Bedding, Do-It-Yourself

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Nursery bedding has come a long way. Now more than ever, parents have options beyond the plain white, pink, blue and polka dot crib sheets that previously dominated the market. But sometimes those adorable trendy printed sheets can be out of your budget or you simply cannot find the perfect Star Wars-themed bedding for your mini Jedi. The good news is that even if you’re a beginner behind the sewing machine, you’ll find it’s a snap to DIY a crib sheet as unique as your nursery style.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Materials: two yards of fabric (minimum 44″ width), 80″ length of 1/4″ elastic, cardstock (or poster board), two small safety pins, sewing machine, thread, scissors, iron

Please note that the following tutorial fits standard U.S. crib mattresses 27-28″ wide, 51-52″ long, and 3-6″ deep and should not be used on any other size mattress.

Begin with a fabric rectangle that measures 68″ x 45″. If your fabric comes 44″ wide, that’s okay too—just be sure to keep the salvage edges intact for maximum width.

Cut an 8″ square template out of cardstock or poster board. Align the template with one corner of your fabric, trace and cut out the corner.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Repeat on the remaining three corners until your fabric looks like this.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Run a zigzag stitch around all the raw edges of your fabric to prevent fraying. (I used bright pink thread for easy visibility, but you’ll want to use thread that coordinates with your fabric.)

How to Make a Crib Sheet

If you are worried your fabric may shrink significantly when washed, you can wash your fabric before moving onto the next step.

Align the edges of your cut corners, right sides of the fabric together. Pin and sew the corner with a 5/8″ seam allowance. Do this on all four corners. Don’t forget to back-stitch the beginning and the end of your seam for strength.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Next, you’ll need to create a small casing along the edge for the elastic. Use a hot iron to crease a 5/8″ flap around the entire edge of the fabric (wrong sides together). One easy way to quickly iron a consistent crease is to draw a line 5/8″ up from the long edge of a piece of cardstock. Then fold the fabric against the edge of the cardstock template up to the line, and press with your iron.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

After creasing the entire edge, at the center of one long side, mark a starting point (one pin) and stopping point (two pins) that are 2″ apart.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Because you ironed the casing flap, you won’t have to pin around the entire sheet—it should fold over nicely on its own as you sew. Starting where you marked the fabric with one pin, sew all the way around the sheet (wrong sides together) with a 1/2″ seam allowance.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Stop at your two pins mark, leaving a small opening in the casing.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Cut an 80″ length of 1/4″ elastic. Pin one end to the sheet (so it doesn’t pull through) and attach another safety pin to the free end.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Insert the free end of your elastic into the casing and thread it all the way through to the other side of your opening.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Overlap your elastic ends about 2″. Sew them together a couple times with a tight zigzag stitch.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

Pull the elastic back into the casing and sew the opening shut.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

All done! Your new crib sheet should fit snugly, with the gathered elastic edges tucked neatly underneath the mattress. Never place an infant in a crib with loose bedding.

How to Make a Crib Sheet

How to Make a Crib Sheet

The best part about this project, other than its simplicity, is that the possibilities for customization are literally endless! And now that you know how to make a crib sheet, you also know how to whip up a custom toddler bed sheet—it’s the same size mattress. Happy sewing!

7 Comments

  1. 1

    I see that you did a casting all the way around the crib sheet and not just the corners. Please share with me your reasoning – thanks, Phyllis

  2. 2

    Hi Phyllis. In order to guarantee a tight fit, the elastic must run around the whole sheet. Enclosing the entire length in a casing (not just the corners) ensures that no child will accidentally grab hold of loose elastic and harm themselves. Safety first!

  3. 3

    This was super easy and came out perfectly!! I was able to make sheets that coordinated with the quilt I made for the nursery. Thank you!!

  4. 4

    Have you made a pack and play sheet before? If so, do you have the measurements for that size mattress?

  5. 5

    Hi Emily, I haven’t made a pack-n-play sheet before. But, here’s how to go about it… measure your pack-n-play mattress. Then, add 8″ to both the length and width. Because the pack-n-play mattresses are very thin, you don’t need much depth on the sheet. So use a 4″ square cut-out in the corners. So, for example, my pack-n-play mattress is 38″ x 27″. Adding 8″ to each side would give me a starting rectangle of 46″ x 35″. Then I’d cut 4″ squares from the corners and sew the rest as described in this tutorial. Good luck!

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