When I first saw the idea of doing appliqué onesies at a baby shower at the Cutting Table, I immediately thought of doing this project at Nicola’s baby shower. I did have some trepidation about having to stitch around the appliqués, but thankfully my co-host Maura convinced me that it would be worthwhile, and it certainly was.
Here’s what you’ll need to do this at your party:
- blank onesies. I was unable to find these in any color besides white in local stores, but I ended up getting a good selection between Rock Bottom T-Shirts and these Disney solid bodysuits. These MoonTree Kids Bold Colors Bodysuits are very cute as well! I got a range of sizes from newborn to 18 months, because we all know how fast babies grow!
- fabric – I pulled a bunch from my stash, and Maura brought an adorable charm pack
- fusible webbing – I used Heat ‘n Bond Lite Iron-on Adhesive
- iron and ironing board
- optional: stencils or objects to trace (cookie cutters are good for this), examples of appliqued onesies
I wrote up a set of instructions with a storybook theme that you can download here: DIY Onesie Instructions from Jewels at Home. It also helped to show the first people step by step, and then they helped the next group. It all went quite smoothly, and there were just two that I needed to fix up afterward, because the Heat ‘n Bond didn’t stick. I’ll show you the “rescue” tips later in the post, but first, here are the step-by-step instructions for decorating the onesies.
DIY Onesie Tutorial
- Choose a design and fabrics.
- Sketch your design onto the paper side of the iron-on paper. Note: your drawing will be reversed when the design is finished, which is important for letters.
- Cut out the paper with your design with a small margin around it
- Place the sticky side of the Heat’n Bond Lite facing the back side of the fabric and iron for just 2 seconds.
- Cut out the design exactly along the lines you sketched
- Peel off the paper backing
- Place your design on the onesie and iron for 8-10 seconds
- Optional: Add words or details with the fabric markers. We signed the “bums” with our names!
Finishing the Onesies
After the party, Maura and I split up the onesies to take home and sew the edges. For the simple outlines, I used a small zig-zag stitch, which I think is the most secure. For the ones with fine details, I used a straight stitch, so I could follow the shape more neatly.
If you end up with some onesies with appliques that didn’t stick, I thought of two ways to rescue them.
- Pictured below, place the fabric on the sticky side of the Heat’n Bond Lite. Use some glossy paper (this is from some contact paper) face down on the fabric, and iron. Cut out carefully.
- You could also place the fabric on they sticky side of the Heat ‘n Bond, trace around the design with pencil, and cut out the paper. Then iron the fabric onto the cut-out paper.
This was a lovely project – it was wonderful to see so many people try it, even those who don’t usually do craft projects, and it was fun to see how each onesie reflected a little bit of the artist’s personality.
Can’t wait to see these on the new baby!