How to Make Baby Headbands

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Baby headbands are an adorable way for young babies who don’t have much hair to wear decorative bows. Toddlers can also wear headbands to style their hair and keep the hair out of their eyes. You can cover a piece of plain elastic with fabric to make a custom baby headband in the color you want, or even match an outfit or dress. Once you’ve made a basic headband, you can decorate it with bows, ribbon rosettes, artificial flowers or the finishing touches of your choice.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • 1/2 inch or 3/4 inch wide elastic
  • Scrap of fabric
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Small safety pin
  • Ribbon roses or decorations (optional)
  • Hand sewing needle or hot glue (optional)

Measure a piece of elastic long enough to wrap snugly but comfortably around the baby’s head. Add one inch. Then cut the elastic with scissors.

Cut a rectangle of fabric that’s 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide (depending on the width of the elastic) and about twice as long as the elastic.

Hem the short ends of the fabric.

Fold the fabric in half, right sides together, forming a long, narrow strip. Stitch along the edge opposite the fold.

Attach a small safety pin to one layer of the end of the fabric. Turn the pin to the inside of the fabric and push it through, turning the fabric right side out. Remove the pin.

Attach the safety pin to one end of the elastic. Insert the pin into the end of the fabric. Pull the fabric over the elastic until it’s completely covered, and the ends of the fabric are even with the ends of the elastic. The fabric should pucker up, forming gathers or ruffles. Smooth out the gathers so that they’re even.

Overlap the ends of the fabric-covered headband and pin them together. Check the size of the headband and make it tighter if needed. Sew the ends of the elastic together, with the ends of the fabric pushed back, then hand-stitch those fabric ends together.

Hand sew or hot glue decorative touches, such as ribbon rosettes, bows or artificial flowers, to the headband if desired. Put the decorations over the seam in the headband to cover it.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you want a flat rather than a ruffled headband, you can cut the fabric 1 inch longer than the elastic rather than twice as long.
  • Instead of elastic, try using soft, stretchy fabrics like flannel, velvet or cotton.
  • Make matching bows from the same fabric and hot glue them to the headband as decorative accents.
  • Use caution when working with scissors, safety pins, sewing machines and hot glue.

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