How To Make a Waterproof Baby Changing Mat / Simple Sewing Tutorial

baby changing mat

In this simple sewing tutorial, I show you how you can make a waterproof baby changing mat.

changing mat diaper bagIt’s the perfect size that you can fold up and throw in your diaper bag. 

They’re easy to wash and really easy to make and they make really fun baby shower gifts.

I’m going to show you two different methods that you can use to finish the edge of the changing mat: how to apply double fold bias tape with a mitered corner edge and how to sew a very simple unbound edge.

baby changing mat supplies


  • ½ yard waterproof PUL fabric ( polyurethane laminate)
  • It’s a fabric that has one side that’s woven and one side that’s plasticky and waterproof.

You can find this online or at most fabric stores. Sometimes they’ll have prints, but most likely you’ll just be able to find a white, which is just fine.

When you buy the pull fabric it comes on a bolt that’s really wide, almost 60 inches wide.

You can make several of mats if you buy a 1/2 of a yard of the pull fabric.


  • ½ yard flannel or cotton print fabric or fabric cut to (25 x 18 inches)
  • fusible fleece or light colored flannel cut to (25 x 18 inches) for lining


I like using an upcycled fabric when I can. For this changing mat project I used a flannel sheet that was white and of good quality that I no longer needed.

  • double fold bias tape (2 ½ -3 yards) OPTIONAL
  • fabric clips (pins will put holes in the PUL fabric)
  • scissors/rotary cutter, mat and ruler (optional)
  • iron/ironing board
  • sewing machine
  • turning stick
  • label/tag (optional)
how to make your own bias tape binding


If you’ve been intimidated by bias tape and haven’t applied that yet, no worries, I’ll show you how easy it is to apply.

After seeing this tutorial I hope that you’ll find it’s really easy because it does add a lot of charm to your projects.


Simple Unbound Changing Mat

CHANGING PAD FUSIBLE FLEECE1- Fusible Fleece Application

The first thing to do, if you’re using fusible fleece, is to iron that to the back side of your front piece of fabric. (bumpy side of fleece will be facing down).

One thing to mention though is you do not want to iron on any of the fusible fleece directly on that bumpy side or the sticky stuff will get onto your iron.

2- Tag/label Application (optional)

If you are wanting to add a tag, to the mat, this is the time to do it.

The cut edge of the tag will be along the raw edge of the fabric.

adding tag changing matThe seam allowance is 3/8 inches, so take note of that when placing the tag in place.

Clip the tag in place and then take the time to go to the sewing machine and baste that in place. You’ll be glad you did.

changing mat fabric sandwich

3- Making a Fabric Sandwich

Now you are ready to make a fabric sandwich and sew it all together.

If you are going to use a flannel lining, place that on the table first.

Then place the front piece on top of that with the WRONG SIDE FACING DOWN.

The pul fabric goes next with the RIGHT SIDE FACING DOWN.


Look real closely and you can see that the WRONG SIDE has a pattern to it (grain of fabric weave).

THE RIGHT SIDE is more shiny and a little bit more plasticky looking with a smooth finish.

Line up the edges and clip all three layers in place.

changing mat sewing

4- Sewing the Changing Mat Together

This first basic method you’ll sew all the way around, leaving a 4 inch gap unsewn for turning. Really simple.

Backstitch at the beginning and end of the seam using a 3/8 inch seam allowance.

The straight stitch is 2.5 in length.

Sew to the corner, stopping 3/8 inch from the edge. Leave the needle in the down position, lift up your presser foot and pivot the fabric to continue sewing all the way around.

clip corners changing mat

5- Clip the Corners.

changing mat

6- Turning Right Side Facing Out

Find the opening. Reach inside between where the right side is facing right side, and pull it out.

Take the turning stick and poke the corners out.

changing mat pressing

7- Pressing the Edges Out

Take it to the ironing board. DON NOT PRESS THE PUL FABRIC! It will melt.

Fold the edges of the opening up, the same seam allowance and press. Apply a few clips to hold it in place.


topstitching changing mat

8- Top Stitching the Changing Mat

Okay, now we’re ready to topstitch all the way around the changing mat.

Change the stitch length to 3 instead of 2.5. This will give you a much better finished look.

The seam allowance will only be 1/8 inch. (You can apply a strip of tape on your sewing machine to help as a guide. (watch video tutorial for the details).

Clip the threads.

Wasn’t that simple?

mitered corner changing mat


Let’s start on the second method, which is applying a mitered corner with double fold bias tape.

I am going to go over the basics here in this post, but you can watch the video tutorial here to get all the details and tips.

For this changing mat, I chose a cute orange flannel polka dot fabric with stripe bias tape that I made.

I used a rabbit tag, from my LOVE LABELS collection. (you can get the PDF file here).


