Just another day in paradise…


{Tutorial} Pump Pouch

Hi everyone!

Recently we received S’s new pump which was very exciting!

Unfortunately we have had to wait almost two weeks and are still waiting for our pump start class. And even after that class we will have to wait another week before going “live” with the insulin. Sigh.

In the meantime I have been busy working on designing a pattern for pump pouches.

Now if you don’t know anything about diabetic pumps then you have no idea what a pump pouch is. Basically it is a small fanny pack (yeah think back to those good old 80s!) that the child (and some adults) wear to contain their pump.

There are a LOT of different companies that make these. If you google, you will find a number of WAHM type companies that make a variety of different pump pouches. But here’s the problem. They tend to be EXPENSIVE! One company makes some adorable products but charges $40 or more for a simple pump pouch. And since it takes very little material, and time to make your own, I wondered why no one had created a tutorial to do just that.

So here’s my attempt at a tutorial. Please bear with me as we have not truly tested these out. I am just basing them on the ones on the market. As we use them I intend to update the tutorial to fix any issues we may occur. But I would LOVE any input from anyone who tries them out. Let me know any flaws you see or anything that you struggle with understanding. I love your feedback!

Materials needed:

~ 1 zipper that is at least 7″ long (I chose a metal one for its durability. A sport zipper would be another good option.)

~ 4″ of hook, and 4″ of loop that is  3/4″ wide

~ 2 pieces of decorative cotton/flannel fabric cut to 6″ x 4″

~ 2 pieces of a softer fabric (flannel is a great option) cut to 6″ x 4″

~ 1 piece of coordinating fabric that is 2″ x 6″

~ 1 piece of coordinating fabric that is 3″ by measurement A (see below for instructions)

~ Piece of 3/4″ elastic cut to measurement B (see below for instructions)


1. Lets start with some math so you can get correct measurements. First, measure your child’s waist. Don’t make the measuring tape too tight or you will end up with a tight belt. Put it on your child exactly as you would the belt of the pump pouch. Write that number down. I’m going to give you my son’s measurements in hopes of making this clear.

           Waist: 18″

Now, take that number (whatever it is) and subtract 10″ from it. Write that number down. This is your “magic number.” In my case, that number is 8″.

To get number A take your magic number and add 9″ to it. In my case, number A is 17″. This is going to be the length of your waistband piece. Cut your waistband piece out of coordinating fabric to be 3″ X YOUR number A.

Now go back to your magic number. This time subtract 2″. In my case, this resulted in 6″. This is number B and the length to cut your elastic. Make sure to make a note of all these numbers for future reference.

2. Make sure you have all your pieces measured and cut out. It is important to have it all prepped so that you can quickly move from one section of the pouch to another without too much complication.


Lets start with the belt portion of the pouch.

1. Fold your 3″ wide waist strip in half width wise, right sides together. It will still be as long as your number A but will now be 1.5″ wide.

2. Stitch down the length of the strip. I use a 1/4″ seam allowance all the way through this project.

3. Turn. (This may be a bit tricky since it is so long and skinny. Make sure you take your time to turn it carefully). Iron so that the seam is in the center of the strip.

4. Mark 9″ down from one side of the strip (a). The velcro will be placed in this 9″ section. For now, just mark it and leave the ends open.

5. Feed elastic to this marking. I find it easiest to put a safety pin on the end of my elastic and feed it through the end of the strip where the velcro will be going (b). When I feel that the end of the elastic that does not have a pin on it has reached my mark, I stop feeding it and stitch it into place (c). Use a simple straight stitch across the width of the elastic making sure to catch at least 1/4″ of elastic. Backstitch several times to secure. Pull the elastic the rest of the way through (d) and stitch to the end of the tube (e). Again, backstitch several times. (This is a bit tricky but is totally doable. Just take it one step at a time.)

6. Now find the end of the elastic that you stitched in place 9″ from the edge. Place the strap under the foot of the sewing machine, lengthwise, with the seam on top. Insert the needle into the seam. Stretch the elastic so that the fabric is flat. You do not want any bunching at this point. Keep stretching on both ends of the elastic while stitching down the center seam. This step is important to keep the elastic from rolling.

7. Fold in the ends on the end of the strap without the elastic. Stitch closed. Add velcro, placing the hook and loop next to one another lengthwise.

Set aside for the time being.


1. Take the 2″ X 6″ piece of fabric. Fold ends to the center. Iron.

2. Fold in half. Iron again.

3. Stitch all the way around the folded fabric as close to the ends as possible.

4. Fold in half. Line the ends up next to one another, and stitch in place.


Update: My son has been wearing his pouch all day today. We have had great success with it, but I think that the pouch itself is a bit tall. I think next time I make one of this design I would take a half inch off of the height. So instead of using the measurements below, I would use 6″ x 3.5″. This will make the pump fit tighter into the pouch. Keep in mind that we use the Animas pump and that your pump may need the larger pouch size.

