As I’m sure everyone in the world with web or media access has heard, on the 22nd of July the world welcomed the newest heir in line to the British throne, Prince George.


To celebrate his arrival, designer Fiona Goble and the Ivy Press have released this free pattern, which includes dolls and outfits for Princess Catherine, Prince William, and wee Prince George.  Fiona Goble published a fun book of patterns called Knit Your Own Royal Wedding in preparation for Kate and William’s wedding in 2011.

If you strive for authenticity, you might like to make a little baby shawl for your knitted prince in the same style as the gorgeous Filmy Fern shawl that was the official gift from New Zealand.


Fluffy bunny

by kath_red on 07/02/2011

in Toys+Plush

The cutest little fluffy stuffy bunny from Allsorts.

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Softie maker extraordinaire Abby Glassenberg is currently posting a series on softie making. Such an excellent idea.
Elements of Soft Toy Design: Intro and Stitch Length, Openings, Using Freezer Paper, Pattern Drafting for a Simple Outline Toy.

Continue to follow the series as Abby posts. Link.

abby glassenberg - elements of soft toy design


Sleepy-time baby and doll quilt

This adorable cuddly sleepy-time baby with its coordinated mini doll quilt will be loved by little girls. It’s easy to make and by adding some dried lavender to the stuffing you can help your little ones have sweet dreams.

Tools for this project
Sewing machine + sewing machine thread
Embroidery (hand stitching) needle
fabric glue
tape measure

Materials for Sleepy-time baby
20cm square piece of black felt for hair
5cm square piece of white felt for arms
Cream fabric for face 12x17cm / 4x7inches piece (x2)
Pink fabric for body 20x17cm piece (x2) 8x7inches
Scrap of polka dot fabric for scarf 3x17cm 1×7 inches (x2)
Scraps of pretty fabrics for collar + pocket
Pillow stuffing (+optional dried lavender)
Black embroidery thread for facial features

Materials for doll quilt
Scrappy strips of pretty fabric – approx 23x3cm / 9x1inches (x10)
Polka dot piece of fabric for pocket 13x13cm / 5×5 inches
Pink strip of fabric 42x4cm 16.5x 1.5inches
Unbleached or cream cotton for back – 54x42cm / 21×16.5inches
Unbleached or cream cotton for front – x6 pieces (42x17cm/ 16.5x7inches; 42x5cm/ 16.5x2inches; 42x11cm / 16.5x4inches; 23x13cm/ 9x5inches; 23x10cm / 9x4inches)
Coated hand-quilting thread

[Notes: Press seams as you go and press each piece flat before moving on to the next step.]

Sleepy-time baby
Pattern pieces for doll

Step 1. Cut out your pieces using the diagram shown above:
– cut the hair from the black felt, cut the arms from the white felt, cut the collar and pocket from scrappy pretty fabric.
– Sew together the fabric for face, the strip for the scarf and the fabric for the body (x2 for front and back of body).

Step 2. Lay out all the cut out pieces onto the body, fix them in place temporarily with small dabs of fabric glue then machine sew them.
– Attach the rounded hair piece to the back head
– Attach the fringe hair piece to the front head
– Attach the arms and collar to the front body
– Make a pocket by cutting out a pocket shape and hemming around, then attaching in position by machine.

Step.3 – Hand embroider the face details using black thread and a simple back stitch.

Step.3 – Fold the pony tails at the top to make a small pleat and pin them onto the head front, facing inwards – sew them into position.

Step 5.
– Place the front and backs right sides together, trim the top of the head to be slightly rounded.
– Pin and sew around the edges, leaving a gap at the bottom to insert the stuffing.
– Turn the body right side out through the gap at the bottom.

Step6. – Stuff the doll with your pillow stuffing until nicely filled but still soft. (Optional add a handful of dried lavender in the body stuffing.) Hand stitch the opening closed.

