Practical Crafting

Despite my rather exuberant creative streak, I tend to be extremely practical in my creativity.  I like doing things with a point.  Pretty is nice, but *useful* is so much better.

To that end, I love sewing things that I can use.  And something I use with great regularity (men, may this be a test of your constitution!)

Yep.  Pads.  Guaranteed to be used monthly throughout the bulk of my adult life.  So why should I be forced to spend a constant stream of cash for disposables when I can make some (let’s face it, ADORABLE!) ones to use over and over?  Flannel cotton pads.

I had bought some at first, but they’re so expensive and you’d have to buy so many to really last, so instead I made my own.  No need for fancy designs and curved edges.  Besides, the store bought ones tend to be so short, not nearly enough to cover me for heavy days or overnight!  These I can make nice and long and put nice bulky inserts into them.

I put the opening on the side instead of trying to make an overlapping bottom.  Really, this works better for keeping everything in place, anyway.  The tab wraps around the opening to close it all in and nothing has ever shifted or tried to escape.

I made heavy-duty inserts using thick fleece between flannel for extra absorbancy, and then put a heavier multi-layered cotton insert under to keep leaking contained.  I need to pick up some baby changing pads, which have that leak-proof coating on one side but holds up to washings without going crumbly, and then that can be a great bottom to absolutely prevent any leaks.

Tabs wrap around the undies and close with snaps, and keep everything in place.

Seriously, though… that fabric!  I loved it from the moment I set eyes on it.  Skull and heart crossbones with pink!?   Too perfect and too cute to pass up!  I’ve got several of these lined up to make, and will probably go back and try to snag more of this fabric.

But here’s what I’ve made this week, just sewing bits at a time in the evenings:

The great thing about making these yourself – if you know anything about sewing – is that they’re *super cheap*, you can pick any awesome fabric you like (just make sure it’s 100% cotton and flannel really seems to work best) and you can make whatever size that fits you.  Women come in all sizes, after all, and pads should work *with* us, not against us!

I don’t use a pattern, I just sew up a rectangular ‘pocket’ with tabs and add snaps, then sew up inserts to go inside.  If you have a pad you like using and it’s the right size and shape, you can make a pattern from it.  Mostly I like the variety of sizes and shapes I can make when making my own.

There are lots of sites that offer patterns and various other ways of constructing washable pads.  And if you aren’t into sewing, there’s commercial brands, or Etsy has a lot of them as well.

Even if you love your tampon or moon cup, you can still use washable pads for panty liners, and the absolute best part of having reusable pads is never having that sinking feeling of “oh no, I forgot to buy…!”

Well, this has been my crafty creativity for the week!  If you have any questions, feel free and I’ll answer as best I can. 🙂

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