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How to Make a Custom Baby Blanket the Easy Way

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You might be curious about why you’re seeing a post titled “how to make a custom baby blanket the easy way” here on My Wee Abode. It’s a bit out of the ordinary, I know, but let me assure you, there’s a method to my madness. Also, there’s a really sweet story that accompanies this easy DIY custom baby blanket tutorial as well.

How to Make a Custom Baby Blanket the Easy Way

Today’s post is not the norm around here!

A tutorial for how to make a custom baby blanket? “That’s not the usual, Julie.”

Well, let me give you a bit of back-story… and you can call me “G” (short for G-ma) for this post (and ONLY this post). 😉

baby blanket with satin ribbon in jungle and leaf print

NOTE: This post is about a simple DIY custom baby blanket made by a novice “seamstress” (that’s me). I am, BY FAR, not a perfect or professional seamstress, so please know that my sewing is not perfect either. I’m still learning along with you! However, this post WILL show you some basics, and I will update the post as I discover ways to improve the blanket!

The Beginnings of the Grammy Blanket

Back when my kids were born, our family was blessed with a multitude of grandparents, including great-grandparents.

Growing up, my siblings and I really disliked the tradition of addressing our grandparents by their last names—like Grandpa Royster or Grandma Atwood.

However, when it came to our own children, we decided to change that tradition!

Our parents became “Grammy and Grampy”, my dad’s folks were affectionately known as “Great Pa and Great Ma”, while my mom’s parents embraced the titles of “Great Grandma and Great Grandpa”, and so on. It was a small change, but it was very helpful within our family, especially for the grandchildren.

The Grammy Blanket is Born

My son, Jared, the first grandchild to enter the world of Grammy and Grampy.

Grammy had a passion for sewing, and when the anticipation of the first grandchild started to build, she knew exactly what she wanted to do—create a personalized baby blanket and some cozy flannel burp cloths for the newest addition to the family.

Her custom baby blanket became an instant favorite!

easy diy custom baby blankets with marvel characters on wood surface
This is one of Grammy’s last blankets she created,
for her #2 great grandchild who is now 6 years old.

Crafted with printed cotton fabric on one side and soft coordinating flannel on the other, Mom added a special touch with a matching satin blanket binding. This became her tradition for every grandchild and great-grandchild that followed (and sometimes, she made more than one blanket!), sewing love with each stitch, until Alzheimer’s sadly stole her ability to continue.

Jared loved his Grammy blanket and used it well into his boyhood.

Passing the Easy DIY Custom Baby Blanket Torch

I’m incredibly fortunate that Mom shared her sewing expertise with me over the years. From mastering simple techniques to tackling more intricate projects like sewing my own dresses for my children’s weddings and assisting with the bridesmaids’ dresses for my daughter’s wedding, we shared many memorable moments at the sewing machine.

So, when Mom unfortunately lost the ability to continue making those cherished handmade baby blankets, it felt like a natural transition for her to pass the Grammy-blanket-making-torch to me. I’m blessed to carry on this tradition!

And what’s even more heartwarming is that I’m not the only one keeping the tradition alive. My sister and nieces have all embraced the art of crafting these beautiful personalized baby blankets. (In fact, my niece even refreshed my memory on how to perfect those corners with the satin binding!) It’s truly a family affair, and I couldn’t be happier to see this tradition continue across the generations!

What Makes This a Custom Baby Blanket

You can customize this homemade baby blanket in several ways:

  • Select fabric prints that complement the theme of the baby’s nursery.
  • Feel free to consult the newborn’s parents regarding their preferences for fabric prints, including their choice of colors and designs.
  • Customize fabrics to suit the new arrivals’ gender, whether it’s a baby boy or a baby girl.
  • Fabrics can range from whimsically baby-themed to more sophisticated designs.
  • Pair printed flannel with coordinating cotton prints for a “cohesive “designer” look.
  • Satin blanket bindings are available in a variety of colors, allowing you to precisely match the satin ribbon edge to the fabrics used in the custom baby blankets.
  • If you have access to an embroidery machine or know someone who does, consider adding the baby’s name and birthdate to create an even more personalized blanket.

Samples of Custom Made Baby Blankets from Grammy… and Me!

