Wednesday, October 10, 2012

How to Sew Baby Burp Cloths

Baby burp cloths made from cloth diapers is an easy and quick to make project that makes a very thoughtful gift for a new mom.

At other baby showers I had seen people give diapers turned in to burp cloths at gifts and decided I wanted to make this useful gift for my cousin Jamie.  Not being a mom yet, I had no idea that there were different types of cloth diapers available.  I sent Ben to the store with the request of white cloth diapers and this is what he brought home.  This tutorial is for others out there who have made the same mistake as us, there is hope! 

They felt like cheese cloth!  Ben suggested that they would be great for straining what comes out of the baby!  I mentioned this to the lady at the cutting counter at Joann's as I purchased my decorative fabric for the project, she said they thickened up as you washed them.  Wash them I did!  And again!  I did not notice any difference.  After some research on the internet I discovered that there is also 3-ply and padded diapers, AAAHHH.  Well since I had already washed these I decided to see what I could do with them.

Here they are 10 wrinkly diapers!

This would never do, so I ironed them and folded them into thirds.

Then I tested one out by sewing a line along the opening.  I tried to turn it inside out but unfortunately I still had two exposed edges that ran length wise - my goal was to get it down to one.

Ben suggested I try folding it as a "Z" fold.  This worked, when I sewed the two edges I could turn it inside out length wise and only have one opening.

Now you can see I have only one opening and only one exposed edge (this edge will also get hidden).

Next up was my decorative fabric - I purchased 1/2 a yard of each, so if you want to do all the same fabric you'll need 1 yard.   I also washed it and ironed it.  Then I cut it into strips that would fit nicely inside the new rectangle size of the diaper.  I folded down 1/4" seam allowance and cut out the corners.

This way they wouldn't be too bulky when folded under...

Then I centered the decorative fabric on the diaper and on the edge with the opening I wrapped it over the edge so as to hide the ugly surged edge of the diaper.

I centered it and intentionally left some of the diaper exposed, like a frame to the fabric, and pinned it in place.

Then I sewed it down using the zigzag stitch.

And there they are, all finished.  Super easy to do!  I made 5 of each fabric so she would have lots to use and can go longer without doing laundry.

They stacked nicely into two clothing boxes.

The bottom box is the fleece blanket, but that is for another post...

Have you received a burp cloth made from a diaper?  Does it work well?  Since I am not a mother (yet) I would love feedback on if these type of burp cloths are useful.


  1. I also made the mistake of getting the "cheesecloth-like" kind, have there been any reviews on these yet?

  2. You can totally use them! In this tutorial I ended up using them and they looked great! My cousin's son has now turned one and she used them the whole time! They held up great and DID continue to "thicken" up with each wash! :) The next time I made baby burp cloths I made them out of the tri-fold diapers and it was much easier, you can read about it here:


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