Monday, June 24, 2013

baby stitches


This pregnancy seems to just be flying by, I'm about 6 months along now, and can't believe that in 4 short months we'll be meeting out little one for the first time!  Things have been relatively easy so far (knock on wood!!), and as we found out that our little pumpkin is indeed a little LADY, I decided it was high time to dig into that Baby DIY Pinterest board I've been pinning away to for the past 6 months, and get sewing.


I started by stitching up a few self binding receiving blankets using this tutorial by Sew Much Ado, but altered the cutting directions to cutting my backing at 40" square and the front fabric at 34" square.  The only reason I did this, was after pre-washing my flannel I snagged at Joann's there was major shrinkage.  The WOF shrunk to about 40ish inches, so a 42" square wasn't happening.

I found there to be a little bit of a learning curve with these, and that accurate cutting is so so important!  The first blanket I made (the light pink on the bottom) turned out horribly, and I figured out it was because my squares were off and slightly rectangle-ish instead of square.  Once I figured out how to use my big 20.5" cutting ruler to square up the fabrics, it was much smoother sailing, and I was cranking out one of these blankets in about 45 minutes (pressing and cutting fabric included)


I plan on making more of these guys (when I can get flannel on sale again!), they feel so cozy and will make great swaddle blankets.


With the leftover flannel from my smaller cutting measurements,  I was also able to cut the fronts for 2 burp clothes from each background fabric.  For the backing, I searched high and low for cotton chenille, that I ultimately ended up purchasing off of Ebay, as Joann's no longer carries this fabric.  I used Made's Burp Cloth Tutorial and could not be happier with the result.  I love how soft the flannel side is, and how absorbent the cotton chenille will be for those baby spit up moments.


While I love the chenille, it was a little pricier (read: alot pricier) than I had planned on spending, as its not readily available at any fabric shop near me.  I'd love to know if any of you moms out there would recommend another sort of fabric that would be equally absorbent for the backing?  I'd love to make some of these for a few friends that are having babies soon also.  I was thinking of using terry cloth but thought I'd consult you wise readers before making any rash decisions :-)


While I'm picking your brains about absorbent backing fabrics, I'd love to know what your favorite DIY baby projects were!  I have a list about a mile long, and would love to know of tutorials or baby items you found super helpful, so I can prioritize my list.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I've only been able to find chenille on I like to use terry cloth for the backing, easier to find and just as absorbent:) I always love to make bibs too!!

  2. oh your baby makes are gorgeous! congratulations on carrying a girl :)
    You could use old towels or terry for the cloths. Honestly I find basic muslin cloths are just brilliant - not only do they absorb but they dry really quickly when you wash them!
    Make bibs! drool ones and eating ones (you might not have time when the baby comes!
    Make or buy a baby sleeping bag, they are totally awesome (I've always used grobags) for when the baby is too old for swaddling.
    Baby dresses are super cute and quick to make (as I recently discovered!).
    Have fun and use what you have (save your money for when she's bigger, eats you out of house and home, needs shoes and grows out of everything she wears in a month!!).
    A breastfeeding cushion/cover if you intend to do that - it's very handy and comfy, my daughter has been sitting up in it recently and my son still uses it as a cushion so it'll last!!
    Oh and make sure you add something to make just for yourself to that list :)

  3. Wonderful! Congratulations on finding out that you are expecting a little girl. I love the red squiggly fabric. So fun!

  4. I would use terry cloth as well.

    I spent a lot of time making receiving blankets. I could make them bigger than you could buy them and I used them to swaddle my babies. The ones you buy are so tiny after washing, I used them for spit up cloths. My kids were terrible for spit up and drool, I went through a bunch of them every day.

    And of course each of them got a crib quilt, then a big boy quilt, then a big big boy quilt. LOL I have two boys. 10 and almost 13 now.

  5. the burp cloths and blankets are great! and terry cloth should do the trick. I agree with Lucy- bibs for sure! some smaller ones for later when your little one is drooling and teething. changing a drooly bib is easier than changing a drooly shirt! And ones for eating- maybe with laminated fabric and a pocket at the bottom to catch food. Some moms also use covers for shopping carts when she can sit up in the buggy.

    :) Kelly @ My Quilt Infatuation

  6. I have 2 toddlers now and I still can't live without the gerber cloth diapers. I initially used them for spit ups (my firstborn was a biiiig spitter upper) but once we got over that I started using them as after meal cleanup rags and I just love them.

