How To Make Stretchy Headbands For Babies

We all know that babies can be hard to dress. They’re too small for most clothes, and their heads don’t stay put when you try to put a hat on them! That’s where I come in. I’m going to teach you how to make your own headbands for baby using felt and elastic—and it only takes about half an hour.

If you’ve seen a baby girl birth announcement recently, browsed Instagram, or shopped on Etsy, you’ve probably see an adorable infant wearing an oversized headband or bow accessory. Whether you love it or hate it, the trend is here to stay.

While they may not have much hair just yet, a dainty baby headband can add an extra touch of sweetness to any newborn onesie outfit or photoshoot. The best part? You can easily DIY these headbands and they are completely customizable to your tastes and preferences. Plus, they are super simple to make and are very affordable. They also make a unique and personal DIY gift, and you can even make a matching one for mom!

More: Our Top Mommy and Me Outfit Picks for Spring 2019

Whether you’re in your nesting phase or have already welcomed your little one, these DIY headbands are a super adorable way to keep growing hair out of their face while also adding a touch of flair or personality. These five tutorials are quick and customizable, and you may already have some of the supplies from previous DIY projects.

No Sew Flowers

Make a statement with these classic flower headbands from Practically Functional. You can decide to mix or match the colors of your flower and elastic to create a uniquely personal look.

SaveDIY No Sew Baby Flower HeadbandsPractically FunctionalMake your own DIY no sew baby headband in under five minutes, plus a really useful baby headband size chart for the elastic!

Materials

  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Soft, stretchy elastic
  • Fabric flower

Directions

  1. Cut your elastic to size, adding about ½” for overlap. Cut an additional 1.5” piece of elastic for covering the overlap.
  2. Bring the two ends together, overlapping about ½”, and add a dot of hot glue to hold the two ends together.
  3. Wrap the shorter piece of elastic around the overlap and add a small dot of hot glue to hold it down, with the seam of the shorter piece on the shiny side.
  4. Add a dot of hot glue on the seam, sticking the back of the flower onto the glue.

First, gather all of your supplies. You’ll need felt in whatever colors or patterns you want, a hot glue gun, scissors, and coordinating elastic.

  • First, gather all of your supplies. You’ll need felt in whatever colors or patterns you want, a hot glue gun, scissors, and coordinating elastic.
  • Cut two pieces of felt that are each 5-6 inches long by 1½ inches wide. Use one piece as the base for your headband and cut a third piece to fold over the top of one side to make it look like a bow tie (or whatever shape you want). If you want your bow tie wider or thinner than what I used here – just adjust accordingly!
  • Trim excess fabric off both sides so that only about ¼ inch remains beyond where you will start gluing things down. This will help prevent any fraying later on due to tension pulling on those edges during wear time at day care or preschool

Next, cut the felt into strips that measure about an inch by 6 inches.

Next, cut the felt into strips that measure about an inch by 6 inches. If you want to make them shorter, that’s fine too! You can cut them however long you want. It’s up to you.

Once your strips are measured and cut, use a ruler to measure the width of your headband (we used 1/2″). Then use these measurements to figure out how many felt strips you’ll need for each side of the headband. Measure one inch down from where you measured at one end of your headband and then measure another inch down at the other end of your headband (you should now have two marks on each side). Now count how many marks there are between both ends of your headband: if there are 3 marks between both ends then this means that there will be 6 total stripes around each side—3 in between both sides plus another 3 in between those first two marks on either side; etcetera! And repeat this step for each additional stripe/color change as needed until you reach as far over towards the middle (or wherever) as possible without covering any part of a previous color change area(s).

If you’re using one color for the headband, cut a 4-inch x 1/4-inch strip of felt.

If you’re using one color for the headband, cut a 4-inch x 1/4-inch strip of felt. If you want to use two colors and make them match, cut two strips in the same length and width. This step is optional.

If you are doing multiple colors on your headband, now would be a good time to rethink your original decision. Perhaps this choice was too bold after all? Maybe you should go with something more subtle? Or maybe what was once too much is now just right! If so, proceed as planned; if not, read through this section again until you feel ready!

Glue the end of the first ribbon to the back of the headband piece and wrap it around until it reaches the other side.

  • Use a hot glue gun to attach the end of the first ribbon to the back of one side of your headband piece.
  • Wrap it around until it reaches the other side and glue down again for security.
  • If you are using multiple colors, make sure you alternate them so that they aren’t too similar in shade or tone.
  • Make sure you have enough ribbon to wrap around your headband at least twice (so four times total).

Repeat with all of your ribbons until none are left.

