Wednesday, May 6, 2015

The Geekiest Baby: Middle Earth Themed Accessories

We last left SHB (Small Hobbit Baby) in the Shire, playing with his One Teething Ring. After his shocking discovery of the Black Speech runes-revealed-by-drool, he realized that the only thing to do was to try to destroy the ring, So he started his long journey to Mordor, passing the Misty Mountains along the way. While taking a rest stop, he came across an old friend.

It's Smaug!!! Cue the screaming like when Lucille Bluth sees Gene Parmesan. 
Hey Chiefest and Greatest of Calamities, remember how I was able to sneak by you before?
Well, it was because of this magic ring of mine. 
See? It's got runes all over it. 
Okay, enough about me and my ring, let's see if your armor is still like tenfold shields, your teeth like swords, your claws spears, the shock of your tail a thunderbolt, your wings a hurricane, and your breath death!
Hmm, this spike is kind of bendy...looks like you've let yourself go!
Ooh, the sun is coming up. Well, it's been nice catching up, but I gotta go destroy the ring. 
Sigh, who knows when we'll see each other again? I kind of miss that little Barrel-Rider. 
Wait a second, I totally forgot I had this palantir! Maybe I'll just give him a call. Does that make me look too needy?
I think someone's calling on the palantir! Who could it be? 
Hello? Who are you and where do you come from, may I ask? 
Oh hey Smaug. Didn't we just hang out? Why are you calling already? Aren't you supposed to wait three days or something?
Dangit, I knew it was too soon. Why didn't I wait? Why do I never wait?
This is why I don't have friends; I always try too hard and scare them away. 

Okay, I know, I've got the story all wrong, but maybe SHB's cuteness will pacify all the upset Tolkien-fans who insist on strict accuracy.

As I mentioned before, I had some necessary items that I had to make for the SHB Sew-Along, and I had some frivolous items. Now that SHB is no longer a floppy newborn, he doesn't need the nursing pillow for nursing, but it's still useful as a lounging/climbing/teething pillow, and it was beginning to accumulate a rather impressive amount of drool. Spot cleaning gets old really fast, so I wanted to make a washable cover. Of course, I can't leave well enough alone, so instead of making a quick and easy utilitarian cover, I took this idea and put my own geeky spin on it. So instead of taking less than an hour, this cover took...significantly more than that. Totally worth it, though!

There's a large patch in the hollow of his left breast as bare as a snail out of its shell...I mean, there's a zipper...for easy removal for laundering purposes. 

As for the toy palantir, well, Mr. Cation wanted SHB to get familiar with handling round objects since I can't play any ball sports to save my life, so maybe early practice will keep SHB from being the pariah of pick-your-teammates P.E. classes. Again, I could've kept it simple, but this was right after the LOTR concert so I was inspired. I actually made the fancy one first, but then realized I liked it too much (and put in too much time hand-stitching) to let SHB go to town on it, so I made him his own, simpler palantir. Unfortunately, because there was less stretch in the black fabric, it ended up being less round. So much for practicing handling spheres!

Patterns: The palantiri were made with this pattern, plus my own added eye bits. This tutorial was the basis for the pillow cover, and then lots of self-drafted pieces for the horns, wings, spikes, and face.
Fabric: One and a third yards of red fleece for the cover, plus various scraps of black fleece; various scraps for the palantiri, all from stash.
Notions: Velcro to attach the wings (because Smaug's a wingaling dragon!) and a 24" zipper for the dragon, polyfil stuffing for the palantiri

I had to make the picture grayscale in order for the details to show up at all, but the wings can detach!

Hours: Five for the cover, half an hour for the simple palantir, 1.5 hours for the fancy one.
Total cost: $5 for the red fleece; everything else was stash.
Final thoughts: I am so pleased with myself, even if both cover + toy turned out unnecessarily complicated! Sometimes you just gotta do things that make you happy, even when it's not efficient or practical. Also, red and black are ridiculously hard to photograph.

In case you're wondering about poor overeager Smaug, he did eventually find happiness. The third palantir belonged to Walnut, who was perfectly happy to answer the call to cuddle in the sunlight with a dragon.

I did not pose Walnut. I added the palantir, of course, but he snuggled up next to Smaug all on his own. 

And SHB did make it to Mt. Doom to dispose of the ring.

And that concludes the epic tale of the SHB Sew-Along over here at Cation Designs!


  1. Love it. I want's them my preciousss. perfectly done ;)

  2. Ridiculously awesome stuff. Best re-use of a nursing pillow ever!

  3. Ohmygosh, so fun!! And I'm glad that poor Smaug found a cuddle buddy at the end. I'm sure he's only a misunderstood dragon that just wants a friend. How could he not be, when he's that cute?

    I mean, a cute chiefest of calamaties. Right.

  4. I want a Smaug pillow! That is the coolest looking nursing pillow EVER (I didn't even realize it was a nursing pillow in that first photo)!

    I'm always making simple projects far more complicated that necessary too. But yes, I totally agree - you just have to do what will make you happy in the end. I'm glad you kept the fancy palantir for yourself.

    ~ Brooke

  5. Great pillow!!! And SHB is getting soooo big and he is the cutest SHB ever!!!!

  6. This is the most brilliant thing. The absolute most brilliant thing!

    Glad to hear you've had a bit of a kick-start thanks to the SHB sewalong, your ideas are just fantastic! (I am working on SHB stuff for a friend, thought I'd make the sewalong deadline but sadly not!)

  7. This is amazing!!! I hope when I have kids, I can make as many awesome and geeky things as you!

  8. OH MAH GAWD. I love it so so much!! The fabulousness of this post cannot be measured in words!

  9. Omg I love it! You have great ideas :D

    I totally want a Smaug pillow for myself now

  10. SHB is adorable. :)

    I'm not as in to Tolkien as you are, but you are a sewing inspiration all the same.

  11. I kneel in deference to you, your wit, your adorable Smaug, and SHB. And I scared my cat from laughing so hard. Win!

  12. cutest Smaug and Hobbit evahhhh......

  13. I am laughing my head off over here! Well done!

  14. So so so cute and so clever with the boppy pillow!!!
    Good job chasing down that palantir Walnut! (I almost called him Peanut...)

  15. Not only is this adorable and clever, but I am SO happy about the strong bad reference!!!

  16. I just squeed out loud over here. The cuteness that is Smaug! I want one, and my guys haven't needed a nursing pillow in 6 1/2 years. Could I use him for a study pillow instead? You are so clever; SHB is one cute, lucky little guy.

  17. That dragon is the best, so brilliantly executed - and washable too! Genius.

  18. All of your LOTR accessories for SHB are so cute—I'm blown away by your cleverness in coming up with them :)

  19. You and your imagination plus sewing skills know no bounds! Total Cuteness. And I'm still chuckling...

  20. These are fabulous! The SHB is so super cute too! What great stuff!

  21. Ahh so cute! (And I totally lolled at wingaling dragon. I've got one as a laptop decal at work :) )

  22. You're killing me with all the cuteness over here... I don't have an SHB but somehow I feel like I need that Smaug in my life LOL... looks like Walnut agrees ^__^

  23. WOW. That is pretty much my favorite post I have ever seen on a sewing blog. I can't wait until Z is old enough for me to read her the Hobbit.

  24. WOW. That is pretty much my favorite post I have ever seen on a sewing blog. I can't wait until Z is old enough for me to read her the Hobbit.

  25. OH. MY. WORD. That is just too cute for words! There were lots of squeals over at my house. You are going to share the extra bits you drafted, aren't you? Pretty please..... :)

  26. I'm not sure that's Smaug. He's so cute!


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