5 Things You Can Make For A Baby.

I know, it’s been forever since I posted regularly. But there’s been a wedding, a load of jam to make and far too much baby stuff to catch up on. Should be back to blogging now though!

Anyways, here are five things I plan on making for our baby. None are truly bare essentials as in I could buy them at a store or DIY them some other way. But sewing saves money, reduces stress and keeps me from buying every cute thing I see. So if you’re going through the same acquisition urges, here are five things you can make, rather than buy, to save some money and spare your sanity.

1: A nappy bag.

Retail price: From the stats used in my WIP “Baby Budget Diary” book, the average nappy bag costs £50.

Materials cost: Nothing so far! I had almost everything I am using from ages ago and I am repurposing a lot of freebies.

I know I don’t need to make one. A sports bag can be grabbed for a couple of £ and the gods know it’s simpler. But every single penny I can save is a lifesaver when it comes to this new budget book project, and, to be honest, I kind of want a cute, personal nappy bag.

2: Sleep sacks.

Retail price: £20 a piece, total £120 for the first year. I’m gonna faint.

Materials cost: £3.50, and only that high because Jon and I fell in love with this Doctor Who print sheet fabric. Is Doctor Who gender-neutral? Yes, it is. Shhh…

If you want your Winter baby to be as warm as possible and sleep safely blanket-free, you will need sleep sacks. We actually bought a second hand one for £1.50, but usually they cost over £5 even second hand, and I’d rather make some nice, personal, robust ones that can be used by the babies to come.

3: Flannel wipes.

Retail price: From my Baby Budget Diary statistics, a year of disposable wipes costs £310.70 on average.

Materials cost: £0. Free felt and fleece!

Well worth making, for many reasons. Firstly, you have to use cotton and warm water on a baby anyway for the first few months. Secondly, it’s £310.70. Thirdly, all you need is to cut nice big squares of plush fabric, big enough to cover your hand, and probably around 50 of them. You can make them pretty as well and hem them, but the basic is cutting. I will likely be done in an afternoon when I sit down to do this. Couple of days if I decide to sew. Might even drag out the sewing machine!

4: Bibs and burp cloths.

Retail price: According to my Baby Budget Diary stats, £15 average for the first year.

Materials cost: £5 for the bits I’ll use.

I actually spent £20 total on all the fabric I bought this last month. But not all of it is for bibs and rags. Not all of it is even for the baby! Around £5 will go into bibs and rags. So it’s not cheap. But they’re easy to make. Great if you need stress relief. Probably not worth it if you don’t like sewing.

5: Stuffed toys.

Retail price: The average baby’s first Christmas costs £272. Assuming an even four way split between stuffed toys, rattles and travel toys, books and educational tech, that’s £68 on stuffed toys for year one.

Materials cost: Will probably use around £10 worth of fabric at the most.

Stuffed toys are awesome to make. They can be super-cute, you know they’re safe, they are completely personal to your child, you know how to fix them when they break… just win, win, win!

So there you have it, five things I will be making for my baby. I will try and make travel pillows, lactation pads and swaddling blankets as well, but they’re not quite as exciting to talk about.

What things do you like making for babies and kids in the family?

 

For help starting out homemaking, check out The ESSENTIAL Beginner Homemaker’s Guide. For help budgeting all your everday and not-so-everyday essentials, from food to transport to clothes, check out On A Budget: The good homemaker’s guide to economizing.

3 More Ways To Save Money Online.

Some of my older readers may remember a post from half a year ago, where I brought up some great online shops for people in America and England to take advantage of.

But there are many more ways of saving money than by just finding cheap shops or buying in bulk. Try a few of these on for size.

1: Voucher Sites.

Voucher sites offer discounts and cashback rewards when you use them. Simply log on, print any usable vouchers and make money.

For example, I use Sainsbury’s My Coupons site to get a little cashback on any groceries I actually buy, and I search online for any vouchers whenever I need them. I have even got some babycare vouchers stashed away ready to use at Boots (if they’re still running the program) when I need the items. Come to mention it, I may cash them in as soon as the positive test comes back and start stashing wipes and creams and shampoos already.

How to find them: just search for “free vouchers” or “money off vouchers”, maybe add your country or region for any specialist ones.

2: Warehouse Clearance.

Warehouse clearance sites operate under the same process as bulk buying websites like BuyWholeFoodsOnline. They buy in bulk so as to get a massive saving, then they sell on to the customers for a mild profit. Often they are selling items that are near or past their BBE dates, but nowhere near their Use-By dates.

I love using a few assorted sites, but Wowcher and Approved Food are my favourites at the moment. These sites move around and change, so just search for “best before buy” and see what you get!

3: Newsletters.

I subscribe to so many newsletters, mostly online but some snail mail. Whenever you buy from a website, subscribe to their newsletter. I know, for example, that I will buy from Buy WholeFoods Online, Natural Balance Foods, Donald Russel, Wowcher or Sainsbury’s again soon. So it’s good to see their offers when I’m getting near the date when I need a new purchase.

What’s more, when you subscribe to newsletters you can access special offers not advertised on their site, or even, if you go a few months without buying, receive a discount on your next purchase.

Whenever you buy from an online site, check for their newsletter, you may be pleasantly surprised.

For even more ways to save money, check out my book On A Budget: The good homemaker’s guide to economizing.

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TTFN and Happy Hunting!