1. Start with one of the 6″ x 4″ pieces of fabric and your zipper. Lay the fabric upside down on the zipper so that the fabric is over the zipper (wrong side up), and the edge meets the edge of the zipper. If it is a fabric with a print, make sure that when it flips over it will be facing the direction you want it to face. Make sure to place it in the middle of the zipper. Stitch along the length of the fabric. (Note: I do not always use a zipper foot. My regular foot placed up against the zipper creates a nice stitch close to the edge of the zipper and creates a nice straight line.)

2. Repeat on the other side of the zipper with the second outer piece of fabric. It should look like this when finished.

3. Repeat the process with the liner fabric on the backside of the zipper.

4. Measure one inch down from the zipper on either side of one of the outer pieces. Pin the belt strap on one side, and the loop on the other, ends touching ends. Stitch in place backstitching several times. Keep within the 1/4″ seam allowance.

5. Pin the outer fabrics together, right sides touching, making sure to tuck the strap between the two pieces so that they do not get sewn on (other than the ends that you have already stitched in place).

6. Pin the liner fabrics right sides together. Adjust the zipper so that the teeth are facing towards the liner pieces.

7. Stitch all around the pouch leaving a 2″ gap in the liner for turning. Use a 1/4″ seam allowance. Make sure to backstitch a few times over the zipper ends, and over the strap/loop. Clip corners, and zipper.

8. Turn right side out, leaving the liner out of the outer portion of the pouch. Fold ends into the open gap. Stitch over the entire bottom portion to seal the gap.

9. Push the liner into the pouch. Admire your handiwork!

I’d love to see your pictures. Share a link back in the comment section to your pump pouch if you make one. And remember to let me know what does and doesn’t work for you. I love to read your comments!

Hope this helps all you pumping mamas out!


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Baby Sophie’s Gift Reveal

Do you remember this post about my soon to be born niece? Here are the photos I originally posted:


And here is the great reveal! I made it into a collage so you can see all the goodies in one picture.

Her outfit included: a headband (with removable flower), a pair of shoes, a dress, and a diaper cover (not intended to go over cloth diapers). Isn’t it adorable?

I got to use my serger and felt like a real professional making this outfit. I am really proud of how it turned out.

I can’t wait for baby Sophie to be born! She is due on the 13th of September so it shouldn’t be long now! I bet her mama is very eager!

If you are interested in making a similar outfit for someone special in your life, here are my inspirations:

Made By Rae’s Itty Bitty Baby Dress Pattern

Dana Made It’s Diaper Cover

Shwin and Shwin’s Pleated Mary Jane

Craftastical”s Fabric Flower Carnation Tutorial

Note: I did not follow any of these tutorials exactly. I simply used them as a guideline (except for Dana Made It’s Diaper Cover, as it included a printable pattern). These are simply tutorials that are out there that have already been done by talented women and that can help you to achieve similar results.

Happy Crafting!


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Baby Sophie

No, that’s not our little girl’s name. I’m only 10 weeks along so we have NO clue what we are having yet. And chances are, it is a little boy.

Baby Sophie is my precious niece who is due to show up in the world on or around September 13.

I am so excited for my brother and sister in law! They got married back in November (remember this post?). I was so excited to welcome another sister into the family. Then a few months ago, we found out that they are expecting!

I knew that I wanted to make something special for Baby Sophie. I just love making baby things, especially for little girls. And since I can’t make it back to Tucson for the baby shower, I wanted to make sure that it was done in time to be mailed out to be open at the shower.

Dedication paid off and I got the whole gift done today. I can’t post pictures yet because I want it to be a surprise for my brother and sister in law. But I did take some pictures as a sneak preview. Hopefully it will make you eager to see the rest of the gift later in July.


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Oh Baby! Oh Baby!

About a week ago I wrote about baby items that I had made. I hope that I have inspired you to go out and find ways to save money on your baby items.

Since then I have been thinking and preparing for our trip home (we leave in just a few more days!). Although I like the side carrier, I wanted one that would hold up better to the tolls that will come with being in the airport for hours, sans-strollers (we have to bring the carseat for S to sit in on the plane, along with all the other baby and diabetes things so we are opting to go without). Here are the three that I have been drooling over online.

Ergo baby: Runs from $115 up depending on the type you get.

Boba Baby Carrier: Runs from $120-125

BabyHawk Mei Tai: These run $89 and up depending on the design. They have options with buckles and they also have designs that are more traditional in nature and require tying.

The Ergo and the Boba carriers have their own bag options:

The Ergo backpack is $48.

The Boba Pack is $100.

Both options connect to the straps of the carrier allowing mom to carry baby and all the necessary items easily and conveniently.

But as I said in my “Oh Baby!” post, we just don’t have that kind of money. If I got the Boba and the bag we would be looking at $250. For a carrier! I’m just not sure, for us, it is worth that investment.

And that brings us to the reason for this post. I wanted to share with you three other options that I found on the internet. (Thank you, thank you, thank you to those of you who offer your patterns for us crafty mamas for free!)

The first is very similar to the Ergo and the Boba. I love it, but I don’t have the nylon straps, or the buckles on hand so I opted to skip it this time around. (Although my hubby wants me to make it for him, lol!)

