Things You'll Need
- Absorbent fabric, such as terry cloth, minky or fleece, or cloth diapers
- Printed quilting weight cotton or cotton flannel
- Scissors or rotary cutter
- Cutting mat (optional)
- Straight pins
- Sewing machine
- Knitting needle, chopstick or pen
- Iron and ironing board
When you have a baby, spit-up becomes part of your routine. Instead of packing a few extra shirts every time you take your baby out, bring along a few burp cloths to protect your shoulders. Sew some of your own using printed woven cotton or flannel fabric. Use an absorbent fabric underneath the printed cotton to soak up the spit and keep the shoulders of your shirt stain-free.
Cut both the absorbent fabric and the printed fabric into 22 by 10 inch rectangles, using either the scissors or rotary cutter. If you use a rotary cutter, place the fabric on the cutting mat first to avoid destroying your work surface. Cut one rectangle from each fabric for every burp cloth you plan to sew.
Set one rectangle of absorbent fabric right side up on your work surface. Place a rectangle of printed fabric on top of it, right side down. Line up the four sides of the fabric so that they are even.
Pin the two fabrics together. Space the pins no more than 2 inches apart on all four sides.
Stitch the fabrics together, using a short, straight stitch. Leave a 1/2 inch seam allowance on all four sides. Leave a gap of about 3 inches open on one side, so that you can turn the cloth right side out.
Use a pair of scissors to trim the seam allowance to 1/4 inch and to clip off the corners at an angle. Don't cut through the stitches.
Push the fabrics right side out, through the hole you left in the stitching. Use a knitting needle, pen or chopstick to push the corners all the way out, so that they aren't rounded.
Tuck the raw edges of the opening under and use the iron to press them flat. Pin the open part of the burp cloth closed. Iron the entire cloth to smooth it out.
Top stitch around the four sides of the cloth, 1/8 inch from the edge. The top-stitching adds a decorative touch and closes the gap.
Drape the burp cloth over your shoulder the next time your baby needs to be burped.
Based in Pennsylvania, Emily Weller has been writing professionally since 2007, when she began writing theater reviews Off-Off Broadway productions. Since then, she has written for TheNest, ModernMom and Rhode Island Home and Design magazine, among others. Weller attended CUNY/Brooklyn college and Temple University.