    My other obsession is onesies. I use them like undershirts at all times. It keeps any diaper messes contained and it keeps their hands out of their diaper messes! My 3-year-old was in them until I absolutely had to give them up for potty training.

    I'm excited for you. The birth of my firstborn was one of the most special moments of my life. :)

  7. I use flannel on one side of my burp cloths and organic cotton on the other which is unbleached and super soft, similar to flannel. It's about 60 inches wide and around $10 a metre in Canada so likely cheaper in the states. Congratulations! Girls are wonderful, but I'm biased since I have two!

  8. The most useful baby item I have ever made has been the bapron.

    I've made them for myself and as gifts. It used to be a free tutorial and pattern but I see now that it is for sale. For 6 bucks though, its totally worth it in the clothing you'll save. I needed to enlarge the size of the pattern but I have used them for my infant boy and my 3 year old still uses his.

  9. I'm so excited for you, Jess!

    I have made several baby sleeping bags (using this tutorial as they are the best when babies are little as well as when they get a bit bigger and never want to keep their blankets on in the crib.

    I loved the white gerber cloth diapers for burp cloths. My husband's grandma made me a couple flannel burp cloths with crocheted edges and they didn't hold a candle to the cloth diapers in terms of absorbency. I also bought a few colored cloth diapers from target, but I wouldn't recommend them because they were soaked and pretty much useless after one spit up. If you buy the white ones, you can prettify them by sewing a band of fabric across it.

    I haven't tried the pattern, but I think the divided basket from Noodlehead would be so handy! I keep my baby's diapers in a wicker basket and I think the divided cloth basket would be so much cuter!

  10. They look great! My friend Veronica used terry cloth for some similar burp cloths, and they looked really cute! So glad you pregnancy is moving swiftly along--I'm just about to the second trimester now, and I feel like it's been dragging...hah! Maybe some sewing projects like these will keep me busy. :)

  11. Onesies will be your best friend. Also, have more burp cloths than you think you need. I usually use at least 3 a day. Get Dreft from Costco. It will last all year. The Noodlehead basket is awesome for keeping all the baby gear in one spot. Also, make a diaper caddie for your diaper bag. In it, keep diapers, wipes, and a change of clothes, plus a baggie for the dirty clothes. Daddies are much more willing to change diapers while out if you give them a caddie instead of the whole bag. Have fun! My baby just turned 3 months old this week. She's already so big.

  12. Cloth diapers-I used them as burprags-very absorbent and you can dress them up with fabric! Also get a boppy pillow and make your own covers! Much easier to wash the covers than it is to throw the boppy in the wash. I used a free pattern from it doesn't look like it is available, but I can send you the pdf file if you want!

  13. Oh a girl! How gorgeous. We had a girl first, nearly ten years ago now. It really doesn't seem that long ago to us. I would use towelling on the burp cloths, and you could just cut up cheap towels or cloth nappies for that. Much cheaper than buying fabric. Breast feeding pillows that curl around your body as well as support the baby are the best for newborns. They make learning to feed so much easier for both of you. Newborns don't need bibs. They really only start drooling about three months old, then you'll need heaps of bibs! Onesies a the best. Save the cute clothes for going out and events! Seriously, onesies are great for sleeping and easy to change the nappy all the time. Oh, nappies are diapers. I forgot you are American and call them a different name! Best advice I got for having a baby - take a roll of your own soft toilet paper to hospital. The hospital stuff is the cheap rough stuff, and you don't want that near you after just giving birth.

  14. Oh, you will have so much fun with a little girl. My daughter's birth is what got me sewing and quilting. I couldn't afford to buy all the cute things I wanted, so I learned to make them myself! I would recommend making a bath towel apron -- like this: I haven't used this pattern, but it helps you understand the concept.
    I second all the cloth diaper moms. I still use mine as rags. When sewing burp cloths/bibs, I use bar towels for the backing. Super absorbent and cheaper than yards of fabric.

  15. I use Dollar Tree washcloths to cut a square of terry cloth for burpcloths. They are soft, and you get several for a buck. This results in a smaller burp cloth, but you can't beat the savings.

  16. I have been making some burp rags for my daughters and nieces that are having babies....I use diaper cloth that you can buy at Joanns for one side and then cotton/flannel/knits for the other side....the diaper cloth works great. I use two layers on each burp cloth. Prewash fabrics first...