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Baby Burp Cloth Tutorial

Any new moms out there? Or moms with newborns at home? Listen up, because this baby burp cloth tutorial is for you. My babies are all quite the little spitter-uppers. Anyone else have babies that spit up all the time? I have a burp cloth in practically every room, on the car seat, the bouncer, and 2 in the diaper bag. Ugh, spit up. I love to use cloth diapers because they soak everything up. Instead of leaving them white and plain, I thought I’d let you in on how I frilly them up a bit. They turn out so adorable.

Baby Burp Cloth Tutorial

I’ve had flannel burp cloths in the past, and even though they’re super cute, the spit up tends to roll off the cloth instead of getting sucked in. So I go for the cloth diapers sold in the baby section of almost all stores. I don’t think the “ply” matters much, there’s 3 or 4 ply and they both do the job. You’ll be surprised how easy these are to make yourself.

These darling burp clothes make perfect gifts for baby showers. Pair them with some diapers, pacifiers, and brownie mix for a late night snack for new moms. Your mom friends will thank you.

Baby Burp Cloth Tutorial


  • Cloth Diapers
  • Ribbon or Ric Rac
  • Quilt Binding
  • Sewing Machine with thread to match the ribbon

Baby Burp Cloth Tutorial


First, get out a cloth diaper. Then choose a ribbon to use and cut two strips to the length of the cloth. Starting at the top of one of the seams, sew right down the middle of the ribbon all the way down. Do this for both ends. I only sew ribbon on one side and if the thread shows through to the other side, that just adds color to the other side.

Next, measure and cut your quilt binding for the top and bottom. Fold it over and sew. I like to use a zig-zag stitch to give it a little flare. Then repeat with the other end of the cloth. I don’t worry about the open ends on each corner. (This bottom burp cloth is all wrinkly because it’s been washed.)

Now you’re done. But if you have a spitter like me, you’ll need to make about 7 more of these! They are so worth it though aren’t they? Look how cute she is. What are your favorite baby product must-haves?


  1. My Mom made a bunch of these for our first baby – it wasn’t from a cloth diaper, but she did sew cute ribbons onto each. We needed a lot of them!

  2. I love your idea, and i was wanting to do something like this for my daughters baby shower but I dont have a sewing machine thats working and i was woundering if I could use fabric glue and would it hold up in the washer . if so what brand of glue do you sagest.
    Hope you can help me. laura.

    1. I’ve never used fabric glue, so I’m not sure how it would hold up. Although I’m assuming it’s made for just that, to be able to wear and wash. I would look at the box of the glue and just make sure. Then I would think it would be fine to use.

  3. Clarification on the ribbon part – I meant the sides of the ribbon would life up, not the ends. Thanks again for answering!

  4. Can anyone explain how to finish the ends of the quilt binding/bias tape? Do you just tuck any extra into the folded part and then sew the ends shut? I don’t think I explained that well…its difficult to explain.

    Second question, for the ribbon – do you use some sort of fabric glue and then just stitch down the middle? It would seem that if you’re only doing one stitch down the middle that the ends would lift up. What do you all do?


  5. I have been sewing for years and about 6 years ago I started making these cloths. I now have an embrodiery module on my machine so I have begun to add little phrases to each cloth. New mothers always love these!

    Keep sewing!

  6. I love the idea of using these as baby shower decorations. They would make a beautiful garland hung over the fireplace and then mom to be can use them after the baby shower to care for her baby. Great gift from the baby shower hostess too!

  7. Im a newbie, little internet knowledge. Being a senior I have allmost no famuly is hard. I donate most of the things I make. Donate to causes, church Organizations. I appreciate your sharing nof these cute ideas and pretty easy too. LUV.

  8. My sewing machine has several disks in which to embroider.
    I’ve bought the cloth diapers and embroidered around the edges.
    I used several patterns, blue balloons, yellow ducks , etc.

    The theme for my nieces shower was yellow ducks. I made her a dozen
    burp towels with the ducks. I also bought white face cloths and embroidered
    a row of ducks about a 1/4 of the way uo on the facecloth. I made two separate baskets
    with them. They were a big hit!