1- Making the Fabric Sandwich


Layer 1: Pul fabric (right side facing down)

Layer 2: Fusible fleece ironed on the back of front piece or flannel fabric

Layer 3: Front fabric (right side facing up)

2- Fabric Prep

Line up all the edges. You may need to trim some of the edges so they are even.

Flip the fabrics over to make sure the Pul fabric is not bunched up.

Once it is lined up, clip in place.

Using a long stitch (basing stitch) sew all the way around using a ¼ inch seam allowance.

This step will save you a lot of grief and is worth the time to do.

It will keep the three layers stable while you put on the bias tape.

3-  Tag/label Application (optional)

Add the tag now if you want one. 

3- Bias Tape Application

Apply the bias tape to the back side (Pul fabric side first, and then you will wrap the tape around to the front, and then top stitch it.


This little changing mat is the perfect size to use, fold up and toss them in your diaper bag.

I hope you enjoyed that tutorial!

baby gift changning mat and burp clothMake up a few and add some burp cloths and you have the perfect baby gift!

burp clothes chaning matI have a tutorial showing you how to make these burp cloths (which are super simple to make!




Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

Make Your Own Adorable Bias Tape Binding the Easy Way

diy bias tape binding
how to make your own bias tape binding

Bias tape binding is used in a lot of sewing projects, and I love working with it. But did you know that you can make your own?

Why would you want to make your own bias tape when you can go to the fabric store and buy a package of bias tape already made?

bias tape at the store

If you’ve ever gone to the fabric store to buy bias tape, you’ll notice that they only come in a selective amount of solid colors, and that’s boring!

You’ll find the color to match your sewing project fabric if you’re lucky.

What you’re not going to see is bias tape that is made from cute colored prints.


In this post, I’m going to show you how you can get five yards of bias tape binding by using just ONE fat quarter of fabric. Making bias tape is quite simple.

It only takes about 30 minutes to make five yards.

I’ll show you how to make a single fold bias tape, a double fold bias tape, and bias strips for binding a quilt.

Be sure to watch the video tutorial at the end of the post because I show you throughout the video several different tips that maybe you haven’t seen before, and I show you how I store and organize my bias tape.

I do have a previous post where I showed how to make bias tape using a different method and in that tutorial, I go over in more detail about what bias tape is, what it’s used for, so you might want to check that out.

Watch the video tutorial at the end of the post because I show you several different tips throughout the video that you haven’t seen before, and I show you how I store and organize my bias tape.

In a previous post, I showed how to make bias tape using a different method, and in that tutorial, I went over in more detail what bias tape is and what it’s used for, so you should check that out.


bias tape binding supplies

Bias Tape Binding Materials and Items Needed

Bias Tape Instructions

1 -Fabric Prep

The first thing that you’ll do is press the fabric to get the wrinkles out.

If using a FAT QUARTER, which usually measures around 21×18 inches, you’ll need to cut it into a square. (18×18 inches).

bias tape binding


***If you’ve cut your fabric 18x 18, you’ll, you’ll skip this part.

Place the fabric with the RIGHT SIDE FACING UP.

Square up the fabric by bringing the short edge to the long edge.

Line up the edges so it makes a perfect triangle. (You may need to straighten off the edges because they don’t always cut it straight at the fabric store).

Cut off the excess. So that you have a piece of fabric 18×18 inches. It can be bigger or smaller, it just needs to be square.

cutter blad tipIf it’s been a while since you’ve changed your rotary cutter blade, you may want to do that. I have a post showing you all about rotary cutters, including changing the blade.

It makes a big difference if you have a sharp blade.

You can READ THIS POST for more details about “how to change the blade”.

bias tape binding folded triangle

2 -Cutting Two Triangles

Before you open the triangle up, cut the fabric into two separate triangles.

Cut it along the fold of the triangle.

Take your scissors, lay them flat like this, and push them out onto the fold.

Cut down all the way with the flat edge of your scissors on the table.

bias tape binding

Flip both layers of fabric to the right.

Take the top layer and flip it to the right

Line the top edges up. Leave an ¼ inch tail on that side where indicated in the photo.

Pin it in place.

bias tape binding seam allowance guide

3 -Sewing the bias tape binding fabric.

You can put a quarter-inch presser foot on your sewing machine, but if your sewing machine doesn’t come with a quarter-inch presser foot, you can take a piece of masking tape, washi tape, or painter’s tape and put it down on that quarter inch seam marking on your sewing machine plate.

bias tape binding top seam

Sew the top edge using a quarter-inch seam allowance.

Change the stitch length to a 2 instead of a 2.5. This will keep the stitches just a little bit more secure.

***Check out the video for a great tip on starting a seam without the fabric bunching up.

bias tape pressing

4 -Press the seam allowance open.

bias trape binding drawing lines

5 -Marking the bias tape strips

Place the wrong side facing up and mark two-inch strips starting at the bottom of the fabric and work your way up until you’ve filled the fabric with 2-inch increments.

