Happy February hive! Though Phil the groundhog may disagree, I’m feeling (and hoping) that winter is starting to wind down and that springtime is just around the corner. And let’s not forget that Valentines day is this month! Pinks and reds, candies and hearts—it’s all so fun. Though Valentine’s Day is not typically a holiday that I go all-out for, now that I have a child it all seems so fresh and exciting again. I’ve found myself pinning lots of festive ideas and crafts this past week or so and though Little Deer is still young, there are a few things I’ve planned for us in the coming weeks that should be lots of fun.

To kick it off, I thought I would sew her a little heart onesie. I’m loving all the festive hearts outfits I’ve been seeing, but I wanted something unique and handmade (not to mention low-cost). Last month I sewed the number “1″ on a onesie for Little Deer’s birthday and I was surprised by how easy it was. I still had some leftover red felt, so I decided to repeat the process, but this time with a heart.

I am by no means a crafty person (and I don’t know how to sew that well) so don’t feel intimidated if you’re not comfortable with a needle. I wasn’t either but I survived! It truly is a simple project and perfect for some downtime during an afternoon nap.

To get started, here’s what you’ll need:

SUPPLIES

  • Onesie: I love the three for $12 deal that H&M has on onesies, so I got this plain white one as well as two cute polka dot ones. You definitely don’t need a white one though, you can sew a heart on any onesie or shirt you’d like!
  • Glue: I’m not great with pinning things and getting them to stay where I’d like, so I used some leftover felt glue that I had from making Little Deer’s Christmas stocking to adhere the heart to the onesie prior to sewing it.
  • Tape: I just used a few small pieces of double-sided tape to hold the stencil on to the fabric while I was cutting it  out.
  • Scissors: I love these little ones that my mom gave me for Chrismtas, thanks mom!
  • Felt: I went for red, but again, pick any color you’d like!
  • Thread: I used embroidery thread and decide blue would be a fun and contrasting color.
  • Stencil: I made this stencil on Picmonkey that you can download and print here: heartstencil
  • Needle: I don’t actually know much about different types of needles, so I just picked one out from my assorted pack that was large enough for me to be able to thread my embroidery thread through.

INSTRUCTIONS

After you gather your supplies, the first step is to print and cut out your heart stencil. You can use the one that I linked to above, or any other heart shape you like. Picmonkey has lots of different heart shapes that you can choose from and resize.

Once you have your heart stencil ready to go, use a few pieces of double sided tape (or pins if you’d prefer) and attach the stencil to your felt, then simply cut around around your stencil.

Gently pull the stencil off from the felt once you’ve cut it out. It may have a few fuzzies on it from the tape, so be sure and put that side face-down on the onesie when you attach it.

To make sure the heart stayed nice and secure, I lightly glued it onto the onesie.  I highly recommend you only use a very thin layer of glue, and stay away from the outside centimeter or so of the heart. Once the glue dries, it can be very difficult to push your needle through the felt if there’s glue in the way (trust me, learned this the hard way!).

The felt glue that I used dried quickly, but even so I wouldn’t worry about waiting too long for it to be perfectly dry before you begin sewing. The glue is just to hold it in place while you sew, not keep it their all on its own.

Once you have a thin layer of glue on your heart, go ahead and place it on the onesie. I recommend having a good idea of where you’re going to place it ahead of time. Even holding it up to your babe while they have a onesie on to get a good idea of how close to the collar you want it would be smart. I ended up putting mine a little lower than I wanted to, whoops!

***An aside for moms of boys: Though this project can seem a little girly, I think you could definitely sew a heart onesie for a boy too! I think it’d be cute to have a little bit smaller of a heart and place it off to one side, tilted slightly, or even sew the heart onto one of the sleeves.

After you’ve given your heart few minutes to dry, it’s time to get to sewing. You can really do any stitch you’d like, but the one I learned recently for making Little Deer’s stocking was the one I decided to go with – the blanket stitch. I loved how simple it was and how you creates a decorative border around the shape you’re sewing.

Rather than try and explain it to you, I’ll link you to a great youtube video. It truly is amazing what you can learn on Youtube! This video tutorial also used a heart shaped cutout which makes it really nice to follow. Here’s the video: blanket stitch tutorial.

As you can see, you end up with a nice border. This happens because every time you pull your needle up from the fabric, you pull it through the closing loop of thread.

If you’re new to this stitch it might be nice to try it out on a scrap piece of fabric and some extra felt until you get the hang of it. I know for me it took me a few stitches before I had a good idea of the spacing and such.

Since you’re dealing with two layers of fabric with the onesie, I found the best way to hold it was to have my four fingers inside the onesie and under the heart, and my thumb on top holding the thread. Again, it was a little awkward at first and then I found a good hand-hold and it just clicked.

When you watch the youtube tutorial, you’ll notice that she did the point of the heart a little differently than I did. I found that when using this stitch in the past, I just could not get it to work like she says in the video. So compare what she does to what my heart looks like and see what you’d like to do. I just did two stitches at the tip to make a diamond. For me it was so much simpler and I think it turned out just fine.

Once you make your way all the way around, just finish by bringing your thread to the inside of the onesie and tie a knot. You’re done!

I truly love how simple and cute this heart onesie turned out. It definitely boosted my confidence in my ability to learn new skills and make some fun things for Little Deer. I’m already thinking about what I want my next felt project to be…

And here she is wearing it! She was very engrossed in placing leaves on the bench at the time and didn’t feel like giving me a smile, the little stinker. It’s a miracle that I even got a clear shot with how much she’s running around these days.

I hope this tutorial inspires you to make a little something fun for your little one!

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What do you think, want to give this easy project a try? Let me know if you have any tips, tricks, or questions!