Handmade baby shower gift set

A couple of weeks ago, I put out a cry for help on Twitter. I needed ideas for a non-gender-specific baby shower present, and it had to be handmade. Obviously I couldn’t show up with a shop bought gift – my reputation would be in tatters.

I got tons of useful advice, and ended up putting together a blanket, burp cloth, and bib. It took me less than a couple of hours, and I thought you guys might be interested in what I came up with. I think they make a nice set together.

(Whether these things are actually useful for babies, I have only the vaguest idea. Opinions welcome!)

baby set


I wanted to buy everything in one place, and I had a gift voucher for The Village Haberdashery, so that’s where I started. Plus, they have an amazing selection of prints, and I didn’t want to choose  boring neutrals or pastel shades just because my present had to be unisex. Babies deserve colour!

I bought:

Baby Blanket

Lots of people recommended Handmade Jane’s baby blanket tutorial, which you can find here. It’s beautifully simple and quick, and seems to have the seal of approval from people who know about baby stuff.

baby blanket

I used cotton flannel instead of fleece, so my blanket is pretty thin. The flannel is super-soft and cushy though, and doesn’t shed bits of lint everywhere like some fabrics I could mention.

Also, can I just say that I LOVE this leaf fabric. I wasn’t expecting a quilting cotton to be so soft and beautiful. I would definitely use a fabric like this from Cloud9 to sew a shirt. The colours are super vibrant.

Burp cloth

Most babies seem pretty watery (and worse) so something to catch leakage was essential. I’m not sure though if a ‘burp cloth’ is an American concept? None of my friends with kids had heard of them by that name.

Anyway, I used this free downloadable pattern from Cloud9, which has a nice rounded area so it fits over your shoulder better.

burp cloth

The back is plain white flannel, and I used an extra layer of cheap flannelette in the middle to make it extra padded. I also sewed two lines down the middle to stop the layers shifting.

The bib

I had enough fabric to make this out entirely out of my yellow fat quarter, but I loved the leaves so much I had to include them. Once again the back is plain white organic flannel, with another layer of cheap flannel in the middle to make it more absorbent.


The pattern is this one from The Purl Bee. It seems very small to me – next time I would use a template with more baby coverage, and possibly a wider neck opening. I used a jersey hammer-on snap as a fastening. These ones from Prym are pretty great and very easy to put in.

Note to self – use woodland animals next time

So there you go, a matching baby set. This cost me about £28 for fabric and just over a hour cutting and sewing time. It went down pretty well at the baby shower, although it didn’t elicit as much coo-ing as a tiny bandana bib made with owl fabric, curses.

You could definitely make it cheaper, although I think it’s worth using a really nice fabric for the blanket top at least. The bib could be made from any old scraps, and so could the burp cloth if you didn’t mind piecing it. I look forward to making many more of these whenever another one of my friends pops out a sprog…

26 thoughts on “Handmade baby shower gift set

  1. Smaller footprints November 12, 2013 / 12:27 PM

    I am sure baby like your design.Because they like to see something colorful,having some pictures,my grandma made something like this for my sister’s baby,and I saw him to play with that leaf.

  2. Daren Pearson November 9, 2013 / 2:05 AM

    Wow the gift set is looking so cool. Handmade gifts have one thing that a ready made one can never have that is the love in making the gift. truly this gift is the best according to me!
    Thanks for the share!!!


  3. minnietheminks November 9, 2013 / 12:23 AM

    How sweet. I just found your blog and have read heaps. I love your style, pattern and fabric choices. I had my first cherub 20 months ago and I used burp cloths all the time. My Mum made him some bibs and because we live overseas ( from Scotland live in Australia) every time I used one I thought of her. hand made gifts are the best.

    • yesilikethat November 11, 2013 / 12:12 PM

      Hey thanks! It is nice to think of the person who made a gift for you whenever you use it 🙂 Hope you are enjoying the slightly warmer weather in Australia!

  4. jamahistory November 9, 2013 / 12:18 AM

    This set is really cute – I love the leaf fabric and colour scheme. Definitely going to steal these the next time a friend of mine has a baby!

