Monday, January 02, 2012

{Tutorial} "Name" Beanbags

I decided to make my son Travis some beanbags to help him to learn the letters of his name.
Uppercase letters on one side and lowercase letters on the other.

I went through my felt stash (yep, I have a whole bin FULL of felt) and realized that I could get almost all the colors of the rainbow to spell out his name!

First, cut your fabric into 5"x5" squares. 2 of each color.
Then arrange them into a rainbow and take a picture.Very important step! Unless your fabrics are not, in fact, a rainbow of colors because that just would not make sense.

#1. Trace the REVERSED Letter onto the shiny side of Heat N Bond, iron it onto the fabric you are using for your letters and then cut it out. Remove paper backing and iron to the center of your 5"x5" square.

#2. Using a zigzag or straight stitch, sew the applique to the fabric square.

#3. Here is my first one all stitched down. I used a straight stitch as close to the edge as I could. GO SLOW as there are lots of turns and curves.

#4. Here is what the back looks you can see it looks just like the letter because of how carefully I sewed. My thread matches, so it's probably not that big of a deal, but I am a firstborn(read:Type A) so I kept it as neat as I could. I eased up a bit after the first one.

#5. Repeat with the lowercase letter on the other 5"x5" square of the same color.

#6. Pin the two squares "T" to "t" like they are smooching. Maybe even make the sound when you do this step. Pin the crap out of it, or don't. Not really necessary to use that many pins, but whatever.

#7. Sew around the outside of the squares leaving a 2"-3" opening. Back stitch at the beginning and at the end so that it is nice and strong when you turn the bag.

#8. "Clip" the corners. This removes some of the bulk once you turn the bag right side out. Make sure you don't cut through the thread.

#9. Turn the bag right side out and poke out the corners with something pointy (pencil, chopstick, actual apparatus meant for poking out corners).

#10. Fill bag with beans. I used about 3/4 cup in mine.
#11. Top stitch all the way around the bag to seal it closed and to add strength.

Let your toddler play with the beans on the floor so that he will leave you alone
long enough to get these finished!

Just FYI:
Making these assembly line fashion is the way to go!
Do each step with all the beanbags at the same time so you save time
and are not going back and forth.

Let the LEARNING FUN begin!

You may find me linking up with some of these blogs:
Fingerprints on the Fridge, Making The World Cuter, Dittle Dattle, Mad Skills Monday, Skip to my Lou, Craft O Maniac, Delicate Construction, Ask Anna, New Nostalgia, House of Grace, Sassy Sites, Not Just a Housewife, Today's Creative Blog, My Craftie Life, Sew Much Ado, Seven Thirty-Three, Someday Crafts, A Diamond in the Stuff, My Girlish Whims, Somewhat Simple, Momnivores Dilemma, Paisley Passions, Fun to Craft, Make it, Wear it, Gluesticks, House of Hepworths, What Allie's Making Now, Finding Fabulous, A Little Knick Knack, Mommas Kinda Crafty, Its a Hodgepodge Life, Inspiring Creations, Be Different Act Normal, Wildflowers and Whimsy, Tatertots and Jello, The Idea Room, My Repurposed Life, Sew Many Ways, I Heart Naptime, Thirty Handmade Days, Under the Table and Dreaming, Creative Itch, Oops I Craft My Pants, Addicted 2 Decorating


Christian said...

Love this idea. I am going to use it.. only with all the cotton I have stored away lol. Thanks for sharing

Abbie said...

What a fun way to personalize things! These turned out too cute!


Would also love it if you stopped by for a visit!

P.S. I'm your newest follower. : )

~Abbie (

Jenna said...

Super cute and educational, way to go! I love using rainbow colors. :)

Lisa said...

Very cute! Love this idea!

Unknown said...

What a great idea for letter and name recognition. A nice spin on an old game!

gail@My Repurposed Life said...

oh so very cute! I love the bright colors.
thanks for sharing at Catch as Catch Can!

tobecontinued said...

Love this idea! Would be great for using up scraps!

Sassy Sites! said...

Just so you know! :) You got a Saturday morning SHOUT OUT over at Sassy Sites! I loved this idea! Thanks so much for sharing it at our FFA party! Have a wonderful Saturday!


Unknown said...

Oh, wow, that is SUCH a great idea! You could even do the whole alphabet! My son is good at spelling his name, but needs some practice with all the lowercase letters. Your beanbags look great too, really neat and professional! Would you consider sharing here?

Unknown said...

Those turned out wonderfully! I love them- nicely done!!!

robyn @

Misty @Creative Itch said...

Love this idea! Thanks for sharing @'Sew Cute Tuesday'! I'll be featuring you on Jan. 10th, so be sure to stop by and grab a 'featured' button!

Krista Schneider said...

Great idea and fantastic tutorial!

Laurel @ Ducks in a Row said...

This just might be my go-to birthday present this year! LOVE them!

Gwen @ Gwenny Penny said...

Very cute variation on the beanbag idea, Amy. These look very professional... I can't believe how perfect the stitching is on the back of your "T" square! Firstborn/Type A here, too, so no need to explain :)

Karah @ thespacebetweenblog said...

Wow, these are so cute! Colorful and personalized, love it.
A few blog friends and I introduced a new challenge idea today and it would be so fun if you want to join. If you have a second, check in at to learn more, and feel free to email me if you have any questions!
Karah @ thespacebetweenblog

Unknown said...

These are sooo stinkin adorable.. and what a super fun way to learn your name! Thanks so much for sharing with the Pink Hippo party.. can't wait to see what you share next!

Allison @ House of Hepworths said...

You are awesome so I featured you at my Hookin Up with HoH Party!

Feel free to stop by for a button if you'd like. :)


Allison @ House of Hepworths

Unknown said...

I definitely love how these turned out! so pretty and cute and colorful! totally pinning it and featuring it at the party!


The most important thing she’d learned over the years was that there was no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one."
~Jill Churchill