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. πŸ™‚

50 responses to “How to make the Best Bibs”

  1. Brenda Estes Avatar
    Brenda Estes

    I’ve tried and can’t get your fee pattern, I love this bib and want to make it for my great granddaughter. Thank you

    1. Jeremy Holden Avatar
      Jeremy Holden

      Hi Brenda,

      Sorry about that. The links are updated and working again.

  2. Pat Avatar
    Pat

    I can’t get pattern to do anything. I push button it changes color and just sits there. Could you please email me the pattern as I am a little computer challenged

    1. Jeremy Holden Avatar
      Jeremy Holden

      Hi Pat,

      Sorry about that. The links are updated and working now.

  3. DONNA TINKER Avatar
    DONNA TINKER

    I LOVE this bib pattern! Thank you so much for sharing. I wish your tutorial could be saved in PDF.
    Donna Tinker

  4. Doris Avatar
    Doris

    Have made many of these wonderful bibs for my granddaughter β€” she loves them β€” but needs size scaled up. How do I enlarge the pattern so neck and arm holes larger??

    1. Trina Avatar

      Doris, have you ever used a graph to scale things up? Or does your printer have a scaling option?

  5. Missy Avatar
    Missy

    Thanks so much for this tutorial! Can’t wait to make this for my nephew. Also really appreciate the bias binding tutorial link in the comments!

  6. Molly Avatar
    Molly

    How long does it take to make one?

    1. Trina Avatar

      under an hour if you are familiar to sewing!

  7. Rita Avatar
    Rita

    I was wondering if I could use this pattern to make bibs to sell. I would definitely link your site as my reference. πŸ˜‰
    Rita

    1. Trina Avatar

      absolutely, Rita! Go for it, and thanks for asking!

  8. Dolores Avatar
    Dolores

    Hi, Love this bib and would like to make one for my grandniece. How old are the toddlers you made them for. Mine wears a 12T

    1. Trina Avatar

      8 months to 3 years!

  9. Maria-Elena Mendez Avatar
    Maria-Elena Mendez

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

    1. Trina Avatar

      You are so welcome, Maria!

  10. Pat Avatar
    Pat

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

  11. Angela Jackson Avatar
    Angela Jackson

    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.

  12. Rob O'Neill Avatar
    Rob O’Neill

    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.

  13. Jackie Avatar
    Jackie

    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.

  14. Teddy Avatar

    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,

    Teddy

    1. Trina Avatar

      Sorry about that, Teddy–we were having server issues! The pattern is back up now–thanks for your patience!

  15. Gerry Avatar
    Gerry

    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?

    1. Jeremy Holden Avatar
      Jeremy Holden

      Gerry, They are back up now. Thanks for alerting us to the issue.

  16. Nina Adamson Avatar
    Nina Adamson

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

    1. Trina Avatar

      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?

  17. Shannon Avatar
    Shannon

    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!

  18. Tylstenie Avatar
    Tylstenie

    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.

    1. Trina Avatar
      Trina

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

      1. Shannon Avatar
        Shannon

        I was trying to get the pattern and I am receiving the error message as well. Would love the pattern please!

        1. Jeremy Holden Avatar
          Jeremy Holden

          Shannon, They are back up now. Thanks for alerting us to the issue.

  19. Erika Avatar
    Erika

    Great Tutorial! Thanks so much! Can’t wait to hit the thrift store and make a few for my new messy eater!

  20. Carol Southard Avatar

    Thanks for the great tutorial… I was able to follow it and make some bibs for my grand son who is 1 1/2. Thanks for taking the time to create it and share your wonderful pattern. You can view what I made on my blog at http://sewsweetcake.blogspot.com

  21. CelticaDea Avatar

    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 http://pir8.freeservers.com/quilting/CBT/ Although I'll admit, my favorite part is the 'dread pirate roberts' part πŸ™‚

  22. Trina Avatar

    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!

  23. NotYetTheDodo2 Avatar

    Thank you for making this very understandable tutorial – I've made several of the bibs, and they really work! Thanks for sharing!

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/notyetthedodo/5682606685/in/photostream

  24. Abuela Avatar
    Abuela

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

  25. Angie Avatar
    Angie

    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!

  26. Kimberly N Avatar

    Thanks for the great instructions. I made a couple and blogged about it here: http://socialvoice.liveworld.com/forum.jspa?forumID=1100000020

  27. Kimberly Avatar

    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!

  28. Anonymous Avatar
    Anonymous

    I can not wait to make this! It is the best bib I have ever seen. Thanks for sharing your talent with strangers πŸ™‚

  29. Anonymous Avatar
    Anonymous

    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

  30. Ashley Avatar
    Ashley

    You have no idea how much I needed this tutorial! I'm making one TONIGHT. πŸ˜›

  31. Lola....L..O..L..A....lo--oh--luh! Avatar
    Lola….L..O..L..A….lo–oh–luh!

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

  32. Heather Avatar
    Heather

    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.

  33. Trina Avatar
    Trina

    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. πŸ™‚

  34. Will Avatar
    Will

    This is a very good tutorial Trina, so good I could probably make one. :p
    I hope you win the contest.

  35. CVO Avatar
    CVO

    She's a cutie-pie! Are there many toddlers in your neighborhood?

  36. Liv Avatar
    Liv

    Aw, ur so smart!

  37. Julia Marie Avatar
    Julia Marie

    Hey, I never thought of using towels. I'm no creative genius πŸ™‚ That's a really good idea!!

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