  5. Ruth Procter November 8, 2013 / 12:28 PM

    These look great – a friend of mine just had a baby so I might have to borrow some of your ideas, thank you!

  6. Melizza November 8, 2013 / 1:54 AM

    You chose such gorgeous fabrics. And they will all be super duper useful.

    That neck opening for the baby bib is perfect. It can do to be a bit more snug to prevent the baby’s neck getting wet from milk if baby spills while drinking. I made several for my son and it still fits him at 8 months. But yeah, they are a bit short for him now.

    • Melizza November 8, 2013 / 1:56 AM

      Short but still useful 😉

    • yesilikethat November 11, 2013 / 12:15 PM

      Good tips, thanks! Next time I might add another snap so it can be closed up tighter.

  7. EmSewCrazy November 8, 2013 / 12:32 AM

    Love all the bright and cheerful colors. What a fun set.

  8. gingermakes November 7, 2013 / 11:48 PM

    Really cute! I love this little set!

  9. Charise November 7, 2013 / 5:54 PM

    What a thoughtful and awesome gift! I also love the bright colours for babies & think you chose and mixed really well! I’m in Canada and we do use burp cloths, although most of the time I never had anything handy nearby and ended up with spit-up dribbling down my shoulder. Would have loved one (or ten) of these especially with the snazzy neck cut-out!

  10. Kelly November 7, 2013 / 5:40 PM

    Very cute! I have no idea about babies either, but I’m at that age where my friends are starting to have them. I love this gift idea! So far I’ve just been knitting hats that may or may not fit…

  11. Handmade Jane November 7, 2013 / 5:21 PM

    Oh what a lovely present Kathryn! I love the fabrics, they’re so stylish. And glad the tutorial was useful, I’ve made lots of those baby blankets for gifts and they’re always a big success! x

  12. Vicki Kate November 7, 2013 / 5:07 PM

    What a gorgeous set! Suggest they keep the burp cloth near the crib so that those middle of the night feeds are easier. It got to the point where before feeding boy I made sure I had a cloth of some sort for the inevitable burp at the end!

  13. Joanne November 7, 2013 / 4:35 PM

    What a wonderful gift for anyone expecting a baby. Never heard of a burp cloth but that would have come in handy a number of times with my watery one 🙂

  14. Lindsay November 7, 2013 / 4:06 PM

    I have made quite a few of the Purl Bee bibs for friends of mine recently, so easy to make. For newborns they are a little on the big side I think, but usable, then can be still used months later! My friends really liked them and are still using them.

    • yesilikethat November 7, 2013 / 4:12 PM

      Ah that’s good to know – really have no concept of how big a baby’s head is, the neck opening seemed tiny! They’re so quick to make, I love them.

    • Lindsay November 7, 2013 / 4:29 PM

      That’s what I thought, but have seen them in situ so now know it is definitely big enough, and in fact quite large for a newborn. They’ll grow into them soon enough!

  15. shivani November 7, 2013 / 1:58 PM

    lovely set! I agree re babies and colour… milky, wishy-washy pastels are too dull, especially when there are such glorious prints out there – love your selection!

    • yesilikethat November 7, 2013 / 4:13 PM

      Thanks Shivani! Have you been busy making baby stuff? x

  16. Clare Szabo November 7, 2013 / 1:45 PM

    Awww i love this set Kathryn and think you made some excellent fabric choices without knowing the gender. Great job.

    • yesilikethat November 7, 2013 / 4:14 PM

      Aw thanks. My friend seemed chuffed with it anyway! x

  17. Sew Quester November 7, 2013 / 1:43 PM

    Very cheerful and colourful set. I also made burp cloth not so long ago for little baby of friends – his parents said that they used the cloth couple of times, but usually there is a diaper around and they use it more often.

    • yesilikethat November 7, 2013 / 4:13 PM

      I guess that makes sense – if the baby makes a mess you grab whatever’s nearest rather than reaching for the special handmade gift drawer 🙂

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