Here are just a few of the custom baby blankets that are currently in our family:

collage of custom baby blankets in different patterns
  1. I made this blanket for my now 2-year-old grandson. My daughter chose a handsome woodland cotton print and she found some flannel that looked like bark strips. We accented with turquoise binding that matched the trees in the cotton fabric.
  2. This double-sided flannel blanket is 5.5 years old, and was made by Grammy. It’s a bit faded now, but still in pretty good shape as my granddaughter has another favorite Grammy blanket that is too worn to share! LOL!
  3. This is another blanket for my 2-year-old jellybean. Again, my daughter picked out the fabric, and loved the unique flannel she found to coordinate!
  4. My first (and probably last) attempt at making a minky blanket. I couldn’t find the right orange flannel to match the robins in the cotton fabric. I chose this fabric for my now almost-4-year-old granddaughter because her name is “Robin”. 🙂
  5. The last blanket in the collage was one of Grammy’s, and she made it for my now 6-year-old grandson who has a dad (my son) that enjoys pretty much anything Marvel. Luckily, my grandson does, too!

Want more convincing for making one of these special baby shower gifts yourself? Read on for a tutorial that will teach you how to make a personalized blanket for baby!

And be sure to read the extra tips at the end of this post for the best ways to use a custom baby blanket. One tip may just surprise you a bit!

How to Make a Custom Baby Blanket the Easy Way

First, let’s cover what you DON’T need for making a DIY baby blanket:

  • No pattern needed: That’s right… You don’t need a pattern for sewing a baby blanket like this one!
  • Major sewing skills: To make a custom baby blanket, you only need to be able to sew a straight line, and know how to adjust the stitches on a simple sewing machine.

Items You’ll Need to Make a Custom Baby Blanket

This post may contain affiliate links, at no additional cost to you. For more information, see my complete disclosure.

Spoonflower on Etsy has LOTS of fabrics to choose from. But be careful! Read the descriptions of the fabric carefully and adjust for the width of the fabric. Their standard width is around 45″ wide. It will work, your blanket will just be a bit smaller.

And there is always your local fabric store, too!

Cutting and Trimming Fabric for an Easy DIY Custom Baby Blanket

After choosing your fabric and blanket binding, you need to cut and trim the fabric. All the sides need to be straight and clean.

  • Place fabric right-side-up (on both sides), salvage edges straight together, and pin (Photo 1). The salvage edges usually have writing on them, and they are clean cuts from the manufacturer.
  • Smooth out your fabrics so there are no wrinkles on the top or bottom fabric. Line up uneven edges of the fabrics on the straight edge of the cutting mat (Photo 2). (Notice the salvage edge of the animal print fabric is being cut off. This is because my flannel was extra wide. Always try to put the salvage edges together.)
easy diy custom baby blankets
  • Place your cutting straight edge on top of the fabric, making sure to line up with the edge on the cutting mat (Photo 3). Cut firmly with rotor cutter, holding firmly on top of the straight edge so it doesn’t move. Repeat this process to ensure all sides are even. Pin the remaining open sides together (you should have pins around all four sides now).
  • Use your sewing machine to sew a straight stitch down all four sides of the fabric. The inside “edge” of the presser foot is a perfect guide for sewing straight lines (Photo 4).
  • IMPORTANT: REMOVE ALL PINS FROM FABRIC. For extra safety, run your hand along the edges to ensure you remove ALL pins. Your line doesn’t need to be perfectly straight (Photo 5). The blanket binding covers a multitude of sins!
fabric corners
  • Next, trim all four corners, ABOVE the stitching (Photo 6).

Adding Satin Blanket Binding to a Baby Blanket

This is the easiest way I have found to add satin blanket binding (aka blanket ribbon) to a handmade baby blanket.

  • “Anchor” pin your ribbon to the edge of the fabric (Photo 7). If you place this in the middle or about 1/3 down on of the sides, it’s easier to work with. It helps to keep this area away from a corner. However, I’m going to work on hiding this area IN the corner on my next blanket (I’ll update this post and share my experience on my next blanket, coming soon… for a friend, not for a new grand… yet!)
easy diy custom baby blankets tutorial steps
  • Place the fabric edge as close to the inside fold of the blanket binding (Photo 8). This will keep the satin from wearing-down unevenly.
  • Pin along the edge of the blanket binding as you go (sorry… I pin as a lefty!) (Photo 9).

How to Make a Corner with Satin Blanket Binding

Now this part is a bit tricky, and takes some finagling, but once you get it, it’s easy to repeat it!

