I was looking to use up some scraps and wrote to two charitable organizations with some sewing ideas. One of my favorite charities, Jack’s Basket, wrote back and said they would welcome my help. (If you haven’t heard of them, they make welcome baskets for newborns diagnosed with Downs Syndrome.) I have made baby blankets for them before, but this time I looked at my piles of scraps and had suggested making baby bibs. To my surprise, they wrote and said they actually would love bibs even more than blankets right now!! Sometimes it pays to reach out and ask, right?!!
There are many bib patterns available online but I only needed one simple one. This free downloadable baby bib pattern from applegreencottage.com comes with three sizes and couldn’t be easier. The seam allowance is included in the pattern and you can fiddle around with some of your fabric scraps. There are instructions to sew the bib, and you won’t find it difficult at all. (Jack’s Basket prefers their baby items to be sized for 3 months and above, so I went with the middle size from the pattern.) I think these will be a good average fit.
The more I read about making bibs, the confused I am about materials. Some people add interfacing, while others say it’s not necessary. Many sewers suggest using 3 layers for the bibs with flannel, terry cloth or fleece in the middle to help absorb spills. While laminated fabric may be nice, it isn’t my preference for newborns. I mostly used quilting fabric for the fronts and backs. I tried using some old towels/terry cloth for the center of few of my bibs and they do look nice, even though the terry cloth sheds like crazy! I bought some flannel scraps on sale at Joann’s to and the red star bib above is one example. I didn’t add a 3rd layer to that bib and it is probably too thin, however it was much easier to make! The flannel is lovely but you must prewash it first or else you’ll be donating a doll-size bib!! Sometimes when you prewash flannel it ends up looking faded or used. So flannel isn’t always preferable. The bottom line is, use what you have…and it will be fine.
TIP: Regular KAM plastic snap fasteners from Amazon weren’t long enough for layered bibs!
Most people use snaps for bib closures, preferring that to the scratchiness of velcro. I haven’t ever used them before, but took the plunge and bought some KAM regular snaps on Amazon. It’s not a big investment and the snaps are useful for many other sewing projects as well. However, I learned that the standard snaps don’t work for bibs that have thicker layers- batting and terrycloth for example. For thick items, you need extra long plastic snaps and they aren’t readily available on Amazon. Off to the KAM site, I went and ordered much preferred size 20 EXTRA LONG KAM snaps. Since I already now had the snap pliers, I just needed more snaps. They cost me only $13.99 plug shipping but use the code WELCOME and you will get 10% off. (However, if you’re new to snaps, you will need the KAM pliers as well. They cost an additional $14.99 plus shipping. Be sure to use that discount code.) After juggling with this new to me gizmo, I’m now using the longer snaps with success. You could just go with regular metal snaps or other types, but I like to complicate my life and the plastic ones have been on my wish list!!
I’m having fun playing around with fabrics. There are endless ways to design bibs and I am just getting started. While the bibs make wonderful gifts, I’m only making them for charity right now. If any of you sewers or quilters are looking for a fun and useful charity project, please join me in making a few baby items for this wonderful organization. You can message me for the Jack’s Basket mailing address or check their website for more information.
Linking up to: Oh Scrap, Midweek Makers, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Peacock Party, Finished or not Friday, Brag About Your Goodies, Thank Goodness It’s Finished Friday, My Quilt Infatuation: Needle & Thread Thursday.