Thursday, October 23, 2008

Making a Diaper Pattern (Tutorial)

Okay, so I got some new fabric today and since Lily has finally hit the growth spurt that will move her cute little butt from a small dipe to a medium, I decided I needed to make a new diaper pattern before I made a new diaper.
Then I thought about making a tutorial in case anyone else was wondering how to do a diaper pattern.

I started off with a tape measure, a hard plastic measuring board (I'm sure there are fancier names for it, but I use the non-fancy names, b/c if i ask my husband where my "seam ripper is" he gets very confused looking. But if i say "that little pokey thing with the blue handle" he knows exactly where it's at. So we'll just stick with the layman names), a pencil, a diaper that fits lily (although I had to use a cover b/c her only medium dipe is in the wash) and some pattern paper (or in my case, some printer paper taped together... how i always make patterns).

You'll take a few measurements. Now, these pics don't really do it justice b/c i'm just trying to show you were I took the measurements AT. not HOW I took them. If the area has elastic (like the back of the dipe) you need to be sure that you are measuring the full piece of fabric, so stretch that puppy WAY out.




Now that you've got your measurements, jot them down on the corner of your paper. Do it in pencil, b/c they might change a bit. (mine changed, so don't be shocked when you see different numbers there later).

Also, I have to make a few adjustments along the way in my pattern b/c since I'm using a diaper COVER it's a little bigger than an actual diaper would need to be (in order to cover the full diaper). IF you're measuring from a diaper, you should be okay without much adjusting.

Take your "back of the diaper" measurement (mine was 17) and draw a straight 17" line on the bottom of your paper. Mark the center.

Take your rise measurement and draw that length (17" on mine) up from the center marker

You should have somethin' like this

Now at the top of your rise line, make a line as long as the front of the diaper measurement. On mine that was 8 inches, so I lined up the rise-line with the number "4" on my measuring board, and then drew a line 4 inches to the left of the rise and 4 inches to the right.

Then go a little less than 1/2 way down your rise line, and draw a line the same length as your middle measurement (the crotch of the diaper).

At this point, I took 2 more measurements.
I measured from the top of the front of the diaper to where the elastic for the leg started (the front rise)

And I measured the thickness of the tabs that would come around her body. I did adjust this # a little, b/c i don't love how this cover fits her.

Add those to your measurement list (you'll notice mine have changed, lol)

Take your front rise measurement (mine was 4") and measure 4 inches down from the top line on each end

Take your measuring board and complete those lines straight down

If you feel fairly confident that your crotch line is where you want it to be, you can go ahead and do this (like I did) or you can adjust if need be...
but from here, you'll sketch out from the bottom of the front rise lines to the crotch line, giving it a curved leg shape.

I then measured down about 4 inches from the crotch line, and measured out another 8 inch wide area. This is where I had my leg hole lines meet at.


I then took the width of the tabs that I had written down previously, and I measured that distance up from the edges of the bottom line. Then I took my board and drew straight lines going up that distance (mine was like 3" i think). From there, I sketched out from the leg lines, into the tab lines.


Shape your tabs to your preference

erase unnecessary lines

Trace with a pen/marker and add a roughly .5" seam allowance around entire panel.

Cut out pattern

For the sake of conserving paper, take the scraps and cut out your soaker panel. Make it as large as you prefer.
I happened to find a scrap that was exactly the size I wanted.


Pick up cranky child and put her down for her nap

1 comment:

Lyndsey said...

That pattern is great! Your method is much better, more professional than my trace-a-diaper-you-have method.

I'm going to hopefully finish the diaper I started several days ago tonight. Maybe. We'll see.

What a sweet cranky baby. Hope she took a nice nap for ya!