Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Tutorial: How to Make Your Own Baby Mobile

As my regular readers will already know, I am expecting my second son in January. I have been working on the changes needed to make my apartment ready for my expanding family and my current focuses are Milo's bedroom and the baby's nursery area.

One of the items on my 'To Do List' for the nursery was to either buy or make a baby mobile. I never really put together a proper little nursery space for Milo due to a lack of imagination, energy and time.  I refuse to let that happen this time around and so am making a real effort to make a special little space for baby No. 2. My budget to make this happen is pretty tight, what with all the little changes I want to do to the place, so whilst searching through online shops for interesting and colourful baby mobiles, I failed to find anything I liked in my kind of budget. I did however see something I loved out of my budget and I thought hey, I could do that myself. So I did.

I have to point out that whilst I am a jewellery maker, I am not the most experienced of arts and crafts people. I haven't really done much handmade work, outside of my jewellery, since childhood, so this was a bit of a new experience for me. I'm really proud of how the mobile turned out and so I decided to share the method I used to make it in case anyone else out there fancies giving it a go themselves! Because of my lack of experience, there may well be better ways of making this mobile so feel free to adjust the method to something that better suits you, but here are some basics to get you started with...
What you will need...

Felt of your colour choice (make sure the felt is thick enough that it will keep the shape you want with a bit of folding. Very thin felt won't work without extra support.)
Coloured thread to match felt
White thread
Hard surface to cut felt on (I used a hard covered old book because I didn't have a proper board)
Flat nosed pliers
Crimp beads
Craft knife  or scalpel
Bamboo circle (this is missing from the picture because I used mine before I took the photo!!!)

Create your stencil

Step 1: Take the cardboard and drawer a butterfly shape (in the size you wish the butterflies to be)

Step 2: Cut out butterfly stencil

Make the butterflies

Step 3: Place stencil on felt and cut around the stencil with the craft knife. Don't worry about making the shape completely perfect, you can rectify any small problems in the next step.

Step 4: Use the scissors to tidy the butterfly shape

Step 5: Fold the butterfly in half

Step 6: Sew loops along the straight edge of the butterfly (around 5mm wide dependent on the size of your butterflies) to secure the two halves together

Step 7: Fold down the wings of the butterfly. If you've found the right thickness of felt then the wings should stay in position once folded

Hang the butterflies

Step 8: Decide the order of colour that you want for your butterflies

Step 9: Loop your white thread around the bamboo circle and then start on your first hanging thread. Repeat the following steps until all the threads and butterflies are hanging in place

Step 10: Pierce the white thread through the top, centre of the top of your butterfly

Step 11: Thread the crimp bead through the string and squeeze (with the flat nosed pliers) securely in to place where you want the butterfly to stay on the thread. Because I am a jewellery maker, I have these pieces easily available, there are alternative ways to secure the butterflies in to place without these pieces

Repeat steps 9, 10 and 11 until you have all the butterflies in place. 

You will then have have a wonderful, colourful, handmade baby mobile for your nursery!

If you use this tutorial to make your own baby mobile please do let me know and feel free to post a photo of it on my Workingberlinmum Facebook page, I'd love to see it. 

If you want to find out about more fabulous crafts ideas from fellow parents, check out my 'Crafting Ideas' folder on my Pinterest page.

Workingberlinmum can also be found on... 

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  1. This looks so good and the instructions are very straightforward. I have done quite a lot to our nursery but hadn't thought about a mobile and now I don't need too. Will dec be going to John Lewis for supplies this weekend. My older daughter wants to make one for her room as well.

    1. Glad it's given you some inspiration and it would make a great project for your daughter too! There's no reason why mobiles should just be in nurseries, they look lovely hanging in a child's bedroom.

  2. It looks amazing! Well done you.

  3. Awww it's adorable. I'm so looking forward to the birth of my daughter and I've love creative stuff but I don't think I'd have the patience or neatness to do this. It so lovely.

    1. Glad you like it. It isn't anywhere near as hard as it may look, believe me, I am far from a skilled crafter ha ha. It just is a bit on the monotonous side. The latter butterflies weren't nearly as well cut as the earlier ones! I think it took about 8 hours to do in total which I did over two days. So satisfying once it's done though. There are also much simpler versions like circles of different coloured felt hanging, that was going to be my alternative if the butterflies were too hard.

  4. wow thanks for the great idea will try and then send u pics if decent enough lol

    1. Please do, I'd love to see them :) You could post them on my Facebook page if you like: https://www.facebook.com/workingberlinmum

  5. Hi. I love how u make it look so simple and nice.. Thanks for sharing :-) i am just wondering, where can i find those bamboo circles? I am also staying in germany (bayern). Appreciate your reply. Thanks :-)

    1. Thank you very much :) I got the bamboo circle from Idee Creativemarkt but you should be able to get them at most crafts stores

  6. This is just beautiful! How did you hang it up over the crib?

    1. Thank you :) I've used a kind of 'arm' that attaches to the side of the crib and it hangs from that. It's not perfect but it does the job. A photo of it will be up on the blog soon.

  7. Thanks for posting your baby mobile idea :) where did you find the bamboo circle? I'm having trouble finding one like the one you have pictured in this post.

    1. You're welcome, I'm glad you like it :) I bought my bamboo circle in an arts supply store. Anywhere that sells items for cross stitching should have them as that's the main intended use for them I guess. I hope you can find one and enjoy making your mobile.


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