Are you sick of arguing with your kids over screen time? Provide them with stimulating fun without batteries! These 17 fantastic non-electronic games are perfect for young children with limited or no reading or math skills!

17 Non-Electronic Games for Young Children

Nearly all parents I know these days complain about trying to limit their kids’ screen time. They’re always on their tablet, or gaming device, or smartphone. If not, they’re using the computer or zoning out in front of a TV. I can’t help thinking how different these kids’ lives are than mine was when I […]

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Sticker Kid personalized name labels – 10% discount!

Two years ago I was contacted by Sticker Kid* to try out their personalized name labels for kids. I was initially skeptical but, upon trying out their products, I immediately realized that these were very special labels. Not only are they very cute and colorful, with lots of styles to choose from, but they are […]

Basico: a knitting pattern for summer sweater. An easily personalizable knitting recipe for a pullover sweater with saddle shoulders. Full review on www.cucicucicoo.com

Basico: a knitting pattern for summer sweater

Last summer I knit my very first sweater. I know that summer is generally not the preferred season for knitting, but I had the opportunity to take a course last June by my friend Maria, a designer and expert knitter (the designer of this bandana scarf and these wrist warmers that I’ve made), so I […]

The Saturn Sweater: a crochet sweater with colorful embroidered rings. A pattern review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Saturn Sweater: crochet sweater pattern review

It was love at first sight. I love bright colors, but sometimes I don’t want to be dressed too brightly. That’s why the Saturn Sweater, a pattern by Linda Permann, with its charcoal grey body with colorful accents, immediately caught my eye when I was searching for a crochet sweater pattern on Ravelry. One day […]

The Perfectly Imperfect Play Doll: a fabric doll pattern review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Perfectly Imperfect: a fabric doll pattern review

Finally I’m ready to show off my Perfectly Imperfect cloth dolls. I’d been working on these dolls and posting in-progress pictures on Instagram for months. My original plan was to make a bunch for Christmas presents and the kids’ various charity Christmas markets and giveaways. My original plan failed and I only managed to get […]

Tepore knit wrist warmers: a simple pattern with simple thumb openings, worked in the round on double pointed needles. A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Tepore knit wrist warmers

My friend Maria of Maria Modeo Handmade in Italy is an amazing knitter, designer and teacher. She’s helped me numerous times with my knitting issues and is incredibly knowledgeable about all things yarn-related. I already posted last year about her bandana-style neckwarmer pattern, and will post in the springtime about a summer sweater I sewed […]

The Birkin Flares jeans pattern by Baste + Gather: high waist, slim fit with flared legs. A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Birkin Flares jeans pattern by Baste + Gather

Sewing your own clothing is always amazing, but there are a few garments that many home sewists are afraid of attempting. Like bathing suits (which I hope to do soon with this pattern by Jalie that I bought this past summer). And bras (I’d love to learn with the Sewing Bras: Construction & Fit course* […]

The Skip Skirt for girls, pattern#22101 by Sew By Pattern Pieces: 10 sizes, 7 skirt variations, 3 leggings lengths, with the possibility to attach the leggings to the skirt. A sewing pattern review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Skip Skirt #22101: Girl Skirt Pattern

I recently tested the Skip Skirt pattern for girls by Sew By Pattern Pieces. I was drawn to the adorable knee-length skirts in seven different styles, with matching leggings. My daughter would live in leggings if she could, and she also adores this style of skirt, so I knew that I wanted to sew some […]

The Suzuran No-Waste Kimono Jacket pattern: a French-designed, Japanese-style spring kimono, perfect for warm weather. The best part? The unique pattern design uses every bit of a rectangle of fabric with no remaining scraps! A review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Suzuran no-waste kimono jacket pattern review

You may have noticed in my Me-Made-May 2015 documentation last week that there was one day that I was dressed considerably more fancy than usual, and that the me-made item had still not been blogged about. It was a special pattern that I had tested for a fellow designer, Julia from Tites Mains, and that […]

A review of the Cecilia Puff Tee free pattern by Once Upon a Sewing Machine. A sweet and easy t-shirt with puffed shoulders | www.cucicucicoo.com

Cecilia Puff Tee free pattern by OUSM

A couple of weeks ago I had the fun experience of testing Once Upon a Sewing Machine’s new pattern, the Cecilia Puff Tee. A few months ago I sewed OUSM’s Grown Up Thumbs Up shirt/dress, and I loved the pattern so much that I made three (and have received an order for another from my […]

Grown Up Thumbs Up pattern by OUSM: a jersey shirt or tunic with thumbhole cuffs, long or short sleeves, regular or funnel neck, optional bands for sleeve and bottom hems, and maternity option. A pattern review by www.cucicucicoo.com

Grown Up Thumbs Up pattern by OUSM

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you might remember this picture. I was so excited while sewing these cuffs with thumbholes, that I couldn’t resist taking a hand-selfie. This amazing bit of sewing origami made no sense at all to me, yet they came out perfectly. This awesomeness was part of a pattern […]

Finger Pocket Fish: a review of the softie toy pattern by Just Bananas over Soft Toys

Finger Pocket Fish: a toy fish pattern review

As much as I love sewing, I really don’t have a ton of experience sewing softie toys, otherwise known as stuffed animals. I sewed a little boy doll a few years back as a remembrance to a miscarried baby and some soft bones for my kids’ toys, but not much more than that. I’ve also […]

Big Girl Briefs: sewing underwear from t-shirts! Serger Pepper #biggirlbriefs pattern review

Big Girl Briefs: sew underwear from t-shirts!

