How to Make a Tailored Crib Skirt


Not all parents want ruffles for their new baby, especially if he is a boy. However, the crib ensemble looks appropriately tailored with a pleated crib skirt. It can be a stand-alone piece that drapes over the wire mattress frame or it can be attached to the fitted crib sheet. It doesn't take long to sew the ensemble and you may want to make several in washable fabric.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Material
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron
  • Dressmaker's chalk
  • Measure the wire mattress frame. Decide how long the bed skirt will be. Take into consideration that the mattress frame is usually able to be raised or lowered and plan the length accordingly. Add an extra ½ inch to the length to accommodate the seams and bottom rolled hem.

  • Determine the type of pleat you will use on the skirt. You can make a knife pleat or a box pleat. Calculate the folded depth of the pleats times the number of pleats on each side to determine the length of material you will need per side. Add an extra ½ inch for side hems.

  • To make the wire mattress cover-style skirt, measure and cut out a rectangle that equals the length and width of the mattress cover. Cut out the fabric length and width you calculated for each side, plus top and bottom ends. Hem the bottom of each side piece with a small rolled hem. Pin the pleats evenly across the width of the measurement and check to make sure that they are exactly the same on both sides. Do the same for the top and bottom sections of fabric. Iron the pleats in place and secure with a line of stitching along the top edge.

  • Place a pleated side on top of the cover rectangle, right sides together, and seam. Repeat with the second side. Stitch the bottom and top ends in place and be sure that the material extends completely to the four corners. Trim excess material and iron. The mattress goes on top of this tailored crib skirt.

  • To attach the sides of the tailored skirt to a fitted crib sheet, add the depth of the mattress to the length of the side drop. Use dressmaker's chalk to mark the top of the mattress on the fitted sheet. That will be the seam line. Pin the sides to the seam mark, right sides together, and stitch. The tailored crib skirt will drop from the top of the sheet, down past the mattress and to the length you have determined.

Tips & Warnings

  • Complete the look of this ensemble by stitching a bed quilt that matches the tailored bed skirt.
  • Be sure to launder all material used in the baby's crib to remove sizing and to insure that the material won't shrink.

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  • Photo Credit baby in the crib image by Tatyana Gladskih from
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