Monday, July 22, 2013

1st Birthday T-shirt Upcycled to Keepsake Teddy bear

A personalized shirt could either go into a box and rot away OR you could upcycle it to a priceless keepsake!!!

I prefer keepsakes!!

Karen Bear 4 

What I did anyone can do and I wanted to share with you how I did it, so if you are inclined you could do the same.

A couple of months ago one of my son’s preschool teachers asked me “can you make me something with my son’s 1st birthday shirt?” 


Notice the word “something

I asked her what she had in mind and her response was simple “Surprise me” 

Holy cow!!! As scary and kind of intimidating as that can be, I was excited about the challenge.  Surprise me….

I searched Pintrest, the internet and marketing catalogs but nothing really spoke to me.  I could of done a blanket but really another blanket??  I could of done a pillow but that is kind of *boring too.  *For me as a seamstress.

It took me a while but I finally decided the perfect plan was to make a teddy bear.

How I made the bear…

I used a free pattern on How Joyful. I enlarged it and made it work specifically for my need.  Let me forewarn you. The pattern instructions are very very vague. The pattern pieces are great.  Therefore, if you are an intermediate seamstress you should have no problems, I would steer away from this bear tutorial if you are a beginner.  There are plenty out there with better instructions.

Karen Bear 1

To make this bear a true keepsake I finished off this keepsake teddy bear with special details.  I added a zipper on the back seam with a pocket on the inside.  This allows for keepsakes like pictures, notes, or small items that mean something to Charlie and his mom.  How wonderful would it be years from now to find all these wonderful treasures inside the bear!!

Karen Bear 5

Then to add a few finishing touches I put a gingham heart on the palm of the bear.  Representing that this little boy has his mommy’s heart!!!

Karen Bear 2

As a seamstress it was my absolute pleasure to make this bear!!

Karen Bear 3

As I was finishing this bear I thought of ways to make this even more unique and personalized. Maybe you could use some of these ideas.

1. Make the bear out of old baby blankets that belonged to the baby

2. Use old baby clothes and make a unique and crazy quilt style bear. Every piece would be made from different clothing articles.

You are only limited to your imagination!!

I am very grateful to Charlie’s mom who trusted me enough to make something she will keep forever!!!!  I hope she loves it as much as I enjoyed making it!!!  If you are interested in me making something for you or would just like some ideas for a keepsake email me!! 



Melissa said...

Very, very nice work - I am sure she was thrilled...

Gale Fitts said...

I am sure she was "over the moon" with what you have done! Outstanding job Maridith!!!

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