Receiving Blankets for Violet

Roy has a new cousin, baby Violet! Roy and Violet are both named after their grandparents, and I can’t wait to watch them play together someday soon.

Violet’s mom, Susan was a trimester behind me, and we were so excited to be new moms and share the pregnancy and mommy experience together. I wanted to make Violet some receiving blankets like I had made for Roy just a few days before he was born, in some fun girl colors this time!

Dan and I quickly learned with Roy that you can never have enough receiving blankets – they are incredibly versatile and durable. When Roy was brand new, we used them to swaddle, then as burp cloths (because, seriously, burp cloths are NOT big enough sometimes), and now Roy plays with them and cuddles with one most of the day. Luckily, they are  also super easy to make!

First, pick out some fun flannel! We aren’t a pastel kind of family here, so I made all of Roy’s in bright stripes and colors. For Violet’s, I chose a cute pink, magenta and orange print. If you time it right, flannels go on sale a lot in the beginning of fall (so go to the store now, ladies!) and will go on clearance in the spring or early summer. Wash it at home with some baby safe (i.e, no dyes or perfumes) detergent and don’t use fabric softener, as it can irritate baby’s skin. Iron it well, and you are ready to cut!

You can make your blankets whatever size you’d like – I like a simple 36 by 36 inch square, myself. I cut the fabric to 37 inches, then one inch off the other side (slightly more than the selvage). Turn 90 degrees and do it again! Save the trimmings for little appliques on other baby stuffs, perhaps?

Keep the cuts of your edges clean and straight, lined up well with the guidelines on your mat.

Finish the edges of the blanket with your sewing machine. My Janome has a great overedge stitch that I love to use. If your machine doesn’t have an overedge stitch and you don’t have a serger, you can do a rolled hem, or use a zig zag stitch along all your edges. When you come to the corners, take your foot off the pedal,  leave your needle in the fabric, and turn it 90 degrees, so your stitch is uniform along the corners.

You can use a thread that will blend in with your fabric, or one to contrast and stand out. Trim all your threads and you’re done!

I made two blankets for Violet, then found some bright orange flannel in my stash and made two burp cloths to match. I used the same steps for the burp cloths, but cut them to 12″ by 20″ instead. Then I wrapped them up with a little ribbon, and off to the post office they went!

Like I said, super easy and quick! In all, two blankets and two burp cloths took me less than an hour. You can make them in baby’s nursery colors and fabric, and save a bundle compared to buying them at the baby stores.

If you make some yourself at home, please leave a link to your pics in the comments – I’d love to see!