Have you ever sewn one of these?!

I'd be willing to bet my Brother (sewing machine, that is) that you probably haven't sewn one of these.  "Is it a bird?  Is it a plane?  NO!  It's...a reusable sanitary pad!"

Yes, you read that correctly.  But before you get thoroughly grossed out, hear me out on this one.

Several weeks ago I blogged about how much I was enjoying making pillowcases for the wonderful organization 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge.  While I finished those, the word "pillowcase" still kept floating through my head.

That train of thought led me to want to make my first pillowcase dress--fairly intimidating for a person who has little experience sewing apparel.  Making the pillowcase dresses led me to search out how to make my own bias tape for said dresses.  I made a tractor load of bias tape (another first) and was relieved to discover it was easy, albeit a little time-consuming.

While browsing online for pillowcase dress tutorials, I came across Little Dresses for Africa.  It's an inspiring non-for profit that not only delivers dresses to girls, but also hope.

And dignity.

Here's where I finally get to the topic of this post.  These amazing angels distribute sewn, washable and reusable sanitary pads to girls who otherwise are using dangerous substitutes like bark, rags, and newspaper.  The recipients of these pads can manage their periods easier, better and safer.

You can learn about Little Dresses for Africa's sani-pad program, and I'll show you my very first attempt at making a sani-pad. :)

1.  I cut out flannel pieces for the front and back of the pad, along with the "wings."  (I traced a maxi pad, but you can just roughly make one 4" x 9")

2.  I cut up an old yet absorbent towel and two more pieces of flannel for the inside of the pad.

3.  Then I sewed the 3 inner layers to the back of the pad.  After that, I quilted it for extra security, following the diagonal lines on the towel.

4.  I sandwiched the wings in between the top and (thick) bottom layer, leaving a 3 ish " opening to turn it right side out...just like when you're sewing a place mat.

5.  Then I top stitched around the whole thing.  I still need to add the velcro to the "wings."

This was certainly a first for me.  My goal is to  make 25 dresses and 25 sani-pads by the summer.

And that, dear friends, was my convoluted journey from pillowcases to sanitary pads.  :)