Saturday, April 30, 2011

Chenille Burp Cloth

My first child spit up like none other.  We had to carry around a hand towel at all times just to clean her up.  Most of the burp cloths that you buy at stores were not absorbent enough for her, so here's a tutorial you can make for that baby that spits up everywhere.  It's very absorbent, and the chenille side is very soft for their new baby skin.

You will need:
  • 1 fat quarter of 100% cotton woven material. I used homespun.
  • 1 fat quarter of complimentary fabric or pre-made 1/2 inch bias tape
  • An old towel.  You could also use a cloth diaper or cut terry cloth material.
  • Starch spray if you're making bias tape.
  • Coordinating thread

Prewash your towel and fabrics.  Then, fold one of your fat quarters in thirds to make a rectangle that's about 18 inches by 7 inches.

 Cut out your towel to the same size and pin the homespun fabric on one side like this.

Then, on the towel side, draw a diagonal line like this with a fabric marker or pencil.  This is the first line you will sew on.
With the homespun fabric down (you don't want the terry cloth catching in the feed dogs at all), sew diagonal lines about 1/4 of an inch apart across the entire burp cloth. (In this picture they're 1/2 an inch apart.)  How far apart you sew depends how many layers you have an what type of fabric you use.  If you have a looser weave like homespun, you either need to make the lines close together (about 1/4 inch) or you need to add more than three layers.  If you use flannel, for example, which is woven more tightly, you can do three layers sewn 1/2 an inch apart.

I turned around at the end of each line and made the next one without cutting the thread so it would go quickly.

Then with your very sharp scissors, carefully cut between your sewn lines.  Cut only the homespun fabric and be careful to not cut the terry cloth.

Trim up the edges.  Sometimes all of the diagonal sewing will skew the fabrics a bit, so I like to trim it to keep it all straight before adding the bias tape.

Next make the bias tape out of your other fat quarter.  Skip this step if you're using pre-made bias tape.  Cut strips 2 inches wide on the bias (diagonally).

Then sew these strips together until you have enough length to go around the whole burp cloth.  I needed 3 strips.  To sew them together, place them perpendicular and sew diagonally like this.

Press the seams open.  This is the starch I use.  Fold the whole length of fabric in half longwise and press it.  Then open it up.
Press each side to the center line.
 Then fold it in half and press again.  Voila.  Homemade 1/2 inch bias tape.

Now sew that bias tape all the way around your burp cloth.  If you need a tutorial to show you how, here's a good one on the Smashed Peas and Carrots blog.

Before you wash it, it looks like this:

Throw your cloth into the washer and dryer to fluff and fray the chenille side.   It should get all soft and fluffy and nice for baby.
The Chenille Side
 The Towel Side
And an action shot...


  1. That is a Great idea!!!! Thanks for sharing :0)

  2. Cool project. Do you have a finished product picture?

  3. I think I'm going to make one in another color and then post a pic of it finished.