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DIY Gauze Swaddle Blankets for Baby (…light and breathable!)



When Chloe was a little baby (3 years ago, gasp!), I noticed that stores were carrying these lightweight cotton Gauze Blankets.  I remember them being about $40 for a 4-pack and thinking that was ridiculous.  But the one thing that convinced me that I should try them, was the fact that we were living in hot & humid Georgia at the time….and they were super lightweight.  So, I gave them a go.  And you know, Chloe was a March baby and we used them all spring and then throughout the summer when we moved to Colorado…..and I sucked every penny out of those little gauze-y blankets.


They’re great for swaddling baby and keeping them snug, without over heating them.  But they’re also perfect for draping over bare baby skin while outside and there’s a slight breeze or indoors when the A/C is on and it’s just a tad chilly for new baby skin.  And you know, I used those gauze blankets to cover myself while nursing Chloe ALL THE TIME…..and it didn’t make me so sweaty hot, like other heavier blankets will do.



So, with this pregnancy, I have had those same blankets on my baby-shopping-list for months….but that price tag, aggggh!  I kept thinking that even though that cotton gauze fabric isn’t super common, I’ve got to find it somewhere and just make them myself.  And guess what??  I found some gauze fabric online.  In a variety of colors.  For like $3-$4 a yard (with free shipping).  Yes, please!



All of the gauze I found came in plain colors, so I decided to add a little fun to the edges by binding patterned fabric strips all the way around.  Yeah, I could have kept it really simple like the store-bought variety, and just hemmed each edge.  But what’s the fun in that? :)




And this gauze is 100% cotton.  So it breathes really well, is absorbent (if needed), and gets softer and softer with each wash.  It also has a slight stretch to it, which helps with swaddling.





3 perfect-for-summer Gauze Blankets complete….and ready for baby boy’s arrival this summer.



But in the meantime, Chloe thinks they’re hers.  So, I wrapped up one of her baby’s in the blanket……and suddenly, her little mommy-mode kicked in.



Cracked me right up.




If you’re not having your own baby this summer, I’m sure you have at least one friend who is.  Maybe?  Or wait, surely you have a pregnant neighbor you’ve seen waddling to the mail box. I’m sure she’d like a set of these.  (Hey, why don’t you offer to mop her floors too……I hear pregnant ladies have a hard time with that during the last couple months.  Just sayin’.)  Just bundle up a few blankets and make a new momma happy!





Wanna make some too?


Okay, first of all, I found my gauze over at  There is a nice variety of colors to choose from but there aren’t any prints.  But really, that’s okay.  The fabric around the edges make these baby’s pop!


Oh, and the fabric width listed online is probably what the width would be if you pulled it out flat (most are listed at like 52 inches wide).  But gauze fabric never lays flat.  So, don’t be surprised when it arrives in the mail, a little shriveled….and doesn’t actually end up being 52 inches wide.  And the regular price of this fabric is listed at $3.98 right now, but I always search for coupons online and plug one of those in.



  • 1.5 yards gauze fabric (for each blanket)
  • 3 inch wide strips of bias cut cotton fabric. (Or, you can buy double fold bias tape, already made for you)
  • matching thread


First of all, these blankets will be made exactly like these Knit Receiving Blankets…so refer to that tutorial as needed.


Now, before anything else……PRE-WASH YOUR GAUZE!  In fact, go ahead and pre-wash the cotton you’ll use for the edges BEFORE cutting them into strips too.  (I just threw the binding fabric into the dryer after spritzing it with some water to help shrink it up but the gauze, I put through a full wash and dry cycle.)  This way, you’ll get all of the shrinkage out of the way and won’t have any problems with the blanket getting all wonky once it’s washed.


Okay, now grab your gauze and look down the manufactured edge of the fabric.  Yeah, most likely, it’s a little wonky.  But don’t let that make you nervous.  Adding the fabric binding will help hide that.



Cut your fabric down to the square or rectangle that you’d like (I cut most of mine down to about 45-48 inches long).


Then, stretch out the width the best you can, to even up the sides a bit.  (If you use an iron, I’m worried it will take out too much of the stretch and then when you wash it, the fabric will shrivel back in and then your binding will become like lettuce leaves.)  You still want it to be wrinkly and shrivel-y…that’s okay.  You’re just trying to even it out.