    I like the idea of the rick – rack and seam binding, can’t wait to try them.

    Thanks for another great idea!

  9. To address Cab’s questions, one row if stitching down the middle of the trim is adequate for a narrow trim but on a wider,stitch near both edges.
    Trim will shrink at a different rate than the diaper but it’s much more difficult to work with a prewashed diaper.
    Red dyes bleed the most but it never hurts to test any color for bleeding. A sheet of Shout’s Color Catcher in the wash works well.
    Couldn’t find the multi- ply diapers so put two diapers together, folded in half and then stitched two sides together through all four layers. Turned right side out and moved that seam into the lengthwise middle of the tube. Strips of fabric with edges pressed under could be topstitched in place of ribbon or in addition to it or rick rack. Enclose the open in strips of fabric or the quilt binding. Used strips of fabric that matched a nursing mother cover-up I also made.

  10. So cute and easy! I made several of these for my friend’s baby shower, HUGE hit! Now I am getting requests from all of our friends! THANK YOU FOR THE TUTORIAL!! c:

  11. This reminded me of a burp cloth I received with my first child (24 years ago) and I haven’t seen one like it since. A lady across the street from us brought over a cute little burp cloth made out of white terry cloth that she had embroidered my daughters name on one side “Hi, my name is …….” and on the other side is said “Oh, excuse me!” I got so many compliments on that cute little cloth.

  12. Cute ideas I have been making these for a few years but always looking for other ideas. One idea is to dye the white cloths with a Rit Color Dye of your choice that way when the spit stains the cloth you won’t be able to see it. Dye the cloth diapers first before adding embellishments. :)

  13. Frosti – I haven’t had any of these bleed, but it will depend on the ribbon you use. The binding shouldn’t bleed, and most ribbons shouldn’t either. But it is always good to do a test and wash just one in the sink or washing machine.

  14. Hey! Thanks for this tutorial! I just got charged by my aunt to make burp cloths for her twin 6 month olds, as she is moving and wanted a change. Usually she uses old blankets, but cloth diapers are so creative! These are so simple, but they work so well. I was also thinking I might stencil their names on them, but i’d need to buy fabric markers. Does anyone know how to make sure they don’t bleed???


  15. HOw cute!!! I just discovered this website and am hooked!!! I can’t wait to make this for my little boy on the way. And to make them as baby shower gifts. fun! I have no clue how to sew but I think this is one I can start with for sure. Thanks a ton!!!!

  16. This is a great idea. I was looking into embroidering a few burp cloths, but this is much easier and less time-consuming. I know a lot of expecting moms, so I will take your idea and run with it! Do you mind if I share on my blog? I will put a link to your site and your name. Thank you so much!

  17. Thank you so much for sharing this great idea! I just made my first one and it really was super easy. I can’t wait to get creative and pick out more materials to make the rest of them!

  18. Your idea is wonderfully simple. And I totally agree about the baby spit up – my babies come charged and ready for the long haul in the spit up department! I too use only cloth diapers because the flannel ones, while cute, just do not do the job. I use wider ribbon and sew down both sides of the ribbon to keep it from curling. I add bows, applique shapes (hearts usually) or simple designs (cars, trains, baby bottle, diaper pin, etc.) in varying sizes to add visual interest for the babies. (These are usually the ones I give away for gifts or take out into public; the simple ones stay at home to mop up the big spits.) I’ve also picked up remnants of large prints of bugs, lizards and fish, cut them out and appliqued them onto the diapers. I have a serger and so I use coordinating thread and serge around all four edges for the finishing touch. They still sew up fast and look very impressive.

  19. Just made some this weekend for a friend. So cute and so easy. Yours look so much better than mine…as this was my first time with quilt binding. But I do have to say they were easy to do!

  20. – I use cloth diapers for burp rags also! Decorated them with paint/stencils. They are very cute and work very well! I really like what you did with them also! Your daughter is beautiful! (Mine has hair just like hers.. and looks a lot a like except she’s got really blue eyes)!