Repeat with all of your ribbons until none are left. Your headband is complete!

When attaching the ribbon, be careful not to glue it down so that it can still be removed when washing the headband. Also, don’t leave any ribbons hanging and don’t glue them on the other side of the headband.

Make an easy diy baby headband using this tutorial. This type of baby headbands is my favorite because you can easily adjust the size. Choose among 3 sizes and make a fashionable baby accessory in minutes!

how to make a baby headband

Do you like cute diy headbands? Make sure to check out my popular earwarmer pattern in my shop too – it comes in 8 sizes from baby to adult!

Do you want an ad-free, printable copy of this online tutorial? Find it here for just $3. You won’t need to access the internet every time you want to make it. —— Or get the BUNDLE with ALL the Printable Tutorials – current and future ones!

link to printable pattern bundle

THIS DIY HEADBAND FOR A BABY IS EASY TO SEW!

If you’ve never sewn with jersey before, this is a good project to start. I’ll be right here with you, showing you how to make a baby headband that’s easy, quick, and adorable!

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No serger? Easy solution! You can sew this baby knot headband with your home sewing machine or serger.

No time to sew now? Save this project for later to Pinterest using this link or the image below:

how to make a baby headband

SUPPLIES TO SEW A DIY BABY HEADBAND

  • jersey, knit fabric: 22″ x 5″ (56 x 12 cm) for the smallest size, 26″ x 5″ (66 x 12 cm) for the largest size
  • coordinating sewing thread
  • sewing machine (or serger)
  • ballpoint needle, iron, scissors, pins
jersey fabric for baby headband

This diy baby headband project is designed for knits, ideally for mid-weight jersey. I used one with a 50% 4-way stretch, it’s a 95% cotton + 5% spandex blend. If you’re new to sewing with jersey, check out these tips on sewing with stretch fabric. Must-know!

So smooth and comfortable – it’s the latest collection by Mimi G Style, my daughter called it ‘Spotty’ – and she wants me to make a skirt and leggings with it. Might just happen, as the print is both girly and modern. And if I’m lucky and the day is just right, I’ll take a few snapshots and make sure to write down the dimensions to post here on the blog. Would you want a tutorial for a knit skirt or leggings – any of these? Let me know!

Oh, and also, jersey is also great to make basic scrunchies – so comfy! (Or use my new scrunchie pattern – 4 designs, all FREE!) – oh, or these sweet and simple hair ties!

One more thing, you will want to prewash your jersey before you sew because it will shrink.

knotted baby headband

CUTTING DIMENSIONS FOR DIY BABY HEADBAND:

  • cut (2 pieces) 22″ x 2 ½” for Small size baby headband (56 x 6 cm)
  • (2 pieces) 24″ x 2 ½” for Medium size baby headband (61 x 6 cm)
  • cut (2 pieces) 26″ x 2 ½” for Large size baby headband (66 x 6 cm)

WHAT ARE THE FINISHED SIZES OF THESE KNOT BABY HEADBANDS?

SIZEHeadband Size UnstretchedApprox. age
Baby Small14-15″ (35-38 cm)newborn
Baby Medium16-17″ (40-44 cm)6 months
Baby Large19-20″ (48-51 cm)1 year

If possible, measure your baby’s head circumference first to make sure the size fits. You can always adjust this type of baby headband when tying the knot, and this is why I prefer these headbands for babies to other, fixed designs.

Also, the fit will depend on the stretch of the knit you are using. Err on the larger side. I used a 50% – 4-way stretch knit, which is a pretty much forgiving material, and easy to work with.

white baby headband with spot print on jersey

HOW TO MAKE A HEADBAND FOR A BABY

So, how do you make a fabric baby headband? I’m giving you all the steps you need, below. But first, simply decide on the size you want.

STEP 1 – CUT THE FABRIC AND TRIM THE ENDS

Fold your jersey piece so the right sides are facing. This way, you’ll have your two strips ready to stitch immediately you’ve cut them – cutting both at once: so you’ll cut 2 pieces 22″/or 24″/or 26″ by 2 ½” (same width for all sizes)

cutting fabric for headband
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On each end, cut off a 1″ by 1″ triangle to form pointy ends. I find this the easiest way to prevent too much bulk on the headband ends once it’s on the baby’s head. Also, this is the simplest way for me to end up with nice rounded and slightly pointed ends for the knot on the headband – it always works great for me!

STEP 2 – SEW THE DIY BABY HEADBAND STRIPS TOGETHER

stitching line marking for diy headband

Place the pieces with the right sides together and sew around, leaving a few inches on one of the two long edges unsewn for turning. You don’t need to sew straight lines at the ends – it’s easier when you just go for a little curve when sewing the headband ends.

