Dinosaur Mitten Tutorial from Mme ZsaZsa

You guys have been so great about sending me links to the cool boy stuff you’ve found online!  One example that I just had to share is the link Sabine sent me to the Belgian blog Mme ZsaZsa, a mother of two boys who’s made these amazing dinosaur mittens:

AND these awesome dinosaur jackets; such a great way to jazz up the plain jacket for the boy:

all images used with permission from Mme Zsa Zsa (thanks!) 

Just in time for BOY month, she’s decided to start an English version of her blog, also called Mme Zsa (check out the pictures her son’s drawn of their family, the reclining dad is hilarious).  Best of all, she’s just put up a tutorial for the mittens so we can make them too!

Thanks Mme Zsa Zsa! 
And would you like to win a pixelated quilt pattern?  Enter the giveaway over at MADE:

Rae combs her archives for BOY STUFF

I can’t believe how long it took me to look through my archives and find all the boy stuff I’ve blogged about for boys big and small*.  This isn’t a comprehensive list, but it comes awfully close to covering everything I’ve ever posted for boys.  It also became painfully obvious how much work the blog still needs. Lots of stuff you could probably make from the instructions I’ve given (like that banner down there, easy peasy), but some things I’ve been downright vague about. Like that blue striped manshirt?  SO easy to make, but the instructions I’ve given are rotten.  Really just needs a nice easy tutorial to walk you through it.  And those Big Butt Baby Pants that I promised a pattern for eons ago?  Please don’t anyone remind me. Anyway, with that disclaimer, I hereby present the Made By Rae Boy Roundup:

And actually now that I’ve looked at it all, I’m pretty proud of this collection.  It’s a work in progress, but it does give one a sense of accomplishment to see it all laid out here.  So I hope you’ll enjoy looking through some of these and maybe you’ll be inspired to do something new!

*big and small pretty much refers to men and toddler/baby boys here.  Since the beginning of the month, Dana and I have both lamented the fact that we really have very little to present in the teen-boy department.  I hope you’ll accept my apologies but at the same time recognize that as we both have our small boys and husbands to sew for (and the same can be said for many of the blogs we read, and therefore the guest bloggers as well), you may have to wait about…hmm…12 years for a “Celebrate the Teen Boy” Month over here.  πŸ™‚

Check out this adorable newsboy cap over at MADE:

Guest Post: Andrea makes the Simple Modern Baby Quilt…bigger!

Today I’m so pleased that Andrea of Knitty Bitties is here to talk about her latest quilting experience!  Andrea and I have been friends (virtually) for almost two whole years, and you know online years are like dog years.  She’s helped me out in a pinch (she can pattern test at the drop of a hat), her sewing is absolutely flawless and I’ve always been jealous of her ability to pump out multiple versions of beautiful handmade things for her shop in no time (while I always get distracted after one or two, which hrrmm maybe explains why her Etsy shop has been a huge success while mine has just fizzled out. hee). She also loves colorful fabrics, so she’s a girl after my own heart. Add to that that she is truly one of the sweetest people I’ve ever known. I hope someday I’ll get to meet her in real life (and that goes for so many of you, by the way)! Here’s Andrea:

Hi Everyone

Well you all know that Rae is a super cool cat and she was sweet enough to ask me to write a guest post for the “Celebrate the Boy” extravaganza. I was tickled pink, er blue?, and said sure. Then I thought about how horrible I am at formulating sentences that make sense to anyone over the age of six. And my grammar … well let’s just say that my love of … probably says it all.

So, first … a little about me :). I’m our household CEO, CFO and every other C-O. It’s a pretty small company, just me, my husband and our 6 year old boy :). I have a BA in Graphic Design though I’ve never used it formally. Instead I worked as a project manager for a national bank until I had my son. Since then I’ve loved spending my days raising him up and having more time to be creative. Three years ago I started really sewing and haven’t stopped since. Two years ago I started a little shop on Etsy to support my fabric habit and maybe set a little aside to help our family budget. I love talking fabric and patterns, designs and color … a nice big glass of iced tea and a fresh plate of cookies would make it perfect!

