Today I thought I'd fulfill my promise for a tutorial on my embellished babies burp cloths. I know a lot of you probably don't have a need for decorated burp cloths so I'm also showing the technique on kitchen towels. We can all use a cute towel, right?
I found this towel at HomeGoods. It's so me and my ADORNit Flamingo Fever fabric complements it perfectly. The technique is the same whether you're trimming a towel, napkin or diaper and is a fun way to add a bit of personality to an everyday item without adding the bulk of a ruffle. What I love about this technique is that there are no raw edges - the back looks as neat as the front!
The first thing you'll want to do is prewash and dry everything - you want to get rid of the possibility of any shrinkage before you sew.
For the towel or napkin, cut off all the hems all the way around (diapers don't have hems so if you're decorating a diaper you can skip this step).
This is a good time to straighten any edges that are a bit wonky.
I cut the two side strips of fabric three inches wide by the length of the towel plus a few inches and the two end pieces four inches wide by the width of the towel plus a few inches. This can certainly vary depending on your project and if you have a towel that has a design on it you will need to take that into consideration since you won't want the strip to be so wide that it covers up the design.
Press each strip in half length wise, wrong sides together - pretty, right sides out.
Sew side strips - raw edges of the strips to the wrong side of the towel, raw edges even, using a 1/4" seam.
Once sewn, trim excess from ends of the side strips.
Press seams of side strips toward towel.
Top stitch in place. I used my number ten Edge Stitch foot on my Bernina with my needle position one click to the right of center. (I stitched all the way around - outer edge too).
Place one folded end strip across the bottom on the wrong side of the towel and tuck in the raw ends as shown below. Pin, press and sew using 1/4" seam allowance.
Press the 1/4" seam allowance toward the towel, flip to right side of the towel, press, pin and top stitch all around as I showed above on the side strips. Repeat with the last top strip.
That's all there is to it. So quick and easy.
Here's the same technique done on a colored diaper. I found plain colored diapers years ago at K Mart (do we still have K Mart?) but you can also find them here. I usually buy extra when I see them because they can sometimes be a bit hard to find.
As you can see I like to add a label or cute saying cut from fabric. (The photos below show the top stitching on the fabric strips and also shows how neat the back looks - be sure to match your bobbin thread with the towel or diaper so your stitching doesn't show on the back).
What I love about this technique is that it's a great way to not only add a little something to a diaper burp cloth but it's also a great way to square up a less than perfectly square diaper.
I used this ADORNit fabric for the HAPPY label by fusing Steam a Seam Lite to the back of the fabric, then cutting out the saying, fusing it to other fabrics and appliqueing it all to the diaper using and open zigzag stitch and clear thread.
Here's another strictly decorative towel that I made years ago, but this time I used fabric to make the body of the towel. Wouldn't this be cute in a guest bath or as a decorative towel in a kitchen? Not at all absorbent but stink'n cute none the less. (I sewed the lace in the seam between the towel fabric and the top and bottom bands).
I hope you found this tutorial inspiring and helpful. It's such a great project for someone just learning to sew and a great way for us more experienced makers to get a quick fabric fix. Please let me know if you have questions.
Remember to Be You - you are perfect just the way you are!
Until next time,