car seat canopy with peek-a-boo tutorial

Only one more month left before our sweet little baby will be here. I've been super busy trying to get all of the little projects done before life gets even crazier. I have been wanting to make a car seat canopy for a long time, I think it is because I am extra paranoid about taking a little baby out into the world after working at a hospital for many years. People think I'm crazy, but I'm okay with that. Anyway, I think the canopies, tents, whatever you would prefer to call them are an awesome idea to keep whatever it is you want away from your new little one: bugs, the sun, others. And I based mine on this tutorial, but I wanted to make it with a little peek-a-boo so that I could open or close the cover as much I wanted. I couldn't find a tutorial that gave measurements for that type of alteration, so I thought I would write a post just in case there are others out there who would like to make one too. Hope it helps:) 

As with all tutorials on my blog, this is for at home use only, so please play nice.

What you need:
1 1/4 yd.          lightweight fabric
1 1/4 yd.           coordinating lightweight fabric
a little extra fabric or ribbon for handle straps
60" of coordinating ribbon for peek-a-boo closures

*All seams are 1/4" unless otherwise specified.

These fabric requirements are based on my Chicco car seat, you may want to measure your car seat first to make sure that the cover will be all that you desire and more. My finished cover was about  43" L x33" W. The length running from the front to the rear of the carseat. Also in fair warning, I am over estimating the amount of ribbon for the peek-a-boo closures. Personally I only used about 30", but the ties are much shorter than I would have liked. I was in a very anti-go-to-the-store mood, so I just used what I had on hand. Probably will regret my laziness later, but oh well. With that said...

Cut out your pieces:
Cut out one 35 1/2"x 26 1/2" piece and two 17 1/2"x18" pieces from both yards of fabric. Also cut two 5x9" pieces for the handle straps (I cut four so it could be reversible). You know, so I could coordinate the cover with whatever I am wearing that day, since I am that put together. Right.

Sew on peek-a-boo flaps:
Lay one 35 1/2"x26 1/2" piece of fabric down in front of you right-side up, so the 35 1/2" length is going from left to right. Pin one 18"x17 1/2" piece of the same fabric starting at the bottom left corner of the larger fabric piece. See diagram for details. Sew starting at bottom left corner toward center stopping about 1/4" from center.

Attach second 18"x 17 1/2" piece to opposite end likewise. There should be about 1/4" overlap at the center. Begin sewing from bottom right corner toward the center, again stopping 1/4" from center. Press.

Sew coordinating fabric pieces together in the same fashion.

Attach ribbons for closure:
Really you can use whatever you would like for closures, I'm sure buttons or snaps would work great too. I just had the ribbon on-hand, and I think ribbon is especially cute for little girl things. Anyway, Place ribbon as shown below down the center of both fabric flaps as desired, be careful to align both sides the best you can. Pin in place.
Sew together front and back pieces:
Place coordinating fabric over your fabric with attached ribbons. Sew around all edges, leaving about 3-4" open for turning. 

Create rounded edges: 
If you would like the edges of your canopy rounded, take a bowl from your kitchen and place at each corner marking the rounded edge. Sew around each corner. You can do this before sewing the pieces front to back, but I think it is easier to keep everything in place if you do it after. Turn cover right-side out and press. Top-stitch around all sides. I actually sewed around it twice just for fun, once closely around the edge and again about 1/4" inch from the edge.

Make straps:
To make straps, place the 5"x9" squares of fabric right-side down if front of you. Bring each edge toward the center 1/2" and press into place. Finally, fold the piece in half width-wise and press. Top stitch around all sides. Test out where you want to place your velcro using your car seat handle. Sew on velcro where desired.

Attach straps to cover:
The final and perhaps most tricky step is to attach straps to the cover. I just measured my car seat and pinned them in place, then I tried it out to see if that was really where I wanted them. When I was happy, I sewed them in place going around it a few times to ensure they were very secure.

Embellish as desired: 
Of course, if you would like you can embellish your handiwork a little. I thought mine could use a little festiveness so I just added some fabric flowers.

I feel a little like I have mommy-brain right now, so if there is something I forgot to include or that doesn't make sense leave a comment and I will try my best to clarify. Thanks for stopping by:)