I also love peanut butter, running, baking, reading, napping, pizza, movies, knitting and shopping … not all at once though and not necessarily in that order :).

{Simple Modern Baby Quilt, Image courtesy of Oh, Fransson!}

In perfect timing with this month’s theme, I just finished my first BIG quilt for my son. It was part of a ‘robot’ room re-do for his 6th birthday (which was last Saturday). I used Oh Fransson’s Simple Modern Baby Quilt Pattern and modified it to fit his full size big boy bed.

It only took me 14 months to complete the quilt from the time I ordered the fabric. But that wasn’t the pattern’s fault. It was because I got scared. A full size quilt? What was I thinking?!?!

I wasn’t too sure how I would quilt a quilt that size, but I read a lot of good tips (which I’ll share) that made it a relatively painless process.

So come on over to Knitty Bitties to read the full review and enter yourself in the giveaway.


Yep, the pattern designer herself, Elizabeth of Oh, Fransson!, has sweetly offered to giveaway THREE copies of this pattern to three lucky readers. To be entered, stop by the pattern review post and leave a comment.


Thanks Andrea! It’s always fun to see new ways to use great patterns like this one and get tips and inspiration.  And thank you to Elizabeth for the generous giveaway! 

Only TWO MORE DAYS left of this amazing month of Celebrating the Boy.  See what Dana’s got up her sleeve:

Hallelujah he actually wears it!

I may have had to resort to bribery in the past to get my little guy to wear the stuff I made for him (In this post you can actually see him holding his bowl of sprinkles so I could get photos).  Happily, that phase seems to have passed; now when he wears stuff I’ve made for him he says, “Mommy YOU made this shirt for ME!”  So it’s pretty sweet.  I’m not naive enough to think this will last forever, but I’m trying to enjoy it for now. 

See the tutorials for how to make this shirt and how to add the pockets.

Still more awesomeness

1. rainbow hoodie with buttons!, 2. _1MG_12746, 3. Baby Boy Rag Quilt, 4. Everybody Loves A Yeti, 5. 90 min baby muscle tee, 6. Play Waders, 7. fleecy monkey, 8. 90 min t.shirt with mushrooms, 9. Upcycled Sweater Hobby Horse, 10. Rainbow of BatBaby Hats2, 11. animal undies!, 12. yellow pants 2, 13. The Man-bag, 14. wood robot attack, 15. bsj-3, 16. New favorite pattern, 17. Trousers for FB in Red Letter Day by Lizzy House, 18. Fondant Fishies, 19. Acoustic | 6/12 mo, 20. 7934_175787839049_693789049_3841964_2085476_n, 21. tooth officer, 22. toilet paper tube wild things, 23. boyshirts, 24. robot coat handmade, 25. project linus quilt

In the next couple of days I’d really like to do a “Costume Edition” of the mosaic, so if you have a costume you’ve made for a boy that you’d like to share (for Halloween or maybe a birthday or just for fun), put it in the pool so I can try and include it if possible.


Do you ever have it where you stumble across a great blog you’ve never seen before and it’s like discovering gold and you get really pumped and speed-read all their archives?  That happened to me a few months ago with Chez Beeper Bebe.  It embarrasses me a little to admit this but after discovering Holly’s blog I immediately sent her a gushing email declaring/unleashing my new-found love for her blog (but please, don’t let that stop any of you…*beams*), and if she thought I was a stalker at least she didn’t let on in her most-gracious response.  It might be her background in creative writing, but Holly produces some of the most hilarious and well-written blog posts I’ve ever read AND her blog is crafty, so it’s one of my faves.  Holly’s got a day job in Corporate America and is also a wife and mother, but in her free time she upcycles unwanted textiles into all sorts of cool handmade things (mainly toys) which in addition to selling in her Etsy shop, she often shares tutorials for on her blog. Among her future goals: finishing her novel and “redesigning Little People for Fisher Price so they could be as cool as they once were.” Hear, hear, I say!  Here’s Holly to introduce you to her awesome Parachuting Softie:

Hello. I’m Holly. I make stuff from other’s people’s stuff they no longer want–you know, that whole reduce, reuse, recycle business. I have one energetic (read: sofa-leaping, light-saber wielding, trouncing on whomever is within range) 5 year old boy who inspired me to start my own little plushie-making business–which has since evolved to include other less-plush toys and a few things for babies. It’s mostly all about the under-10-years-old set.