  • When you get to the first corner, start tucking the ribbon back into the area you just covered, both in the front (first layer of fabric) and back (second layer of fabric) (Photo 10 above). Tuck the binding so that it neatly and squarely hits the inside fold of the binding. This will naturally create a corner.
  • Once it is tucked appropriately, you will see the corner. Pin as shown (Photo 11).
  • Now flip the corner over and check the ‘back’ side. You do not want this to be uneven (Photo 12). Unpin, and readjust, making sure the binding is tucked directly into the fold of the binding, then repin (Photo 13).
custom baby blankets tutorial steps
  • Continue with the process until you meet the “anchor” pin where you started (in Photo 7). Unfortunately, I forgot to get a photo of this, so I’m sharing the area after it was sewn, which isn’t perfect, I know (Photo 14). Cut off the excess binding, but leave enough to fold under and cover the unfinished edge of the binding (in Photo 7), and pin for sewing. Again, this is tricky, but worth the effort.
  • Use a zig-zag stitch and sew completely around the blanket. Keep the edge of the binding lined up with the inside of the presser foot as a guide, as shown (Photo 15). This will keep your stitch straight and even.
easy diy custom baby blankets binding being sewn on blanket
  • Sew the corners down only about halfway, starting from the inside of the corner. I made a mistake this time and completely sewed them down… but it’s no biggie!
  • Remove all the pins and, again, be sure to run your hand along the edge to ensure that the baby isn’t going to get stuck with a pin! (No, this hasn’t happened, thankfully.)
  • Trim all excess threads.

And that’s it! You’ve created a custom baby blanket!

The Finished Product – Custom Baby Blanket

Take a gander at my finished product. This blanket is for my now one-year-old grandson. Taking care of Mom made it difficult to get projects like this done.

easy diy custom baby blanket with satin ribbon in jungle and leaf print
The stitches aren’t perfect, but only the perfectionist seamstress would notice! 😉
A dear friend, who is a professional seamstress, is going to help with this next time! Update coming!

These homemade baby blankets measure approximately one yard wide and around 54 inches long, which is standard fabric width. They’re just the right size to accommodate a newborn and provide plenty of room for growth into toddlerhood.

Heck, my oldest grandson (8-years-old) still sleeps with his Grammy blankets, as do all my grandchildren.

What’s the Average Price for Making a Custom Baby Blanket?

To purchase all the necessary materials for making this sweet little baby gift is about $25-35 dollars (or less), depending on where you get the fabric, and what type of fabric you choose.

The Best Ways to Use a Custom Baby Blanket

So, there are a number of reasons and ways to use a DIY baby blanket. Here are just a few:

  • These baby blankets are designed to offer the best of both worlds with their double-sided construction. One side features a breathable cotton print, ideal for maintaining a cool temperature even when paired with the cozy flannel on the other side. The flannel provides excellent insulation for colder weather, ensuring that baby stays snug and warm.
  • The addition of satin binding seems to be ‘addictive’ with babies. They’re drawn to the soft, luxurious feel of satin against their skin, finding it immensely comforting both to touch and to snuggle-up against.
  • Using a double-sided baby blanket as a staple in the cradle or crib proves incredibly convenient for visits and travels. By providing a familiar, larger item with their scent on it, baby feels more at ease, making it easier for them to sleep in new and unfamiliar surroundings.
  • Here’s a bonus tip from my daughter: In the weeks leading up to baby’s arrival, she sleeps with the baby blanket. This transfers her scent onto the blanket, creating a comforting connection for the newborn as they adjust to their new sleep environment in the big wide world!
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Give Baby the Gift of a Handmade Baby Blanket

So, do you think this tradition might start in your home/family? Obviously, I think it’s a great way to welcome new babies into the family.

baby blanket with satin ribbon in jungle and leaf print

And, don’t forget, these custom baby blankets make great gifts at baby showers, too!

signature updated 2022

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    1. Thanks! I’m sure YOU could see my issues, too! 😉 Love you… maybe I’ll have you come over and help me when you get home!

  1. What a great tradition to have in your family, Julie! I think it’s a rule that a child must have a handmade blanket from a loved one to snuggle with and cherish for years to come. I know my boys certainly have some. I love that this post also feels like a wink to your mom. Pinned!

  2. I made one for each of my children and for my son’s blanket I had to sew on the satin binding 3-4 times as he wore them out. He loved the feel and if I didn’t get to it right away I heard about it. Not pleasant.

    1. Yes… that satin binding is a game-changer for babies, and often wears out! I think my mom replaced the satin on one… but the others, she replaced the whole thing when requested, because the fabric was usually worn, too… after many years. So good to hear from you, Fernie. I think of you often!

  3. I love this so much, Julie! And, I love the story behind it! I’ll be featuring it today at Thursday Favorite Things. 🙂

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