If you're anything like me, you'll find it impossible to part with your child's outgrown belongings. Your house is probably filled with heirlooms which are too precious to throw away but are never used and take up valuable space. Yes? Here's the trick: if you love something enough, find a way to keep it.
Our house is teeny and has no storage (seriously, one small linen cupboard - that's it) so I've learnt to upcycle what I don't want recycled. I get to keep Alice's cute things while challenging my creativity to whip them into something new. Win, win!
Today I want to show you how to make a super fast crochet bag from an old Babybounce. The old-school bouncer nets are way too pretty to pitch and because they are lightweight and strong, make ideal backpacks. Alice uses hers to cart around her crew; no more worrying about losing Bunny at the shops because I know Alice has her back, literally.
Let's get started!
Before you start on your backpack, you must prep your Babybounce net. To slip it off the wire frame, squeeze both sides of the frame inwards and pull the net downwards. It might take some wriggling but will eventually slide off. This is the trickiest part of the whole project. Wash the net in warm water and dry flat in the sun. It will smell of summer. Now it's ready for action!
1. Grab some matching ribbon. I used a cream satin which I already had but any cord will do. Cut two pieces with matching lengths (mine were about 30'' long). Tie a knot at the ends of the ribbon to prevent fraying. Attach a safety pin at one end of one length of ribbon and thread through the existing channel at the top of the net, starting on on one side and then threading it all the way back around the other. Both ends of the ribbon should now be on the same side.
2. Repeat this process with the second piece of ribbon starting on the opposite side. Pull the ribbons so both pieces are even. Pull again to close the bag shut.
3. Cut off the straps that held your mini in place on the bouncer. I've kept the straps as I plan to upcycle these too, probably into a headband for Alice.
4. Your net should now look like this. Nearly done!
5. Add some shoulder straps. I used white pom-pom trim as I wanted the straps to be a feature of the bag. The length of the straps will depend on the age of the person using the backpack. With the bag closed, I measured from the centre out to each bottom corner and then doubled this length for Alice's straps and then adjusted to fit. It took a bit of playing and guess work to get the right length. Tie one end of both straps to the centre point of the bag.
6. Tie the remaining ends to the bottom left and right hand corners of the bag. This forms the straps to loop over the shoulders.
7. Finally add an accent to your bag. I tied on a grey bow but you can omit this if you please and just keep it plain. Your Babybounce backpack is done! Store in a pretty place when not in use.