How to make the Best Bibs

Best Bibs for babies or toddlers! All you need is a fat quarter of fabric, an old towel, and this tutorial!

A while ago I posted pictures of these great bibs I had made Jesse, and promised a tutorial.So, here you go!

from this mess…

to this!
The Best Bibs Tutorial

Does your toddler (or one that you have sat beside at a recent meal) love to feed himself, yet the act requires a complete change of clothes after every meal? This bib has the best coverage of any bib I have met, is easy to put on, and cute on top of everything else. Basic sewing skills are all you need along with these materials:

– One hand or bath sized terry cloth towel
– A fat quarter of complimenting cotton
– The pattern pieces, which you can download, print off, and tape together at the points marked. Each section piece is sized to print on standard 8>5″ x 11″ paper. Tip- be sure that there is no page scaling in the print dialog box.

Bib Pattern (full size 11″x 25″)
Top section
Middle section
Bottom section

1.Cutting Out I like to use the towels that are velvet-like on the outside, with the loops only on the inside, ’cause food doesn’t get so embedded in the smooth side. Plus, these towels are extra thick, so even if your toddler spills half his juice cup, his shirt still stands a good chance of staying out of the laundry bin for a few more hours. I find mine at the local thrift store.

Fold your towel lengthwise and pin pattern piece along fold, as marked. Cut out.
You may have some nice chunks of towel left, and these I like to save to make into baby face cloths.

2. The Bias Binding Now you will make the binding and ties for the bib. I have found that a fat quarter of fabric, cut on the bias in 1 1/2 inch wide strips makes just enough for one bib. Join all the strips on the diagonal and sew together to make one long piece of bias binding. Iron all the seams open.

(I won’t go into depth on how to make bias binding in this tutorial, but if you have never made it before, you can follow steps 1-8 on this page)

3.Armholes The next step is to bind the edges of the bib. You will start with the ‘armholes’. Pin the bias binding (right sides to the velvet-side of the bib) to one armhole edge, as shown, and sew at a 3/8ths seam.

Turn bib over, fold the binding to encase the raw edge of the terry cloth, and fold the raw edge of the binding under about 3/8ths and top stitch down.

Your seam will just catch the binding on the back side, but will run through the terry cloth on the front, basically hiding the seam.

4. Shaping Once we have bound the armholes, we can shape them. Join the dots marked on the pattern by overlapping the corners and pinning them. Now we will bind the sides of the bib and, in doing so, catch the edges we have pinned together, completely finishing off the armhole.

5. Binding Edges With the bib right side up, pin bias binding right sides together all around the edges and bottom of bib. Sew, beginning on the right.

Repeat the binding method used for the armholes, catching the corners of the armhole with-in the seam.

6. Neck edge and Ties Hooray! We’re almost done. Now you’re ready to make the neck edge and ties.

Fold your remaining bias binding in half to find the center, and pin this, centered, to the neck edge. You should have at least 8 inches extending on either side (if you have a lot of extra, you can trim it down to 12 or 14 in. on each side).

Sew this seam, ending with back-stitching at the end of the neck edge. Now fold the binding in half, lengthwise, right sides together, and pin. To aid in turning the ties, you can encase a length of yarn in the fold, with a knot at the end of the yarn.

Sew at a 3/8 inch seam, taking care not to catch the yarn in your stitches, from end of tie right up to the neck edge. Trim corners of ties, and turn by slowly pulling the end of the yarn.

Now you can finish the neck edge just as you did the other edges, trim the yarn off close to the tips of the ties, and…

… you’re finished!

This one I made for our little neighbor girl, and gave it to her when her family came over for dinner. She is bi-lingual and kept saying “Pretty! Pretty!” in both English and Japanese when I put it on her. :)

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  1. Maria-Elena Mendez says

    I’ve been looking for this pattern for ages!! Thank you for the tutorial, VERY easy to follow.

  2. Pat says

    Hello — Thank you for the tutorial; however, I do not see the pattern pieces to download. Many thanks for your time and assistance.

  3. Angela Jackson says

    That bib is phenomenal. Thanks for generously sharing this tutorial. It looks very easy to do and it makes me want to make one too.

