I am at a stage in life where all my friends are having babies one after the other. Every few months someone is getting pregnant or delivering a new baby 🙂
My best friend from high school delivered a little girl just a few weeks back and I’ve been making a little gift basket for her. I decided to add a couple of baby blankets in. I am certain she can use these for quite some time. (Except for close family, none of my friends know about this blog yet. Right now, its just my secret baby project. That’s why I am so boldly putting up stuff before I even send these gifts across :P)
I’ve noticed that the standard size store bought receiving blankets are extremely small and babies out grow them in a few months. These are slightly bigger (about 1 square yard) and last for a much longer time. I love that these blankets are so versatile. I made a couple for my daughter 2 years back and I still use them almost everyday. You could lay these on on the carpet or picnic blanket, use them as a car seat canopy or a stroller canopy. I always keep one in the diaper bag. Because they are highly absorbent you could even use them to wipe accident spills or clean ur baby in case you forget to carry a towel. Of course, they can be used as regular blankets or swaddles.
I love to use cotton flannel because they are soft, breathable and 100% cotton. You could make them single layered or double layered for added thickness. You can even add batting and make a tiny baby quilt :). Like I always say, the possibilities are endless. I am here to just get you started.
The tutorial I have for you is for a simple double layered blanket with no batting.
Supplies you need:
- Two co-ordinating fabrics, 1 yard each
Cut the two fabrics into 1 yard squares. I hope you find fabric that is at least a yard wide. I do not advice piecing fabric for blankets because when it comes to making anything for babies, you want to make sure its as comfortable as it can get. Also, they don’t really have to be squares. you can make them any length/width you think wise( or even circular if you like ;))
Put the right sides together.
Pin the edges together. Be sure to hand press the fabric to make sure there are no folds and they lie flat on each other. I would really recommend pinning them because even when you try your best, sometimes both pieces of fabric might not really be of precisely cut and when you stitch fabrics of unequal length together, you might end up with some unwanted creases.
You could leave the vertices pointed/round them up. The choice is yours. I like them rounded up as they give the project a nice professional touch. To round them up, all you need to do is place something circular like a lid/glass on the vertex, mark it out and cut along the line. Do this on all 4 sides.
All you need to do is run a straight stitch along the edges and join the fabric . (Do not start from the rounded edge. Start on the straight side )
There’s a little trick that you can use to get a cleaner finish along the rounded edge.
When the angle of the edge is about to change, lower the needle such that it is inserted in the fabric.
Raise the presser foot. Change the angle of the fabric to bring it into the correct position.
Lower the foot and continue to stitch.
p.s: Make sure you don’t rush along the curves. Be as slow as you need to be. Stop and turn as many times as you need. If the above steps aren’t clear enough, there are tons of videos on youtube that tell you how to sew along curves. You could even try it on a test fabric before you proceed.
Continue to sew on all sides leaving a small gap (about 4-5 inches big) that you can use to turn the fabric right side out.
There’s another small thing left to do before you turn the fabric. Use the tip of your scissors to make small slits along the rounded edges. This makes for a nicer curve when you reverse the blanket.
After you turn the fabric poke the corner with a pen to get a clean seam/finish.
Once you turn the fabric first stretch it along the seam and press. Now fold it along the seam and then press again. I’ve noticed this gives cleaner seams.
As you press, be sure to fold the open sides by about a quarter of an inch inwards. Press and Pin.
Now, run a straight stitch along the whole length to finish your cosy little blanket.
In fact, I made two blankets for my dear friend. The other one is single layered. Thats a lot easier to make. All you need to do is cut the fabric into the required size and sew close the edges.
So, there you go. Doesn’t this make for cutest (and a very useful) homemade gift?
Until next time, Happy Making!