Baby Bib and Burp Cloth

Bib 10Babies. Just as cute as they wanna be! In this post, I’m going to show you how to make an adorable bib and burp cloth to match. While they’re definitely not as cute as babies, (nothing is!) they are quick, relatively easy, and can be a good fabric scrapbuster. I had a little of this Riley Blake animal fabric and blue dimple dot minky left over from the crib set I made a couple years ago. Click Here to see that post, Crib Set Extravaganza.

Bib 5I had started on this bib back then, but didn’t get it finished. So the above picture shows what I had cut out and ready to sew. (Yes, the gray piece had been in the embroidery hoop for 2 years. That’s why all my posts about procrastination, if you’ve ever wondered.) The hippo was just cut out of the Riley Blake fabric. I tried to leave a tiny edge of gray background around him so I had a scosche more room to sew around him. (I had no idea that’s how scosche was spelled until I had to look it up just now. Ya learn something new every day!)

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Just place your cut-out onto the bib fabric…Bib 7

And whip stitch around that little guy with embroidery thread.

Embroidery Needle Threader

Here’s a tip if using embroidery thread makes you want to jump out of a window. (Or is that just me?) Walmart and sewing/craft stores carry this gigantic needle threader, which is perfect for embroidery floss.  The thread comes as a 6 strand rope. I cut the length I needed and separated it into two 3 strand pieces. Using 6 strands would have been way too thick for this project.

Bib 1

After your design is sewn onto the bib front, put it right sides together with the minky (or fabric of your choice) back. Pin, Pin, Pin, Pin, Pin! You’re working with a quarter inch seam allowance here, and the minky is stretchy and slippery, so you definitely don’t want anything moving out of place.

Bib 2This tip may be for me more than anybody else, but I hate sewing really tight curves like this, so I took a clear ruler and traced the stitch line with a pen that’s made for sewing. (The ink disappears when ironed.)

Sew around the edge at 1/4″, leaving an opening for turning out. Turn the fabric to the right side and top stitch, making sure to catch that opening so it’s securely closed.

Bib 3

This is what you should have at this point.  Again, the neck back piece is a beast to sew. If it comes out horrible, take the topstitching out and try it again. Marking the stitch line with chalk or soluble ink may help you.

 

Bib 4

 

The last step is to attach the velcro. To do that, cut a rectangle of velcro the length you would like it according to how it will fit on the bib. Then round off the edges by cutting diagonally across the corners and then cutting tiny diagonals across the corners that last cut just made. You really can’t be too careful here…you want baby to be comfortable and safe, so just run your finger around the velcro to make sure there are no sharp points. When attaching, maake sure the hard part will be on the bottom, facing out so it never rubs baby’s skin. To sew on the velcro, I’ve found it’s easiest to just do straight stitches, forming a box.

 

Bib 8

Bib 11

 

This is the finished product. If any of you make one, I’d love to see it. Post pics in the comment section, please.

 

For tips on working with minky fabric and how to sew the burp cloth below, just follow my Taggie Blanket Tutorial and don’t use the ribbons.

Bib 9

Bib 10

 

 

Taggie Tutorial

 

Blanket 12

How different it is to have babies today in a pinterest world than long, long ago when I had mine. Ok, so it wasn’t that long ago, but Pinterest wasn’t invented until 2011 so I missed the opportunity to find out what all those creatives moms were making for their babies. Now I see baby stuff on there occasionally because I look at a lot of sewing boards, but I was still pretty out of the loop on the whole “taggie” craze. Heck, I didn’t even know that a tiny baby blanket is called a lovie now! When my girls were babies, they loved blankets, but they didn’t make any small versions, so they mostly just cuddled up with the cutest burp cloths we had on hand. Don’t say it- I know, mother of the year!

So when a friend from church asked if I could make a taggie lovie and blanket for her son who has to make multiple trips to the children’s hospital, I gladly accepted. The poor little guy had lost his old one during one of those trips and needed a replacement. Luckily, I had seen them enough to know it was pretty simple construction, but I still looked at a couple tutorials to see what tips and tricks they offered.

Here are the best two tips I found:

1) Sew the ribbons on very securely by sewing each one two or three times. This is super important! You don’t want any of these ending up in baby’s mouth!

2) When sewing the layers together, sew with the minky side down. This helps avoid stretch.

Now, on with the tutorial:

Prerequisite: Wash your fabric! Don’t skip this step, most cottons will shrink. I used flannel on the front and minky dimple dot on the back. The flannel shrunk quite a bit.

1. Cut the fabric to the size of your choice. Lovies are often 12 X 12. I cut mine 11 X 15 so the finished size was 10 X 14. The blanket’s finished size was about 40 X 40.