Next, round off each corner with your scissors.



Then, cut 3 inch wide strips of fabric, that are cut on the bias.  (More on cutting bias strips.)


To connect pieces, follow the quilt binding tutorial and sew them together on the diagonal.



Then, open up the fabric and iron it flat.  Having a seam on the diagonal like that will lessen the bulk as you fold the strip into bias tape.



Make sure that you have continuous strip of fabric that is long enough to go all the way around your gauze piece.  Then, fold your strip into a piece of bias tape.  (More on making Bias Tape.)



Then, start along one side, leaving a several inch tail at one end, begin sandwiching your bias tape around the edge of your gauze.  Flatten out the gauze fabric as best you can as you slide it between the bias cut fabric strips.  Pin in place.



Once you reach a corner, do your best to pin it around the curve of the corner.  It’s okay if it’s not absolutely perfect…..but the stretch of the bias cut fabric will curve around that corner pretty well.



Then, sew the binding to the blanket.


Wait…….but don’t freak out if the fabric is a little rippled.



Iron and steam it flat and it will shrink into place and will look MUCH better.  Oh, that steam…….it’s magical!



And that’s it!  Your little swaddle blankets are ready for baby!







. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Ashley Johnston
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Ashley Johnston

Owner at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with my craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!
Diy gauze swaddle blankets for baby (…light and breathable!)
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  1. JuliaB_M says:

    The DIY projects are fun…you should check out the company I just saw them on an episode of Shark Tank! They started making Zipadee-Zips at home. It’s a great story!

  2. Katie says:

    my sister in law made these for me but she used acrylic paint and stamped helicopters on the gauze. Two years later the helicopters are still there and my little guy still loves his blankie!

  3. Lana says:

    bumbleofbees on Etsy sells cotton gauze bias tape that would go perfect with these blankets!!!!!

  4. Autobeschriftung says:

    Currently it seems like WordPress is the top blogging platform out there right now.

    (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on your blog?

  5. Ginny says:

    Thank you so much for this clear, concise tutorial. I made three with gauze from Thanks for that price tip as well. They had a stretch terry on sale so I bought some and made some hooded towels and wash cloths using the same plaid binding. What a beautiful set for a soon to arrival baby in warm Atlanta.

  6. Katherine Jameson says:

    Thank you for this great post! I liked how you mentioned that we need lightweight and breathable swaddle blankets. Personally, I found that the Zipadee-Zip fit that description and helped my child.

  7. Linda says:

    Was just in Hobby Lobby on Saturday and they are now carrying cotton gauze in solid colors. I check Joann’s as well and I found something similar in cute prints. The fabric at Joann’s is thinner. More like a cross between gauze and maybe a denser cheese cloth. Haven’t tried using it, but they had some really pretty nursery patterns.

  8. Beth says:

    I made cotton gauze blankets for my twin great-niece and great-nephew two years ago and am getting ready to make more for another baby. I have ordered cotton gauze from in the past, but had issues with the quality, so I ordered bubble gauze from Dharma Trading Company. It is a high quality gauze, in my opinion it softens even better than the A & A brand after washing. It only comes in white, so I splurged on great thread for my serger. Superior Thread company has a textured poly thread called Polyarn that holds up to high heat from the dryer, unlike wooly nylon thread. My two year old niece still naps with hers, it is her “soffy”. Dharma Trading Company also carries dyes so you can dye them yourself. I’ve thought about serging in white cotton thread and doing just that.

  9. Zoe says:

    What is “bias cut cotton”? And how do i buy it? Will i be able to buy it in strips or do i just have to buy some cotton in any pattern and cut it myself? And where did you get yours? Thanks! This is a great tutorial, i cant wait to make some swaddling blankets for my little one due in 3 months!!

  10. Elizabeth says:

    Ashley- About how much bias tape would you say you used to go all the way around? I found some delicious printed gauze bias tape that I am debating for the edges… just no clue how much to order!!

  11. Mary says:

    I live in South Texas and am looking forward to giving a set of these to a friend. It was fun matching binding fabric to nursery and lifestyle, in their case cowboys and camo. I prewashed gauze purchased at Hancock and it seems soft enough. Thanks for the great tutorial!

