Hot fuzz

We have had such a wonderful Christmas time. We spent a few days at my parents’ house as we have every year since Rose was born, but this – her third Christmas – was by far the most magical, least stressful, most restful to date. She is at such a nice age, she knows all the special people and loves to get them to play with her. She was really excited by the ‘chimmee’ in nanny and pop pop’s sitting room and kept retelling how Santa had come in and left the presents on the floor. I loved hearing this story so much.

One little pre-christmas present I made her as a really portable and no-space, no-mess activity for these holidays was a bit of fuzzy felt.  I have fond memories of this little activity from when I was little (and also a really strange very early memory of fuzzy felt which i think i am confusing with a memory of those little verruca pad things? memories can be strange. i sometimes wonder if Rose will remember things we do now in a weird way later…). I think my version is much coarser than the mass produced type, but for little Rose it seems to be just fine.

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If you have never come across fuzzy felt before, it is a really simple toy for children. Felt pieces will cling to each other, so it is great to  make pictures using felt pieces on a felt back ground (I very lazily just used a larger square of felt for my background, but you could put this onto a piece of board to keep it really flat). The pieces cling really nicely, but are easy to move around for hours of fun (or minutes depending on the age of child!)

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It was difficult for me to decide what shapes to make for my fuzzy felt set. I had seen lots of felt Christmas trees that children can decorate with felt decorations (which was my original inspiration for this little toy) but I decided to go for something less seasonal and in the end I created a little landscape scene.

I bought my felt from my local haberdashery but have seen it in all sorts of places for sale. My pieces were about 50p each so I managed to get a nice range of colours for just a few pounds. I cut out shapes of lots of things from the world that I knew Rose will recognise, trees and a car and clouds and a cat. I hoped she would enjoy putting together little scenes and so far we have had some lovely little plays with this one, and lots of conversations about ducks on the water. Success.

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Cheese on Toast

One of Rose’s favourite games at the moment is to make me lunch in her little kitchen. She is very attentive and always asks if i’ve had enough and does the washing up for me. She also likes to help in the real kitchen, buttering her toast and grating cheese.

We bought her a very sweet little toaster for her birthday, and i thought it would be nice for her to have some cheese and a little grater of her own so she can make cheese on toast in her kitchen whenever she likes.

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I decided to have a go at some felt craft for this little project as the colours are so nice and they make lovely tactile toys.

For the grater and cheese i needed:

Light grey, black and yellow felt
A black fabric pen
Ruler, pencil, paper, pins
Grey and yellow threads and a needle

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I made up some little paper templates and cut out my felt pieces as follows:

For the grater:Β i needed two grey pieces 14cm x 9cm for the front and back and two pieces 14cm x 5cm for the sides. I used black felt for the top and bottom these were two pieces 9cm x 5cm.

I drew my cheese grater design onto the front and back and sides using my fabric pen. My pen was a dylon pen andΒ needed a hot iron to set it. i was a little bit worried about how the felt would survive a hot iron but it was fine and the pen has worked really well.

For the cheese: i cut out two 8cm x 8cm squares for the top and bottom and then marked 2cm down from one corner and drew and cut along this line to create a diagonal edge (as if it had been grated away!). The side pieces i cut out were 3 pieces 8cm x 4cm, and one piece 6cm x 4cm.

I stitched all of my pieces together using blanket stitch on the outside of my pieces (with wrong sides together) making sure that my stitches were about 3 – 5mm from the edge of the felt and about 5mm apart.

I also used a bit of my yellow felt to make some little grated cheese pieces – i am not really sure how long those will last before going up the hoover though!

 

Rose was absolutely delighted with her little toaster (toasty as she says) and knows exactly what her cheese and grater are for. It’s a lovely time when we have tea at Rose’s.