This past weekend I got to spend some time with my sister and her new baby. I was quickly reminded about all that you have to do to take care of an infant. The most obvious thing you have to do is laundry, constant laundry! I remember those days when you could go through multiple outfits a day – and not only outfits for the baby but also for you. Thankfully my little newphew is not a spitter so that has cut down on the amount of laundry she possibly could do. It also reminded me of the amazing blankets I used with my boys. When I had Luke I was given a homemade receiving blanket as a gift and I was sold. The store bought ones are actually worthless once the baby hits their first growth spurt. These homemade blankets however can be used well into toddlerhood. The single blankets allow you to swaddle the baby securely and completely. The double blankets are versatile and can be used as a blanket, a cover for a car seat or a floor blanket for them to wiggle on. Since being exposed to these wonders I haven’t turned back. They are a regular in my list of items to give moms who have just had babies. I buy my fabric at JoAnn’s when the snuggle flannel is $2.99 a yard. This typically happens the day after Thanksgiving and a few times throughout the year. When it goes this cheap I stock up on different boy and girl fabrics. I typically will make 1 single blanket and 1 matching double blanket per gift unless you are my cute nephew and I can’t stop myself 🙂
I am no sewing expert, but I can get the job done. Here are the directions on how I make these wonderful, big blankets.
How to make a Single Sided baby blanket:
First wash and dry your fabric before you cut or do anything to it. If possible, wash with a non-scented detergent like ALL-free and clear. After the fabric is washed, follow these steps to making a blanket.
1.) Cut your fabric to be a yard and ¼ (about 45 inches). It doesn’t have to be exact. I have made blankets from 1 yard of fabric too. Trim the edges so that all four sides are straight. Iron the fabric if it is wrinkly. (Should have taken the picture after I ironed it 😉 )
2.) Put the fabric right side down onto your ironing board. Pick a side and fold the edge of the blanket down and iron it in place. The fold can be anywhere from ½ to ¾ of an inch. I just eyeball it but you can measure and pin if you want. This is where I try to not let my OCD get the best of me 🙂 Do this on the top and bottom of the blanket. (Doesn’t matter what you pick as the top and bottom – just do two sides that are opposite each other.)
3.) Fold it a second time, ironing it a second time. This will then hide the cut edge. After you have ironed it down you will want to pin it into place. I use 4-5 pins on each side.
3.) Sew down the middle of the folded edge to lock it into place. On my machine you will want the right side facing up. You can start sewing about ½ to ¾ inch into the edge. You will want to backstitch at the beginning and the end of your line. I use a straight stitch to sew around my blankets, but you can use a fancier stitch if you want.
4.) To complete the other two sides: You will cut off the corner of the blanket where you just sewed the edge. Then on the underside cut the folded side edge to make a point. (see second picture) This helps the corners lay flatter and not be as bulky.
5.) Take the non-sewed side and fold it over ½ to ¾ of an inch, ironing as you go. Then fold it over a second time to hide the edge. After ironing it down, pin it into place with 4-5 pins.
6.) Sew these two sides into place, backstitching at the beginning and the end of the line.
7.) Cut off the excess strings and there you have a single sided blanket 🙂
If I was smart I would have taken a picture of the finished product. Tomorrow you will get a picture of the whole gift package.
Like I said earlier, these are amazing baby gifts. You can personalize the fabric and make it fit the mom or baby’s personality and likes. Along with giving them a great gift that they will actually use over and over.
What do you like to give as baby gifts?