Dishtowel bibs are a favorite among moms of babies who eat food and moms of kids who eat popsicles. They cover from neck to shoulders and from chin to tummy. Dishtowel bibs are easy to put on your baby, and hard for baby to take off. And, if you can use a basic sewing machine, it’s an easy DIY project that will take less than an hour. Splurge on a nice hand towel to make a dishtowel bib as a gift. Or, repurpose a dishtowel and an old t-shirt collar to make one for FREE!
To make a DIY Dishtowel Bib, you will need:
- hand towel or kitchen towel
- small piece of coordinating ribbing (a knit material)
- sewing machine or serger
I don’t have a serger, so I used a simple zigzag stitch on a basic sewing machine and completed this project easily in under an hour.
Pattern and Ribbing Dimensions: For a one-size-fits-all bib, make a paper pattern circle that is 5 1/2″ diameter. Your ribbing piece will be 12 1/2″ by 2 3/4″. For smaller bibs (infants) use a 4 1/2″ diameter circle and 10 3/4″ by 2 3/4″ ribbing with a small hand towel.
Towel Selection: Most of my towel bibs are made with really nice, big bathroom hand towels from Target. They are about $14.99, regular price. These are nice for a baby gift, because they are a little fancier. However, Target has kitchen towels in every color for just $2.99, or you can get kitchen towels at the dollar store! I’ve used dollar store towels and they were just as good as any others.
If you are just whipping up some towel bibs to keep on hand for yourself, you can repurpose old hand towels you already have. This is what I did when I made some towel bibs for Grandma’s house.
DIY Towel Bib Instructions
1. Fold bib in half lengthwise.
2. Trace circle with center at 1/3 of bib.
3. Cut out circle.
4. Cut strip of ribbing 2 3/4″ wide and 12 1/2″ long. Stretch will be in the length.
5. Zigzag or serge short ends of ribbing together (almost no seam allowance).
6. Fold ribbing circle in half into a skinnier tube, right sides out. It will look a lot like a t-shirt collar. In fact, this is how you make a t-shirt collar. In fact, if you don’t have ribbing and want to cut off the collar of an old t-shirt and use that, you definitely can.
7. Pin ribbing to right side of towel as shown, starting at the seam. Ribbing should be stretched equally between pins. Both cut edges of the ribbing should line up with the inner cut edge of the towel. This is where you’ll be stitching.
After first 4 pins, you can place more pins around the circle, stretching ribbing evenly as you go. Or you can stretch ribbing by hand between the 4 pins as you sew the ribbing on.
8. Zigzag or serge along edge of circle (almost no seam allowance). When finished, ribbing will “flip” into circle and sewn edge will disappear to underside of towel.
Here’s the homemade dishtowel bib in action! This is my skinny 9 month old with the Target bathroom towel size bib and a 12 1/2″ ribbing. You can see that the smaller size would fit her a little better. This bib fits both my 3 year old and my 6 year old still!
*Thanks to my aunt, Sharon, for teaching me how to make a dishtowel bib.