Cut off the remaining fabric.

bias tape binding excess

These two-inch strips will make a double-fold bias tape that measures 1/2 inch or one-inch single-fold bias tape.

Of course, you can make bigger strips of bias tape if you want.

The lines must be accurate.

6 -Sewing the bias tape fabric


bias tape lining up linesFlip the right side facing up. Bring the ends towards the center. (You think you would just line up the lines straight across, right? But you don’t.

You’re going to shift the lines up one row, then line up the lines.

This is where the magic happens!

quarter inch ext bias tapeFind the point on the left piece of fabric. That point needs to extend past the line underneath by ¼ inch.

Pin the edges in place, careful not to pull the top or bottom fabric tighter than the other.

Go to the sewing machine and sew down that side using an ¼ inch seam allowance. No need to backstitch.

It will seem a little awkward, and it won’t lay flat; it will look like the photo above.

press bias tape seamPress the seam open.

***If you’ve ever made bias tape binding where you cut a bunch of strips sewn them together individually, and then pressed each individual strip seam allowance open, then you know how tedious it can be.

It also takes a lot more time. This way you have such nice, neatly pressed seam allowances.

It’s the easiest way to make bias tape!

***If you’ve ever made bias tape where you cut a bunch of strips sewn them together individually, and then pressed each individual strip seam allowance open, then you know how tedious it can be.

It also takes a lot more time. This way you have such nice, neatly pressed seam allowances.

It’s the easiest way to make bias tape!

butting bias tape strips

7 -Cutting bias tape binding strips

Start cutting the strips by following the lines.

Continue cutting until you have five yards of bias tape.


bias tape binding types

There are three types of bias tape, bias strips for binding without a fold, single fold and double fold bias tape.

8 -Unpressed bias strips

Simply leave it unpressed or just fold it in half, then place it on mini bolts ready for use.

bias tape binding folding

9 -Making single-fold bias tape (manually without bias tape maker)

Fold the bias tape strip in half. Then bring the edges together in the center and press the outer folds.

Continue that process until you have pressed the whole strip.

bias tape binding maker

10-Double fold tape using the bias tape maker

This little tool is so handy!

They come in several sizes, and for this project, I am using the “blue tool”.

Slide the point of one of the points into the tool. Sometimes, it’s a little challenging to get it to come out.

Just take a pin and kind of cinch that up through that slit that’s on top of the tool.

Gently start pulling the fabric through the tool, and it will start folding the fabric sides in.

bias tape binding single fold

Start pressing it as you pull.

When you go over the seams, you may have to fuss with it just a little bit, and it can be a little annoying, but stick with it because, in the long run, it’s so worth it.

Continue to do that until the whole strip is folded.

I like to leave my strips wide because I don’t want that fold in some projects when I’m using a double, especially if I’m going around corners or things.

11- Double fold bias tape binding without the tool

To make double-fold bias tape, fold it in half again and press it in place. That’s it.

storing bias tape

How to store and organize your bias tape strips

I use comic boards to store my small pieces of fabric, as I’ve shown in this post.

These comic boards work well to also store bias tape.

1 – Making bias tape bolts.

Cut the boards. 5 X 2.5 inches. (This is the same size board that come with your store bought bias tape.)

bias tape binding mini bold

2 – Folding bias tape on boards

Take your bias tape strip and start wrapping it around the board. You don’t want to pull it too tight.

Tuck the end under the already wrapped tape.

I found the perfect box matching the bins I used to put my small fabric bolts on.


They fit in these boxes perfectly!


They have adhesive strips on the back so you can hang them on your sewing wall or inside a cabinet door like mine.

It’s eye candy for my sewing room.




Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More

DIY Bias Tape: Single and Double Fold Tutorial

Is there a project you’re making that calls for bias tape? 

I’m going to show you how simple it is to make your own unique single and double fold tape.

What is bias tape?

Bias tape is a long narrow strip of fabric that is cut on the bias.

What does “bias” mean?

The bias is a 45-degree angle across the weave of the fabric.

The fabric that is pulled “on the grain” does NOT stretch.

Fabric pulled “on the bias” stretches. That’s what is so wonderful about this stuff!

It curves and still lies flat when sewn.


What do you use it for?

You can use it around necklines, armholes, bind blanket edges, and just use it as a decorative trim.

You can also make an elastic casing with a wide bias tape.

There are two types of bias tape: single fold and double fold.

The reason to use one over the other is simply by preference.

Double fold is a little more durable because the fabric is doubled and will hold up better.

Good for binding blankets etc. When sewing clothing edges, a single fold is less bulky. It also comes in a variety of widths.

Why make your own?

You may be wondering why you would want to make your own when you can just easily go to the store and buy it. Well, there are several reasons to make your own.

