My kids love to use hooded towels! Some mornings they have offered to stand and drip dry rather than use a towel without a hood. And, of course, we all love to use hooded towels for newborn babies! The problem is that hooded towels can cost a fortune and they never seem to be as high quality as the hoodless towels you buy. I have added hoods to towels 3 different ways (check back later for demo’s on the other two methods) but today I will show you the “cut and sew” method. I prefer this method over the other two because it is fast, inexpensive, and it isn’t hard on my sewing machine like the “fold and sew” method. You will be amazed at how easy it is to make your own hooded towels.
Step 1: Purchase a coordinating bath towel and hand towel. If you find a hand towel with a cute appliqué on one side go ahead and buy it! The towels do not have to be a continuous print, in fact, the appliquéd ones are often my favorite!
Step 2: Lay out the hand towel. You will cut three pieces, two rectangles and one square. The rectangles should be approximately 7.5 inches x 10.5 inches. If this towel is to be used for a newborn you can make the hood narrower by using smaller dimensions (6.5x9.5). The square should be equal to the smallest side of the rectangle; 6.5x6.5 or 7.5x7.5. If your towel has an appliqué you will want to center the appliqué in the middle of the square. As terry cloth tends to fray badly keep as many of the factory made edges intact as possible, this will also allow your towel to look much less “homemade” in the end. The two rectangle pieces should be cut from the same side; this will give you one piece with a ‘finished’ right edge and one piece with a ‘finished’ left edge.
Step 3: Lay your square on top of one rectangle with right sides together. Stitch the two pieces together using a zigzag stitch (to prevent fraying) from the “X” to the center of the square “Y”, easing your way around the corner. Be sure you are sewing the side of the rectangle that does NOT have the factory finished edge, you want that to be the exposed edge.
Step 4: Repeat step three with the second rectangle forming a ‘hood’ with an open back.
Step 5: Trim the back of the hood to allow a smooth seam. Lay the hood front side down, with the back exposed, trim the excess towel away so the bottom of each rectangle may be stitched together. Sew the back together. (I realize it would be more exact to cut the rectangle the proper size to begin with but I have noticed there is a high chance of being “off” depending on how sharp you sew the corners. This way I know I will not run out of material.)
Now you have a hood that looks like this on the front (notice the corners have been trimmed):
And like this on the back:
Step 6: Find the center of the BATH TOWEL. With right sides together match up the center of the hood to the center of the bath towel and pin. Sew the hood to the towel two times for strength.
You now have a hooded towel to be used from birth to age ten (at least)!
Here are two of the towels I made for K10 when he was born. I love the appliqués and the finished edges!!