I sometimes feel like I talk about underwear a lot! At first I just used underwear to make things, like my stain-covering ruffle shirt and quick lavender sachets. Then I moved on to making underwear from old t-shirts, first with my own size 2T girl underwear pattern (download the pattern for free!) and then using […]

Sticker Kid etichette personalizzate - Codice sconto esclusivo!

Sticker Kid custom name tags – Exclusive discount code!

I was recently contacted by Sticker Kid, a Swiss-based company working in countries all over the world, about their personalized custom name tags. They are extremely high quality adhesive stickers available in various formats as well as iron-on labels for clothing. My kids are constantly losing their belongings, sweatshirts and jackets at school and summer […]

Hands free asymmetrical bag: a Serger Pepper pattern

Hands free asymmetrical bag: a Serger Pepper pattern

I was really excited to be one of the testers of my friend Irene from Serger Pepper‘s latest pattern, the hands-free asymmetrical bag.* I’ve been using this Colombian mochila for nearly five years and it’s starting to fall apart. Plus the wool strap bothers my exposed skin in the summer. I’d been wanting a new […]

Butterfly sleeve flower girl dress: McCall's M6690

Butterfly sleeve flower girl dress: McCall’s M6690

On Monday a good friend of ours got married and we were honored to participate as a family in the civil ceremony. Italian weddings don’t have the same traditional roles for other people to participate in. My husband and I were the Italian version of the maid of honor and the best man (simply called […]

Green Cat lettiera ecologica per gatti: una recensione

Green Cat, eco-friendly cat litter that works: a review

The following is a sponsored post, but all opinions expressed are fully mine. I’ve always had at least one cat at a time since I was little, but most of the time they were outside and didn’t really use much cat litter. For the past six years, though, we’ve been living in a 4th floor […]

Serger Pepper's Basic Leggings: Pattern Review

Serger Pepper’s Basic Leggings: Pattern Review

Any of you who know me in real life and have seen me any time since high school will know that I just love tights. The more colorful, the better. I love wearing them under skirts, matching colors and designs or completely mixing them up. Under shorts. Love ’em. And any of you who’ve been […]

make DIY record bowls

What to do with old records: bowls and jewelry

I love that records are coming back into style. Besides the fact that their sound is just so full and amazing and the cover and insert art is often so elaborate (and the larger format makes it much easier to appreciate it), I just love anything retro. Plus my husband and I have loads of […]

Turn old t shirts into boys' underwear

Turn Old T Shirts into Boys’ Underwear

In Italy young children can start public preschool if they will have turned three by the following May. Which means that some kids start when they are only 2 1/2, like my little Nicky did (toting along with his special backpack, of course). And of course they have to be fully potty trained by then. […]

Sew shorts from upcycled materials

Make shorts from bed sheet scraps

One of my favorite blogs is MADE. Dana makes beautiful and professional-looking clothes and other things. Her photographs are gorgeous and her tutorials and very detailed and easy to follow. I’ve already written about how to make your own leggings or pants pattern, but when I saw her shorts pattern for kids from 12 months […]

handmade soap

Homemade soap

Who doesn’t feel pampered washing themselves with scented and colorful soaps? And, even better, handmade ones? Homemade soap is more natural than industrial soap, and then you also know exactly what’s in it and you can fiddle around with the ingredients to create certain characteristics. It seems that it isn’t even particularly difficult to make […]

vivere in 5 con 5 euro al giorno

living in 5 with 5 euros per day

no, i’m not talking about myself, but the book by stefania rossini, aka stefy of naturalmente stefy. i had the pleasure of meeting her virtually a couple of months ago and i was immediately drawn to her book, which is about degrowth and how to live without the obsession of having to buy a lot […]

cardigan from tshirt and tie

confessions of a refashionista + t(ie)-shirt cardigan

  alternate title: “good things come to those who wait.” that’s how it went with the book “confessions of a refashionista: life on the zig zag.” i’d wanted to read it since discovering sheri from awesomesauce & asshattery, but she was getting the new edition ready, so i patiently waited. and i’m quite glad i […]

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Ecological Creativity from Elisa Nicoli

when elisa nicoli let me know that one of her books could be of interest to me, i immediately went looking for it and found that there are also two other of her books (published by altreconomia) that also look very interesting. she proposed a swap and so for a baggie of my tile-dominoes, she […]

DIY beaded pendants

awesomesauce-y!

about a month ago, when sheri from awesomesauce & asshattery and i were flattering each other’s work, we decided to do a little swap: i’d make her a t-shirt skirt and she’d make me an apron top. good times! not only because of what we exchanged, but because i got to know a bit this […]

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Vinegar and baking soda

i’ve been reading recently about ways to clean the house and do lots of other things without using cleaning products from the supermarket, full of chemical ingredients with names i can’t pronounce. my mother has always remedied a blocked sink drain with baking soda, vinegar and hot water, but i didn’t know that vinegar removes […]

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A bit about ecological craft books

first of all, i’d like to send all my best wishes to all you mammas out there! i know i’m a bit late, but my gift to myself yesterday was to not do anything, so no work, a bit of crafting and a lot of sleeping! i hope that you all had a wonderful day […]

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Window crayons

Every free moment these days I spend making new menstrual pads for my Cloth Pad Shop store,* so I don’t have my own original things to write about right now. Instead I’m writing about something I brought back home to Italy from the United States: window crayons. They’re big twistable crayons that are softer than […]

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Kitties on potties: CitiKitty review

Today we finally started organizing our “box,” our storage area on the ground floor of our building, where we’d dumped so much stuff that we couldn’t even walk in it anymore. And we found lots of fun stuff we’d forgotten about. Such as the tray I used when I tried to potty train my cat. […]