  4. Rob O'Neill says

    Oh, I consider that these baby bibs are very good to have because of the picture of that cute little man using it. I love this bib tutorial of yours and I enjoy reading it. My baby boy is a very messy eater and I am planning to make one of these bibs, but too bad that I can’t have its pattern anymore.

  5. Jackie says

    Very nice, I’m not too good at sewing but like to sew. This looks like I can do for any new babies coming up the ranks. Thanks.

  6. says

    I can’t seem to find the pattern for this darling bib.

    When I click on bib pattern full, or top, middle, bottom section a whole different web page comes up.

    Hope I will be able to get the pattern.

    Thank you for your time,


  7. Gerry says

    I so enjoyed reading your bib tutorial. I would like to make one for my granddaughter… however, I am unable to get the pattern. I keep getting a message stating… “domain name has already expired”. Is your “best bib” pattern still available? If so, how can I get it?

  8. Nina Adamson says

    I love your bibs. I have made several for my grandchildren. Have you ever made any of these for smaller necks?

    • says

      Hi, Nina! I haven’t made these bibs smaller, but you could easily if you cut the bib out on the center fold and just scooch the pattern piece off the fold a bit, effectively narrowing the bib and the neck hole. Then just trim the neck hole to be rounded. Make sense?

  9. Shannon says

    Thank you so much for posting this and keeping it up. I made them for my first child, I made them for my second child, and I’ve made them for a number of friends who have commented on how wonderful my bibs are. You just can’t buy anything like this!

    When they hit about a year, they start ripping regular bibs right off, but these stay on. Thank you so much!

  10. Tylstenie says

    I am to be a new grandparent this year and am excited to make some baby things. i came across this toddler bib tutorial and would love to try it however I get an error message whenever I click on the link to the pattern. Is the pattern still available as I know it has been years since it was first listed here and if so any suggestions as to why I am getting the error message? Thanks to any help.

    • Trina says

      I’ll get tech support (read: my husband) right on that! 😉 Forgive if it takes us a little bit…we have internet difficulties this month. Thanks for letting us know there was a problem!

  11. says

    Thank you, Thank You for this awesome tutorial! I am SOOOOO tired of 'wiping' down bibs. I just want to put them in the washer. This is perfect! I know this is an older posting but the link to the bias binding directions is broken. I've found these directions Although I'll admit, my favorite part is the 'dread pirate roberts' part :)

  12. says

    NotYetTheDodo – you have certainly taken this bib to the next level! thanks for sharing the pictures – Makes me want to get in the studio and make some appliqued bibs. I liked what you said on your flickr site about the terry cloth bibs not needing to be ironed. They always look great straight out of the laundry. Awesome!

  13. Abuela says

    Thank you! I have been looking for this pattern for a while. Your explanations take the fear out of tackling the project.

  14. Angie says

    THANK YOU for posting this. I've been looking for some way to protect my 1-year-old's clothes without him feeling like he's wearing a bib because he HATES all bibs and throws a huge fit when I try to put one on him. I'm definitely going to make this!

  15. says

    Thank you so much for this. I have been needing a bigger, thicker bib for my monkey. He rips off all the velcro ones and pulls the over the head ones back over his head. Plus most of them are soaked though by the time he is finished with his meal. So this could not be the more perfect bib for him. I made one last night so I will be trying it out this morning. Thanks again!

  16. Anonymous says

    Thanks for this tutorial! I am headed to my folks for Christmas and there will with 6 little grandkids that need bibs to cover their good clothes – this looks PERFECT!THANKSBetsy

  17. Lola....L..O..L..A....lo--oh--luh! says

    What a great idea!! I think I'll make a few extra to leave at Grandma's house too! Thanks!

  18. Heather says

    Hey I had one like this when I was little. My aunt made all the cousins craft aprons one Christmas. Ours had pockets but from what I remember this is very close. I had mine for years.

  19. Trina says

    Thanks, Will! I appreciate the feedback.
    CVO- This little girl is the grandchild of some good friends of the Holdens, who live in the park next door to us. It's nice to have another little toddler around – she and Jesse play together in the back yard and it's fun for both of them!

    The only other child in the park is a 6 month old baby in Apt. 12. :)