Saturday, June 25, 2011

Changing Pad with Pocket Tutorial

My friend is having her first baby girl after three boys and I've been working on a gift bag of homemade goodies for the past few weeks.  Ideas keep coming and the bag keeps getting bigger and bigger.  *laughs*  I sometimes have a tendency to go overboard, but it's fun to have an excuse to whip out something new... and girly.

     The past week or so, I've wanted to make a changing pad, but couldn't find a good tutorial for one with a pocket that fit all of my requirements.  I wanted it to roll up neatly with the pocket tucked inside, and I wanted it to close with a tie.  In the end, I came up with this:

Unrolled, it looks like this:
     Once again, I took pictures along the way, prepared to make a tutorial if it worked.  So glad it did because I only had so much of this fabric...  ;)

1/2 yard of outside fabric
1/2 yard inside fabric
2 packages (3 yds ea.) of extra wide double fold bias tape for binding and ties
2 packages (14" x 18") Heavy weight double-sided fusible interfacing
Thin quilt batting (I used Warm & Natural)
Extra strong thread (I like Gutermann, but whatever you use, it's going to have to be tough.)
Needle for hand-sewing the binding and finishing the pocket
Rotary cutter and mat
Acrylic ruler
Disappearing Fabric marker and/or dressmaker's pencil (depending on fabric color)
Iron and ironing board

Step One- Cut your inner and outer fabric, batting, and interfacing into 12" x 35 1/2" pieces (your interfacing won't be long enough as a single piece, so cut two of them to fit this size.

Step Two-  Lay your batting on the ironing board and then place your interfacing on top of that.  On the very top, lay your fabric, right side up... so you've made a "sandwich".  Follow the instructions on your interfacing to fuse all pieces together.

Step Three- Place the fused pieces fabric side down (quilt batting on top) and use your ruler and disappearing marker to mark the piece 5.75" from the bottom, then 5.75" from that line, mark again, then 6" from that line, then another 6", and a final 6" from that one.  Stitch down each of the lines drawn.  Mark the bottom part (5.75") with a pin... this tells you which side will be your pocket.

Sew along lines (white arrows)
Step Four- Next, use your ruler again to mark 1/4" about the 2nd line from bottom, and 1" above the 3 lines above that one.  Sew.

Step Five- One last time, use your ruler to mark 1" above the very top line.  Sew.
Tired of sewing lines?  I was!  Good news is that's the last "outer fold" line you'll have to sew.  Yay!

Step Six- Cut two 12" pieces of bias tape for your ties.  Open them up on the ironing board and press each end down 1/2", then fold closed and sew all the way around.

Open up bias tape and press ends down about 1/2".  Fold closed and press again.

Sew all the way around to make ties.

Step Seven- Starting at the bottom (pocket area marked with pin), roll your pad up.  With your ruler and dressmaker's pencil or disappearing pen, mark 1" above the edge of the top flap and smack in the middle.  This is where you'll put your top tie.
Step Eight- Move ruler down and line it up with the bottom edge.  1" above bottom edge and smack in the middle, mark where you'll put your lower tie.

Step Nine-  Sew on ties.  I put them to the back edge of each mark, leaving room for the binding.
Step Ten-  Lay inner lining on top of quilt batting and make sure that it's positioned the way you want it to be.  (Print or pattern however you want it to end up). On the side that is opposite of the pocket, use a glass or other rounded object to round off corners... being careful not to cut off ties, trim.  Remove pin that marks pocket.
Step Eleven- Be cautious not to sew or cut ties in this step!  Make sure inner fabric is still lined up then pin in place and sew around.  Trim excess away from seam, being careful not to cut through your stitches or your ties.
Step Twelve- This one's a doozy, so be prepared for a photo bomb that breaks down the binding process.  If you know how to bind, start binding at the pocket side and bind all th way around.  Then skip down to the next step.  If you're new to binding, hopefully these pics will help.... in either case, be careful not to sew your ties to your binding
       Start pinning bias at the middle of the pocket side (I opened my other pack to use on this step to avoid having to add length).  Start sewing a few inches away from where you started pinning it to leave room for connecting bias later.  In this step, you will bind all the way around, mitering the square corners and wrapping around the curves.  Connect at the end (I did a straight line b/c no matter what I do, I can never do the angle connect right), trim excess bias, and steam seam open.
Start sewing seam around where the second pin is (I started sewing where my finger was and didn't have enough room, so move down a couple of inches so it's a little easier for you than it was for me).

To miter your square corners, sew until you're ALMOST at the edge (but not quite), backtack.
Flip up bias so it lines up with the next edge you'll be binding.

Flip edge down, pin in place, and sew.

Curve around edges.  Pin in place and sew.

When you get back to the beginning of your binding, line up the edges on both, mark where they meet, and sew them together, right sides together. 

Trim off excess, being careful not to cut through seam.

Steam seam open.

Step Thirteen- Finish sewing the edge you left open. so you could bind the bias together.
Step Fourteen- Flip bias over and handstitch all the way around (using an invisible stitch) to the top of the changing pad.  Get ready for slightly sore fingers, that interfacing is not fun.
Step Fifteen-  Flip up pocket and sew in place along the inside edge of binding.  I handstitched this too, because the double layer is no joke.  I didn't even attempt it with the machine.  When you've finished one side, sew the bindings of that side together as well using a ladder stitch.
Holding pocket in place.  You'll want to stitch along the top and bottom inside edges of the binding, going through all layers to secure pocket in place.

Once you've sewn up one edge, insert the needle at an angle along your miter to begin sewing the binding together.

Oh, yucky lighting, but you can see how the bindings are now together and "neat".

Now, your baby can look snazzy even during a diaper change.  Enjoy!


  1. Thank you for your detailed tutorial! What a nice professional look. Mine turned out very nice, I'm sure my new DIL will like it.

  2. Great tutorial! I'm not skilled enough to handstitch the bias tape, but it still turned out pretty well. :-)

  3. a great idea and a lovely tutorial...thank you so much!

  4. Love this. I am a new grandma. Might make this to keep at my house. You did a great tutorial! What do you think of facing the fabrics together, sew then turning...instead of binding?

  5. Love this. I am a new grandma. Might make this to keep at my house. You did a great tutorial! What do you think of facing the fabrics together, sew then turning...instead of binding?

  6. I really like this tutorial and want to try it! My only concern is, is this machine washable?