Mama Cloth

OK, I’ll warn you now. If bodily fluids and the like really gross you out, I’d just quit reading now.
Still with me?

Well, let’s get on with it.

As we all know, when you have a baby, there’s quite a lot of bleeding. It only makes sense, right? I mean, a baby just left your uterus. And you’ve gotta be prepared for that. Most will recommend you get those giant pads you had in middle school.

I decided this was the perfect time to try out cloth pads. I’ve been interested in them quite awhile, but I didn’t have a period often while on birth control and obviously haven’t for the last nine months.

Now, some people are really disgusted by the idea. To me, though, all of the reasons I wanted to cloth diaper my baby are just as legit for me. Cost, health, and the environment were all factors. Fortunately, Erik doesn’t mind my forays into becoming more “green”,” since I know some husbands think this is a bit wild.

I figured, too, that I’m going to be doing laundry all the time anyways. What’s one more load dedicated to me and my health?

And so, I got this cloth pad pattern from Uber Domestic. There are plenty of free tutorials out there on the web, too, but none of them looked quite right or worked for me. Investing in this pattern ensured good results in three different sizes.

It’s a little tricky getting the hang of making these beautiful, and I still haven’t quite got it, but who else is really going to see them, right?

One thing that might sound a little crazy is that it does make a difference to have these nice soft fabrics in cool patterns instead of the usual gross pink plastic from the disposables. I was able to use scraps from diaper making and my other sewing, so that cut down on cost. Other than the pattern, my only other investment was in buying Zorb for the center, which is an extra-absorbent material. Very cost-effective project if you’re okay with washing and reusing cloth pads.

These pictures don’t show them with snaps on, as I was having a bit of trouble with my snap pliers on picture day, but you get the idea.

To help keep track of the type of pad each is, I added little initials on the wings.

I’m glad to have embarked on this project. It may not be for you, but if it is, well, now you know how I did it.

I Made It! Monday

This weekend was fun. I had a baby shower to attend, which was great. It’s my fifth in the last six months. Lots of babies in my world.

Speaking of babies, Olive is doing great. She makes the funniest expressions. It just makes me laugh.

Olive Asleep

And, since we’re on all things baby, here’s a cute project from last week’s party:

baby sunsuit

What a cute sunsuit byAlyssa of kadydid designs!  I adore the fun polka dots.

Now on to this week. A few guidelines:
1. Please follow my blog. Links are on the sidebar.
2. Keep it family-friendly. I reserve the right to delete links.
3. Have fun! Visit some of the other blogs and share some comment love.
4. Post my button or a link to the party somewhere on your blog.

Ninth Street Notions
Ninth Street Notions


Cheap Bathroom Gear Update

One of the difficult aspects of our remodeling a bathroom is our budget. We have to cut costs however possible. It’s how we were able to do this little bathroom pick-me-up for well under $250.

Since we had changed up the colors of the bathroom, I wanted to get new bathroom gear – you know, the soap dispenser, toothbrush holder, and all that. What’s the point of fixing the bathroom up if everything doesn’t match?

But the cheapest metallic look bathroom dispensers I could find were $8 each. I searched the thrift stores, but to no avail. Then it hit me. Why not fix up what we’ve got?

I started with this:

old glass

They weren’t terrible. They just didn’t go with the new look of the bathroom.

Enter metallic spray paint. It’s only about $4 at the store for a can, which is plenty to fix up a few accessories. And it’s so easy to use. I’m not going to claim to be the best at spray painting, but fixing up these four pieces took me about 10 minutes total.

Metallic Spray Paint

On a relatively warm day, I took the pieces outside and covered them (along with a good portion of the plants overlooking the creek I live on.

Spray Painted Bathroom Gear

I then took them inside to fully dry.

They turned out silver, shiny, and beautiful. And much more fitting to the new colors in the bathroom.

Bathroom Gear

$4, and it looks like an entirely different set of bathroom accessories. I love cheap updates!

