Tailgating Toddlers

Football season is around the corner and tailgating times aren’t far behind. And even though our college days are a distant memory it doesn’t mean we can’t cheer on our team with toddler in tow. And what’s a tailgate without the game of cornhole? Not much of a tailgate if you ask me.

Using scrap triangles from a current quilt project (pics of that coming soon), I fashioned some bean bags (or corn bags rather) by sewing two triangles along the horizontal to make a two-toned square. I started with 24, 4 1/2″ triangles, in sets of four with three main colors: turquoise, red, and pink. These will be the teams.

(Note: I am never good at taking pictures at the beginning of a project but I do have many towards the end. Sorry!)

I chose coordinating triangles from my scrap pile and sewed them together to make a 4 1/2″ square. I then cut 12, 4 1/2″ squares from my backing fabric, a natural muslin I snagged at IKEA for $1.99/yard.

Sew a color square to a backing, right sides together leaving one edge open to fill with your beans (or in my case corn kernels). Trim the excessmaking sure to cutting the corners on the diagnol to make a nicer corner when you turn them inside out.

After turning them right side out, press with your iron making a hem on the open side.

Pressed empty bags

Here are the pressed bags waiting to be filled

Filling the bean bags

A family affair

Using a funnel, fill your bags with your bean of choice 2/3-3/4 full. I went with white hulled corn kernels but any dry bean will do. BP and LP even got in on the action for this one. It was a fun activity for the littlest (albeit messy).

Filled but open bags

Filled but open bags

Safety pin the open side or sit them upright until your ready to sew them closed. I set mine in a 9 x 9 baking dish which kept everything tidy and upright while I vacuumed rogue kernels off the floor.

I hand stitched the open side using a basket weave stitch and doubled thread. You can machine sew them if you like using a zipper foot but mine were too full and kept losing kernels. You’ll want to use less filling if you go this route.

There you have it–12 bean bags, 4 per team–soft and light for little hands but weighty enough for a mean game of cornhole.

Finished bean bags

box goals

Bubble Lawn Mover box turned Cornhole goals

For the “goals,” you can use any box, basket or bucket. It can be used as-is or transformed into a traditional cornhole goal. I kept the box from a recent gift from GG knowing it was the perfect shape and size to recycle into goals. Using my yard stick and cereal bowl (see, not so fancy here!) I drew circles for the holes and a diagonal line on either side to cut.

It required kitchen shears and duct tape but once complete I had two, same-sized goals perfect for game day or any day that wouldn’t be complete with cornhole. I may paint or cover the goals at some point to hide its original use but for the time being, they do the trick!

Finished cornhole game

Toddler Tailgating


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Filed under fabric scraps, games, recycling

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