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Kara Murphy

Interested in making a blanket for your little one? Here are five baby blanket how-to's.

Sure, you could buy baby blankets in various colors, designs and fabrics at many different locations. But there's something unique about a homemade blanket that makes it worth the time and effort that it takes to construct. "A homemade baby blanket feels totally special," says Dana Willard, the blogger behind MADE. "To know that special time went into making it gives it a special meaning." Willard features several different tutorials on how to make a baby blanket on her website.

Perhaps no one understands the magic of a homemade baby blanket more than Carol Babbitt, the executive director of Project Linus. Babbitt's organization has donated more than five million blankets to children in hospitals over the last 20 years. "Knowing you are bringing comfort to a child is such a reward for our volunteers," says Babbitt. "And it makes such a big impact on the children -- they can recognize when something is handmade instead of purchased in a store. It helps them, gives them comfort, in a very real way."

Interested in learning how to make a baby blanket? Here are five easy tutorials to try:
 

  1. No-Sew Fleece Blanket
    Is sewing not your forte? According to Jenny T's Simple Sewing Projects, the no-sew fleece blanket requires no machines, needles or tape measures. You just need scissors, some nimble fingers and maybe an hour of your time. The end result is a soft blanket that will just get softer with use and washing in the years to come.

    If you have a newborn baby, you should create a blanket that is about 1.5 yards in size. As your baby grows, you'll want to continue to make larger blankets that will wrap her up comfortably. You can always reach out to your local fabric shop for ideas on sizing.
     
  2. All-Purpose Knitted Afghan Blanket
    Do you like to knit? Check out the all-purpose knitted afghan pattern on the Project Linus website. According to Babbitt, this is a simple but enduring pattern that's easy and quick for even a beginner knitter.
     
  3. Faux Chenille Blanket
    One of Willard's favorite baby blankets is the faux chenille blanket. Her MADE tutorial calls for four or five types of fabric, each about 1.25 yards in size, though you can, of course, make a different size if you prefer to do so. "I like it because it looks really cool, and can be put on the floor for kids to play on," Willard says. "It's great for practical use."
     
  4. Minky and Cotton Blanket
    Babies -- and their parents -- love nothing more than the soft and cuddly feel of minky fabric. Add a satin ruffle -- an accent that your baby will love to touch with her sweet, chubby fingers -- and you have a blanket that might just be the blanket of choice for the years to come! You can find directions for how to make this blanket on Creative House.
     
  5. Personalized Blanket
    Don't have time to make a whole blanket by yourself? Not a problem! You can buy a pre-made blanket and still make it extra special by personalizing it. On While They Snooze, blogger Sarah provides a tutorial on how to add the applique of your choice -- perhaps a name, initials or a picture that matches the theme of your baby's room -- to a baby blanket. As an extra special touch, Sarah suggests adding a decorative stitch around each applique.


According to Willard, the types and patterns of fabrics available today are more varied than ever. By having all of these options at your fingertips, you can easily create a blanket that is just right for your baby. "Even if you're not great at sewing, there are so many ways to make blankets and personalize blankets," she says. "You don't even need a lot of time."

That's good, because (let's be honest!) all you want to do is snuggle your sweet bundle of joy all day long.

Kara Murphy is a freelance writer from Erie, Pennsylvania. She is a mother of two children, ages 5 and 3. She has made both of her children no-sew fleece blankets, but counts on her mother-in-law to do any work requiring a sewing machine.

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