Sweet Summer Nightgown for Girls – Super Easy, Lazy Pattern

Beautiful, easy nightgown!

I have a soap box I need to stand on for a minute. I hate, hate, hate the flame-retardant material used in nightgowns for kids. The fabric feels nasty to me, and (perhaps the bigger problem), having these nightgowns in my house is a constant reminder of the power the tobacco industry has wielded in the US. Seriously; by influencing national legislation to require flame-retardant materials in PJs that aren’t tight fitting (by definition, all nightgowns), the tobacco industry was able to save a ton of money on lawsuits. When parents smoked in bed and caught the house on fire, kids sleepwear was less likely to go up in flames. This legislation is so restrictive that cotton fabrics meant for children even have to carry a warning on the selvage:

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So, yeah. If you want a nice, breathable cotton nightgown for sweltering summer nights, you have to make it yourself. Or go to Europe, where you can actually buy such things. Making one seemed a little easier, so that’s what I did. More

Child’s Workspace Transformation

Workspace

My daughter’s art space has been, well, a disaster. This is a problem for several reasons. First, it’s impossible for her to find anything, and there’s no actual work space. More

Easy DIY Toys — “Tickle Monster” Sensory Ball

tickle featured

“Tickle monster” soft sensory balls are deceptively easy and fast to make, and kids love them. They’re squeezable, lovable, throwable, catchable, and just generally fun. Best thing about them is that they’re easy to do even if you’re just learning to knit or crochet. Because they’re felted, dropped stitches don’t matter, you can be as lazy as you like, you can take shortcuts galore…and they basically come out looking perfect no matter what! Don’t knit? It’s really easy to learn, and there are tons on instructive online videos and websites (that’s how I learned!).

Materials

  • 1 skein of cheap wool, any brand (yes, it MUST be wool; otherwise, it won’t felt). It should be medium weight (worsted) for best results. You can use any color; I used black to really allow the colors of the textured yarn to pop.
  • 1 skein textured yarn. Craft stores like Joann have lots of options, as do online stores like Yarn Market. The texture you use will determine the look and feel of the tickle monster.
  • Large knitting needles (maybe a 10) or a big crochet hook (maybe an M). It doesn’t really matter what size you use, but working with the textured yarn (especially popcorn) will be much easier with a larger set of needles or hook. One great thing about the tickle monsters is you can just eyeball everything; no measuring, no stitch counting, no patterns. The smaller your needles/hook and the tighter your work, the less your fabric will shrink when you felt it, though, so keep that in mind. More