Tutorial: Hooded Towel {Part 2}

One of my most popular tutorials is on making your own hooded towel. I'm sure it's because the store bought ones are good for infants, but definitely NOT for toddlers or preschoolers. 

Well, my almost 5 year old (10 days to go) starts swimming lessons tomorrow! To make it even more special I  made her a new towel!!

She is a pink-lovin'-girl through and through. I pulled out several fabric scraps from my stash and let her choose the one that she wanted on her towel. Of course, she chose the pink and red strawberries!!

I LOVE homemade hooded towels because you can make them as large as you want! You can buy the HUGE beach towels and have an adult sized towel... or buy a regular bath towel and it's perfect for your little one! 

I made this one for my nephew the same day as I made my daughters.

Can you tell he likes Elmo!?!? 

Want to make your own? Here's how...

• 1 bath towel
• 1 hand towel
• fabric scraps
• sewing machine, thread, scissors
• rotary cutter, cutting mat, and ruler {very helpful -- though not necessary}
• iron and ironing board

Start by cutting your hand towel. Since I wanted mine to really cover her little head and be a nice size to allow some growing in to, I only cut down the width of the hand towel... not the length! I trimmed about 3.5" off -- enough to just cut off the tag. 

If you want a smaller hood trim a little off of each side as well. Since I wanted large, I didn't trim it. 

Then grab your scrap fabric. It needs to be at least as long as the width of your trimmed hand towel -- a little longer is even better! Make sure you iron your fabric. Then cut it into two 4" wide strips. {This is where the rotary cutter really comes in handy} You want your pieces to be EXACTLY the same size so that the strip of fabric on your hood matches up. 

Then fold your fabric strips in half length-wise and press them with your iron. 

Now take your folded strips and your hand towel. Check out your towel to see if there is a right and wrong side to it. Sometimes there is a slight difference and the right side is a tad more fluffy. You want to pin the open end of your fabric strip to the WRONG side edge of your towel -- the width edge. Then sew a straight stitch about 1/4" from the edge of your towel. Just be sure to make the same seam allowance for both strips -- again, to be sure that your strips will line up. 

Next, take your sewn edges to your iron and press your stitching. Then fold your strips over so that your seam is now hidden under your strip and press again. 

Now, take your strip and fold it over the edge of your towel to the other side -- wrapping the edge of your towel with your strip of fabric. Press it again with your iron. Be sure that your fabric is pulled nice and snug against the edge of the towel as your press it. 

Now top stitch your strip on to the right side of your fabric. You can use a straight stitch -- or if you want to get fancy -- a decorative stitch. Then iron your stitching when you are done.

 To finish the hood, fold your towel right sides together and line up your fabric strips. Pin and sew along on of the open edges. 

I actually used a decorative stitch -- kind of like a serger stitch - to make this seam nice and neat on the inside. Here is what the stitch looks like on my machine:

... and here's how your current pieces should look. The bath towel hasn't been touched yet so it's still the same. 

Here's the point when things get a little crucial. You want to take your bath towel, fold it in half and find the center line in the length of it. Then either use a pin and mark that point or iron your towel in half. Line up your marked center with the center of the edge of your hand towel. 

I found that if I overlap the finished edges -- the manufacture edges --  I get a much cleaner line and better look. It's hard to see in the picture, but I placed the right side of the hand towel on top of the wrong side of the bath towel so that the bath towel is the one you will see on the top on the finished side. {did that make any sense!?!?!?}

I matched up the edges of the manufacturer edge so that there was about a 1/2" overlap. Then I pinned it in place. 

Then I used the same decorative stitching to attach the hood to the towel. It gives it a nice finished look. Since you are using the manufacturer edge as the one seen, it makes it look a little less home made. 

Once you are done with that, your towel is ready for use!! 

Here are some shots of my little one after finishing her towel -- she wasn't thrilled about taking photos .. so these look a little like mug shots! LOL!! 

Now it's your turn! What organizing, crafting, cleaning, cooking things have you been up to this week!??!


  1. I sort of want one of these for myself :)

  2. Love the tutorial it is so easy to follow. The fabric detail you added to the hood really makes it pop. I just posted a great Salmon recipe on my blog http://blog.skinmdnatural.com/2012/03/eat-salmon-for-naturally-healthy-skin/


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