If you follow me on instagram, you may already know, but here on the – slightly neglected – blog, I hadn’t mentioned it yet: the Abfabulies home has welcomed a new occupant. A little person. A little son. A little brother for our big brother.
Little people, sons and brothers deserve cuddly projects. That’s a fact. So I got out my Stof voor durf-het-zelvers book to get started on the baby swaddle blanket.
Unfortunately the book didn’t mention how much fabric I needed to make the blanket. So I asked Google. And while my question on how much fabric I needed remained unanswered, I did find some feedback. Some very different feedback. Some people thought the swaddle was a quick and easy project, others though the explanations in the book were very high level, resulting in questions and problems while sewing. I got a bit scared at that point. My seam ripper and I, we are the best of friends, but it doesn’t mean we have to see each other all that often. Just knowing that it’s there when I need it, is more than enough for me.
In the end, and maybe because I was extra careful after having read all that feedback, I didn’t find this baby swaddle that difficult to make. Of course, I did have to use my seam ripper twice. Once because the fabric started shifting while attaching the velcro, and I had accidentally sewn some creases that weren’t supposed to be there. The second time was intentional: I added the whole at the bottom to allow me to use the blanket in the car seat.
By the way, in case you were wondering what that onesie is doing in every picture, it has the word Bärenstark written on it. And I thought it was quite funny, with the polar bears and all. But then it became clear you cannot read it in the pictures. Oh well.
But how much fabric do you need then?
The baby swaddle blanket comes in 2 sizes: a smaller version and a larger version. For the smaller version, 1 meter should be enough. I made the larger version, and then you need at least 1,05 and preferably 1,10 meter. If you are like me and you want to make the larger version while you only have 1 meter of fabric, you can puzzle a bit with the fabric you have. I decided to compose the front of the foot bag from 3 parts, instead of cutting it as 1 large piece. That way, 1 meter of fabric was enough to make the larger version.
- I used my serger to assemble the blanket. If I were to make a second version, I would not do that again, it makes it harder to sew into the corners, and getting the corners exactly right is important to get the baby blanket right.
- I used clothes pegs instead of pins to keep the layers of fabric together while sewing. Not ideal, but better than pins. From what I hear, wonder clips are the answer to this problem, but I haven’t used those yet. Do you happen to have any experience with these? If so, would you recommend them?
- If you want to use the swaddle in the car seat, check whether you need to adapt the velcro accordingly. Since you swaddle the blanket slightly differently in the car seat, it may be you need to either add some more velcro, or that you need to rearrange the placing of your velcro.
- If you’re planning to use the swaddle blanket inside only, I’d consider to make it without the little hood. Then you can use it as a replacement for a sleeping bag at night as well.