  12. Emily says:

    Love the blankets! How much fabric do I need for the bias? In the picture it looks like double fold bias tape…is it three inches total before you made the double folds or three inches total after you’ve made the double folds?

  13. Megan W. says:

    So the gauze blankets I bought for my daughter (who will be 3 this month!) have been working great even for our January baby. It’s a great swaddle blanket, and then we can tuck a bigger blanket around her on colder nights. Last night one of them started wearing out with a couple rips, and I told my husband “Great! Ashley JUST posted a tutorial with a cheaper fabric option than I’ve ever been able to find!” They are by far my favorite blankets!

    I wonder how stenciling or stamping would work if you wanted cute little prints. Polka dots would be really cute and easy!

  14. Jen w says:

    I have made lots of gauze blankets, as gifts and for my own babies, although I have never bound the edges, very cute:) I just get my gauze at Joann’s, they have basic white, cream, black and brown. I get the lighter colors and dye them, super fun and mine have always washed well and gotten super soft. We live in AZ so they are a must. I always use a coupon too:) nice tutorial!

  15. Sally says:

    Ashley, These blankets look great. Two daughters and six granddaughters later, my oldest is about to become a foster mother to infants. I need to get busy making some for her. In the past, we used plisse which is thin and cotton. I have serged them or hemmed them with a zig-zag or decorative stitch and added a sewn on applique to match. We made them 45 inches square. Winter ones were cotton flannel, sometimes with blanket stitch hem done with embroidery floss. Anyway, I do want to try the gauze if it’s soft.

  16. JAQUELINE says:

    These look great! What size bias maker tool is used for 3 inch wide strips? Also about how many yards of bias tape is used per blanket or how much fabric is needed to make the right amount of bias per blanket? Sorry for so many questions I am still new at this.

  17. Mikea says:

    You are having me want to make everything! I made a guaze one for my daughter 2 years ago using fabric paint and folding the edges and never used it because i didnt like it. I LOVE your idea to just bind the edges! I also ordered my guaze from And about to do it again now! Thank you! This baby is due in august so thats perfect

  18. Linda says:

    Try Hancock for your gauze.

  19. Kalley says:

    Am I missing the link to where you bought your gauze?

  20. Michelle Davidson says:

    Louisiana babies are thanking u NOW! The heat, the humidity, and never enough of the air conditioning. THANK U!!!!

  21. Jenifer Moore says:

    Wow! I love it. I love my store bought gauze blankets for my little man, but they don’t have any bright colors. Thanks so much for the neat idea! Can’t wait to get started!

  22. Marni @ Haberdashery Fun says:

    Just saw this on craft gawker!! Love love love! We used gauze blankets for our baby who is now a toddler and loved them. Perfect for summer. Your color combinations are great. BTW. I’d love to work with you sometime!


  23. Megan W. says:

    These are so cute! I needed these blankets with my daughter who will be 3 this month. She was so sweaty all the time that the price tag was worth it. Even with our January baby we’ve used them all the time for swaddling. On the colder days we just put a warmer blanket over the gauze swaddle. I’d looked for the fabric before, but for some reason I only ever found it for $10-$12/yard. Now I want to make some again!

  24. Michaela says:

    I made three for my youngest when we were moving to S. TX from northern CA. It was going to be hot! I used them for nursing, mosquito shields in the stroller or the ergo baby carrier and swaddled her in them every night. I didn’t add binding to mine, just used my moms serger to go all the way around and they held up through multiple washes each week and though one has a stain, they are still soft and the serge held up well. was the best bet when I got them almost 2 years ago now. I have a scrap left from one of the brighter colors I got and am planning to make it into a bubble skirt with a knit lining now that she’s older and walking around.

    I love the idea of the soft cotton bias tape around the edge. You could personalize it to match their nursery colors.

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh yes, you totally know how great these are!!!!! And good to know yours got softer and held up well. And the skirt is a cute idea!

  25. Rachel says:

    They sell some gauze at Joann’s now and I believe it was similar in price. Just in case you need to get some in a hurry and don’t want to wait for shipping.

    1. Ashley says:

      I’ve never even seen it there…..I’ll have to look again. Very good to know! :)

    2. Mary says:

      I think here in Ohio the gauze is a seasonal item.

