Finished Swaddle blanket in Wild Ones flannel

In my last post, I mentioned that I was going to be making a swaddle blanket for a friend expecting her second baby this coming March. Well, over the weekend I attempted this project. I say attempted because it was much more of a challenge than I had anticipated.

The pattern that I used was from the Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book. After looking it over briefly, I decided that it seemed simple enough. Cut out the fabric, sew the swaddle ties together with a French seam, and sew the bias tape on. I knew the bias tape would be tricky, but was not expecting it to be this painful! The instructions called for ¼” bias tape. I have never used bias tape before, and since I am still perfecting the art of sewing in a straight line, I might have been better off with a thicker bias tape. I found it really tricky not only to sew it onto the fabric, but even pinning it on and trying to keep the fabric tucked within the tape was a challenge. Every time I came to a rounded corner the bias tape would sort of flip the fabric down. This made sewing difficult as it kept wanting to bunch as I tried to straighten it out. I was excited after I got around the first corner because it looked great! And then I realized the fabric wasn’t sewn in all the way.

I wasn’t sure how to handle part of the swaddle ties with the bias tape. At one point the straight edge meets at a 90° angle and goes directly into a curve. I didn’t know if it was best to keep the bias tape all one piece or if cutting it and sewing a seam would be more ideal. I couldn’t seem to keep it along the fabric without it bunching while being all one piece, so I decided cutting and piecing would be the way to go. I’m not sure if what I did was right or not, but it seemed to work. I made a small slit in the bias to fit over top of the previously laid bias tape to help it lay down better.

I’m not sure if this is a common problem or not, but as I was sewing the bias tape on, my machine kept coming unthreaded. I’ve never had this problem before so I didn’t know if it was related to the tape or not. I do have a pretty old machine that I inherited from my grandmother when she passed. I really should probably invest in a new machine, but I love the fact that she used to create things on here long before I called it mine.  Ultimately, here is what the finished project shown in the book looks like:

Sadly, I don’t have a baby to model this on, and I really don’t think my cat would enjoy being swaddled all that much, so I’ve included a couple close-up shots to show some of the areas I was pleased with. 

Overall, I think the project would be great for anyone with a little bias tape experience. Since it was my first time trying it, I think it was a good starter project. I’m not too crazy about jumping back into the world of bias tape anytime soon (at least not with ¼“!), but I really like the nice and clean finished edge it gave the final product. There may tbe some messy and crooked seams, but it’s still a super cuddly blanket thanks to the Wild Ones flannel!  I know my friend’s new baby is going to love it.


  1. Tonya - February 15, 2012

    looks great, love the idea of this swaddle blanket

  2. Rose Ann - February 15, 2012

    Looks great. I know that if I sew at a slower speed for any length of time, my machine comes unthreaded too. Mine is only 4 years old. I was told that that happens…. You did a good job, thanks for sharing!

  3. Linda Christianson - February 17, 2012

    If I made any of these for newborns, I would just serge the edge. That binding looks like work and extra cost. The binding did give neat accent.

  4. Lynda - February 23, 2012

    What a great project!
    I think I would have just made some Bias stripping of my own. Because it would probably be a fabric that would not be as densely woven it might have a little more give.
    But, be that as it may, you did a great job.
    Where did you get the pattern?

  5. Katrina from Connecting Threads - February 23, 2012

    Hi Lynda – The pattern is in the Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders book by by Rebecca Yaker and Patricia Hoskins. If you’re interested it is for sale on our site.
    There are lots of other great projects in there too! 🙂

  6. CHRISTINA MACKENZIE - February 23, 2012

    It’s been years since I have done sewing for infants but when I did I used a fancy stitch to put the bias tape on. It gave the project extra dimention and made the tape more secure. Also rather than pin it all and sew, I would ease the fabric in a bit at a time.

  7. Mary - June 25, 2012

    Wow, this looks very fancy. Great job in creating a wonderful swaddle blanket. I’ll give this a project a try.