For this month’s Baby Sew Along pattern, I’m sharing an easy and cute DIY tag blanket with fabric tags. This is a beginner-friendly sewing pattern made from two fat quarters and about an eighth yard of fabric (or a third fat quarter, or some pieces of scrap fabric). This makes a little lovey that baby can rest on for tummy time while pulling on the fabric tags.
This post contains affiliate links. I may receive compensation (at no added cost to you) if you make a purchase using these links. This post is sponsored by Baby Lock and is part of our ongoing collaboration. All opinions and thoughts are my own. Additional supplies for this project were provided by Cricut, Fairfield, and Michael Miller Fabrics.
With many parents now following the medical advice to have babies sleep on their backs, it’s also important to let infants have some supervised time on their tummies each day to build their motor skills and to get in activity. Tag blankets provide a soft surface for tummy time and the tags can provide some visual stimulation and give baby a chance to touch, hold, and pull the tags.
As baby gets older, this little blanket can be used as a comforting lovey. It’s portable enough to bring along as a changing mat, too.
If you pick cute fabrics, it’s also a project that can just brighten up the room!
This is the fourth in the Baby Sew Along. Are you just hearing about the Baby Sew Along? Get all the details here.
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DIY Tag Blanket
Sewing Project by Underground Crafter
This simple tag blanket uses less than a yard of fabric and can provide hours of supervised stimulation and comfort for baby. This is the fourth pattern in the Baby Sew Along.
- Approximately 16” (40.5 cm) x 20” (51 cm) after quilting, not including tags.
- Sewing machine with needle such as Baby Lock Jubilant. (Read my review of the Jubilant here.)
- Cricut 45 mm Rotary Cutter, Acrylic Ruler, and Cutting Mat OR fabric scissors and marking pen.
- Iron and iron-safe surface.
- Clover Mini Wonder Clips or Flower Head Pins.
- Clover 1/2″ Bias Tape Maker (optional, but makes the process much easier!).
- Basic sewing supplies (seam ripper, thread snips, etc.).
- 100% cotton fabric for front, back, and fabric tags.
- I used 2 fat quarters from the Michael Miller Fabrics Frosty Marbled Hash fat quarter bundle from the Hash Dot collection for the front and back, and approximately 1/8 yard in Enjoy the Little Things in White from the Black & White collection. Ask for these fabrics at your local quilt shop or shop online at Fat Quarter Shop or Fabric.com.
- Alternatively, you can use another fat quarter for the tags, or scrap fabrics sewn together into a 1” (2.5 cm) strip approximately 60” (152.5 cm) long.
- Fairfield Quilter’s 80/20 Batting – Small 45″ x 60″.
- 100% cotton thread in your choice of color for stitching and bobbin. I used white.
- Iron your fabric to remove creases and wrinkles.
- For the fabric tags, cut 1” strips until you will have a total length approximately 60” (152.5 cm) long. Note: You do not need to cut on the bias for this project. It’s confusing because I will keep referring to a “bias tape maker,” but we are really just making folded fabric tape which we will use as tags. Also, if you plan to use double-fold fabric tape for another sewing or craft project, you may want to cut extra strips so you can prepare the fabric tape now.
- Layer your fat quarters for the front and back over the batting. Cut through all layers until your project is the size of the smallest layer.
Prepare Fabric Tape for Tags
- Sew your 1″ fabric strips together along the short edges using a 1/4″ seam sewn with the right sides together.
- If using the Clover 1/2″ Bias Tape Maker, follow package instructions to feed the fabric into the bias tape maker, or watch this video by National Sewing Circle for more details.
- Use your iron to press the tape following the package instructions. Tip: If you don’t want to burn your fingers, be sure to hold the bias tape maker by the handle as the rest of it can get hot from the iron.
- If you don’t have a bias tape maker, check out this video by Create with Claudia for 5 ways to make fabric tape without a bias tape maker. Again, remember that for this project, the fabric can be cut straight and not on the bias.
- When this step is finished, you’ll have single-fold, 1/2″ fabric tape.
- To make the fabric tape stronger so the tags don’t open when baby plays with them, we’re going to double fold the tape. Fold the fabric tape over again, with the seam at the center.
- Sew through all layers to create double-fold, 1/4″ fabric tape.
- Cut the fabric tape into 12 pieces for tags, each measuring about 5” (13 cm) long. Lengths for these tags do not have to be exact.
Prepare Blanket for Sewing
- Place your batting on the bottom and layer fabric for the top of your blanket right side up on top of the batting. Use Clover Mini Wonder Clips or Flower Head Pins to attach fabric tape tags on top of the fabric piece as follows. Fold each piece of fabric tape. Position the raw edge so that it aligns with the raw edge of the fabric. (In other words, the fold of the tag should be facing into the fabric for the top of the blanket and away from the edges you will sew.) Tip: Use fewer tags on the short edges to make it easier to assemble the final blanket.
- Layer fabric for the bottom of your blanket wrong side up on top of the fabric for the top of your blanket. (In other words, the blanket fabric should be right sides together.) Use Clover Mini Wonder Clips or Flower Head Pins to pin the top layer of fabric to the rest of the quilt sandwich, being careful not to reposition the fabric tags.
Sew and Quilt the Blanket
- Starting at short edge just above the final fabric tag on that side, sew down that side through all layers with a 1/2″ seam. Note that you may need to move slowly around the tags as those sections will be much thicker than the rest of the project.
- Continue sewing through all layers with a 1/2″ seam on the next long edge, the next short edge, and the next long edge. When you turn to the first edge, finish sewing just after the last fabric tag on that side, leaving an opening about 3” (7.5 cm) wide for turning.
- Pull the fabric through the opening so that the right sides are facing out.
- Once the fabric is right side out, it will be quite wrinkled so you’ll want to iron it again on both sides of the blanket.
- Sew a 1/4″ top stitch around all 4 sides, being sure that you seam through the opening you left for turning the fabric right side out.
- Quilt the top of your blanket as you like, following the instructions on your batting for how many inches apart your stitches should be. I did mine free form in diagonal and then straight because the baby doesn’t mind how your stitches look and I find that more relaxing. However, my quilt lines aren’t parallel or equally spaced, and I know that is troubling for some people.
- If you are such a person, here are some more orderly quilting options.
- Use the Stitch Guide Foot (at the bottom left in the photo below) from Baby Lock’s Quilting 6 Foot Kit collection of presser feet. Line the guide up with your top stitch border on the long edge to start. Continue to line up the guide with your finished stitch rows to create your horizontal lines. Then, line the guide up with your top stitch border on the short edge and repeat to create your vertical lines.
- Alternatively, use a fabric pencil or erasable fabric marker to set up your quilting lines before you get started, and then stitch on your quilting lines.
- You can find out more about presser feet options in my Sewing Machine Presser Foot Guide.