This post was the reason I started thinking about making my personal blog private and setting up a new blog to share my creative adventures with the world. It was my first attempt at making a tutorial for a DIY, which I did because I couldn’t find any step-by-steps on the web that told me how to create a new cover for my Snoogle Pregnancy Pillow, so I figured that documenting my attempt would probably be helpful to others. And I think it was! This post consistently got the most hits on my site. I was glad other people found it helpful, but after my son was born I started to become uncomfortable with the sheer amount of information I was sharing there, so that led me to start this place to share. Anyway, here is the original post, from August 2011:
So a few weeks back, Target had the Snoogle on their daily deal. Dodi loved hers and I read a lot of positive reviews online, so since it was on sale for the cheapest I’d seen it, I snagged one. It was a little hard at first, but after a few nights it broke in pretty well and I really like it – I think that it really helps with hip/back pain. What I didn’t like about it, though, was the rough cotton cover. It was plain and got pilled up within a month and it wasn’t the softest cotton in the world. I figured that those things could be easily solved with a new cover. Unfortunately, most of the covers I saw on Amazon weren’t doing it for me. I wanted a flannel cover and there weren’t any available. There were jersey covers, which would probably be pretty cozy, but they came in exciting colors like sage. I wanted something more fun.
I figured this could be easily solved with a couple of yards of flannel and my sewing machine. Unfortunately, no matter how hard I Googled, I couldn’t find a tutorial on how to DIY a Snoogle Cover. I did find one post on a random message board where a girl posted a picture of one that she’d done and said that she used 2 yards of fabric. “Perfect!”, I thought, “I’ve got 2 yards of some really cute flannel already washed and ready to go in my fabric stash!” Yeah… That girl must be a much better seamstress than me (which, I don’t doubt, as I’m a total sewing newb), because I couldn’t figure out any way to make a cover out of only 2 yards of fabric. It looked like it might just work, but not quite… So to play it safe, I went out and bought 3 yards of fabric, figuring that I’d probably have some good scraps left over. I also figured that I’d try to document what I did to create a cover, in case there are any other total sewing novices out there who’d like a little bit of guidance on how to DIY a Snoogle Cover…
So, as you can see from the picture, the Snoogle is large and not a normal or symmetrical shape. So the first thing I had to do was try to figure out how the Snoogle would fit on the fabric…
So I tried to fold the fabric in half lengthwise but it was pretty apparent that it wasn’t going to work. The Snoogle was just too long.
Next I tried to fold it widthwise (with the selvedges of the fabric together). This was definitely going to work for the length of the Snoogle, but I’d need to figure out something for the curvy ends. Since I’d bought 3 yards of fabric, I figured there’d be plenty of fabric left over to cover the curvy parts. So I got to ironing my fabric and laying it out on the floor (the only area large enough to do this) and then I positioned the original Snoogle cover (which I’d taken off the Snoogle) on it. I got out my disappearing ink marker and began tracing around the Snoogle. If you’re trying this out yourself, you’ll want to make sure you leave yourself plenty of room. I had the Snoogle positioned on the fold of the fabric, so I’d only have to sew up one side for the most part (before the Snoogle began curving in), so I was figuring that I only had to leave so much for a seam allowance. Yeah – don’t forget that you not only have the seam allowance, but the height of the Snoogle to account for. I didn’t have to redo anything, but getting the Snoogle cover on the Snoogle when I was done was a lot harder than the original cover.
When I got to the curvy parts, I marked on the fabric where I expected to connect the ends. I also marked on the Snoogle cover with pins, where I expected to pick up the tracing for the curvy parts.
Then I traced the curvy parts on the end of the fabric that I hadn’t used yet. After that, I cut everything out. Then I lined up the curvy end pieces with the main long part of the Snoogle.
Now, here’s where I probably did things in a weird order. I sewed the curvy end piece to the long main piece on the side that didn’t have the envelope opening. Then I pinned the sides together of both of those pieces and sewed around the outside from the fold, around the top of the curvy piece, and then back down the side towards the other end where the other curvy piece with the envelope opening was going to attach. This part worked out OK, but when you get to the other end, don’t sew all the way to the ends of the sides because you’ll need to leave space to attach the other curvy end piece (hopefully that makes sense…).
OK now here’s the part where I probably did things weird. I’d never done an envelope opening before. First, I lined up the curvy end to the main piece to make sure that everything lined up correctly.
Then I realized that I had to account for the envelope opening. So I folded and ironed down one of the ends of the curvy end piece and then sewed it down to make a cleaner looking opening for the envelope opening.
Well, it was about that time that I realized that I’d need to stuff this end piece inside the main piece to sew it together, and that way when I turned it right side out, the opening with the finished edge would be on the outside of the cover. So I had to rip the seams out a little ways to account for this.
Then I realized that I forgot to sew the other side of the curvy end pieces to the main body part (the side behind the envelope opening). So I went ahead and did that and then I pinned around the outsides and then sewed around the entire outside of the curvy end piece and the little bit of the main body piece that I had to rip the seams from before.
When I was done, the main body piece had both curvy end pieces sewed onto it, with the flap for the envelope opening the only thing that wasn’t sewed to the main body. The outside edges were sewed the entire way around. At this point I was ready to turn it right-side out.
I was happy with the way the Snoogle Cover turned out. I think it looks really cute on my Snoogle and it’s definitely cozier than the original!
Now, a project wouldn’t be complete without a post-mortem lessons-learned wrap-up, right? So what would I do differently? Well, I don’t know how I could have done it without 3 yards of fabric, so I definitely would get 3 yards again. I’d make sure to leave a lot of room when I trace around the original Snoogle cover onto the fabric, so that it wouldn’t be so difficult to stuff the Snoogle into the cover in the end. I’d also make sure to overlap the end pieces more so that when I create the envelope opening, I’d be able to finish off the exposed end of the fabric pieces. Overall, though, I think that it was a pretty good job for a first attempt – especially by a novice sewer!
So I’m gonna admit something people: My son is 19 months old, and I still use that Snoogle pregnancy pillow! But seriously, if you’re the type of person who has back or hip problems and usually shoves a pillow between your knees to get comfortable when you sleep, having a big curvy pillow like this is so much more convenient! And hey, my husband is a firefighter who works 24 hour shifts, so there are at least two nights a week where I’m sleeping alone and it’s nice to still have something to lean back on those nights! And… I’m going to stop justifying right now. The Snoogle rocks, and I may never have any more kids, but I’m still keeping and using this thing! And, come to think of it… This tutorial could use a lot of refinement and I could use another Snoogle cover, so be on the lookout for the DIY Snoogle Cover Part Deux coming to this blog in the future!