Wednesday 20 July 2016

A Homemade Mobile for the new Baby

With my due date fast approaching, I’ve been trying to get organised before the baby arrives. This has meant sorting out a little corner in our house for the new baby. We’re not decorating a nursery this time around because Ebony didn’t sleep in her own room until she was two and a half, so we’re going to enjoy having a spare room a little while longer.

After much consideration, I decided to invest in a changing table. We didn’t have one for Ebony because we were in our 20s and laughed in the face of backache but now I’m 30 and I need all the backache related help I can get. I found a second hand changing table on Gumtree and sent Laurie and Ebony to Chorlton to pick it up.

The changing table will give us somewhere to store all of the clean nappies and wipes, as well as creating a designated area for nappy changes in the house. I’ve put the changing table in my office because I have space and will probably be in there writing with the baby in a sling often enough to make it worthwhile. It also leaves our spare room empty so that if the baby is crying in the night, Laurie has somewhere to hide if he’s suffering from sleep deprivation at work.

In an attempt to pretend I don’t feel guilty that the baby is getting a changing table in lieu of a bedroom, I’ve been creating the most beautiful changing table in the world. I wanted to get Ebony involved in the decorations. At four and a half, she’s very excited about the arrival of her new baby brother or sister and I’ve been working hard to develop a bond for them during this pregnancy. Part of this simply comes down to Ebony feeling included in decisions about the new baby so I knew she’d be thrilled when I asked her to help create a mobile for the changing table.

I bought some fabric pens (I got these ones for a fiver) and some stuffing (this one) from Amazon (I signed up for a free trial with Amazon Prime and now everything arrives at the speed of light and it is amazing) and bought some plain white fabric from our local craft shop. I thought it would be a nice idea to get Ebony to draw our family for the mobile because I really love the people she draws and I thought it was a nice way to personalise the mobile. I cut the fabric into rectangles and she drew each member of the family including the cat. Once that was done, I ironed the fabric straight away to protect the images. Then it was time to start sewing.

I had some nice colourful fabric left from another project so we decided to use that as the backing. With the hand drawn image facing the patterned fabric, I used the sewing machine to sew most of the way around the drawing. Then I cut off any excess material before pushing the fabric back through the hole so the drawing was the right way round. I stuffed the pockets of fabric and then hand-sewed up the gap.

I didn’t want to fix the mobile to the ceiling in my office, so decided to buy a mobile arm and hanger to use. I ordered this one from Amazon, in hindsight, I should probably have gone for the 88cm one because the 66cm is quite low and I think the baby will soon be able to reach the dangling toys. I would have preferred a wooden arm, but couldn’t find any that had good reviews. If my dad wasn’t busy sunning himself in Europe, I would have tried to rope him into building one but alas he had a lucky escape.

Once all of the drawings had been stuffed and sewn and the mobile hanger had arrived, it was time to fix the mobile together. I simply used thread to fix the stuffed drawings in place, though I’m not sure how well this will hold out once the baby manages to grab them.

I think it looks great and Ebony is really proud of it. The mobile hanger plays music and rotates and I know Ebony will love turning it on to entertain the baby during nappy changes. When the baby outgrows the mobile, the stuffed drawings will make great toys as well, so I’m hoping we’ll get years of use out of them. It was a really simple project and only took a few hours in total to complete.

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