October 15, 2011

Sometimes, I'm a GENIUS!! - Boppy Cover Tutorial

So tonight (which isn't really tonight, because I've got like, 2 weeks of "how-to's" that will post before this, but work with me) I put together a Boppy cover, and I feel SUPER SMART in how I did it. I know it's not new (in fact, I remember searching for, and finding explanations of how to do this on the internets a while ago, but the links are apparently "evil" so I won't put them here - I probably got some kind of virus visiting it, but whatever) but what I DO think I figured out on my own... was that a standard towel is the PERFECT size (and I'd imagine material!) to make a Boppy cover out of!

A new baby girl entered our family (no, not my baby girl... another one) and I wanted to make her mommy a boppy cover. But I kinda ran out of time to get nice fabric... so I looked at the store and was like "meh. I don't LIKE these :-/. I wanted to MAKE her one!!" and then, the genius button got hit - what if I made it out of a towel?

So I marched myself over to the towel section, picked up a regular pink towel, and marched myself out of the store. I then turned my original Boppy cover inside out, and folded it in half, and traced it onto a piece of freezer paper - my favorite method of pattern making.



I had already decided to use overlapping flaps to keep it "on" instead of a zipper or Velcro or buttons or whatever other methods are out there to keep a Boppy on it's pillow, and that's where I felt so genius - I could use the ends of the towels as the flap bits! (Oh, and the towel is absorbent, so you don't have to worry about the spit-up that will inevitably end up on this nursing pillow.



So I traced  out the portions I needed for the "back" onto the edges of a folded towel, and a "whole piece" out of the middle, as well as a 26"x3" strip for the inside of the pillow, and then cut them out.



Now, since it's terry, I felt like it was a good idea to "overlock" the edges - so all the edges got a zig-zag stitch overhanging the edge. It made a lot of terry dust, which leads me to believe that was a smart move.



Once you've got your pieces cut and "serged", take your strip and pin it to the "front" piece, and sew it in place. Then pin it to the bottom back piece, and sew it in place - make sure "right sides are together" for this, because even though it's a towel, there's a tag on there SOMEWHERE.






Here's where I made a boo-boo, but that means you won't. Lay the top back piece down and make sure the edge of the towel is straight across the front. Then lay the bottom back piece down (all right-sides together) so that it LOOKS like a Boppy cover, and pin ALL THE WAY AROUND.


Sew that sucker up from edge to edge, folding the strip in half to start - you'll hit 3 layers of terry where the overlap is, but my machine didn't complain too much, and I definitely wasn't taking it slow. I DID lock stitches over the joints of the pocket... just for extra protection.



Ta-da! Turn that sucker inside out, slide your Boppy in, and pull the top piece over and you're done!





The making of the pattern (which I will hopefully add to this post someday), "serging", "oops"ing of the layout involving seam rippers, AND taking all the photos took me about an hour and a half. I was NOT careful in the serging process... my machine was a humming, but it came out nice! I could have sewn with slightly larger seam allowances, but I was being "safe" there. The pattern allowed for 1/2" seam allowances, and I was just shy, but it fits, and it's good enough for government work! ;)

So go ahead and make a Boppy cover out of an old towel, or a cheap towel, or a fancy towel, or just some fabric. It's much easier than it looks!

-Betsy