fabric storage baskets

fabric storage baskets by Little Button Diaries (3)

My kids are messy. I can spend a day tidying, then within 5 minutes of them being in the house they’ve brought half their toys down and spread them across the floor then abandoned them 5 minutes after that. Because they hate me. So I stack them all up in little piles on the stairs to go back to their rooms whenever anyone is going upstairs (you’ll regularly hear my shout “TAKE your pile!!!!!” as they pound up for more crap).  I thought I’d make some cute little baskets for them, so instead of taking a pile they can take their baskets back. And they look much nicer than piles of toys. It was a great concept. Except for one flaw. They now use these baskets to bring down even more toys than they could carry before. FFS.

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Cath Kidston Christmas Tree Toppers

guard christmas tree topper diy

We may be slightly behind the rest of the world but this weekend we are putting our Christmas trees up. Hoorah!

A couple of weeks ago, Cath Kidston asked us to design two tree toppers inspired by their prints. We love all their London prints (like, to an excessive amount) so we decided to make a little guard to watch over all your gifts. Then we made a rosy posy topper, inspired by their Ardingly Rose print, for a blooming beautiful tree.

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Make your Own Elf on the Shelf!


Would you like to make your own, unique elf on the shelf? This one comes complete with little belled booties and a hat, a bag to store his goodies and a free template to make him super easy to make. Whoop!

It’s not too early to talk about christmas is it? Never! I was in the shops about a month ago  (a MONTH. Now that is too soon!) when I saw the little Elf on the Shelf thing. That thing has got it’s marketing pegged. £30 for a felt/plastic doll and a little book! I do like the idea of a cute little elf that sits happily on your shelf throughout December though, so I thought I would make my own, and share it with you. So you can too. I tried really hard with this one – I wanted him to be special. I hope you like him!  

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Fabric Kite Tutorial

fabric kite tutorail by Little Button Diaries

How pretty is this beach hut fabric (available in store) by Cath Kidston? We used it in our latest collaboration with them to make this pretty kite for their blog. It makes a great addition to a lonely bedroom wall, or you could even try and fly it (don’t try too hard, it’s better at being pretty than soaring through the skies!). Head over to Cath Kidston to see how to make your own.

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The loveliest Quiet Book

sewn quiet book 2

This little quiet book has had a lot of love. It’s 36 years old, sewn by my mum for my brother when he was a tiny baby. It’s the reason I started sewing in the first place, when I was a kid. I don’t think I could ever make anything quite as lovely as this, but seeing that you could create beautiful, real things from pieces of fabric seemed like magic to six year old me. I’ve been trying to meet this standard ever since. I did have a go at my own book a few years ago (see the post on it here) but it’s not quite as lovely as my mum’s.

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Guest Post: Nora’s Pushchair Liner

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Like me, my sister-in-law Nora loves to while away her (rare!) free hours at the sewing machine. She does everything with precision and care and her makes always look great. She made a beautiful pushchair liner a few months ago and said she was thinking of making another one, so I jumped at the chance for her to share with me (and you!) how to make one.

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Our 1st Guest Post for Laura Ashley

We are SO excited to write that post title! We were very happy when Laura Ashley asked us to write a guest post for them using their fabrics. OBVIOUSLY we jumped at the chance – their fabrics are so beautiful, thick and good quality.  So we made a couple of giant, squidgy, floor pillows for our youngest little ones using their lovely Treasure Island and Esme fabrics from the children’s range.

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Toddler Gym Shorts

toddler shorts diy

We went to Paris recently with our little ones and whilst exploring came across a whole street of fabric shops in Montmartre. I don’t think I’ve been that excited in a while. After spending ages looking at all the pretty material, I bought some to make something for my Little Button. After spending a few weeks deciding, I followed this excellent pattern and tutorial for gym shorts here. The back material was up-cycled from a lightweight denim shirt (thanks for the hand-me-down Mum).  The sizing below relates to shorts for a three-year-old.

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How to Make a Simple Sewing Machine Cover

sewing machine cover little button diaries

I made a sewing machine cover last week (I say last week – as though I just whipped it up on a whim. I started making this sodding thing in February but put it aside when I ran out of bias binding and I haven’t picked it up since). I made it because my sewing machine – much as I love it – has the biggest, ugliest plastic clomp of a cover.

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Applique Elephant Nursery Art

applique elephant nursery artwork

Just after Christmas my brother and his wife had a beautiful little girl called Inara. She wasn’t due till February, so she was the picture of teeny tiny pocket sized perfection. I wanted to make her a little picture with her name on it, so I thought I would applique something as I enjoyed making the photo-applique so much. Here’s what I made…

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Musical Toy Elephant


I wanted to make something for the new arrival that might help him sleep (fingers crossed!). When Harper was a baby we had a toy with a musical box inside that seemed to work a treat. That toy became really tatty, so I decided to salvage the musical part of it and make a new one for the baby. This toy could alternatively be turned into a rattle if finding a musical box part is tricky.

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Turn a Photo into an Appliqué

applique art little button diaries 19

Ages ago, before our little buttons were on the planet (and what a different planet it was…), I did a bit of experimenting with turning photographs into appliques. Iwould chop out pictures, often magazine images, place them onto scraps of fabric, and sew to create an applique like this one:

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Patchwork Camera Strap Tutorial

patchwork camera strap

Our latest post for Hobbycraft is now live, hoorah! This month we decided to make something for our long-suffering cameras. We’re so snap happy – our cameras are always with us and they get a lot of bashing about, flung into the nappy bag with all manner of baby junk. We wanted to create a cover for the strap to personalise our cameras, one that can be removed for washing! This is a nice easy project and a great way to use up scraps of fabric.

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How to Make a Ruffle skirt

little girl ruffle skirt tutorial 2

I’m a big fan of making clothes without a pattern. I’m just not good at following instructions. The last two patterns I followed were for skirts, and both of them came out too small (what did I do wrong? Did I just get too fat in the making process?! Blame the pattern, blame the pattern…). Its really easy to make kids clothes without patterns because they don’t need a lot of shape. I made Amelie a little ruffle skirt and it took less than an hour – this is a really simple little project. The same principles would apply for making an adult version. All you need is a button and some fabric – half a metre would do for a toddler.

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How to Make a Piped & Appliqued Pillow

applique and piped pillow tutorial

A couple of weeks ago I was very happy to be asked if I would be godmother to a beautiful little baby called Olive. She is such a joyful little girl, I decided I’d make her a little colourful cushion to match her personality. I’ve never piped fabric before so I thought I’d give that a shot. Its easy! I’m piping everything from now on…

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