2. Cut Ribbons 4-5 inches long. For the lovie I used 4 inch ribbons and for the bigger blanket I used 5 inch strips.

3. Fold the ribbons in pace and pin around the outside of the blanket. (I didn’t measure between tags, and I didn’t put the colors in any particular pattern. I thought that would look best with the different textures and sizes of the ribbons I had. However, you could always measure between them if you’re so inclined.)

           **Use two pins to pin each ribbon in place. This is so important, because it keeps the tags from pivoting as you sew. I tried to sew one side with one pin in each, and the tags came out so wonky it was ridiculous. Save yourself seam ripping time and pin twice.**

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Again, this is how not to do it. Most of my pictures are from my first time around when I only used one pin in each. I was probably too frustrated once I had to redo it that I forgot to take pictures. That’s so me. 🙂
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 Blanket 1

4. Stitch the tags onto the fabric. (Once again, using two pins per tag will make sewing a lot easier.) Each time you sew over a tag, backstitch all the way over it and sew back down it again. This creates 3 rows of stitching over each tag. It may seem time-consuming, but it’s worth it to ensure they don’t  become a choking hazard.
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See how securely fastened the ribbons are now?
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Blanket 5

 

5. Attach the minky to the top layer. I saw some tutorials that don’t sew the tags onto the top layer first, but I think it’s really key that you do this so those tags are really on there tight! Pin all the way around the minky carefully. By carefully, I mean this stuff stretches like nobody’s business, so watch yourself! I pin on the outside corners first and then the middle and then fill in with pins from there. It’s kind of like pinning something you’re gathering. The two pieces of fabric are the same size, but because of the minky stretch, you may have to guide the fabric back to shape a little.Blanket 7

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5 1/2. Quick tip: Make an X with your pins in the spot you’ll be using to turn the fabric. This will keep you from sewing into it like I always seemed to do until I developed this ingenious method. (Can I call it ingenious if I developed it to counteract my sometimes overwhelming airheadiness? Yes, I believe so. It’s my blog.)Blanket 9

See, I remembered to stop sewing! It’s easy to get into it and just keep going, so the big X is like my “Danger, Danger!” sign. And if you don’t see the X coming up, the pins will just stab you, so either way it does the trick!Blanket 10

6. Clip the corners and turn the blankie right side out. Iron on the cotton side, being careful to avoid the ribbons, which could melt. Also, don’t use super high heat, which could affect the minky even through the other layer of fabric.Blanket 11

7. Topstitch. This closes up the hole you have from turning. I used the yellow thread that matched the minky and contrasted with the cute Superman fabric.Blanket 12

 

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To make a taggie in a bigger size, it’s the same process, just on a bigger scale. Even if you got away without using two pins for each tag on the small one, you’ll want to do so on the large on, because the fabric gets so bunched up and moved around when sewing.Blanket 16

Blanket 17

Blankie folded

 

Well, that’s all folks! I hope this post inspires you to make your own taggie. It’s nothing to be intimidated by! If you can sew a straight line, you can make one. Most of the work is in the cutting and pinning. And picking minky fuzz off of your cutting table. And your carpet. And your couch. And your clothes. And your cat…Blankie folded triangle

Crib Set Extravaganza

inside crib 2

It was a full-on crib bumper sewing (and/or throwing) karnival at my house last month! 

Ever toil through some project that you know (with a vague, naiave hope) you can complete, but fall upon more disasters than successes? Yes, breathe and grab your seam ripper and all that, (Do they really expect us to seam rip with such zen?) but there’s always that feeling of “What the, um, expletive, am I going to do if I can’t figure this out in time?” That feeling is compounded when what you have to seam rip is 400 miles long like the bumper I made for my friend’s baby! Okay, I exagerate, but the panic was real.

The concept is simple: cover pre-made foam bumper forms with fabric, bias tape along the edge, voila! Theoretically. I won’t go into all my woes (like the dilema to choose whether to sew the top seam before applying the bias tape for easier sewing…I chose to wing it. . . I’m not surprised, either.)

Suffice it to say, make sure you don’t sew down the entire length of fabric before you change your mind on methods, thus adding a new chapter to your novella of the love/hate relationship you have with your seam ripper. That’s just stupid. I know. Just don’t tell me to my face.

After the whole thing was made and I took an emotional step back, however, I was pleased with the result. Although, as I told my friend, if she ever needs one for another baby, that one will be really good. : ) I threw in a couple bibs and a burp cloth for good measure. They are pretty easy to sew, but that teensy bias tape had me a little fired up.

The moral of the story is this: Bias tape makes me dramatic and husbands are good seam-ripping recruits.

bibs pics- web size

Blankie

bumper

bumper 2

crib

inside crib 1

inside crib 2