Friday, June 24, 2011

Pool Ponchos!

I have been inspired!  I know, blogs do that to me all the time.  But really, I have been inspired!  Last week Jen at Tatertots and Jello featured Kyla from Funky PolkaDot Giraffe as part of her Summer Social series.  Kyla shared a tutorial for the most amazing Surfer's Poncho.

Well, we live in the desert - no beaches for miles - but we have a pool, so the Pool Poncho was born.  Using her basic idea, I whipped up a couple of ponchos for the kids and I love them. 

I found these beach towels on sale at Target for $4 each which is an awesome deal.  Kyla used a hand towel for the hood and pocket.  I just wasn't willing to pay more for the hood than for the body of the poncho so I waited.  Today while at Walmart I found a white bath towel for $2.77 - perfect!  The bath towel was large enough to make both ponchos plus I have enough left to make another one if I want.

The hood is made by simply tracing out the head piece on the finished edge of the towel.  She created her shape by tracing another hooded bath towel.  I simply took an 8.5x11 piece of paper and rounded off one of the corners.  I then placed it on the doubled up edge of my towel and cut about 1" out on the top and back and about 2" from the bottom to allow for seam allowance.  As you can see, my hood is plenty big but I think it is great as it gives plenty of room for growth.

Once cut out, using a zig zag stitch, sew the raw edges together. I further secured my frayed edges by running a second zig zag stitch over the fraying edges of the towel material.

To create the neck hole, fold the towel in half length-wise and then in half again to find the center point of the towel.  While still folded, I cut my neck hole.  She suggests using a shirt as a guide to how big to make this opening.  Mine got a bit big, I made it smaller on the second one.  The important thing is that you are able to get your child's head through the hole.

Next, find the center point of the back of the neck hole and mark with a pin.  Pin the right side of the hood to the right side of the towel starting at this center point and the center of the hood.  (I forgot to take a picture of this.)  Sew the hood to the towel.  The remaining raw edge of the towel should be folded over and a hem sewn.  This part is complete.

Now, to add a pocket.  Again, Kyla  used a sweatshirt pocket as a guide to create her pocket which had a slanted opening.  I decided to make mine more like a muff pocket.  I cut a piece of towel about 8.5 x 11 along one of the remaining edges of my bath towel.  I then hemmed the two ends of the pocket piece and pinned the raw edge, right sides together on the towel.  I placed this about 6"-8" below the neckline.

Using a zig zag stitch, sew the pocket piece to the towel.  I made sure to secure the ends real well by going forward and backward a couple of times at the corners since this is where the pockets will get the most pull.

Fold the pocket down and zig zag along the bottom of the pocket which is a finished edge of the towel.  Again, secure the corners real well.

That's it!  Done.  I highly recommend checking out Kyla's surfer poncho tutorial.  It is truly an awesome inspiration!  Thanks Jen and Kyla for a great summer project!  These will be perfect for swimming lessons too!

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