Thursday, 15 January 2015

A hooded baby towel for Christmas

Whilst shopping for presents for my two grand-daughters, I saw some lovely hooded towels in our local department store. Just the job, I thought - until I saw the price - £35.00! However, the same store had a less than half price sale on some good quality white towels at £9.00 each. So I bought two, and set about making hooded towels. (I'm well aware that if I'd tried a bit harder and had more time, I could have sourced towelling by the metre which would have been even cheaper, but I didn't.)

You can read below how to make one yourself.

To make one of these you'll need (depending on the baby's size):

A large white towel - say at least  34" wide (c 87cm) or towelling of a similar size
Motifs or appliques
About 4.75 yards or 4.25 metres of double fold bias tape - or make your own - to complement the motifs

First I took most of the edges off the towels, as these were quite thick. Then I folded one end at right angles so I could cut a large square for the main body of the towel. This left me a decent size rectangle at the other end from which I could cut the triangular hood. With thinner towelling, I would have cut a square for the hood and folded it in half across the diagonal, but these were thick and good quality towels, so the hood was quite thick enough as a single layer. My towels were a bit on the small size really, at 50" x 29" ( about 127cm x 77 cm - fine for newborn but a bit small for a one-year-old). So I made quite a large hood, the sides being almost half the size of the whole towel, as you can see in the photographs, but with a larger towel, I would say about a third of the length of the side, possibly 40%, would be about right.

The rest was easy. Here's my version with the single layer hood:

Here's the  alternative, with a folded hood - you then don't need  to bind the diagonal edge.

Then you can finish either version the same way, with more double-fold bias tape.

And it's done! Overall the first towel only took a couple of hours. Actually it would have been even quicker if I hadn't tried to take the lazy way (which is always longer in the end). Instead of attaching the tape (opened out) to one side, and then pinning again folded to sew through all layers, I attempted to do it all in one go by pinning both sides of the tape over the towel and sewing round once. I then spent twice as long undoing and redoing bits where I'd missed catching in all the raw edges.

Here's the end result of the first towel. (The second will be similar but with kingfisher blue bias tape.)

And a detail of the appliques I used. You could make your own, of course. The towels in the shop (the ones that I didn't buy) had nice designs of sea horses and other under water creatures, with some wavy seaweed fronds. That's why they cost three times as much!

On with the next one - a birthday present!

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