Monday, October 3, 2016

butterfly swim bandana for Goose

DIY UPF swim bandana, to cover those scalps from sunburn.

We spent most of our summer swimming.  My little Goose has blonde hair, and due to a few funny cowlicks, she has a little spot on her head that you see her scalp. During the summer I was over-worried that my kids would get sunburned. My son seems to tan, and not burn much. Granted, I make him wear a UPF sun-shirt, and sunscreen. Well as much as I can slather on him while he whines and flails. The same with Goose. She will sit still longer to let me put on sunscreen. While I will spray the sunscreen in Jed.I's hair, his hair is thick enough to shield his scalp.  Goose on the other hand I was worried about after I saw her scalp get pink. You may wonder why I'm so uptight about sunburns well this is why:

1. I have burned badly in the past. As a child, as a teen and as an adult. I don't tan. I have once tried to, and got a darker shade of pale. That's it. It was boring, the burns hurt, and I didn't see much difference. I burn, I peel, then I go back to being very pale. I gave up trying to look tan. And just went with protecting myself from burns (painful) and protecting myself from the sun. I have had family members with skin cancer. I have had certain growths removed. We'll see if they grow back. (here's hoping they are just basal cell carninoma and not anything worse) While I did start taking care of my skin earlier than many, (around 18 or so) I still go in the sun everyday, here in Texas, even with sunscreen I'll get damage. If my kids inherited my skin, I need to be careful

2. Sunburns hurt. Do you know what it's like to stay up all night with your sick child? Well, when kids get sunburned they get feverish, and are in pain. You'll stay up all night trying to console and heal your child, and there's nothing you can do but give them tylenol for the pain and rub aloe on them.  I'm trying to avoid a situation where they are in pain, I'm in pain, and everyone suffers. Same reason why I make them brush their teeth. I don't want them to endure the pain of toothaches, tooth abscesses, or root canal's at 5 years old. Yes, those things do happen to children, sometimes even with good dental care. They happened to me as a child. 

So, in order to avoid all those horrible things, while still enjoying the wonderful sun we have here in Texas. I made Goose a swim bandana. Now, any old bandana might have worked. But they usually fall off her head, and I wanted something that would stay on and keep her from getting burned. 

My sister-in-law had some swim headbands for her daughter with white blonde hair that was getting her scalp burned often. But since I couldn't find one available that I liked online, and the swim hats my daughter wore just came off instantly, I decided to make one.

Here were some I found online. (Nice, but not quite what I wanted to my Goose)

UPF Scalp Cover

Nammu Swim Hat

My daughter had borrowed a very cute swim headband from my sister-in-law that was pink with purple butterflies. Just so you know, Goose tells everyone that "Pink and purple are my favorite colors!!"  I had to make a sparkly purple one with butterflies she demanded. I went to Joanns, and they had bunches of swim fabric and she picked out the sparkliest.

Mystique Perfomance Knit in Eggplant at Joann
She even picked out some butterfly appliqués. 
Butterfly Appliqué's

Next came the arduous process of figuring out how to sew on super stretch knits.

Tips for super stretch knits.

1. Use a ballpoint needle
2. Use either tissue paper, or a tear away stabilizer to sandwich stretch knit between otherwise the sewing machine will somehow manage to eat the fabric getting it horribly stuck in the strike plate
3. If you can, use a serger! I finally (really after all these years????) looked in my serger manual and learned how to do a beautiful rolled edge (that stretched beautifully) with a three threads on my serger. It looks like a baby-lok edge and it's gorgeous! 
4. Try it out on sample fabric a lot!!!

In this case, I didn't iron on the butterfly appliqué's since it would have melted off the metallic foil finish ruining the fabric and my iron. So I sewed them on. I tried by hand and those are some stiff suckers, so I used my machine to do a tack stitch. Not the serger of course, but I sandwiched the butterfly and the fabric between some tissue paper and it worked pretty well. There was some knotting of the bobbin thread, but it was to be expected occasionally.

Here is my Goose modeling it for me:

This was my first draft. I didn't think I wanted a basic swim bandana in a triangle shape. But after seeing the little cowlick of scalp that wasn't covered by the one above. I made another in a basic triangle shape. It covered more of her scalp and still stays on pretty well.

Rolled hem from my serger.
On some knits an edge seam isn't as necessary. However, since this was a very stretchy knit, and was going to be stretched a lot on the head. A finished seam is very necessary, or it will start getting runs in them just like a pair of hose. Plus, the edges wont roll which you don't want in this project. Otherwise, it would just roll off the head. :(

Till next time,

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