And while I have always loved toys and found them creatively inspiring, my son is my main source of inspiration. Everything he does–from coloring everything using every crayon in his box, to his fascination with reptiles, to his unmitigated adoration of superheros–somehow, in some way, makes me want to make something new.

Which is how this little paratrooper tutorial came about–it was my own love of classic dimestore trinkets meeting his frustrated attempts to play with this awful, plastic-y parachute guy he brought home from a party that simply would not fly like a paratrooper should.
So, here we are. I have put together a little tutorial on how to make your very own paratrooper softie–made with reclaimed silk scarves only a grandmother could love (thank you local thrift store!). My tutorial also includes some ideas for variations, depending on your skill level, the amount of time you are willing to devote, or just your own inspiration (because if you are like me, you just somehow cannot make it exactly like the instructions tell you to). And there is a little landing pad too, for those so inclined to have a target at which to aim their paratroopers. Happy paratrooper-craft-landing!



From Rae: AWESOME!  I have fond memories of playing with a paratrooper toy off of Aunt Merry’s deck when I was a kid along with vague recollections of envy of my cousins Joel and Shawn for having such a great toy.  Good times.  I know an almost 3 year-old who is going to totally dig this!  Thanks so much Holly for joining in on Celebrate the BOY month and sharing such a fantastic tutorial. 

GUEST POST: Soft Baby Book by Kristena

Happy Monday! Our final week of Boy Posts has begun. Today’s guest blogger is Kristena Derrick, creator of the beautiful blog Thimbly Things. Her blog is filled with stunning light-filled vintagey photos that make me want to hop over to Oklahoma and hang out in her house. I began reading Thimbly Things last summer, attracted by her wardrobe refashions, but have since found her blog has just a little of everything: kids clothes, toys, recipes, crochet, and so on. She recently opened an Etsy shop where she sells prints and handmade items. She’s currently obsessed with patternmaking, papercutting, sewing patchwork potholders and reading dottie angel. Kristena is married to her college sweetheart Evan (they just celebrated their 5-year anniversary on Friday) and has two toddlers Emily (3) and Jacob (almost 2). Today she’s here to share a beautiful soft baby book tutorial with us. Here’s Kristena:

Giving birth to my son, Jacob, may have been the greatest challenge of my life, but designing an original soft toy for him was, hands-down, the greatest challenge of my crafting life.

Jacob is so basic–so easy-going–that he doesn’t need much to be happy. One yellow car, Elmo, Emily’s babydoll (it’s true), Thomas the Tank Engine, hugs, kisses, and some boardbooks: that’s all it takes. Oh, and an open space in which he can run, do flips, sing, roar, dance, and hop-hop. Let’s not forget all that.

He is just uncomplicated.

So what does a crafty mommy make for such a content little heart?

Well, a book of course!

One that cannot be (easily) destroyed by tiny teeth, drool, or inquisitive little fingers.

One that is colorful and personal.

One that is washable.

And one that has many of Jacob’s favorite things.

Thus, I present to you the Soft Baby Book. Made from Mommy’s old jeans. πŸ˜‰

Simple and perfect for the boy. Come see the tutorial and template at Thimbly Things!

Enjoy, dear friends!


P.S. Thanks for hosting me, Rae! You’re awesome. πŸ™‚


Thanks so much Kristena for sharing such a fabulous tutorial! That would be perfect for a shower gift. I love it! I know one little baby girl who would love to have one of those too (and I’m sure I have at least one pair of jeans on “the pile”)…

Dana always has something amazing going on at MADE; hop on over:
And be sure to come back tomorrow for a double giveaway right here on Made By Rae!

