Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Burp cloth ....there is a better way....

I've changed much of the tutorial instructions for this burp cloth because after making several, I found a much better way.  These end up just too narrow.   But they are still cute, so I'm leaving the pictures up. So, some pictures don't quite coincide with directions. From now on I sew a backing piece of coordinating fabric (usually flannel) to the back of the fully unfolded diaper after adding the embroidery.  This makes for a much nicer  size burp cloth

What you still need:
Cloth diaper
Fabric for the  appliqu├ęs and a large enough piece of one coordinating fabric to cover the back.
Matching threads, etc.....

First I pressed the diaper as much as is possible for a pre-folded diaper. 
Lay out the diaper flat and determine the placement of the embroidery or applique design. 

I measured up two inches from the bottom of the cloth to accommodate the trim and a pleasing amount of white space - with a fabric pencil I made a line at that two inch mark to indicate the bottom edge of my applique design.  Hoop the diaper and stabilizer in the machine embroidery hoop and set aside for a few minutes.

If you have selected an applique design, cut a 4x4 square of your selected applique fabric.   If you are experienced with your machine, you may wish to use a smaller piece of scrap material.  However if you are still a beginner in the use of your machine, use the 4x4 square to make it easier to place the fabric later.

Cut 2 strips of your selected trim material Width of Diaper by 2 1/2"

Load the selected design in your embroidery machine and applique or stitch as directed by machine and/or design. For appliqueing, I use a fabric glue stick when it comes time to place the applique fabric on my design.  That way I can put adhesive only on the area of the diaper inside the applique lines and stick the fabric in place so it doesn't move around during stitching.

Here is where it changes the most - re-arranging my pictures and steps - it's time for the trim, if you even want the trim - in the old way I did this the trim helped to finish the egde - in this way, that isn't necessary so the trim would be aesthetic only.

Sewing on the trim is pretty easy - measure up about an inch to an inche and a half - just depends how wide you want the trim.  Place the trim piece wrong side up along the line with the bulk of it above as this will be your sewing line - in the picture it's showing too low on the cloth as this was the original directions where you would turn it over and to the back - you no longer want to turn it over to the back.
  Sew along where your measured the line so that 1/4 inch of the trim fabric is below and the rest above the stitch line - like in the picture only there will be more diaper below.
     Turn the trim down and press.  For ease in the next step, you might want to baste the sides down.

 -  - Embroidered designs, particularly those created on a machine, are rough and bumpy on the back (see picture below).   You would not like this rubbing against your baby's delicate skin.

 Cut the backing piece the size of the diaper cloth - place these to right sides together - sew around the edges leaving a few inches open for turning it.  Turn and press.

**Note about prefolded diapers.  You could probably do this project with a flat fold diaper.  I prefer the prefolded diapers that are already stitched on the folds.  This gives extra padding down the center of the burp cloth.   However, brands vary widely concerning how padded this folded area is.   You will find it much easier to work with lighter diapers.  Our sample was made with Gerber diapers that had a lot of padding in the folded area.  It was extremely hard to hoop all that bulk.   I have previously used a much lighter prefolded diaper that was much easier to hoop.  I found those at "Babies R Us" - they are 3 ply and honestly I would never use them as diapers - too thin.  But they are great for making these burp clothes or as cleaning rags. 

Another example: