Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Sew and Tell with the Car Seat Organizer

Yesterday morning was my son's Kindergarten Graduation.  How in the world is it time for the school year to be over already?!?  I can honestly say that even though he's had a great first year of school, we are both ready for it to be summer break!  Bring on the trips to the playground, vacations, road trips, weekends at grandma's house, and plenty of backyard play dates! 
 When I know I'm going to be spending a lot of time in my car, I always try to make sure it's clean and stocked with the necessities... Kleenex, hand sanitizer, books and movies for the kids, and countless other things I may or may not need ;)  Anyone that knows me can attest that I'm very tidy and organized and NEED for everything to have a place.  I can't even work if there's anything in the house that needs to be cleaned or put away.  Good grief, it's exhausting being me! 
If you like to stay organized in the car, too, our featured pattern might be right up your alley!  This is the Car Seat Organizer from Blissful Patterns.  It's a great solution for storing all of your kids' books, crayons, movies, wet wipes, and whatever else you can fit in there.  It's conveniently within arms reach for them, so you don't have to swerve into oncoming traffic while you try to find the missing toy they are screaming for.  I also really like that it keeps the books and movies off the floorboard of the car so they don't get stepped on and, ultimately, ruined. 

We've got a review from our friend Christine H. of Covered by Design.

Hi, I am Christine, Montana ranch girl, mama to three terrific kiddos and wife to a very supportive husband.  I started to really love sewing in about 2004 when my husband bought me a new Elna sewing machine for Mothers Day.  The Sewing Mamas forum was a great source of information and support for me.  I was self taught until 2010 when I took the Dress Making and Design course from Penn Foster.  At that time I also started a graphic design class which inspired me to do some fabric designing.  I would consider myself an intermediate seamstress. 
The Blissful Patterns Car Seat Organizer pattern took me under 2 hours start to finish.  It would have taken less time but my wrinkly fabric had to be ironed before I could move onto cutting out the pieces.  When I hoard fabric for that long the creases can be slightly difficult to remove.  I also press all my seams as I go, so if you are the type who likes to skip pressing, it will decrease your total sewing time.

This pattern is easy, and a beginner could use the pattern without any trouble.  There wasn’t anything tricky about the pattern, just make sure you read the directions.  I had one moment when I skimmed over the directions and didn’t pay attention to where the Velcro was to be placed.  I read “middle” and skipped the “at the edge” part.  My seam ripper got to have some fun with that.  The Velcro at the neck strap goes in the middle at the finished end of the neck strap not the raw edge of the neck strap. 

I used the suggested size for the pocket divider; although the instructions give you detailed info if you want to change this up.  I used scalloped elastic for the elastic to go around the seat front to change things up a bit.  Fusible fleece also works great instead of batting.  I chose to leave an opening at the top center of the organizer for turning it the right way rather than at the bottom because there are less layers to press and keep together when topstitching it shut.

The organizer fit well on the back of my seat.  I drive a Pontiac Montana minivan.  I was worried the elastic would be too tight to get around the seat, but it went on easily.  I could make it a little shorter, and it would still fit.

Next time I make this I might add decorative stitching instead of the topstitching for fun.  Snaps instead of Velcro could also be a fun change although they might be a trickier change for a beginner. You could also do some embroidery if you are feeling creative!  This pattern really lets you get creative.
The fabrics I used in this project are heavy upholstery type fabrics.  The Waverly “Ribbit” fabric I have hoarded for quite some time.  I love frogs and didn’t have the perfect use for it until now.  I think the circle fabric is also a Waverly fabric but I am not certain on that.  I am maybe a little wilder with my fabric choices than some (as my grandmother is an abstract artist) so bolder choices appeal to me.  I plan on making several more matching ones to go on my other seats, as any mama knows it would be impossible to pick which kid got to use it.
This pattern is fantastic because you can have a lot of fun with color and fabric coordinating.  You could easily make the pockets using different coordinating fabric.  No pattern printing, tracing or cutting out necessary, just easy dimensions to cut out with scissors or a rotary cutter.  It comes together quickly and after making one I am certain I could make the next in closer to an hour, start to finish.
Organization is a must for anyone with kids, big and small.  This is a fantastic way to help keep your kids items organized and handy for them to find.  You can personalize them to fit the needs of each child with colors, patterns and pockets. 

The front side.

The back side. 

The full view.

I'm convinced every mom needs one (or two!) of these in her car!  My backseat is always a mess because my kids think they need to bring everything they own for a trip to the grocery store.  I'd love for everything to have its own compartment to fit neatly back into.  And just brainstorming here, but my kids have a problem keeping their headphones for the DVD player off of the floor, and how cool would it be to attach a short Velcro strap to the bottom that they could use to hang their earphones off of?!?  Moms, use a few gorgeous fabric prints, and you can totally "dress up" your car!  Head over to the website to purchase this pattern for 25% off!!  Woohoo!!
Now we are going to pair up the Car Seat Organizer with a few other road trip friendly patterns :)

Forget Pillow Pets, make way for Pillow PalsNanoo Designs has created these adorable Pillow Pals that will quickly become your child's new favorite bed-time buddy!  There are several variations for both boys and girls so you can create a Pillow Pal that looks like your child!  Let them help out by choosing the fabric for the body portion.  Perhaps create a face that resembles a mom or dad that is deployed and maybe use one of mom or dad's shirts for the body.  They can snuggle with the mom or dad pillow (bonus if the shirt still has their scent) and maybe find a little comfort during those hard times.  These are great for car rides, vacations, or slumber parties!

A great way to those art projects organized both at home and on the go is with the Art Caddy Tote from Gingercake Patterns & Design.  Keep your coloring books, notepads, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, stickers, and whatever else your little one needs to create their masterpiece all in one convenient place that can go wherever they go!  A great way to keep the kids entertained (and organized) on those long road trips!    
I hope your summer is off to a great start, and you get to enjoy the warm weather with the ones you love!  Don't forget you can purchase the Car Seat Organizer for 25% off for the next few days!  You'll be glad you did the next time you load the kids up for a long drive :)

Go sew something magical!! 
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  1. Thanks so much for sharing at A Peek Into Paradise TGIF Link Party.

    I hope you will come party with us next week and see if you were featured!

    Have a great week!

    Hugs! Cathy

  2. Oh, thanks so much Cathy!! We'll definitely stop by next week, too! We appreciate you asking us to participate!! How fun!!

  3. Great idea. I'd love if you'd like up to The DIY'ers:

    1. Thanks Kayla!! Going to check it out now!!


Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I'll try to respond as quickly as I can! Have a fabulous day full of sewing!