This weekend I'm attending the baby shower of a friend from college. It's the first shower I've been invited to since becoming a mom, so I wanted to make something special and useful that wouldn't take too much time in the sewing room. (I'm also playing the piano for a school musical this week, so I've only had a few nap times to spare.) I decided to go with something that I use everyday, many time times a day: burp cloths. I had a fat quarter bundle of 'Storybook' lying around. The soft blues and browns would work for a boy or girl, which is perfect, because this baby's going to be a surprise.
I lined the burp cloths with one-sided terry cloth. I've seen it called 'baby terry' or 'French terry'. It's thick enough to absorb various consistencies of baby fluids, but thin enough to tuck a whole burp cloth (or two) into your pocket. I made the burp cloths about 10-inches by 16-inches—a much more practical size than the long skinny cloths I've seen in stores.
My son, Freddy, is a few months into eating solid foods, and we are going through a couple bibs every day. So I decided to also make a set of matching bibs, using one of Freddy's bibs to make a pattern. I traced his bib onto Swedish tracing paper —(which is seriously the best stuff for making or copying patterns, go buy a roll!)—and I added about a 1/4-inch seam. In retrospect, a 1/2-inch seam would have been better. It was difficult to make sure that I had securely closed the hole for turning when I did the top-stitching.
Instead of cutting the terry cloth out with the pattern piece, I just left it as a big rectangle. This saved me the hassle of wrestling with it through the machine.
I sewed 1/4-inch from the edge of the cotton (again, a 1/2-inch seam would have been better), and then trimmed away the terry.
A hammer is a necessary part of every sewing room, don't you know.
The finished gift: 6 burp cloths and 6 bibs. I used 6 fat quarters, ~1.5 yds of terry, and six size 15 snaps.
Freddy agreed to model one for me. :-)