Saturday, May 23, 2015

A New Nibling: Onesie Decorating

(noun) : the child of one's sibling : a nephew or niece
That's right, Dear Husband (DH) and I are getting our first nibling! We have a niece due in August.

As part of the baby shower, I was in charge of creating a onesie decorating area. I didn't want just plain white outfits, so here is my first adventure in dying fabric.

Gather material: liquid dye (Rit brand), dye fixative (also Rit), onesies in various sizes, salt, rubber gloves, stir sticks, buckets. Check!

I am all about starting gender equality from the very beginning, so I didn't want to do everything pink. I picked out purple, yellow, and black (gray).

Follow the directions on the bottles of dye!
Some fabrics, like polyester, don't absorb the dye. The thread on the onesies was polyester, so it looked like white thread on a colored fabric which turned out to be a pretty cool effect.

I added about 1/2 cup of salt to HOT HOT water and stirred in about half of the bottle of liquid dye. Stir, stir, stir for about 3-5 min to make sure the pigment is distributed.

Wet the fabric in HOT HOT water, then add to the dye. Wetting it first helps prevent dry-spots not absorbing dye.

Stir, stir, stir, stir! Then stir again! This is what prevents blotchy-ness. (That's right... blotchy-ness.)
I stirred all the buckets, intermittently switching back and forth, for an hour.
After your knees are thoroughly sore, and your arms are about to fall off, it's time to rinse! Rinse in as hot of water as your gloved hands can stand. The one bad part about this, is it does take a LOT of water.

Add the Rit dye fixative to hot water according to it's directions, and submerge the dyed fabric for 20 min. You guessed it... stir yet again.

This time, rinse in cold water, squeeze (never wring... it distorts the fabric), and hang dry. They will dry to a lighter color than when they are wet.

In order to make the decorating process easy and non-messy, I created little applique's. (This was by far the most time-intensive part of the project.) It's easy enough if you are just doing 3-5, but I had to make enough for 32 onesies!

Wonder Under - it's a roll/sheet of paper with one textured side. The texture is a web-like material that melts when ironed, effectively "gluing" to your fabric.
Cut a square of the Wonder Under, place ROUGH SIDE DOWN on the BACK of your fabric. If the rough side is up, it will just glue itself to your iron (guess how I know!) Make sure your fabric is larger, or you will melt glue onto your ironing board. 

You can now draw your shape on the paper side, and cut it out. Just remember this is the wrong-side of the fabric so your image will be reversed. So if you want something facing right, draw it facing left. This includes letters of the alphabet!

Peel the paper off the back of your shape (sometimes tricky), place where you want it to be applied, and iron it on. (No steam, just heat.) You can put them on onesies, shirts, pants, blankets, basically anything fabric that you can iron.

Because I used the Heavy Duty version, there was no need to sew around the edges of the shape to keep it down.
I packaged the appliques in individual baggies so people could easily pick what they wanted.
I think they turned out super cute and I got some great feedback from the ladies!

While it was completely worth it, this was much more time-intensive than I expected!
Not a DIY to be taken lightly!

The rest of the shower was a great success and so cute!
Being book-themed, there were a few cute ideas that Mom-in-Law (MIL) came up with.
Like "Green Eggs and Ham" (deviled eggs with parsley on top.

And the game prizes were jars of home made cookies, in homage to "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie."

The custom cake was designed around "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" with some other favorite storybook characters on it. It was both adorable AND super tasty!

Our friend HAND MADE the sign-in book as a gift, which was beautiful.

Speaking of gifts... my goodness there were so many cute and helpful gifts for SisM, the mom-to-be!

Our gift was a print for the nursery that I commissioned from SisX. I asked SisM's favorite color and animal. A purple tiger it was! SisX drew a tiger cub sitting on a pile of books, then used some graphic design to shade and color it. It is adorable, just like the new mom!