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Sewing a Fitted Nappy, a step by step guide.


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What I used to make this nappy:
Absorbing fabric should be as close to 100% cotton as possible. The outside layer can be polyester (won't absorb, though)
* 50 x 50 cm piece of fabric is plenty for EACH piece of nappy body (you should get two out of a 90 cm wide fabric - so, for 1 m of 90 cm wide fabric you would get 4 pieces of nappy body)
* internal soaker pad was about 10 x 35 cm (multiply by as many layers as you want) Anything absorbent (e.g. hemp, sherpa, flannelette, towelling)
* fold out soaker pad was slightly smaller than the internal pad (if you don't have an overlocker, hemp will not fray - a zig-zag stitch along the edges will be fine)
* 10 x 35 cm piece of microfleece is plenty if you want to fleece top your fold out soaker
* 17 cm loop tape for top tummy piece
* 13 cm loop tape for lower tummy piece
* 7 cm loop tape for cross-over on arm (total 37 cm loop)
* 7 cm hook tape on each arm (total 14 cm hook)
* 13 cm elastic across the back
* 18 cm elastic on each leg (total 49 cm elastic)

Optional Steps 1 and 2 if you want to add a sewn in soaker pad (slows drying time)
Sew as many layers as you want together. I have an overlocker, so I overlocked the edges (I imagine straight machine sewing would be fine)

Sewing Internal Soaker

Pin the soaker pad to the wrong side of the nappy body piece that will go against bub's skin. (or, if you are sewing 3 layers of nappy body together, sew it on the middle layer so that your stitching is hidden)

Pinning soaker to nappy

Machine sew on. (I used straight stitch)

Machine sew on

Step 3:
Pin wrong sides of the nappy body together.

Pin wrong sides together

Step 4:
Stitch around the nappy body leaving a gap along the tummy (I leave a gap about 8 cm wide). I used an overlocker to do this step - straight stitch will be fine. You may like to snip the corners with cuts perpendicular to the stitches at the corners to help with turning.
Hmm, no photo, sorry.

Step 5:
Using your pattern, mark the start and finish points for the elastic on your fabric with pins. Using the pin at the start, attached the elastic to the fabric. Use a few forward and reverse stitches (I use a 3 stitch zig-zag) to secure the elastic to the nappy. Now, continue to sew the elastic on, stretching the elastic as you go. When you reach "end" pin, do some reverse stitches. Then, cut off the rest of the elastic. (I prefer to use Lastin as it's not a bulky in the seam - I've used 6 mm swimsuit elastic here so that you can see it)

sewing elastic
sewing elastic
elastic done

Step 6:
Turn the nappy right-side out, carefully turning at the corners. Fold over fabric at the gap and pin closed. Straight stitch over sew around the whole of the nappy.

sewing up the gap

overstiching done

Optional Step 7: if you want a fold out soaker pad.
I made up a soaker pad using a couple of layers of cotton and a layer of fleece on top. I overlocked the edges - I've done this step before with a sewing machine (using the overlock stitch - straight, straight, straight, zig, zag), it did need trimming after washing. I found that hemp is marvelous as it doesn't fray like flannelette/towelling. This fold out soaker is a bit crooked (the trouble with trying to watch the Rugby at the same time!).

sewing on booster

Step 8:
Ah, the velcro - my most hated part. I always find it difficult getting it straight, and I find the hook frequently catches the thread and snaps it. Grr! I decided to use narrow loop on the tummy with a gap between the two pieces so that it could be folded down to cater for a smaller rise for a smaller bubby. It is worthwhile rounding the corners of the velcro. I sew it on using a 3 step zig zag.

pinning velcro

All done!

Here are some photos of it as a smaller, medium and larger size.

smallest setting

medium setting
largest setting

From playing with the velcro, stretching and measuring, it looks like it might fit waist: 34 - 53 cm, thigh: 20 - 35 cm, rise: 36 - 43 cm

Instructions Courtesy of Leanne (Dunners)

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