tips for making a baby bump diary

It’s become a little tradition for us to document my growing baby bump each pregnancy. I’m really glad we’ve done it – because though we started it for ourselves, just so we would remember and could show family – it’s become something our kids really love looking at. I really want to get my act together and print out a full collage for each kiddo to put in their baby books. It’s amazing to me how much my body has changed each pregnancy and then gone back to normal again – I feel like every part of baby’s journey is such an amazing miracle.

So now that i’ve done this 3 times, i thought i’d share with you a few tips!

  1. Choose a consistent & maintainable backdrop. You are going to be taking these photos for 9 months, so you need to make sure you can keep your backdrop the whole time. We used the plainest wall in our house, and removed all the pictures when we were taking photos.
  2. Keep each picture the same size. An easy way to do this is to make sure whoever is taking your photos is standing at the same distance from you every time (We measured each time).
  3. Set a regular time to take your photos, and then give yourself a break! For my first two diaries i tried to take photos once a week, which was kind of a disaster because who has that kind of consistency? not me :) This time round we made it the first week of every month, it was easy to remember and a much more maintainable interval. And even then, we missed one month when i was really morning sick – but such is life right?
  4. Use some photo editing software. You don’t need photoshop, there are some free programs like GIMP, or even Picasa that allow you to edit your photos a bit. You may need to adjust the lighting a bit to make your photos consistent. I also like to crop them a little, and use photoshop to edit out picture hooks on the wall. I made this diary black and white because i think i think it always looks a bit more emotive, and it helped disguise the fact the lighting wasn’t perfectly consistent in each shot.
  5. Wear the same outfit. But choose wisely! You need to make sure that whatever you wear will still fit in 9 months time.  The last two times i’ve done this diary i just used super stretchy tops – but this time i decided to make my own top using my Ruched maternity top sewing pattern. I’m really glad i did because it worked sooooo much better! The last times it was kinda hard to fit the tops over my full term belly, but this time it was a breeze. I don’t know why i didn’t think of using my own design before – so silly!

So did any of you do baby bump diaries for your pregnancies? Or have a favourite? For some other ideas about how to record your growing bump check out our post about DIY pregnancy photo series!

How to make a ruched maternity dress with Clio & Phineas

I’m so excited about todays guest post! Clio has been making the most gorgeous maternity wear during her pregnancy. When i saw that she had merged some maternity patterns to create her own maternity dresses i got really excited and asked her to share how she went about combining patterns to make maternity wear. Clio writes over at Clio and Phineas, so when you’re done reading her tutorial please head on over to her lovely blog and check out the rest of her fantastic maternity makes. So much inspiration there! Ok over to Clio.

First off, I was really excited when I was invited to write this guest post. When I learned I was pregnant, I immediately started thinking about and planning a maternity wardrobe even though it was months before I would actually need maternity clothing. So, it’s something that I really thought about and started working on long before I even announced my pregnancy.

I had a lot of grand ideas at first, but in the end I found that focusing on a few key patterns that were easy to sew, were versatile and that I could use again and again was the best way to quickly build a wardrobe that I love and still feels like me.

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DIY cloth baby wipes

I have been cloth diapering my Baby Bird since she was about 2 weeks old, and i noticed very quickly once i started that i didn’t have enough cloth wipes. In a mad panic i ordered more, waited and waited, and then realised: I CAN SEW.

Moments like these i kind of want to bang my head against the wall for being so silly. I mean seriously meg?? My stash of soft flannel fabric is huge and this task simply could not be easier. Grrrr.

So i quickly sat down, cut a bunch of 7″x7″ (18cmx18cm) squares, rounded off the edges, serged/overlocked the raw edges and we were good to go. It was just that easy. So if you use cloth wipes for your babe, or are thinking about it, don’t forget to check out your fabric stash before you buy! Personally i like using flannel or terry cloth for my wipes. It’s always such a good feeling when you can make something rather than buy it right?

Now feel free to giggle at me for forgetting i owned a sewing machine and scissors.