Baby showers are full of fun and excitement, but it can be tough to find a gift with a personal touch. Plus, you want to give a present that’s practical and absolutely adorable! Why not put together something special that will show off your sewing skills and make your gift memorable? Grab soft fabric scraps, or leftover flannel from your custom quilt, and use these easy instructions to whip up a set of cute baby washcloths. They’re awesome…and will be appreciated from baby shower to baby bath time.
BEFORE YOU START
- You want the fabric you use for the washcloth to fray after you sew, cut and wash it—that’s what will create the chenille texture—so be sure to choose woven fabrics like cotton or flannel.
- Bright flannels sometimes bleed when washed, adding an unintentional tinge to an otherwise beautiful project. To minimize color bleeding, pre-treat flannel pieces by washing them.
- Keep your washcloth simple by using the same fabric for the entire project, or be bold and mix and match colors and patterns.
Three pieces of flannel or other woven fabric in coordinating colors, each at least 9 in. square
One larger piece of flannel or other woven fabric for backing, at least 11 in. square
Chalk marker or marking pencil
Basic sewing supplies (scissors, matching thread, sewing machine, etc.)
- Place the smaller fabric pieces on the rotary mat. Use the ruler and rotary cutter to cut each piece so that it is 8″x 8″. Set aside.
- Place the larger fabric piece on the mat and use the ruler and rotary cutter to cut it down to a 10″ square.
- Place the 10″fabric square face down on the mat. Layer the three 8″squares on top of the 10″square. Center the 8″squares so 1″of the 10″ square shows on each side.
- Pin the fabric pieces together so they don’t shift.
- Place the ruler diagonally on top of the fabric squares and use your chalk marker or marking pencil to draw a diagonal line, from corner to corner, on the top 8″fabric piece.
- Sew through all four layers of fabric along the diagonal chalk or marker line, making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of each line of stitching.
- Continue to sew parallel lines, 1/4″apart, on both sides of the first diagonal line of stitching until the entire top 8″ is covered. Be sure to sew through all four layers of fabric and stop sewing at the edge of the 8″square. You can use your presser foot for measurement by lining up the edge of the presser foot to the edge of the previous line of stitching. Or you can draw lines on the top 8″square on either side of the first stitched line, using the ruler and marking tool.
- Turn the center dial on the OLFA Chenille Cuttercounterclockwise to the “M” setting to expose the cutting blade. Slide the foot at the “M” setting between two lines of stitching, making sure that it is below all three 8″fabric layers, but above the larger 10″ bottom layer. Do not cut through the bottom layer of fabric. Slide the cutter along the channel to cut the top three layers. Repeat between all lines of parallel sewing to create the chenille center.
- Place the sewn fabric pieces on your ironing board. Fold one edge of the backing fabric toward the front until it meets the edge of the chenille center. Use iron to press in place. Repeat with remaining edges, making sure to fold corners neatly.
- Fold the backing edge toward the front again, making sure to cover the raw edges of the chenille center. Press with iron.
- Topstitch the backing edge all around the entire piece.
- Wash and dry to fluff up the chenille center.
TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS
- To speed up sewing, you can increase the stitch length on your sewing machine to 3.0.
- Be sure to pull fabric taut as you sew along the first diagonal line to ease stitching and prevent puckering.
- Sew one line of stitching in one direction, then sew in the opposite direction for the next line. Repeat until sewing is complete. This will prevent the stitching from pulling in one direction and causing distortion.
- Tag your finished project on Twitter or Instagram with #OLFA and #OlfaChenilleWashcloth to share!