IMPORTANT: use a stretch stitch on your sewing machine, a narrow zig-zag is just fine! My machine settings were set at stitch width 3, and stitch length 2.

STEP 3 – CLIP CORNERS

scissors trimming the sewn headband

Trim the corners, removing any bulk from the seam allowance. This will make your project neater once turned.

STEP 4 – TURN AND STITCH THE OPENING CLOSED

steps to turn a fabric headband right side out

Turn your headband right-side-out through the opening (1) – first, push out one side (2) and when it’s turned, do the same with the other ‘tail’ (3). Then use a short and narrow zigzag stitch to sew the opening close. You can also hand-stitch – in this case, ladder stitch always turns out the best!

STEP 5 -PRESS

iron pressing the finished diy baby headband

Now, give your headband a final press so the baby headband will be nice and flat.

STEP 6 MAKE A DOUBLE KNOT

Tie into a double knot, like this:

steps to tie a knot on diy baby headband

If you have your baby somewhere close and awake, first model the head band against the baby’s head and tie only then, so you know the knot is 100% at the right place. But you can always untie and adjust.

WHY THESE DIY BABY HEADBANDS ARE GREAT IN SETS WITH EARWARMERS!

I loved how quick these baby accessories are to sew. What a lovely gift for a new baby!

I tested how they work in pairs, and in sets. So I made two additional earwarmers using this pattern from my shop. Which turned out to be an excellent idea for when the weather turns a bit windy – just switch the headband for the earwarmer, ta-daa!

Ever since, I always mix and match baby headbands with my popular earwarmers.

two types of diy baby headbands
Here’s an additional design that makes a GREAT set with these baby headbands! Check out the Ear Warmer pattern HERE in our SHOP.

It’s so handy to have both baby headbands AND earwarmers in a matching set. So you can switch them as needed – this combo turned out great!

Save this project for later, so you can make your own baby headband with a bow any time you wish:

This post is part of the BABY SEWING PATTERNS series on this blog. And if you’re new to sewing, start with this how to sew guide, or take a look at the main list of easy sewing patterns for beginners. All free!

Check out more baby sewing patterns – all free:

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Or …check out the Earwarmer Headband pattern in 8 Sizes in our shop:

earwarmer headband
Get The Earwarmer Headband PATTERN HERE.

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COMMENTS

  1. SusanJanuary 18, 2023 at 5:41 pmI love being a part of this “sew easy” group.
    Thank you for the detailed information as well as the photos which help me a lot.REPLY
    • DamjanaJanuary 20, 2023 at 10:04 pmSusan hi,
      thank you, enjoy!REPLY
  2. Helen ScalabrinoFebruary 08, 2022 at 9:18 amAt last I’ve found a reliable pattern and sizes. My little granddaughter lives in Kent, England and can’t wait to get started on these beautiful headbands.
    Thank you so much
    Helen, Cape TownREPLY
  3. KarlyAugust 29, 2021 at 11:07 amHi there!
    For deciding on size for a baby, should the finished sizes you list match the baby’s head circumference, or should it be a little bit smaller so it fits snugger??Thanks!REPLY
    • DamjanaAugust 29, 2021 at 3:32 pmKarly hi,better not smaller. I always make it just a bit bigger, not smaller, because babies grow fast. Hope this helps,REPLY
  4. KBJune 29, 2021 at 2:44 amWhat is seam allowance?REPLY
  5. SueMay 19, 2021 at 11:08 amGood easy to understand instructionsREPLY
    • DamjanaMay 19, 2021 at 2:02 pmSue thank you!REPLY

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make your own headbands for baby!

  • Make your own headbands for baby! This is a great way to use up scrap fabric and make something fun that your little one will wear all the time. I love this idea because I have tons of felt scraps, but it could be adapted to any type of ribbon or fabric you like. You only need a hot glue gun, scissors and some ribbon (or whatever material you choose).*
  • Cut strips of felt that are 1 inch wide by 4 inches long.* Glue each end of the first ribbon onto a headband piece.* Then wrap it around until you reach the other side. When you get back to where it started out, just cut off any extra length and glue down again! Repeat as desired for additional colors or patterns.* Add lots more colors if you want!

Conclusion

The great thing about this project is that it’s super easy to do and can be done with just about any kind of headband. Plus, you don’t even need glue! If you want a more fancy look, simply cut out the felt in different shapes (like hearts or flowers), then glue them on top and around the edges of the headband piece.

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