Thursday, January 6, 2011

Ribbon Embellished Burp Cloths

I absolutely hate those skinny little burp cloths that are stocked in every baby section of every store in America. Those of you who already have children know the ones I'm talking about, they are typically about six inches wide and made out of adorable materials that jump off the shelves and make first time parents think they are must-haves for their impending arrival. If you are expecting a baby let me save you some time and frustration; they are worthless. Typically they are so narrow that all baby's spit up goes right past the edge and ends up on the very thing you are trying to protect, thereby causing more laundry. Really, do new parents need more laundry? Pre-folded cloth diapers do the trick nicely. They are absorbent and large enough to catch all but the largest projectile spit ups, but unfortunately they are a bit utilitarian and don't usually come in the cute prints and colors that the worthless ones do. So, what does one do in such a situation? Embellish!

Project: Ribbon Embellished Burp Cloths
Time: About 25 minutes
Skill Level: Easy Peasy!

Begin with the diapers. Get a package of pre-folded cloth diapers. They usually come in packages of 6 or 12 and start at around $12 for a 6 pack. Also choose a ribbon you like, I find that grosgrain works best. Satiny tends to slip a bit and is more difficult to keep straight. I also suggest making sure the ribbon is in the 3/8 to 3/4 inch wide range, too narrow is difficult to sew on, too wide and it takes up too much of the cloth.
Cut two pieces of ribbon about two inches longer than the length of the diaper. Fold under the top about an inch and line it up with the stitching line on the diaper. This is one instance that I give you permission to backstitch on something that you will see. I once made two dozen burp cloths for a craft show and tied off all the threads. In case you were wondering, that's 192 threads. Now I backstitch on the burp cloths.
Start your stitching. Side note, always use white thread in your bobbin case, that way the stitching isn't too noticeable on the other side. Often times white works fine in your top thread, but if you have a darker color go ahead and change your top thread to hide the stitching on the ribbon. On this burp cloth I used white on the light blue side and brown on the brown side.
I don't pin on this project, I just line it up as I go. Make sure that the ribbon is just covering the stitching on the diaper.
When you get to the end, fold under your ribbon and stitch to the end of the diaper. Stitch down the other side, and repeat on the second ribbon on the other side so that the ribbons run parallel to each other.
Backstitch at the ends, and cut off your threads.
And you're finished! If you have an embroidery machine you can add a small design or the baby's name in the center about 3-4 inches up from the bottom edge in a coordinating color. This burp cloth would have a name on it, if the parents were sharing it prior to his birth! I guess I'll have to set it aside until then...

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