My Babyvv

Its hard to see in the pictures, but like the Boba and the Ergo it has straps in the back that buckle instead of tying. There is a buckle on each side, under the armpit area, that is adjustable to make the straps tighter and more comfortable.

Since I didn’t have the buckles I kept searching. I wanted one of a similar design but with straps that I can tie in any way I want. I know it will be harder to learn at first but I think I am up to the task. :)

Here is the pattern I found.

Brooke’s Diy Hood to Headrest Mei Tai

This beautiful carrier is a Mei Tai in style (since it has the long straps that you tie), has a wonderful hood (that can be used to cover baby’s head or rolled down as headrest for varying ages of baby), has wonderful padding in the shoulders and waist, and can be used from 7 pounds up to 35 (or 40) pounds.

The pattern is actually more simple than I thought it would be. At first I was a bit daunted. But it has come along so smoothly! I am unsure as to why I have been so afraid of making my own baby carriers. They are kind of addicting!

All of the material I already had on hand. Some of it is leftovers from my mom’s quilting, some of it was given to me by other kindhearted people, and some of it is left overs from other projects (or projects that never happened).

Here’s what I have so far.

carrier side 1

carrier side 2Hood Side 1Hood Side 2

In the above picture you can clearly see the pocket that I added. There are snaps to keep the pockets closed. These snaps are the same ones that I use on my diapers so I know that they will hold up but also not be too uncomfortable. I added the pocket so that I can keep my id, phone, and possibly keys quickly accessible. It works much like a hoodie’s pocket being one big pocket with two openings.

(Sorry about the lighting. It was cloudy today and I was having troubles getting clear pictures. I guess my photoshop and camera abilities aren’t quite up to par yet. Lol!)

To deal with the bag issue (cause how can I carry a backpack over a carrier?) I found the Onbag. Here’s a couple of pictures of what the bag looks like.

The tutorial is a little bit confusing, and most of the people who have done it live in non-English speaking (or at least blogging) countries. But I have an idea of how to put it together from previous bag making experience.

I love that it is totally versatile! The straps are not connected to one another making it possible to wrap it in a variety of different ways, much like the baby wrap itself. It can be attached to a stroller, a knot can be tied to make it into a shoulder bag (without any hard parts making it perfect squashed between mom and baby), used as a backpack, or used under baby. It has little loops that can be connected onto the waist straps of your carrier.

Here’s a picture of my favorite one that I have found online. I just love everything about this one!

Onbag voor Katrien

It is a huge diaper bag but the nice thing is that it is designed in a way that it can squish up when you don’t need all the space. I love that since I have so much to carry with two boys, cloth diapers, and diabetic supplies.

Here’s the material that I have already cut out.

Onbag material

It matches my Mei Tai. I’m not exactly sure how I am going to piece it together yet and which materials are going to be the outer ones and which will be the inner. But that will be the fun part of putting it together!

It takes a really really really long piece of fabric for the straps, sides, and bottom. It is seamless. Since I am using fabrics I have on hand, I am going to have to piece it despite her recommendation not to.

Finally I leave you with a crayon wallet.

There are so many times when the boys and I are stuck at appointments or the boys are restless at a restaurant. S has become very interested in art. So I thought that an art wallet would be perfect for the airplane ride across the country.

Here are the materials that I have set aside for the wallet, the crayons, and the pad. I will have to alter it some in order to fit the bigger crayons but I know my kids won’t be heartbroken to not have very many crayon colors to choose from at this point!

Art Wallet

I wish you could see the second fabric in the background. Its super cute with a variety of different vehicles. All of these fabrics (except the Cars one) are scraps. The Cars fabric I got on the remnants with no clue what I was going to do with it. S is going to be so excited!

Total it is going to have cost me $4 out of pocket for all three of these projects! I’m pretty excited about that!

What was have you been crafty while also being thrifty lately?


Sewing Your Own Diapers using Babyville Boutique

Sewing your own diapers can be an inexpensive way to boost your cloth diaper stash. Plus, it gives you an opportunity to create something just perfect for you and your family.

I just love Babyville Boutique! They have the cutest prints, are available to buy locally (well, somewhat locally for me), and make cloth diaper making pretty simple. So far I have made three diapers using their patterns.

The first diaper I made was a pocket diaper. I used a flannel receiving blanket as the liner, and the large diaper pattern. It is a great diaper even with its mistakes, but large was definitely too big.

Next, I used the medium pattern and created the yoke style diaper. I love these because I can use any kind of insert, even flour sack towels (which are around $1 a piece at Walmart/Target), in them. The only thing I don’t like is working with the fold over elastic (foe).

Ducky Diaper

Foe is a bit of a pain to work with. You have to stretch in certain parts while still keeping the fabric tucked in. And the worst part of working with it and PUL (the waterproof material) is that it can’t be pinned because pins can create leaks in the PUL. But it is doable. And even with my bad stitching (please ignore it in the pictures), they are great diapers. Bonus, my kids love them!

yoke cover diaper cover

Have you checked out Babyville Boutique’s great line? What is your favorite print?