Now make a doll quilt to go with your sleepy-time baby.

Making the doll quilt
Pattern pieces for mini quilt

Step 1.
– Gather your materials and cut to size
– Lay out the pieces as per the diagram

Step 2.
– Sew the strips together in section 2.
– Sew the 2 long strips to the top of section 3.
– Sew section 1 and section 3 to either side of section 2.

Step 3.
– Lay the top and the back piece right sides together. Round the corners by first marking them with a small bowl and cutting with scissors.
– Pin together and sew around the edges, leaving an opening in the base.
– Turn right sides out and press. Hand stitch the opening closed.

Step 4.
– Using hand quilting thread, needle and thimble, hand quilt using a simple chunky running stitch (+ optional cross stitches).
– Run a line of stitches around the border, and a few lines along the centre, and one side. Your little quilt is now finished.


Inside Issue 3 of Action Pack: A mini-mag for kids who want to do stuff! there is a simple pattern and really detailed tutorial for making the cup, saucer and some tasty felt jam tarts. That pattern is pretty simple, perfect for beginner sewists and kids to make. The teapot pattern is a little more fiddly and tricky and more for intermediate sewists – it is available for only $2 at Pattern Spot – you can get it here.


September/October brings change of season, and fresh starts and frivolity and seriousness too. So for a break from whipup realtime I am introducing a few weeks of guest bloggers to liven up your crafty experience. To bring you something fresh, and hopefully invigorate you to make and do and be and think! Its going to be a fun few weeks so come along for the ride.

Today I want to introduce Nicole Mallalieu, she writes (for the occasional magazine article Stitches, Get Creative, Homespun etc), keeps a blog You Sew Girl, which has heaps of sewing tips and tutorials and she runs a shop too – selling supplies and finished goods so you can get making too.

Since picking up a needle and thread at the age of three, I have been a passionate designer and maker of all things “textile”. I graduated (in 1989) with a degree in Fashion from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, and worked in Australia, England and Ireland, in the fashion and craft industries. Since returning to Australia in 2002, I have designed and manufactured bag patterns in conjunction with teaching courses and workshops in patternmaking, sewing and bag making. I launched my online bag-supplies store in 2004.

From the ashes of disaster (grows the Lavender of success!)

I carefully planned a tutorial for making these “Lavender Luggage” bags for my guest spot on Whip Up… Never one to skimp on instructions, I couldn’t make it fit the Whip Up brief. I spent two days refining, preparing and tweaking before I gave up and embarked upon a quick-fix project. (Sometimes we just have to accept that things are not going as they ought and find a different path!)

Here is my 20-minute-or-less quick-fix project – it saved my sanity after the time I poured into the other project. I whipped up this quick little lavender bag for my frog-obsessed 4-year old. It was meant for her wardrobe, but she prefers to hang it from her bed-head so that it can relax her to sleep.

The method:

1. Cut (x 2) green homespun cotton fabric into a frog face (-ish) shape – no templates are included – you can wing this using the photographs to guide you.

2. Cut 2 circles for the eyes (I had no white felt, so I used two layers of fusible interfacing). This face was embroidered by machine – but it could be done by hand. Buttons were sewn for the eyes (but could equally be appliqued or embroidered).

3. With right sides of fabric facing, sew the two pieces together around the outside edge – leaving a 1” gap in the seam at the bottom of the face and catching a loop of ric-rac or ribbon into the top edge seam.

4. Trim the seam allowances to 6mm (1/4 inch) with pinking shears and turn the face to the right side out through the gap in the base. Fill the face with lavender flowers and slip-stitch (ladder stitch) the gap closed.

This frog was so simple and quick, it made me think of the limitless possibilities for little “animal face” lavender bags for children. It also made me appreciate the simplicity of using materials that are to hand, and throwing them together with love. A nice reminder not to complicate things!

You can see the other project – my Lavender Luggage tutorial on my blog You Sew Girl,