One of the best things about making your own bias tape is that you can make it out of colorful prints! A printed trim adds so much character and really makes it pop.

Bias tape at the store only comes in solid colors, and might I add, a very limited assortment of colors.

There have been so many times when sewing up a project that I had to settle with a tape that that hardly matched the fabric I was working with.

Now I just make my own and can match it perfectly if needed.

Although, bias tape is fairly inexpensive at the store, making your own can save you a little money, and personally I find the process quite enjoyable!


Play Video

Here is a video tutorial showing you the whole process.

How to make your own bias tape

You can manually fold the bias tape, or you can use a bias tape maker. I will show you how to do it both ways.

However, this little gadget is one of the sweetest sewing tools EVER! It makes the job so much easier!

You can get the whole set for a very reasonable price HERE.

Materials and items needed:

  • Woven fabric (cotton, or cotton blends) I recommend using fat quarters or fabric cut to ½ yard.
  • Fat quarters are pre-cut fabric pieces that measures 18 x 20 inches. You can get them at any fabric or craft store.
  • Scissors
  • Bias Tape Maker (optional, but it makes the job soooooo much easier) LOVE THEM!
  • Rotary Cutter, Mat, Ruler
  • Sewing Machine
  • Iron

Although you can make several different sizes as indicated above, I am going to walk you through the process of making a 1” single fold and ½ inch double fold bias tape.

There are different sizes of bias tape makers, each a different color.  The packaged set did not come with instructions on how wide to cut the strips of fabric, which was very frustrating!

So hopefully this chart will simplify things and make it more clear for you.

Using a Fat quarter

Take your fat quarter piece of fabric and fold the bottom up so the side piece is aligned with the top edge. It will make a triangle.


Cut off the excess fabric on the side.


Cut along the diagonal crease.

Take the bottom right corner up to meet the top left corner, to make a smaller triangle. Flip the FOLDED EDGE so it is on the bottom, and the cut bias edge is now on the left.


Cut 2 inch strips (about 3-4 strips) and save the leftover for your scrap box.

sewing the strips together

To get one continuous strip of bias tape, you’ll need to sew the strips together.  NO PROBLEM!

As you can see you will end up with three different lengths of strips. You’ll want to mix them up so you don’t have a bunch of seams close together.

If using a ½ yard piece of fabric:

Square off one of the cut edges so you have a straight edge to work with. You’ll basically do the same thing but you will be working with a double layer of fabric and the strips will be longer.

Place one of the strips with the RIGHT SIDE FACING UP. Take another strip and place it RIGHT SIDE FACING DOWN on top of the other strip at a 45 degree angle. If it doesn’t line up like this, flip the strip and the other end will meet up.

Line up the edges and slide it up or down so it overhangs at least a 1/4 inch, as indicated above.

You will be sewing from the notched corner to the other notched corner. VERY IMPORTANT!

It doesn’t really matter how big the seam allowance is, but it does matter that you are sewing from those notched corners to notched corners.

I drew a line with a pen to show where the seam will be. ( You don’t have to mark it ).

Take it to the sewing machine and sew together. Back stitch at the beginning and end of the seam.


Clip off the little tags. Go to the end of the strip and add another one.

Continue until all strips are sewn together.

Using the bias tape maker


Poke the end of the fabric strip into the big end of the bias tape maker. (If the strip is cut at an angle, which it will be, it will be much easier to feed through the tool).

If it gets stuck, simply get a pin and stick it into the hole in the top and pull it out.

Start pulling the strip of fabric and it will automatically fold the ends over. SO COOL! Use the iron to press as you pull. USE THE STEAM SETTING to get a good creased edge.

***When you come to a seam, you may need to tug a little harder, but no big deal. Continue pulling and pressing until the whole strip is folded. 


To make DOUBLE FOLD BIAS TAPE, simply fold it in half again and press.

Manually folding

To manually fold the tape, fold the tape in half first, then fold the edge up to the crease you just made.

Press. Then fold the top edge down to the halfway point and press. Then if you want double fold tape, fold it half again and press.

So that wasn’t hard, was it?

Oh, the fun things you can embellish with a cute printed strip of bias tape.

This is a blanket bound with a strip of printed double fold bias tape.


Although you usually use a cotton fabric to make bias tape, you can also make trim with knit fabric. This is a t-shirt that I just added a strip of knit binding over the existing neck ribbing. Cute Hugh?


So many fun things you can do.

I hope this opened your eyes up to a whole new world of bias tape.


Don’t settle for the drab and boring tape at the store, MAKE YOUR OWN!

You got this!

Have fun sewing,





Picture of Jan Howell

Jan Howell

Whether it’s a new recipe, a fun craft, or some handy tips for your garden and home, I hope to empower and inspire you with skills that you can use to create joy, improved health, and to do it in a simple way.

Read More