belly + baby // ruffle diaper covers pattern + tutorial

Welcome to another installment of belly + baby! Today I’m sharing a pattern for ruffled diaper covers. I made a basic diaper cover for the new baby and then realized it was too plain! So, I added a ruffle on the top edge and I’m totally in love! These diaper covers are so fun to make, I’ve already made a short stack of them!
You can never have enough diaper covers, right? Let’s get started:

*quilting weight cotton
*skinny elastic
**Free pattern for 0-3 months!**
*1/2″ single fold bias tape
*saftey pin for threading elastic
*serger (optional, I recommend this one if you’re in the market)

A few measurements:
*ruffle strip: 40″ by 3″
*elastic for top*: 13″
*elastic for legs*: 8 1/2″ each

*You might have to adjust this based on the stretchiness of your elastic or the width of the baby’s legs/belly.

**I forget how big babies are, so I think these will fit until around 3 months! If you need them bigger, simply print the pieces enlarged.

Cut out your pattern pieces and ruffle strip.

Sew the front and back together, right sides together, at the sides and crotch. Then finish the seam allowances.

Also serge or zigzag one long edge of your ruffle strip. Turn and press over 1/4″ and finish the hem by topstitching 1/8″ from the edge of the fabric.

Sew two rows of baste stitching through the top edge of the strip, about 1/2″ away from each other. The first one should be 1/2″ from the top and the second 1″ from the top. Gather the strip by pulling the ends of both sets of threads so it matches the width of the top of the diaper cover.

Sew the short edges of the ruffle strip together and match it to the top of the diaper cover, pinning as you go.

Baste it on and serge or zigzag the top edge.  Then, flip over 1/2″ of the top edge (including the ruffle) and pin it in place.

Sew around near the edge to create a casing for elastic. Make sure to leave a 1-2″ opening to insert elastic.

Use a safety pin to thread the elastic through the casing.

After you’ve inserted the elastic, pin the casings shut and sew them up. Unpick any baste stitching that you don’t want.



For the leg openings, open the bias tape and pin the edge to the opening edge. Pin all the way around then sew on at 1/4″. 

Flip the bias tape to the inside of the diaper cover and pin. 

You shouldn’t see any bias tape from the front. Sew it on at 1/2″, again creating a casing for elastic. 

Insert the elastic and close the casing. Repeat for the other leg and you’re done!

So much gathered cuteness!

belly + baby continues today with a Baby Romper Pattern at Shwin & Shwin and gauze baby blankets at Craftiness is not Optional

See you next Monday for more belly + baby!


ruffled diaper covers pattern //


  1. says

    i may actually need to attempt this cuteness with my basic sewing skills. wow, do i need a little girl!!

    love, us.

  2. says

    Very cute!! Tengo dos hijos varones, pero voy a hacer un diaper cover para mi sobrina, thanks!!!

  3. says

    I love these! I am not all about the ruffles all over the bum, (except for a few pictures maybe) I love the subtle beauty in the single ruffle, and how cute would this look with a onsie underneath so you can really see all the cute ruffle goodness? Oh man I am now cursing the winter baby… to wait until summer ah! (and now I am babbling)

  4. says

    These are so cute Kate! I think they’ll be perfect for gifts. :) Thank you for sharing the pattern and tutorial!

  5. says

    I love it. I made some for my daughter using Dana’s pattern and tutorial from Her pattern goes up to 24 months if needed. For gathering, I was watching PBS’s Sewing With Nancy and she had a great way of gathering fabric for ruffles. If/when I can track down the video again I will pass it along. It is worth checking out. I tried it the other day when I was working on a bubble skirt for my daughter and it is so much easier.

  6. says

    I am making these today. thanks so much for the free pattern. this is adorable and perfect for what I was working on.

  7. says

    I’m a grandmother who’s not too savvy about cloth diaper covers. Doesn’t the wet diaper soak through the diaper cover? I think I’m missing something. :-)

  8. joselita Maria Jesus de Souza says


  9. Sommer says

    love love love!! probably missed it, but what are the seam allowances?

  10. says

    I loved this! I love the bias tape for the elastic casing, so much easier than trying to turn the edge under. I’ll have to re-read when I make another one because I had a hard time making the elastic casing for the waist with the ruffle there – maybe I missed something. Anyway I linked to you from my blog! Thanks again…