I grew up in a family of passionate arts and crafts lovers. Most of the sewers in my family were self taught so I was lucky to get a head start in sewing at a young age. My mom taught us a few simple tricks when we were little and I was able to sew small blankets and a cute little cat pillow for myself. 🙂
Nonetheless, I wouldn’t classify myself as an expert sewer, more so a beginning intermediate (if that’s a thing). I do know that with a little time and patience, even a beginner can sew amazing things! With that being said, I am going to walk you through my experience using a favorite cloth diaper cover pattern by SewBaby: the Snap Happy cloth diaper cover pattern.
Note: This post is not sponsored by SewBaby, however this post contains affiliate links, which means that if you buy something I may receive a small commission that helps keep this blog running. I am not able to provide the exact measurements or pattern, and therefore, it is recommended that you have the pattern on hand for best results. You can view it on Amazon here. Thank you.
How to Sew a Cloth Diaper Cover
The Snap Happy pattern includes 5 adjustable sizes for babies ranging from birth to 35lbs. I chose to use the medium size pattern, recommended for 14-22lb babies, and I’m still using the tightest setting on size medium even though my baby weighs 24lbs. I have a feeling they will last a lot longer, up to 30lbs.
- Waterproof Fabric: 1 main piece, 2 leg gusset pieces
- 100% Cotton Fabric: 1 main piece, 2 leg gusset pieces
- Bias Tape, extra wide double fold
- Open Ring Snaps (I used Babyville Boutique snaps and pliers without a problem, but I know a lot of people who prefer KAM snaps and pliers.)
- Elastic, 1/4″ width
I used this pattern to create two different diaper covers: one with two layers of waterproof PUL and the other with PUL and 100% cotton. It is recommended to use a layer of 100% cotton to make the diaper more breathable though my baby hasn’t had any diaper rash issues using either diaper. As for leaks, both of my diapers hold up fairly well. I use my gDiaper cloth inserts with them. (View my gDiaper cloth diaper series for more information on that brand.)
Remember, if you are a beginner, TAKE YOUR TIME. I spent five hours making my first diaper… I was also simultaneously attending to my newborn and two year old, which is why I only ended up making two diapers total! I wish I would have of found this pattern before my baby was born because I would have made a lot more. It’s easy! Are you ready to sew a cloth diaper? I’m sure you can beat my five hour mark, especially with help from my pictures! 🙂
To begin, cut out the Snap Happy cloth diaper cover pattern in your desired size, pin them to the fabric, and cut out the pieces.
Sewing Leg Gussets
Step 1: Stitch leg gusset pieces with wrong sides of fabric together along the curved edge.
Step 2: Pin bias tape along the straight edge. Make sure both fabric pieces are completely inside the fold of the bias tape. Zigzag stitch close to the edge.
Step 3: Cut a piece of elastic 5.5″-7.5″ depending on diaper size. Thread elastic through the opening in bias tape using a safety pin.
Step 4: Bar tack each end of the elastic to hold it in place.
Sewing Diaper Cover
Step 5: Set leg gussets aside. Place the two large pieces of fabric with wrong sides together. Stretch elastic evenly between two layers of fabric. Bar tack lengthwise 4-5 stitches back and forth 3 times. Do NOT sew the entire length of the elastic.
Step 6a (extra step to make it easier): Pin two large pieces of fabric with wrong sides together. Stitch around the entire edge.
Sewing Leg Gussets & Diaper Cover Together
Step 6b: Pin ungathered raw edges of leg gussets to large cover piece. Right sides of fabric will be together. The leg gussets will be folded to the inside of the diaper cover. They are placed along the sides of the diaper. The pattern shows an X to mark the exact placement.
Step 6c: Pin bias tape around the entire edge of the cover. Be very careful around the leg gussets. Make sure all fabric is within the bias tape.
Step 7: Zigzag stitch close to the raw edge of the bias tape around the entire diaper cover. SewBaby recommends using an “even feed foot” if you have that attachment. (I did not use one.)
Add Snaps: Voila, A Fancy New Cloth Diaper to Add to Your Stash!
Step 8: Attach 2 open snap caps and bulbs to each side of the wide end of the diaper cover.
Step 9: Attach 4 open prong rings and sockets to each side of the narrow end of the diaper cover. They should be placed in the shape of a square. This creates two adjustable sizes on your diaper.
Feel free to get creative and add lace or ruffles to the back of your diaper!
(Cute baby pictures optional!)