I found it really difficult to know what to make while I was pregnant. Most of the time I make garments for myself and while I did have a go at a few maternity outfits I found it frustrating trying to fit to an ever changing body. I was growing faster than I could sew and had a fairly enormous bump by the end, so much so that my rtw maternity clothes were stretching/tearing at the seams
I remember feeling like I had all this time to sew that I wasn’t going to get once our baby had arrived but not knowing what to focus on making. With hindsight, here’s what I’d have made:
Closet Case Patterns Pouf – this is an excellent free pattern which you can access by signing up to the Closet Case newsletter. It’s designed with scrap fabric in mind, both for the outer design and also for stuffing the pouf. You can find the details here
Here’s the thing – babies grow out of their clothes realllly fast. Our little girl is six months old and I’ve got an enormous storage bag full of the clothes she’s outgrown. It also feels quite emotional every time we have to retire clothes that have become too wee for her. The pouf would be the perfect project to make during pregnancy and then gradually fill up as baby out grows their clothes. (it has a zip fastening so anything you use to stuff it can be removed at a later date if you wanted to use it again/wash the pouf/pick out the newborn onesies and marvel at how tiny they used to be!)
Bias Binding – it’s not that exciting to make but it does give a lovely finish to things and is a good way to use up leftovers of any especially nice fabrics. You can learn how to make it here Tilly and the Buttons bias binding tutorial
Quiet Book for baby – this would have been a cool project that would let you get really creative. If you search ‘quiet book’ on Pinterest there’s loads of good ideas for what you could do. I’ll probably still try to make one of these for when she’s a bit bigger.
Scrunchies / Hairbands – another good scrap buster and also really useful when they get to the hair pulling stage! It would make a nice maternity project as you’d still feel like you’ve got something you made which you can wear. Here’s a link to a Cut One Pair tutorial for scrunchies, including optional add on bunny ears.
Dribble Bibs – The good thing about making bibs as opposed to baby clothes is that they’ll get more than just a few months wear out of them. It didn’t occur to me to make these before baby arrived and we now have plenty of shop bought ones so can’t recommend a specific pattern but I’m sure there’s plenty of choice.
Pattern Envelopes – Not sewing but sewing related! I always trace my sewing patterns so that I have the option to make them in a different size in the future. (I use baking paper to trace btw). The downside of this is that I need twice as much space for my patterns and my sewing room can get into a mess pretty quickly. If you’re not doing so much sewing during pregnancy then it’s a good opportunity to do some nesting and organise your sewing space.
These hadn’t been released while I was pregnant but I’ve recently been tidying up my traced pattern/pdf patterns by making envelopes for them using a template by Ellie @sewingforswing (if you look up her Instagram there’s a link to the free pattern envelopes download)
So that’s my in hindsight list of things to make during pregnancy.
If you do want to make baby clothes the patterns I’ve tried and can recommend are by Poppy and Jazz. For small baby sizes you might be able to make some things out of old tshirts/Jersey dresses which is great because it’s a) recycling and b) free and c) you get to see your baby wearing a reincarnation of something of yours.
The other thing I did make that came in really handy was fabric travel bags. I used them for my hospital bag so I could easily find things and have since used them whenever we’ve packed an overnight bag. They’re also great for separating small items of baby clothing like socks and bibs. I used a pattern from the Cath Kidston Sewing Book.
Hopefully someone will find this list useful. I’ve posted links throughout, these are not sponsored or anything, just things I have found useful and want to pass on to others.