  21. Question? Do you have to launder the burp cloth in a particular way so the quilt bindings bleed on the white diaper? I bought really vivid colors for edges and worry they will bleed.


  22. I’m making them to use as baby shower decor…something to put centerpieces or flowers on or roll up and use as balloon weights, and then the mommy to be can take home, wash and use.

  23. This is such a cute way to take plain burp clothes and make then your own. I guess the possibilities are endless if you are creative. These would make a great baby shower gift for a friend or family member as well.

  24. I am getting ready to make a few burp cloths with 7/8 ribbon but wondering if anyone has tried Heat n Bond to secure the ribbon?

  25. I just went to wal-mart to pick up some cloth diapers for this specific purpose! My little one is a huge spitter too. I was in dire need of some burp cloths and yours are the coolest ones I’ve seen! Wish I came across them before I started working on these flannel ones.


  26. I just stumbled across this tutorial and it’s exactly what I was looking for. We were surprised to find out that we’re expecting, being that we thought we were done. :-O But I think it would be really fun to teach my oldest 2 (8 1/2 and 7) to make these. It’ll be one of our summer projects and they’ll be excited that they’re making something for the baby. :-)

  27. Courtey – How thick is your ribbon? I’ve used a ribbon that is a little thicker than a thin one, or even ric-rac is thicker and it works just fine. If you have a ribbon that’s too thick, you may have trouble getting your needle to go through it. If it goes through fine, it should work great.

    Although, for the finished look, I have had a thicker ribbon curl more after washing. It’s still cute, but the thicker the ribbon, the more it curls after washing. The ric-rac didn’t curl, if you were trying that!

  28. I love your burp cloths and have begun to make them with my newly inherited sewing machine. With thinner ribbon I sew right down the middle like instructed. What about with a bit thicker ribbon?

  29. Hi, I don’t know how to sew but I will buy a sewing machine to create things like this. I know I will learn…

  30. Just wanted to thank you. I made these for my own children a really long time ago, Now my daughter wants some for her babies. I can’t find the cute baby printed ribbon anywhere and wanted the burp cloths to be cute. Thanks for the tips. My grandson is now stylin’ and profilin’

    S. Fodali

  31. Ok, sorry – now I see in the picture that your quilt binding is 7/8″ thick, but I couldn’t find any in the light pink color I needed (like yours) at that width. What to do??? Hoping to get this done for a shower this weekend. HA!! Procrastinating is bad…

  32. Quick question – I have finally got around to trying this project, & I’m a very inexperienced sewer. Got the ribbon down the middle ok, but having trouble w/ my binding on the edges. Doesn’t seem as fat as the binding in the picture, but maybe my ribbon is fatter in comparison. It is 1/2 wide, but it has an extra fold in it that I could iron out to make a fatter end at the bottom. Since my burp clothes are different thicknesses etc, even w/ pinning I’m having trouble keeping that tiny little bottom completely over the cloth as I sew.

    Any suggestions??? Thank you!! :) Sarah

  33. Hello!
    I really like your how to and I was wondering if I could translate it in French and add it to my list of how to as explained in my french post (,com_mojo/Itemid,149/p,166/ and an English translation : ) Of course, your website would be quoted and there would be a link!
    Thank you,

  34. I am happy to say I found time to try this out – they are adorable! Thanks for the fabulous idea!

    I used “Chinese prefolds” – could never find the 3 or 4 ply at Target and we’re not shopping at Wal-mart right now. Only thing I’d do differently is use some unwashed ones – since mine were ones we’ve had around for awhile, they were pretty thickly quilted up – I think I’d have gotten more “even” results on the edges if they weren’t quilted already. They still turned out great, though, and I’m so glad to have discovered your site!

  35. CAB – For the cloth diapers, they’ve normally had a “3 ply” and “4 ply” label. I haven’t gotten them from Target in a while, so maybe they’ve changed it. I was just at Walmart and they still have them listed as such. For a cleaner look get the thinner ones. If you care more about spit up absorbency, I’d get the thicker ones. Either should be fine for sewing though. Good Luck.