  26. Myaela says:

    I made some for my last baby with gauze from Jo-Ann’s, but it never got soft; it just stayed scratchy. Does this gauze get soft? If so, I may spring for some for the next baby =)

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh really? I feel like the stuff I got was decently soft after the first washing. I’m just assuming it will get softer with each wash….but I’d have to say, the white that I purchased is just a tad softer than the colors. I was just assuming that was because of the dye.

      Hope that helps!

  27. Caroline says:

    Super cute blankets! I love how the binding really pops:) I haven’t done a bias binding before so about how much fabric do you think you need for the binding?

    1. Ashley says:

      Hmmmm…….I just used what I had, but since you’re cutting on the diagonal, you’ll need about a yard to get some longer strips but you’ll only use about half of it.

  28. LeAnne B says:

    Thanks for this! I am due in July and live in AZ, these will be perfect. I received some of a 4-pack of these blankets with my last baby as a gift and I loved them! I used them all the time for my fall baby and just folded them in half to make them “warmer” if needed and used in a single layer for cooler temps. I am not finding out the gender of this baby so I wanted to whip up some neutral blankets.

    I purchased some white gauze from Joann’s and it is very soft and nice. It is about $7.99/$8.99 a yard so more than but I used a coupon. From what I remember, they just had white. I prewashed mine since it is 100% cotton and pretty lightweight.

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh yes, these are great in AZ!

      And yes, pre-washing is a must with this stuff (I just added that into the tutorial…..ack!)

      So glad you’ve loved yours too!

  29. Stacey says:

    These are so stinkin’ cute! Much better than the store-bought ones I’ve seen. Another GREAT tutorial!!

    1. Ashley says:

      Thanks Stacey!

  30. Heidi K says:

    Do you pre-wash the gauze before you make this? Thanks!

    1. Southern Gal says:

      I was wondering the same thing. And is there danger of any shrinkage of the gauze that would cause the binding to be off or vice versa?

    2. Robin says:

      YES! You need to pre-wash. If you look at the comment above (comment #9), they had the same question and Ashley had responded that she forgot to put that tidbit in and inserted it in the post (yep, it is in there now and pre-wash the binding too).

      I need to make some to keep on hand for great summer baby gifts. Yay! for cheap, cute, and easy.

  31. GM Terrie says:

    Hi Ashley – GREAT tutorial! Do you preshrink the gauze before adding the cotton binding to it? Also, do the store-bought ones have a serged rolled edge? The reason that I ask is because I need to keep my cost down and a yard of cotton for binding (even making my own) can add a few more $$ to my bill.

    How do you make your gauze soft? Do you use one layer or two layers of gauze when you make these? Lots of questions.

    You are terrific sharing so many things with us. Thank you so much and God bless you and your family.

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh gosh, I completely forgot to mention pre-washing. Sometimes I skip that step….but for this, yes for sure pre-wash. You wouldn’t want all that work to get wonky. (And thanks, I added that into the tutorial.) And yes, the store bought ones just have a hemmed edge that’s sewn in place. But this fabric is so wonky that even the store bought ones look uneven and stretch funny. But don’t let that deter you…..they’re still great little blankets.

      And no, just one layer is all you need. It keeps the blanket light and airy. And, I washed the gauze, which made it a little softer but I remember with the store bought ones, they kept getting softer and softer… I’m sure these will do the same.

      Anyway, hope that helps!

      Good luck!

    2. Vicki B says:

      Yes you did mention pre-washing away back at the very first of the article

      which I copied and pasted

      “PRE-WASH YOUR GAUZE! In fact, go ahead and pre-wash the cotton you’ll use for the edges BEFORE cutting them into strips too. (I just threw the binding fabric into the dryer after spritzing it with some water to help shrink it up but the gauze, I put through a full wash and dry cycle.) This way, you’ll get all of the shrinkage out of the way and won’t have any problems with the blanket getting all wonky once it’s washed.

    3. Michaela says:

      I made some just serging the edges and it worked great. I didn’t even roll the hem over to make it prettier. I planned to but never got to it. They held up great. Search for coupons and check, sometimes they have a color to two that are cheaper. If you don’t have a set color you want to get. You can also get 3 yards of one color and cut it in half so you have 2 the perfect size. I did this and gave the other one to my sister-in-law and she loved them as much as I did.

