the adventures of ernie bufflo

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how to make a simple crib skirt

22 Comments

Baby bedding is a weird racket. Most of the cute stuff seems to come in sets, but the sets include things that may or may not kill your baby in her sleep, like crib bumpers. And they’re awfully matchy-matchy, as if you need curtains, sheet, bumpers, quilt, and skirt to all be perfectly matched. Personally, I prefer things that “go” rather than match. And the matching sets are often SO babyish, completely unable to grow up with a kid into early childhood. My goal with the twins’ room has been to have a room that is girly but not princess pink, to choose things that they won’t grow out of before they’re potty trained, and to use as many unique, handmade touches as possible. So I decided to make my own crib skirts. I think they turned out great:

I initially followed a pattern for the first skirt, found parts of it confusing, redundant, or unnecessary, and decided to simplify the process for the second skirt. I figured other folks might be interested in a super easy tutorial of my method for making a modern crib skirt, so here it is: how to make a modern crib skirt. There are no gathers, no pleats, noting complicated. If you can cut and sew a straight line, you can do this, I promise. Also, I took the trouble to make this skirt with French seams, encasing all the edges of the fabric, so a serger is not necessary for keeping your crib skirt from raveling in the wash. It should be sturdy enough to last for years.

Materials:

  • For the “deck” or the part that goes under the mattress, you need 1 5/8 yards (44″ or 54″ wide) muslin or other cheap fabric. (I got solid cotton that was on sale for $1.99/yd– no one will see this part)
  • For the skirt, 3 yards (44″ or 54″ wide) mid-weight fabric (I used a cotton duck that feels like canvas and claims to be soil resistant)

How To:

Cut out your pieces from the fabric:

  • For the deck, cut from the muslin a rectangular panel 29″ wide and 53″ long
  • For the skirt, cut 6 panels, each 30″ wide by 16.5″ long

Create a hem in each skirt panel by folding up one of the long sides 1/2″ and pressing, and then folding that up again and pressing:

Sew along the upper edge of the fold, making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of each hem:

Create a similar hem on the two short sides of each skirt panel by folding and pressing 1/2″, folding that up and pressing again, and sewing close to the inner edge of the folded portion. It may help to pin the corners where the fabric is bulky because of the bottom hem:

After you have hemmed the bottom and sides of each skirt panel, fold the deck lengthwise and gently press a crease down the center:

(Can you sort of see the crease in that picture? It’s basically just there to help you find the center of the short ends of the deck.)

Line up the center of one skirt panel with the center of the deck, right sides of each facing OUT. Pin. (The right side of my deck fabric was hard to see, as it was a solid, so you might want to use a disappearing ink pen to mark “right” on the right side of your deck fabric.)

Sew the two pieces together, sewing very close to the edge:

Press seam open:

Fold over, encasing the edge of the first seam within the fold. Press:

Stitch seam again, sewing close to the edge:

Press seam again, and you’re left with a nicely enclosed edge that won’t fray in the wash:

Repeat process to sew panel to other short end of deck.

Starting at one edge, line up the corner of one skirt piece with the corner of one long side of the deck, again both right sides facing OUT. Pin in place along edge:

(using a grapefruit to keep your fabric from sliding off your table is clearly optional but works great!)

Match the corner of another skirt panel up with the other end of this side of the deck and pin in place. The two panels will overlap in the center:

As with the short sides, sew very close to the edge, press seam open, fold over to enclose cut edges, and stitch again to create a French seam. Repeat on other side of the deck with the last two remaining skirt panels.

Iron out any creases your fabric has gotten throughout the process, and you’re FINISHED! Put your crib skirt on your crib and admire your handiwork:

Note: the skirt will not graze the floor when mattress is raised to the highest newborn position, but should fit nicely for all of the various mattress positions you’ll use as your baby grows.

If you make a crib skirt, I’d love to hear how it goes!

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Author: erniebufflo

Writer. Hugger of trees. Lover of food, literature, politics, feminism. Wife to @orzzyo. Mama to twins Etta & Claire, dogs Bessie & Olive, & one not-so-Tinycat.

22 thoughts on “how to make a simple crib skirt

  1. very cute! I’m amazed by your energy and creativity.

    I made several bed skirts many years ago by using a fitted sheet as the base and sewing gathered fabric around the upper edge of the sheet then putting the sheet on the box spring. Not as cleanly tailored as yours but still quick and easy!

  2. I want to copy your twins’ entire nursery! Everything looks so good!

  3. Pingback: Tutorial: Simple crib skirt with no ruffles or gathers · Sewing | CraftGossip.com

  4. I love it! The colors in your nursery are fabulousness!! I linked out to your tutorial on Craft Gossip Sewing:
    http://sewing.craftgossip.com/tutorial-simple-crib-skirt-with-no-ruffles-or-gathers/2012/02/04/
    (I also blog here locally at Little Rock Mamas: http://crafty.littlerockmamas.com)
    –Anne

  5. Aren’t I as proud as can be….YES! Even though you thought you would never do all these homemade things I think you might surpass even me someday:) Can’t wait to see the 3 of you in watermelon fabric at a family reunion some summer, xxoo

  6. I love this…and am getting ready to make a crib skirt for my expected boy. I’ve never been a big fan of gathered ones, and it seems so “girly”. I made the crib skirt for my first, and it was tailored, but much more difficult than this one. For my second daughter, I bought a crib skirt (Target brand) from craigslist and it never did fit the crib right…I had to pin it (too lazy/busy to sew it) so it didn’t drag on the floor. After two girls, I’m excited for things to be more tailored for this one. I actually bought a simple flat bed sheet to make this one, and can’t wait to use your simple method. I kicked around the idea of no crib skirt for a simpler look for this one, but I store things under the crib and need to hide them! Thanks for your simple tutorial!

  7. I just finished making this bed skirt for our grandson-to-be with upholstered, geometric fabric and it turned out great! I am a verteran sewer and was looking for something simple to put together and found several on the internet but was drawn to this one. You don’t have to be an expert and I an sure, all of us struggle with not having enough time. I made this in two days…about 6 hours in total. Thank you thank you thank you! The baby is due at the end of March and we will be ready! I am thrilled to come across your blog. I now will have more time to read up now that this project is complete!

  8. Pingback: To Do… | creative jordan

  9. Thank you for the tutorial! I’m very new at sewing and just finished a crib skirt in robin’s egg blue for my first baby boy! You had great directions!

  10. I like your purple crib. What is the name of the crib? I like to buy one.

  11. Reblogged this on Rachel's Motherhood Adventures and commented:
    this is my next project.

  12. Looks like you did a great job and congrats for tackling the crib skirt. I noticed in your directions that when you attach the panels to the deck, you said to put outsides together (which normally you put the right sides together. But as I read on, you had a very clever way of enclosing those edges that ravel! BRAVO!

  13. Pingback: Blogger’s Quilt Festival | Sew BitterSweet Designs

  14. This fabric is fabulous. Where did you find it?

  15. Why did you choose to make the long sides into 2 pieces rather than 1 long piece? I’m about to make this for my son I’m expecting. I was planning to make a single piece for each side. Would you think there would be a problem with this? Thanks!

  16. My corners look awful! How did you do the corners w/ the French seams? Mine are all wonky. Hopefully I can hide them.

  17. Are all of the panels sewn separately then? or are they connected on the corners in any way?

    • They hang freely and aren’t connected at the corners because most cribs have the hardware that connects the mattress platform to the bed at the corners, so the resulting slit makes it go around that hardware. Thanks to the legs of the crib, you really don’t see the slit once it’s on the bed.

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