This car seat cover was a quick, fun project for me. It makes a perfect gift for a new baby. Mine is for my new baby nephew, Isaac. A cover is wonderful for keeping a baby asleep, warm and safe from germs when out in public.
This is a project where you can definitely employ your imagination to embellish it as much or as little as you want. I chose to piece a strip of my back polka dot fabric on the front top and bottom. I also pieced the straps… but that was out of necessity. I only bought 1 yard of the backing fabric, and didn’t have enough fabric complete the straps like I wanted, with backing fabric on one side and front on the other… so I pieced them, and in the end I liked them better than the way I had planned. I love when this happens. I make a mistake or run out of fabric, and the fix ends up being my favorite part of the project. I think it’s because I’m forced to think out of the box and get more creative.
Here is what you need to complete this project:
- 1 1/3 yards 100% cotton fabric or flannel for top
- 1 1/3 yards 100% cotton fabric or flannel for backing
- Sew on Velcro (I prefer not to use Velcro with adhesive, as it gums up my needle.)
- fabric marking pen (either water erasable or disappearing) or fabric marking pencil
And here’s how:
1. Cut top and backing fabrics 35″ wide x 42″ long. If fabric has a directional pattern like my top fabric, make sure to cut it so it goes in the right direction. If you are piecing either the top (like I did) or backing, make sure the finished dimensions are still 35″ wide x 42″ long.
2. Create curved corners by placing a bowl in the corner and tracing with fabric marking pen or pencil, as shown. Cut along tracing line. (This curved corner is more than just decorative, it serves to keep the cover off the ground on the corners. Next time around, I would use a larger bowl and take more off for the curve, as the corners in the front of the car seat touch slightly.)
3. Cut straps 2 from backing and 2 from top 4″ x 9 1/2″. (I was piecing the straps, so my “back” polka dot fabric was 2″, and the “top” fabric was cut 6″ thereby making my finished strap the same dimensions.)
4. If you want to do any piecing (like I’ve done), make sure finished dimensions are same as above.
5. For the main body of the cover, place right sides of front and backing together, stitch together using a 1/4″ seam, leaving a small opening. Note: all seams are 1/4″ unless otherwise noted.
6. Clip curved corners and turn right side out. I like using a chopstick all the way around the seam, as it makes for a nice edge. Press well.
7. Using a scant 1/4 seam, stitch all the way around the outside edge to give it a finished look, and to close the opening.
8. To make the straps place right sides of front and back fabric together. Stitch around, leaving one end open. (There are few added steps if you are making the straps pieced on top, like mine. I stitch down the length, leaving both ends open, I pressed the seams out, turned it right side out, and pressed so the straps looked even. Then I turned it wrong sides together again and closed one end. Then continue to step 9)
9. Clip corners and turn right side out. (Again I use chopstick) Press well.
10. Close opening. Repeat steps 8-10 for second strap.
11. Fold straps to check placement of Velcro, pin and stitch into place. I made sure the end which I closed the opening was on the inside and therefore hidden.
12. Press straps in half, to act as a guide. For placement of stitching on the straps (to adhere the straps to the body), measure 4 1/4″ inches in from both sides and draw a line with fabric marking pen as shown below.
13. For placement of straps measure 19″ inches from the top and 11 1/2″ from each side. There should be about 5 1/2″ between each strap and about 21″ from the strap to the bottom. If you are visual like me, see Illustration for strap placement. Pin straps into place. Stitch and then reinforce stitching. (The stitching will be one inch apart, and I stitched in a box shape.)
And it’s done! Remember, you really can use your imagination to embellish this cover. You can add buttons, rickrack, or ribbon. As usual, I like simplicity, and the piecing was enough embellishment for me.
Here’s a quick glimpse of the inside.
Now it’s time to wrap it up and deliver it to my dear sweet nephew.