  36. Hi – do you recall where you found the 3 ply? I looked at 2 Targets and both only carry a package that isn’t labeled with “ply” and feels to be 1-ply – very thin – and another package that is 6 ply and I worry might be too thick in the middle.

    Just wondering!

  37. I love the idea of the “frilly” burp cloth. I am pregnant now and love any ideas I can find to make motherhood an easier transition or so I’d like to think.

  38. Those are adorable! I’ll have to remember that, as this year my goal is to only give (mostly) handmade gifts :) Fantastic idea!

  39. One more question :) You mentioned you just sewed straight down the middle – on the ribbon, too? Do the edges of the ribbon curl up after washing?


  40. More questions :)

    Do you always embellish BEFORE washing them at all? Just wondering how this would turn out if you have some cloth diapers that have already been washed a few times and have “quilted up” so to speak.

    Thanks for a great idea! I hope to whip some of these up before my baby is born (due Jan. 27!). I almost feel guilty my 5th will have such cute burp cloths when the older 4 didn’t!

  41. Well these are great and all…but I can’t seem to find the baby at Wal-Mart. Where did you buy her? hehehe

  42. Oh, my these are way to perfect. Every mom to be will be getting these from me from now on. I love that they are so easy to make, but so wonderful when finished, thanks for sharing.

  43. With my daughter, I used to stencil on the cloth diapers – put her name, designs, etc. Now that I have a machine, I’ll know what to do for next time! These would also make adorable gifts. Thanks for the tip!

  44. These are so cute! I am excited to add another cute baby gift to my repertoire. I am curious about how they hold up after wash. I have ribbon just like that to use but does the ribbon fray or get weird after a wash and dry?

  45. I just made four of these for a friend’s baby shower and it was so simple and easy, and they turned out great! Thanks for the wonderful idea! And I’ve posted pictures of mine on my blog and given you all the credit!


  46. I am so glad I found this website! I loved your idea and just finished a set. They turned out so cute, I think this could turn into my traditional baby shower gift. Thanks for the idea!

  47. Thanks for sharing these! I’ve been looking for nice, cheap gifts to make for all the baby showers I’ve been going to! These are adorable!

  48. Thanks for the sweet baby comments. We are having too much fun with our new little one.

    For those with new sewing machines, this is a great project to start with for your sewing machine. Really, just cut ribbon and sew. Then cut the binding and sew. You can do it!

    And these are great for baby showers and new mothers. My second baby didn’t spit up much, so it just depends on what you get for what you’ll need.

  49. ok, can I just say that the little face of an angel at the end of the tutorial is sooo cute!

  50. I love your burp cloths! You gave me one when Ashton was born and it was my favorite. Sadly, very sadly, it was lost somewhere in Disneyland :(

    She is soooooo cute! I can’t believe how much your kids all look alike!

  51. I love, love, LOVE these. Can’t wait to make some. And your baby is so beautiful!

  52. This is great! I have seen these around so often and thought – “that has to be so simple to make” but have never taken the time to figure it out. Thank you! How great are these for shower gifts?

  53. The same happened with my 3rd … cloth diapers it is for those massive amounts of spit-up. I actually gave all the pretty burp cloths away. ;) This is a great gift idea, because I sure don’t have the time or energy to pull it off now that the baby is here. :)

  54. Ok – so the burp cloths are cute. But the baby?? Adorable!! Really. Once I got to her I was too distracted to even care about the burp cloths! ;-) And I totally agree – the spit-up does just roll off the flannel…. and usually right on to mama’s leg, or shirt, or hair….

  55. I am amazed once again with the things you are able to accomplish with a little one. My guy was a horrible spitter….and if I had a crafty bone in my body I would have done somthing like that, but since I don’t….boo hoo, we just had plain ole spit up stained burp cloths :) LOL!
    ~ Lacie

  56. I just got a sewing machine….I have no idea how to sew but this looks like a fun first project!!!

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