Okay, so I'm down to 16 days until my due date, and it only just occurred to me that I have no bassinet sheets - ha. Great pregnancy memory, huh? It was pretty quiet around here yesterday afternoon, with all the daycare kids sleeping, my 20 year old headed back to his base, and the 18 year old up at camp cooking for the week, so I figured there's no time like the present to get the sheets done.
I've never done a tutorial before, but I figured I'd give it a shot here. So, without further ado, this is how you make a bassinet sheet - (or any other size fitted sheet, for that matter).
1. Start by placing the mattress onto your fabric. (I used flannel because it's soft and doesn't feel cold to a baby's skin). I didn't measure anything because bassinets vary in size, so just pull the pad out of the bassinet and lay it on the fabric.
2. Cut around the pad, leaving about a 2 inch border, depending on how thick your mattress is. If you have a thicker pad, then make a wider border.
3. Cut notches into the corners as shown above. You want these as square as possible, and up to about 1/4 inch from the edge of the mattress (leaving room for a snug seam allowance.)
4. Take the sheet over to the sewing machine. Fold over one corner, lining up the cut edges of the notched square. It's okay if your square notches are a little off. Just make the long sides match up (where my thumb is and to the left).
5. Stitch down. Do this to all four corners.
6. Starting about 3 inches before one corner, on the long side, not the end of the sheet, fold over the fabric to create a rolled hem (hiding your raw edge of fabric) wide enough for your elastic to fit through. I used 1/4 inch elastic, so my hem is between 3/8 and 1/2 inch. (I like my elastic to fit pretty snug.) You will sew around the entire sheet making this pocket. I left openings in four places along the sheet so I would not have to use as much elastic. I stopped and started about 3 inches before and after each end. This means that the long sides, between the openings do not have elastic - they just lie flat. If you would prefer, you can run your elastic all the way around. and just leave one opening anywhere along the edge.
7. When you have your hem done, put the sheet on the mattress. Pull it snug.
8. Pin your elastic to one of the openings. I didn't measure the elastic. Instead, I laid the elastic around the edge of the corner without stretching it, then pinned it in place about 1/4 of the length of elastic shorter than it measured before I stretched it. Does that make sense? In other words, I took up about 1/4 of the length before pinning to the next opening on the opposite side. Then to make sure it was the proper length, I stretched the elastic and pinned the corners. You can see in the picture above where the elastic is. This is where the elastic will pull your sheet to, so if this looks like a good amount of stretch, then you have the right length of elastic. Unpin everything and cut the elastic to that length. You will need two lengths of elastic (one for each end) if you made four openings in your hem. If you only made one, us the same concept, but measure your elastic all the way around the sheet, and then stretch to determine the needed length.
9. Attach a safety pin to one end of the elastic and feed it through the first opening. Be careful not to let your elastic twist in the casing.
10. Pin elastic in place.
11. Stitch across the elastic, backstitching to secure, then stitch the opening in the hem closed.
12. That's it! Slip the cover back on the mattress to check the fit. This is a really simple project and requires very little fabric. I made three of these within about an hour.