Perfect Timing: Welcome Baby M!


Just in time to help us Celebrate the BOY, last week my cousin Sarah gave birth to one of the most precious little boys I have ever seen. Baby Micah needed a gift, so inspired by Dana’s 90 minute shirt tutorial I whipped up a little shirt along with some baby pants and a bib.  That great scooter/bike flannel is called “To the Rescue” flannel by Hoffman International, which I purchased at Pacific Fabrics in Bellevue, WA but cannot for the life of me find anywhere online though. dur…

I was under a nap crunch so instead of tracing a pattern (but do read Dana’s wonderfully easy how-to on making your own patterns if you haven’t tried it before), I dug up a commercial pattern for baby layette I already had that happened to include a lap tee. The main fabric came from a t-shirt I had in the harvest pile (where never-worn, old, or poorly-fitting clothes go to die in our house. Although lately that pile seems to have found New Life as it is currently winning the battle against my closet).

I had large enough sleeves on the tee that I could make the entire long-sleeve without a raw edge, so I skipped the cuff, but now looking at all of the adorb. pics of Owen I’m thinking the next one I make has to have those killer cuffs.

Of course, the “newborn size” came out large on Clementine (who is 6 mo!) but at least that way he can grow into it.  I don’t get it, really I don’t.  Why do I have to wear a size ginormous in a Simplicity or Butterick pattern, but when I try to make something itty bitty for babies it comes out large enough for a kindergartener?  Anyway.


Congratulations Sarah and Jeremy and big sister Sadie!!!

And don’t forget, Meg’s Belt Giveaway is open until tomorrow morning, so if you haven’t entered yet, head over right now!

Dana’s got a great place to find custom made carseat covers over at MADE:

GUEST POST: Bot Camp Tutorials from Stardustshoes

I’ve been reading Joanna’s blog, stardustshoes, longer than any other I can remember (seriously!), so I feel like we go “waaaay back.” When I started putting together a roster of guest bloggers for the Month of the Boy I immediately thought of her; she’s written so many fantastic tutorials, many of which are boy-friendly as she has three boys of her own, ages 8, 6, and 3.5.  She is married to a software engineer and in a former life taught ESL in Taiwan.  She’s currently obsessed with sewing leather and has an Etsy shop in the works!  Joanna just so happens to go to the same church in Bellevue, Washington that my parents attend (it’s really such a small world, isn’t it?) so she had Elliot in her Little Lambs class (Sunday School for toddlers) a couple weeks ago when we visited.  I was so happy to get the chance to meet her briefly and she’s every bit as down to earth and funny in real life as she is on her blog!  Today she’s here to show us a few of her wonderful tutorials using another great line of boy fabrics, Bot Camp by Michael Miller. Here’s Joanna:


Hi, readers of Made by Rae! I’m Joanna and am so happy to have been asked to participate in Celebrate the Boy month. I am mom to three rambunctious (and loud) boys, which fits my personality well. As a child, I was a tree-climbing, rope-swinging, straggly-haired tomboy who, when given the choice, would choose jeans over pink and frilly any day. When I first started sewing and needed inspiration to sew boyish things, I was a bit disappointed in the slim pickings, so I started the flickr group Handmade Crafts for Boys. I’m happy to say that the group is over 900 members strong, and the inspiration is plentiful.

From time to time I write tutorials for Making it Fun, Kathy Miller’s blog for Michael Miller Fabrics. I recently wrote tutorials using Bot Camp fabric that are perfect for a boy’s room. Click on the links for a further description and for access to the tutorials.

Tab Top Curtains:


Pillowcase with Inner Flap:


Pleated Bedskirt:


Round Cushion w/Piped Edging:

robot cushion

The Miniquilt:


Happy sewing to all of you, and thanks again, Rae, for inviting me to the boy celebration! πŸ™‚

Thank you so much Joanna!  What a great line-up of tutorials with a great fabric line!  Those mini-quilts are such a fantastic idea for a boy’s room decoration. I love it!
Dana’s got a great boy’s jeans review, so make sure you check it out and the latest over at MADE: