I grew up with a mother who, while shopping, would say things like "Wow, look at this, don't you think this would be so easy to make?!?" So that's where I got my creative eye for looking at conventional things that I would like to have, or that I just find nice, and thinking up some way to recreate them!
This summer I have recreated many things without a pattern...which is what I enjoy the most. I find lots of satisfaction in making things from nothing and having them turn out uniquely wonderful!
I will post pictures of some of my creations, but first I want to encourage you all in your creativity as well. The first step in moving from buying everything to making (at least) some things is to look at things with an open mind. It's hard to duplicate some things exactly, but many things can be slightly altered and still turn out just as nice. Now, if you're the type of person who will never put 1.5 teaspoons of seasoning if a recipe calls for 1 (or if you measure seasonings at all and not just dump them in!) this may be hard for you. There is not always a right and wrong way to do things, that's the first big step!
Brainstorming is key here. If you see a flower headband, for instance, that has intricate bead work...well could you make it with a ribbon instead of beads? Or could you use sequins or a button to make it uniquely yours instead of trying to make the EXACT same headband you saw in the store. Many of my friends who are super black and white in this way have a hard time recreating things in this way because it takes some ingenuity and thinking outside of the box. If this is you, don't worry, you're not a lost cause, it just takes some work!
So, the things I have made this summer are:
1. A diaper bag (yes with a pattern, but with lots of 'extras' that were not on the pattern, and many many alterations to the original pattern)
(pictured here is the diaper bag and diaper case)
2. A nursing cover (with also can be used as a stroller or car seat canopy!)
(the flowers are made from ribbons)
3. A diaper case (to keep diapers and wipes separate in the diaper bag and to keep diapers from being smushed - see picture above)
4. A changing pad and cover (I had some inspiration, but I changed it up quite a bit)
5. Embellished onesies (for baby gifts and one for my little guy - I purchased the embellishments from http://www.etsy.com/shop/ceramicsbycarmen)
6. Burp cloths (design was inspired by an Etsy shop, but I made my own pattern - my inspiration: http://www.etsy.com/shop/MaplewoodBoutique)
7. A pin cushion for a friend
8. A mobile for the new little guy coming in September
And I think that's all...all that I can remember anyway!
So, while later in life I will hopefully be posting some tutorials on here for your creative pleasure...for now you can be inspired by the things I've made and start thinking when you're out shopping: 'hmm...could I make this??'