DIY Taggy comfort blanket & drawstring bag
I’m so stoked with the response to my new book Sewing For Babies & Children – that I wanted to share one of my fave mini makes with y’all…so, here’s a step-by-step guide to make your own Taggy comfort blanket and drawstring bag!
Babies love the tactile feel of ribbon tags, and teamed with the ultra-snuggly textured backing this makes the perfect comfort blanket. Complete with its own mini drawstring bag, it is ready to tote or to gift!
YOU WILL NEED
For the blanket
• 21-in. (52-cm) square of cotton print fabric
• 21-in. (52-cm) square of textured minky or “cuddle” fleece
• Five 20-in. (50-cm) lengths of ribbon in different finishes and colors
For the drawstring bag
• Two 9½ x 10¼ -in. (24.5 x 27-cm) pieces of main fabric
• Two 3 x 10-½ in. (8 x 24.5-cm) strips of contrast fabric in a solid color
• Two 2 x 21-in. (5 x 52-cm) strips of fabric or two 21-in. (52-cm) lengths of ribbon for the ties
• Coordinating thread
• Sewing machine
• Dressmaking scissors or rotary cutter, cutting mat, and ruler
• Hand sewing needle
• Safety pin
Taggie Blanket: 20 in. (50 cm) square
Drawstring bag: 8½ x 10¾ in. (22.5 x 28 cm)
Take a 3⁄8-in. (1-cm) seam allowance throughout unless otherwise stated.
TAGGIE COMFORT BLANKET
1 Zig-zag stitch all around the cotton print and fleece fabrics to secure the raw edges. Press each piece.
2 Cut each of the ribbons into four 4¾ in. (12-cm) lengths, so that you have 20 pieces in total. Fold each ribbon in half. Aligning the raw edges, pin five pieces (one of each ribbon) along each edge of the right side of the cotton print fabric, spacing them evenly. Set your machine to a straight stitch and stitch all around the print fabric ¼ in. (5 mm) from the edge to secure the ribbons in place. Remove the pins.
3 With right sides together and aligning the raw edges, pin the fleece backing fabric to the print fabric; the ribbons will be sandwiched in between. Machine stitch around the edge of the fabrics, leaving a 2-in. (5-cm) gap in the center of one side. Snip off the corners to reduce the bulk and trim any bulky seams.
TIP Using a rotary cutter and ruler is a great way to cut very exact straight lines, so it is ideal for items like this that need to be precise.
4 Turn the blanket right side out through the gap and use a knitting needle to ease out the four corners. Fold in the seam allowance around the gap in the seam, press, and pin in place. Slipstitch the gap closed.
5 Set your machine to a longer stitch (1⁄8 in./3 mm) and topstitch around the blanket ¼ in. (5 mm) from the edge, taking care to pivot at the corners.
MAKE IT YOURS
Add in more ribbons or other tactile elements such as a pom-pom trim to make a more sensory blanket.
1 Zig-zag stitch all around the main and contrast fabrics to secure the raw edges. Press each piece.
2 Pin the main fabrics right sides together, aligning the raw edges. Set your machine to a straight stitch. Stitch from the upper edge down one long side, across the base, and up the second long side, leaving the top edge unstitched.
TIP Sewing the ribbons in place before stitching the main and backing fabrics together prevents the ribbons from sliding apart and helps to create a neat finish.
3 On each short end of the solid color strips, fold over 3⁄8 in. (1 cm) to the wrong side and press. Select a longer stitch (1⁄8 in./3 mm) on your sewing machine and topstitch across each end ¼ in. (5 mm) from the fold to secure.
4 Turn the bag right side out. Fold the contrast strips in half widthwise, wrong sides together, and press to set the folds. Aligning the raw edges, pin one strip to the top edge of each side of the bag. If possible, remove the extension part of the machine and work with the free arm. Set your stitch length back to normal and stitch the contrast strips to the top of the bag.
5 Press the contrast strips up and press the seam allowances down, toward the bag. Select a longer stitch (1⁄8 in./3 mm) on your sewing machine and topstitch around the top edge of the main fabric, ¼ in. (5 mm) from the seam.
6 If you’re making the ties from the contrast fabric, fold and press each strip in the same way as you would when making bias binding. Set your stitch length back to normal and stitch along the long unfolded edge to secure. Feed one tie through each casing and knot at the sides to secure.
Snip away all remaining thread ends to neaten. Fold the blanket neatly into thirds, slip it into the bag, and draw up the ties.