Soap Dish

Bathroom Linen Fix-Up

A great way we cut costs on this low-budget makeover is by creating custom bathroom linens. We had a color palette in mind, anyways, and it was difficult to find just the right shower curtain to go with what we wanted.

Sure, we could have just went with plain white, but by going custom, we were able to save money AND get a unique look.

Shower Curtain

I started with a twin size flat sheet in white. That only cost about $5. We then picked up a couple yards of an orange flower print fabric that was in the value section for $2 a yard.

I cut the sheet to the size marked on a regular shower curtain. I finished the edges with a narrow hem. I had to cut a couple of fabric strips, but I attached those together and then added them to the bottom of the curtain.

Along the top, I lined up the shower curtain liner and marked where the hooks should go. At each of these I created a buttonhole, and I was done. This was a super simple project that had a big impact on both the look of the bathroom and our budget.

Shower Curtain Close Up

Next, I updated a simple white hand towel with the same fabric.

Towel Materials

This was another fantastically easy project. I cut a wide strip of the orange floral fabric, serged the edges, pressed them under, and pinned to the front of the towel. Next, I edgestitched around the fabric, and it was done. Custom, and cost under a $1 for the towel and using scraps from the shower curtain.

Finished Hand Towel

What a fun addition to the bathroom, especially against the green paint we picked out.

Hand Towel

Of course, you no doubt recognized the fabric from the back of the custom cabinet Erik built, too. Using the fabric throughout the project was an inexpensive way to tie the entire bathroom together, add color, and create interest.

Bathroom Makeover

Each winter my parents go to Arizona. While they’re gone, Erik and I choose a room or two to do a makeover. The first year we changed up their laundry room and master bath. Last year we updated the kitchen.

This year we tackled the guest bathroom. Yet another disclaimer on photos from my parents’ house: there is absolutely no lighting in there. No natural light. Whatsoever. Excuse that please.

Bathroom Makeover

Their house was built in 1980. You can’t believe the craziness that was in there when we first moved in. The picture on the left was actually an improvement over what was there. Formerly the bathroom was about half that size with giant gilt mirrors and all that.

The updates still left a bit to be desired. Let me show you what I mean.

Old Mirror

I am not sure why my mother insists on putting rugs on her toilet.

Old Shower Curtain

My sister picked out this shower curtain about nine years ago.

Old Sink Area

Because the sink, toilet, and tub are all a golden yellow, my parents figured bright yellow paint would go with it. Not so much. There on the side you can see a giant white cabinet they installed. It was much needed for some storage in the bathroom, but it didn’t go with anything.

I decided to change up the color scheme completely. We couldn’t afford to replace the tub and everything, so we had to work with the golden yellow. I decided to paint the walls a bright sage green and add in orange, white, and metallic accents. It gave everything a more modern feel without being overpowering.

Erik built a new wall cabinet for over the toilet, framed in the mirror, and painted the wood. He also chose a beautiful new light fixture.

Bathroom Cabinet

We covered the back in fabric rather than paint it to give it some fun texture. The drawer hides extra toilet paper.

Bathroom Mirror

The frame helped balance the mirror over the cabinet, which was great after the old look.

Bathroom Decorations

I had a lot of fun finding pretty little decorations from around the house for an inexpensive update. Later this week I’ll share more on creating the metallic dispensers, as well as the custom linens.

Bathroom Decorations2

That mirror was from the old bathroom. Check it out above sitting on the toilet rug. It is a vintage tray that works much better stood up on its side.

Medicine Cabinet

Look at how great that green is compared to the yellow! Painting the medicine cabinet white really brightened things up, too.

Bathroom Cabinet (2)

And there’s that big cabinet. The color fits in much better, doesn’t it?

Bathroom Makeover

I am quite in love with the new look. No, it doesn’t change up everything, but although it’s hard to tell from these photos, the bathroom is brighter and more modern.