I always hesitate to give handmade gifts. First off, there is no such thing as ‘just whipping up that quilt, burp cloth, pillow, etc…’ At least there is no ‘whipping up’ from me. These small gifts take time. Right now, in my phase of life, I absolutely love sewing and quilting. BUT, very selfishly, I don’t like spending time making something when I’m not absolutely sure the recipient is going to like it.
Do you know what I mean?
I love receiving handmade gifts. Truly, I do. They are usually extremely thoughtful. But it’s really hard for me to dedicate an hour or two of sewing up a gift to give to someone who really may not like patchwork.
One day I had a brilliant idea of making vintage sheet picnic blankets for wedding gifts. It was going to be my standard gift to the bride and groom. I would find a picnic basket to include in the gift as well. Cute, right?
But then I began to realize that was a LOT of time dedicated to making a gift they may not really even want. Not everyone loves old thrifted vintage sheets as much as I do. So I resorted, once again, to buying off a registry where the bride and groom actually choose what they want.
Alas, this last weekend, I sewed two homemade burp cloths. For a gift.
My husband asked if I wanted to make something small for his co-worker who just had a little new little baby girl. Instead of doing a basic burp cloth that takes just a few minutes, I decided to make patchwork burp cloths. Why? I’m still not sure. But I did. And I hope they are a blessing to this sweet family.
I took a few pictures as I went to show you how to make some very simple terry cloth burp cloths for your little one.
1. Choose a fabric for the top of the burp cloth. As you can see, I did mine with some simple 3 1/2 inch squares. My finished top measures approximately 12 inches by 15 inches.
If you decide not to use patchwork, I recommend finding a fabric with some sort of print where you can sew along some lines or a design.
2. Lay the fabric face down on top of your terry cloth. Smooth both fabrics out to get rid of the crinkles. Sporadically pin the two fabrics together and trim around the terry cloth.
I like to use a thick micro-fiber terry cloth. It’s definitely a bit more expensive than the typical terry cloth, but I like using it for gifts. It’s the same terry cloth I used in the tutorial for these super absorbent jersey knit and terry cloth bibs.
3. Sew around the perimeter of the fabrics leaving a couple inches for a hole to turn the burp cloth right side out. I tend to leave a little excess terry cloth by the hole. I don’t trim it as short. It makes it easier to tuck in when sewing the hole shut.
4. Flip your burp cloths right side out, and tuck the little terry cloth tab inside.
5. Using one of two methods, minimally quilt the fabric and terry cloth together. Since my burp cloths were patchwork, I used the grid lines from the squares and sewed a quarter of an inch off each line. If your burp cloths are a solid panel, I advise tracing a line or design in the pattern with your sewing machine and doing a bit of quilting like this. It prevents the burp cloths from ballooning in the middle.
6. After sewing along the grid lines or your fabric pattern, then sew around the perimeter of the burp cloth. This will secure all the stitches you just sewed along the patchwork, and this will sew the small hole shut that you had originally left to flip the burp cloth right side out.
7. Be sure to trim all the little threads coming off the sides. This is a good way to go the extra mile to clean up your gift. Know that using small crafting scissors makes this task much easier than larger strong sewing scissors. I have this pair that my mom gifted me a couple years ago for Christmas.
8. That’s it, my friends. You’ve finished a simple burp cloth made from terry cloth.
If you are curious about any of the fabrics I used in this project, I list them all in this post.
Now. Leave me some of your thoughts on giving hand made gifts. Is it worth the risk? Will they like it?