Making your own baby crib bumpers can not only save you A LOT of money, but it will definitely lend some unique personality and style to your nursery. If you’ve been out shopping around for your baby crib bedding then it is no news to you that this stuff is expensive. And for what? Something you can only keep in there for a few months anyways, until it becomes a safety hazard.
It really isn’t too hard to do. If you have no sewing experience this truly is not a bad project to start with, either.
I want to show you how to make your own crib bumpers, but not only that, how to make your own crib bumper pattern too. It’s really easy. Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 1/2 – 2 yards of fabric
- Cotton batting or foam sheets
- Plain white printer paper or newspaper/pattern making paper
- Ruler and/or measuring tape
The first thing we are going to do is make a pattern for your crib bumpers. This really is pretty easy. First things first, measure the crib. You need to know exactly how long each side is. You will need to make your pattern 1/2 longer on each side. So whatever the length is add 1″, whatever the width, add 1″.
You also need to figure out just how deep you want the bumpers to be. This is entirely up to you. I made my bumpers for a very small crib that was somewhere in between a regular sized crib and a bassinet, so I made mine the width of the printer paper (8 1/2″). To create the pattern all you will do is tape the papers end on end. Trim them to make them the length of the side of the crib plus one inch. If you are making them width wise larger than an 8 1/2″ sheet of paper then you will have to make two and tape them together to make the right dimensions.
Repeat this step all over again for the width side of the crib. Now go back and hold them up to the crib and make a mark where the crib bumper pads ties should be. You need to hold it up to the crib so you know the tie will line up with the bars correctly.
Lay your fabric down on a flat workspace. You should fold the fabric in half so that the front is facing inwards towards itself. Now lay a sheet of cotton batting over this. The cotton batting can be whatever weight you want. It all depends on how thick you want your bumpers to be. You can also buy organic and natural bumpers for organic baby bedding.
Pin the crib bumpers patterns down over both the fabric and the batting. Use the patterns as guidelines to cut the fabrics and batting. Cut two sets for the sides of the crib and two for the ends. Pin them all back together.
Now to add the ribbons for ties. You could sew ties that match the fabric you are using, but I prefer ribbon as it is easier and I just like the decorative accent. Cut the ribbon into 7-10 inch lengths. Make them all the same length and make pairs of two at a time. all together you will have 12 pairs of lengths of ribbon.
This next part is slightly tricky to explain. You want to pin the ribbons in place where you want them to be sewed. The ribbons need to be laid inside in between the fabric pieces.
Pin one set to the top and one to the bottom where you marked off on the pattern for the ties to be sewed. About an inch should stick out from the top and bottom of the fabric but the rest should be tucked neatly inside. If you must, pin the ends in place so they do not accidentally get sewed in place.
Now all you have to do is sew the bumpers together! There are two ways to go about this. For an easy solution (what I did with my crib bumper pads) simply sew each piece together by stitching around the entire outside of each pattern piece, leaving a 1-2″ opening for turning the fabrics inside out. Make sure and stitch 1/2 inch in from the edge to go along with the pattern you made. Remember, we added exactly 1 inch extra to each pattern piece. Turn each piece so the fronts are facing outside.
Pin the openings shut and hand stitch them. To finish the whole project off all you need do is pin the crib bumpers together and hand stitch them carefully. When you place the bumper pads into the crib just have the hand stitched edges facing inwards and they will never be noticed.
For a much more finished baby bumper, first just the very tops of the crib bumpers. Open them all up, being careful to keep the ribbons pinned in place, and then sew each of the ends together all except one (so they do not actually form a complete circle).
Fold them back in place and re-pin. Now sew the entire bottom edge of the bumpers. Sew the ends too. One end can be completely sewed shut, but the other must be left with a 1-2″ opening for turning. Turn the entire piece inside out so the front is facing out. Now hand stitch the opening shut and hand stitch the last two ends together.