Thursday, December 13, 2012

Universal Newborn Template

Here is a template based on the custom diaper that one of my readers won last week!  I made some changes after sewing the one up for her, so this *should* make a nicer diaper than the one I made for her even.  ;)

It has cut/sew marks for a Flip-style cover, an Elemental-style AIO, a more standard AIO, an AI2 or an AIO with a snap-in soaker...  or, you can just make a pocket diaper with the general shape.

Templates can be downloaded here:

Friday, December 7, 2012

Mama Cloth - Part 2

Now for the other style I promised...  and the .pdf template.

This style has a separate soaker pad and base that are sewn together after construction.  You could also do something like a velcro-on removable pad with this construction method.  That seems like too much of a pain to me though.  ;)

For the soaker pad, I used easy to find fabrics this time.  Wicking jersey stay-dry top (Joann Fabrics has it).  1 layer of cotton terry cloth.  2 layers of white flannel.  This is a fairly heavy soaker pad.
 Fabrics pinned together with the outsides facing in:
 Now for your backing...  This time I used antipill fleece and pink PUL.
 The two parts pinned and ready to sew:
 Sew around your backing pieces leaving just a turning hole:
 Turn through your hole and top-stitch:
 Sew or serge around your soaker fabrics leaving just a turning hole:
 Turn through your hole:
 Close up the hole with your top-stitching and add your wet-zone stitching:
Sew your soaker pad onto your backing with a fairly large zig-zag stitch over the edge:
 View of the underside (excuse the dirty donated PUL):
 Snaps applied top view:
 Bottom view:
Wings snapped together:
 Pad folded up and snapped closed:

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Mama Cloth

I'll work up the pdf templates for two different sewing styles of mama cloth (cloth menstrual pads and panty liners) soon.  For now, I'll put up template graphics of one type and a pictorial of another.  ;)

Lets start with our pieces cut out without any extra seam allowance around the soaker pieces.  Here I have one layer zorb 2 and one layer cotton fleece for the contour soaker.  Then I have wicking jersey for the stay-dry topper and white PUL for the waterproof underside layer.  You could use fleece instead of PUL as well.

** I need to remind myself to occasionally mention again that, when sewing with PUL, you need to use a small ballpoint or microtex needle (size 8 to 11 tops) and 100% polyester thread.  :)  PUL items should also be washed and then dried initially and then occasionally in the dryer to seal/re-seal those sewing holes.

My soaker pinned into place on just the stay-dry layer (you can use microfleece, bamboo velour, or really any fabric you want for your topper as well):
 Just use a wide straight stitch and sew to the topper about 1/2" from the edge all the way around the soaker.
 What it looks like from the top side:
 Next, pin or clip your backing and top layer facing each other:
 Sew around the edges leaving one edge open and turn through that opening:
 Next, close up your turning hole with your top-stitching and sew all the way around the edge:
Next, zig-zag OR straight stitch around the very edge of your soaker through all your layers.  I just use my foot to gauge how far the edge is.  When I was sewing the soaker into the topper, I gauged off the foot, so now I just do it the same way but in from that seam I made then.  :)  Perfect border stitch every time (when I actually pay attention to the edge of my foot that is).
 You can stop here and add your wing snap(s), or you can do more top-stitching.

 Top with wet-zone border and snaps added:
 Underside all snapped up:
 Wrapped up nice and tidy:

Saturday, December 1, 2012

FREE Custom Diaper!!!

I am currently working on a newborn stash for a local mama friend.  However, I have decided that I want to make ONE totally custom diaper for one of my blog readers too!!!  TOTALLY custom!  Comment on this post with your dream diaper, and after a week (Dec 8th), I will randomly choose one of you who comments and make the diaper you requested in your comment.

Tell me whether you want OS, NB/S, or sized, and which of my patterns/styles you like best.  Tell me if you want a fitted, pocket, AI2, AIO, and any specifics, embroidery, or special requests.  After I pick the winner, I'll post up the fabric choices I have available that would work well for what that person requested.

Sound fun?  Who wants in?!

*Update* chose #9  I will contact you with your fabric choices etc.  :)
*Update*  Diaper completed.  It is a NB-S square tab AIO with some custom body modifications for the winner.  I will mail it out as soon as I get the mailing address from #9.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Non-Serged Insert or Absorbent Soaker

I'm sure that you've all noticed that I usually serge my inserts and AI2/AIO soakers.  However, I know most people aren't blessed with the huge time-saver that is called a serger.  ;)  In fact, I've only had my serger for about a year.

Today I was helping out a fellow cloth diaper-sewing mom and showed her how I always just did my inserts before.  However, she told me of a method that she had read about that, while it may have an extra step or two, is probably easier to get a cleaner final product out of for most people.  ;)

So, here is an adaptation on the method she told me about using some scraps I had laying out in my sewing room.

For this example, I used a scrap of "Zorb2," 4 layers of hemp jersey, and a "stay-dry" wicking jersey outside fabric.  You can really use anything absorbent though, and you don't need any stay-dry layers unless you want them.  I typically only do my top face stay-dry if anything at all.  You can use terry cloth (upcycled old towels or washcloths), microfiber terry, cotton sweatshirt fleece, cotton jersey, knit, or interlock (upcycled T-shirts), bamboo, cotton, or hemp fleeces or sherpa...  Really, there are SOOOO many options for inserts.  The absorbency of the materials you choose will dictate the total number of layers you should use.  I don't recommend making inserts too thick though, because they'll take longer to wash and dry and not come clean as easily (hold residues and get build-up).  I prefer doing multiple thinner petal-style inserts, or an insert and matching smaller/thinner doubler.  You can also do two thin inserts and sew them together on just the ends or one end so they wash and dry more easily but still stay attached.  :)

Start by cutting the absorbent inner fabric layers to the size and shape you want your finished insert to be.  Then, cut two pieces of the fabric for the outside of the insert 1/2" bigger than the inside pieces all the way around.

Here are some examples of different inside absorbent materials laid over the larger outer fabric: 
Here I have hemp jersey pinned onto wicking jersey:
Use a wide large zig-zag stitch and sew around the very edge of your absorbent (Zorb 2 here) material:
Prepare 2 faces and then pin them together with their outside-facing sides facing in/together:
Next, use a straight stitch and sew just outside the absorbent layers when sewing them together:
Leave a turning hole on one end, and then trim your corners:
Turn right-side-in through your turning hole:
 IF you will be using the insert as a snap-in soaker, apply your snap(s) now:

 Nice hidden cap(s) with padding both above and below:
 Close up your turning hole:
 View of the under-side with the snap stud:
 Ignore my messy top-stitching...