  32. says:

    I wish I could give you a high five. This is going to be so perfect for my baby! We are moving to AZ in September (due 9-19) and though I’ve never lived there before I know it’s gonna be hot, hot, hot!

    1. Ashley says:

      Haha…..consider my hand high-fived! ;)

      And oh gosh, I grew up in AZ until I left for college. Yep, you’ll love these there! And will probably use them most of the year.

      Good luck with your pregnancy! :)

  33. Kelly says:

    Hi – I love the idea of adding something to the edges – I tried this a couple years ago after reading a tutorial on MADE, but the gauze I got then was and still is itchy – my four year old uses them for playing outside, but they never worked for swaddles because I could NOT get the gauze softened. I tried everything – salty brine for three days, dryer balls, repeated wash/dry – and still, nothing.

    I would love to know if your gauze is soft – I also got mine from —- hoping its a better product now?

    1. Ashley says:

      Hmmmm, I think mine feels pretty soft, even after the first washing. I’m just assuming they’ll get softer but I wonder if there are different types that soften up a little easier. I do have to say that the white that I purchased is slightly softer than the colored ones, but I assumed that was from the dye.

      But yes, I think mine will be soft enough to use right away. So maybe they have changed it a bit?? (Or maybe I have alligator skin and don’t notice? ha!)

    2. Kelly says:

      Thank you! It is worth a try – my sister is due in August, and 3.99 a yard is a lot more attractive (and better colors I might add). I will let you know if you have alligator skin when it comes in – ha!

  34. Tracy says:

    I love these… I’m hoping for one more baby, but for now my best friend is expecting her second baby so I will be making some of these for her as soon as she finds out if she’s having another boy or a baby girl. Thanks Ashley!!! I love you blog so much! :)

    1. Ashley says:

      The perfect gift, truly!!

      And thanks Tracy… glad you’re enjoying it! :)

  35. gassmama says:

    Love this and want to make some for my second daughter who is arriving in July. When you say 1.5 yards, was that for all three blankets (.5 yard each), or 1.5 yards per blanket?

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh yes, sorry about that. You’ll need about 1.5 yards per blanket. I fixed that in the tutorial…thanks!

      And yay for July babies! Hope you and baby are doing well! (And I would say sleeping…..but I know that’s next to impossible!


    2. gassmama says:

      Thanks so much for the quick response! I am ordering now, can’t wait to get started on them! haha, not much sleep, seems crazy that part of the pregnancy has already started back up.

    3. Ashley says:

      Oh, I know. And the sleep just gets crazier from here on out. Boo. But well worth the end prize! :)

      Good luck with the blankets!

  36. Rhonda says:

    Wow, I’ve been searching high and low for these!! What great timing! My 3rd grandson is due in August and these will be perfect!!!

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh yes, this will be perfect for an august baby! Have fun with it! :)

  37. HorseMark Cards says:

    This is such a great idea! I love the colors you chose and your daughter is so cute! She will be a good helper when her little brothers arrives! Enjoy your creative day!
    ~ Vickie

    1. Ashley says:

      Yeah, I hope so. She’s a little firecracker….but having a little brother will surely teach her she is not the royal queen of the house! :)


    2. Chelsey says:

      I love this response Ashley! It describes my daughter perfectly too! A little royal firecracker!

  38. Tina says:

    No babies in my future – those days are LONG gone, but I will definitely be pinning this to my DIY baby board on Pinterest for any future baby showers or grandbabies (many, MANY years from now – LOL!)! We live in Texas, so lightweight fabric is totally REQUIRED like 90% of the year here! Thanks for the tutorials!

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh yes, these blankets in Texas are a must! And such a fun gift. Good luck with them! :)

  39. trish says:

    I, too was put off by the high cost of swaddling blankets. I ended up buying on Etsy for much less. This tutorial is great (do it before the baby comes). I also liked the gauze ones that only had a rolled edge (not a bound edge).

    1. Ashley says:

      Yes, the rolled edge is great too. That’s how the stores sell them. But, they have some really cute printed gauze, that I of course can’t find. So that fabric binding gave me a little more color to my plain colors! :)

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