How to sew a cozy nap mat

I don’t know if it’s a common problem with crafters, but does anyone else struggle with a bit of … nerves … when it comes to gifting something handmade (opposed to something store-bought)?

There have been times when I’ve given a handmade gift and it’s been really appreciated, and you can tell the person understood the time/energy/thought that went into it — not to mention the money that went into buying the supplies — and it feels great.

But there are also those times when someone doesn’t seem totally sold on the idea of a handmade gift, even if they’re polite about it, and you kind of feel like you’re standing there holding a finger-painting. Ugh.

(Of course, looking back, some handmade gifts that I made and thought were awesome at the time *cough* terrible homemade jewelry *cough* were actually not-that-awesome.)

Anyway, point is — I made one of these nap mats for my sister and she loved it, so I got the idea of making one for a dear little friend of my son. Darling Husband looked at me like I was crazy — we always buy gifts for kiddie birthdays — and I second-guessed myself a lot. But in the end, she adored it — and her parents seemed to genuinely like it, too, so I felt redeemed.

View my full tutorial

These nap mats are so cute (and practical!) and I kind of want to make a dozen more. You just need a few yards of flannel (pre-washed), four pillows, and snaps or velcro to seal up one side — so the pillows can be removed when the mat needs to be washed.

(Do kids still eat cheese popcorn at sleepovers? That was always a staple for me and Best Friend. We once hid the leftovers under the bed, and her Bichon Frise got into it, which was hilarious at the time for some reason.)

Click over to my weekly DIY column, My Handmade Home, for the full tutorial!


So what do you think?

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