Wednesday, January 22, 2014

How to Make Custom Washcloths

Okay, so a couple weeks ago my sister-in-law, who is nearing the end of her pregnancy, told me she was in need of some bath essentials for baby. Of course, whenever I am giving a gift, my first thought is, "What can I make them?"  So I figured, I would make some custom washcloths for baby Gemma.  Here's what you will need to make six 6" x 6" washcloths:


- 1/4 yard terry cloth
- 6 strips of 100% cotton fabric cut 2 1/2" x 24 3/4" (1 for each washcloth)


Make sure to square up your terry cloth by lining up the selvages with any horizontal line on your cutting mat.  I fold my fabric in half so both selvages are at the top.  Now cut the left side of your fabric to make it straight. Keeping the selvage at the top, cut a strip that is 6" x width of the fabric. Subcut this strip into 6" squares. 

Now cut your cotton strips. Since my board is only 24" wide I lined up the left edge of my strip so that it overlaps the 0" line by 3/4" on the left.  I then cut the strip on the 24" line. 

Now, take your strip over to your ironing board and press it in half with wrong sides together. 

Take that freshly pressed strip and pin it to your terry cloth square so that the raw edges are aligned at about the middle of one of the sides. 

To get a really nice mitered corner, you will want to fold the strip up at the corner so that it creates a 45 degree angle and the raw edges are now lined up with the next side. 

Next, fold the strip downwards so that the fold aligns with the top side and the strip's raw edge now lines up with the next side. 

Pin the corner in place and then place a pin about halfway down the side. This is where you will begin your stitch. 

Head on over to your sewing machine and start sewing along this edge using a 1/4" seem allowance. Make sure to backstitch at your starts and stops. Stop stitching precisely 1/4" from the end of this side and backstitch.  

Now, fold your strip up again and make your mitered corner, just like before, this time starting your stitch at the top of the terry cloth's side. 

Sew until you get to 1/4" from the bottom of the side. Repeat until you come to the third corner. Do not miter your corner quite yet. You are now going to piece your tails of the strip together. Unpin the tail at the beginning of your strip and place the edges of the tails right sides together. 

Sew a 1/4" seem and then press the seem open. Now miter your corner and continue until you have come back to where you first started stitching. Your washcloth should look like this:

You will now fold the binding over to the back side and hand stitch it in place.   First of all, you will want to thread your needle so that you have two even threads.  Place a knot in the bottom.
Hide that knot in the binding by threading it through the terry cloth ABOVE your seem line on the back side.

Thread the needle just below your seem line.

Now you will thread the needle through the very bottom of the folded binding about 1/4"-1/2" to the left, like so:

HINT:  Every time I thread my needle through the terry cloth, I look at the front of the washcloth and make sure I can not see the needle poking out.  If this happens, your thread will show on the front side and believe me, you do not want that!
Oops needle showing through!
Now that's more like it!
Continue to blind stitch the binding until you get to a corner.  You will want to stitch all the way to the edge of the terry cloth.
Fold the corner down, so that the binding's fold is lined up with your stitched seem and thread the needle through the corner downwards.
Now you will want to thread a stitch just below your seem and continue your blind stitch.

Once you get back to where you started, knot your thread and hide it under you binding.
Ta Da!!! You have a cute washcloth that is stylish and unique!

Now put those washcloths in a basket with some baby wash and a bath towel and you have a custom gift that any mother-to-be will LOVE!


1 comment:

  1. Amy! So impressed. Those wash cloths are adorable. So glad I found your blog:)