Long Way Around

This weekend I had the bright idea to sew some baby bibs. I’ve had a little template for awhile now and a few friends with babies coming up so I thought I would whip one up…Very simple project really but it turned into one of those things where I was making my life harder because I wanted to try something particular (being the magnetic snap). Basically, me making my life more difficult than it needed to be!

The Finished Product

Almost finished project, minus the edge stitching to finish off.

Notice the fancy shmancy pretty silver snap closure. It’s too big and awkward and I wouldn’t recommend it! I ended up taking it out and sewing on some velcro instead. Note: these types of magnetic snaps are actually quite easy to put in so I wasn’t way off the mark BUT you’d probably need a smaller one for a bib. It is a strong closure so even though I reinforced the fabric with heavy interfacing the snap would eventually pull the fabric apart.  They are also a real pain to sew around. You will see them in the pictures of the process below but just SEW ON VELCRO! 

Full disclosure: I didn’t draw this pattern myself, I printed the bib template from http://www.nanacompany.typepad.com, here. Take a look at her site as well, super cute stuff. I started by printing and cutting out the pattern. I glued it onto a piece of bristle board I found in the basement while we were unpacking…

Glue on bristle board (card stock for my UK friends)

Glue on bristle board (card stock for my UK friends)

Snip snip

Snip snip

The instructions are on the bib but basically trace on fabric on the wrong side, lining and main fabric right sides together. I busted out some of my fancy oil cloth for the front side of this bib (it could totally be done reversible too). Pin it in place because oil/laminated cloth is a slippery little sucker…

Pretty, pretty Japanese oil cloth!

Pretty, pretty Japanese oil cloth!

Pin in place so tracing is easier

Pin in place so tracing is easier

You could trace with many things but I like to use coloured mechanical pencil crayons. Sometimes I have a hard time finding them so get a couple packs. I like mechanical pencils because they are very fine and sharp and you can trace close to the template…

Mechanical Pencil Crayons

Mechanical Pencil Crayons

Go ahead and trace it

Go ahead and trace it

You could pin the pattern down for tracing but it wasn’t a complicated outline so I just held it down. If it did shift it would have been easy to line up again and keep going. Next cut it out a 1/4 inch outside the line to give it a seam allowance. (The seam allowance is NOT built into the pattern.) Again, simple pattern, so just go for it BUT if you are worried about cutting a 1/4 inch neatly you could mark it out. I just made a few 1/4 inch marks in a few places to keep in line…(see the pink marks…)…(CUT ON THE PINK AND SEW ON THE BLUE…)

Pink seam allowance marks

Pink seam allowance marks

I also like to mark vertical lines on the bottom of the bib to show where I WON’T sew so that it can be turned outside afterwards. Cut on the template outline, pin right sides together and sew with a 1/4 inch seam. I used a zipper foot if you will notice because I needed to get around the metal closure but just use a regular foot because you will do Velcro or a tiny snap that you would hand sew on after…

Zipper foot on but use a regular foot if not doing a snap like this

Zipper foot on but use a regular foot if not doing a snap like this

There are lots of curvy edges on a bib so I went around and snipped in on the curviest bits to make it lay nice and flat once turned…

Clip to the seam allowance of the curviest bits

Clip to the seam allowance of the curviest bits

Turn’er inside out now through that hole you left at the bottom…

Forgot to leave a hole, no worries just unpick...

Forgot to leave a hole, no worries just unpick…

After turning, I finger pressed it nicely and then ran an iron over the cotton fabric side, not the sticky oilcloth side, duh! I like a nice 1/8 inch edge stitch to finish it off. The edge stitch will also have the added benefit of closing off that hole at the bottom too.

Edge stitch

Edge stitch

Let’s talk Velcro/closure placement…You need to think how the ends overlap when closed. I totally had a moment and at first sewed the closures both on the right front sides…think about it, will close twisted…

NOOOOO, DON'T PUT THE SNAPS ON THIS WAY!

NOOOOO, DON’T PUT THE SNAPS ON THIS WAY!

One side of the closures needs to go on the front of one of the sides and the other side needs to go on the wrong side…like this…if you can see in the picture…

1/2 of snap on front of one side and the other 1/2 on the back of the other side

1/2 of snap on front of one side and the other 1/2 on the back of the other side

Ahhhhhh now it will close flat, if you can imagine!…

Snaps on the right side now

Snaps on the right side now

IMG_6682

Soooooo now forget about those metal snappies! Sew squares of velcro on instead. Sew them in the right spots as detailed above. I sewed them on when I was done so that it was secured to both layers and would be stronger. I’m sure I’ll be making more with velcro soon so I will show a few updated pictures.

REALLY, these should only take an hour. Try it out!

3 thoughts on “Long Way Around

  1. The bib looks great, I reckon they would sell like hot cakes. Did you think about sewing the magnetic pieces within the ends? I saw it done on a leather jacket on the Great a British Sewing Bee, the series that has just finished in the UK.
    Rosie (Nicola’s Auntie) x

    • Hi, yes I’ve seen that magnetic option inside too. That would be great. I didn’t have that option kicking around! I love the Sewing Bee! I hope they have more series of that.

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