I was never super into bibs. I remember seeing babies and toddlers all over the place with adorable outfits covered up by a big bib and not understanding the motive behind it.
And then we experienced molars.
The drool. OMG THE DROOL.
It was everywhere, all the time. I tried to ignore it, but after several soaked onesies I gave in and bibbed my son. There had to be a better way!
Then I discovered bandana bibs. So cute, so functional, and above all — so absorbent! The one downside was they were also so expensive.
I had wanted to get back into sewing now that life had (sort of) calmed down for us, and thought tackling a bandana bib would be the perfect practice project. Not only was it super easy, but allowed me to make an array of bibs in a variety of fabrics for a fraction of the cost! Here’s how I did it:
– 1/4yd pre-shrunk fabric for the back (something soft like fleece or terry works best)
– 1/4yd pre-shrunk fabric for the front (a soft cotton)
– fabric scissors
– sewing machine
– snap closures (with the little hammer tool)
First, print out this handy dandy bib pattern I created for you. Be sure that your print settings don’t shrink the pattern by selecting “Do Not Scale” in your settings (or unchecking the “shrink” option). After you’ve got it printed, cut it out along the lines.
Next, pin the cutouts to your fabric, making sure to place the area marked “cut along fold” on the fold of the fabric so you have two identical sides when you unfold the cut fabric.
After cutting, your pieces should look like this:
Put the pieces together front-to-front, so you see the back of your fabric on the outside. Pin together. Note: The front piece is longer than the back in order to create some scrunch. Make sure your edges are flat, and push the buckle towards the center. Don’t worry about getting this perfect — the scrunch is pretty casual!
Time to break out that sewing machine! Seal the edges with a 1/4in margin and a straight stitch. Backstitch the beginning and ending seams. Be sure to leave a small opening somewhere so you can turn the bib right-side out! I have three pins (near the top left) to remind me to stop sewing — not that I’ve forgotten before or anything…
After you’ve sealed your edges (except for that small opening), turn the bib right-side out. It should look kind of fluffy like this:
At this point you could iron the bib to get it nice and flat for the next step, although I’m lazy so I usually just roll the edges between my fingers to make sure the seams have been flipped out and are nice and tight.
Pin the borders down around the edges, including the opening that you pulled the bib through when you flipped it right-side out.
Now there’s a couple ways you can sew the edges. If you’re a beginner like me, you can zig-zag stitch around the edges with a 1/4in margin and call it a day. If you’re more experienced (I’m jealous), you can zig-zag right up against the edge to imitate a serger effect, then top with a straight stitch right alongside.
Almost done! Finally, you’ll need to attach the snap closures. You could use the sew on kind, although I’m lazy and the hammer method seems to suit me better. Position the ring with the spikes on either side of the bib (you may want to measure your kiddo before placing — or just include a couple snaps on each side to make it adjustable). Push it through so you can see the spikes on the opposite side. Place either the male or female part over the spikes so that it fits snugly. Then take your little hammer helper (pictured below) and gently hammer it into place. Do the same for the other side, although be sure to place your spikes on the opposite side.
And that’s it! Easy peasy. This was my first sewing project in years, and to be completely honest it took me a while to get to the “wearable in public piece” point. If you’re in the same boat, I’d start with some remnant fabric as it may take you a couple tries to get the hang of it. Happy drooling!