raw edges and the side seam. Sew all the way around the top, leaving a 2″ gap for turning.

Turn right side out

Place inside the lining, matching seams, and sew 1/4″ seam, leaving a 2″ gap for turning.

10. Turn the bin right side out through the opening. Use your favorite stitch to hand sew the opening closed.

Close the gap

11. Push the lining into the main body of the bin snugly and finger press into the seams. You will have 2″ extra of the lining folded overto the main body of the bin.  Press the top fold of the lining and the inside of the bin.

Extra fabric. Press the top fold all the way around

12. Edgestitch around the seam connecting the lining to the main bin.

13. Insert a ribbon or cording through the opening you left in the seam of the lining. I used a hook to push the ribbon as far in as i could, wrangled it off, then inserted the hook in the other direction, hooked the ribbon and pulled it the rest of the way through. It seemed like a good idea at 11:30 at night. Your best bet is to use a tapestry or cross stitch needle ( one with a dull end), and use it to pull a ribbon through, or thread it and knot the thread, pull the thread through the cording or ribbon, and then feed it through using the needle.

Find the opening

Feed the ribbon through.

14. Tie the ends together in a slipknot close to the opening, leaving about a 1″ tail. This will ensure the ribbon is hidden when in Scrap Bin mode.

Voila! You are finished your Gift Bag/Scrap Bin!!

Gift Bag Mode

Scrap Bin Mode

Gift Bag Mode: Pull on the end of the ribbon and draw up the band of fabric. Tie a bow!

Scrap Bin Mode: Release the bow and pull the edged of the band taught. Fold down over the main body of the bin.

I hope you enjoy making a bunch of these for your friends and yourself! They come together very quickly and the possibilities are endless! You could always fill one with cookies and send it my way! Yum Yum!
As always,

Happy Sewing!!

The Long Weekender Finished!

A quick update for those of you following the Long Weekender Blog Hop.
I finally decided on my fabric. I wanted to use Ty Pennington’s Foliage in Spiced Chocolate. Finding it was another matter altogether! Hawthorne Threads carries both the cotton and the home decor weights, but it was completely sold out in all the colorways. I had considered Amy Butler Love -Paradise Garden in Midnight, but I could not find an accent I was completely happy with. ( I may still make that one, we will see….)
I stumbled across a site called Stitchsteals completely by random chance. I don’t think I could repeat the search that led me to it, but lo and behold, there was the fabric I wanted, and only 5.50/yard! throw in cheap shipping to the USA and a shiny new mailbox across the border, and I had my fabric in my hands in 3 days! Woot! That mailbox may get me into trouble……

Foliage in Charcoal

I also ordered the co-coordinating print Lace in Spice for the inside of the bag and the piping. So much piping! My friend was over the night I planned my cutting layout. I wasn’t too keen using the accent for the handles, and she suggested piping them so it still has a nice pop of color. “What a great idea!” my sleep deprived brain screamed at me, “its only 45″ per handle so that not too much extra!” Right. It did turn out fantastic though. For whatever reason the local stores here either don’t carry cotton cording or they hide it so well you need a bloodhound to sniff it out. I was starting to panic, then I remembered that I have a ball of Bernat Handicrafter cotton yarn in my closet. I measured it and it turned out to be only 1/32″ smaller than what was required. It made a suitable alternate in a pinch.

Piping the bag

The pattern calls for home decor weight, but all I could get my mitts on was cotton. I know cotton sateen is slightly heavier and has a firmer drape to it so I added a layer of lightweight non-woven fusible interfacing to the wrong side of all my pieces. It took a little more time but was well worth the effort. The pieces held their shape much better while sewing and because I used the flimsiest interfacing I could find it did not add any extra bulk. It was as close to home decor weight you could get without actually being home decor.

To make a long story short, after only ripping out my finger once on a pin during the final stretch of hand sewing, I finished the bag! Serendipitously it just happened to be a long weekend so my husband could watch Harry while I sewed up a storm. They kept me company in the final stretches so I didn’t go completely crazy. After the piped handles I needed some support, though you will see that i did indeed add some to the side pockets as well. I had all this extra length and Brain though “well, it really shouldn’t go to waste….”

Mommy’s Little Helper

Without Further ado…..The Long Weekend Bag!

The Long Weekender

Pockets and Handles? Piped!

Fussy-cutting Splendor!

Thanks for reading, and as always,


Happy Sewing!!



And now for something fun…

My husband has recently quit smoking! I am very proud of him. He has been chewing a lot of gum to get through, so I bought him one of those big bottles of tablet style gum. Unfortunately its too big to lug around while he is working, so I made him a Gum Packet! I whipped it up in about 1o minutes. It’s super cute and hold 10 pieces of gum.

You can make one easily using scraps from your stash. You need:

2 pieces 5″x4″

1 strip 4″x4″ and a second strip 2″x4″ ( I used Kona White)

A button

a 1.5″ piece of 1/4″ elastic or elastic thread. You could also make a small loop out of fabric, make it about 2.5″ long to compensate for no stretch.


Fold the 2 white strips in half and press. you will have a 2×4 and a 1×4 strip

Place the 1×4 strip on the right side of one of the 5″x4″ pieces, matching the raw edges along the 4″ side. Stitch across 3/4″ from the folded edge.

Place the short white strip on top of the tall white strip and pin.

Draw the lines for the ‘gum pouches’. Draw a line 3/4″ from the left side, then 3 more lines 5/8″ apart. Stitch on the lines from the top of the first folded strip to the bottom, backstitching at the fold for stability.

Fold the elastic in half and match the raw edges of the elastic to the raw edge of the gum pouches. Adjust the elastic so that it is in the middle of the gum pouches. The loop should be pointing to the folded edges. Sew the elastic in place securely by backstitching multiple times in the seam allowance ( within 1/4″)

Place the 2 4″x5″ pieces Right Sides Together.  Sew around the outside edge, leaving a 2″opening at the top (the top is the side with no gum pouches)

Trim the bulky corners around the gum pouches, and flip the Packet inside out. Close the opening with a whipstitch.

Press the Packet firmly, and edge-stitch around the entire Packet. Fold the packet in half lengthwise, RST. It should now measure 2 1/4″x 3 1/2″ and the gum pouches should be hidden behind the flap. Edge-stitch at the fold.

Sew your button to the center of the “flap”. The elastic should stretch over the button to keep the Gum Packet closed.
Tada! You are finished and have a funky fun packet for your gum! This will fit the regular size stick gums and the tablet gums.

The inside hold 10 pieces of gum

Fun Gum!

Since I whipped it up before hubby went to work I don’t have any tutorial pictures. You can always email me with questions!

Happy Quilting!