Choosing the Right Fabric for Baby Clothes and Accessories

Baby hair accessories are very popular and widely loved by parents and toddlers alike. Hair accessories have risen in popularity in recent times and with this have come a wide variety of options available in different styles, shapes, colors, and designs. For example, baby turbans have just recently become a thing and Head Wraps with Bows are a step ahead of just baby bows or headbands as they combine the comfort of a headwrap with the cuteness of a bow. What's not to love? With so many clothes and accessories out there from dresses, to onesies, pants, singlets, shorts, denim, blouses, tees, jerseys, headbands, turbans and of course head wraps, it can be easily forgotten that you need to pay attention to the kind of fabrics being used to make these items. A baby’s skin is soft and sensitive and so needs to be around only gentle fabrics and materials. Not all fabrics meet these criteria and so it's important to have a basic understanding of which fabrics are good or bad. The first and foremost consideration when selecting fabric for your kid is that – it is soft and non-irritating. For a newborn, an extra consideration is that it should be comfortable against the cut umbilical cord. For older babies and kids comfort and safety ranks as the prime consideration. You also do not want the fabric to be clingy or slippery or thick – the fabric has to be breathable. Some fabrics are listed below Lawn Cotton: Lawn cotton is a lightweight soft 100% cotton fabric with a high thread count, is very much suitable for making kids clothes, especially baby clothes. It is somewhat transparent and has a slightly crisp feel but at the same time, it is very very soft to touch, as it is made of very fine thread. It is a popular choice for making white baby gowns and dresses. Lightweight cotton can also dry faster than other fabrics and this is a huge advantage as a parent need baby clothes to get dry quickly due to continuous spills and baby stains and the subsequent washing and drying that have to

be done. Lawn cotton is lightweight and so it fits perfectly. Handkerchief linen: This is a lovely very soft lightweight semi-sheer linen. Handkerchief linen fabric has a slight texture to its surface This is an heirloom project staple. As it is linen, expect the elegance of linen but with a soft feel ( a cotton/ linen blend will come without all that wrinkling natural to linen). This fabric is perfect for making gowns for newborns for baptism or naming. As it is lightweight you can sew dresses with gathers, peats, as well as smoking without the unwanted bulk. Muslin: This is a cotton fabric available in many different weights – from very thin to somewhat dense, even coarse. The thin muslin is great for making baby clothes as you do not get more breathable fabric than this, it is 100% cotton. Muslin is usually used for making cloth diaper covers, swaddling clothes, burp clothes or nursing covers. It is used to make these items rather than clothes as it is not very glamorous looking. This fabric is very suitable for lining and for making petticoats to wear under dresses. Gauze is a type of muslin that is very soft. It is a cotton muslin fabric with a slightly wrinkled look. It is an open weave, airy and very breathable. Single gauze and double gauze fabrics are available. Batiste: This is a cotton open weave fabric which is very soft. It is not transparent like voile or lawn fabric. This fabric is very durable compared to other types of cotton fabrics and at the same time very comfortable to wear as it is super soft. Batiste is also a lightweight fabric which as I mentioned above is a great advantage for parents. Swiss batiste fabric is a favorite fabric for making baby dresses and nightgowns Broadcloth: Broadcloth is a lightweight and smooth fabric that can be cotton or cotton blend. Choose the cotton for making clothes for babies. The cotton broadcloth has a lustrous surface texture with a fine rib effect. You can make gowns and dresses with this fabric. Small kid tops and dresses in this fabric embellished with fine embroidery can be seen in retail showrooms. Fleece: Light fleece fabric is a good choice for kids’ winter clothes and winter accessories. Fleece is used as an alternative to wool. It is moisture-wicking and keeps the body warm. Unlike wool, fleece is easy to maintain as it is machine washable and dries fast. Make swaddle blankets or kid jackets. Microfiber fabrics: Microfiber fabrics is a soft and non-allergenic fabric that's a great choice for parents whose kids have sensitive skin. Jersey knit fabric: Cotton jersey knit fabric is a favorite for baby and children’s clothes They are soft and breathable. Another advantage over woven clothes is that

jersey knits are stretchy and this increases the level of comfort they provide. Bamboo rayon: Bamboo material, is an ultra soft yet durable rayon fiber made from cellulose derived from bamboo plants. It is organically made and is supposed to have non-allergenic properties which make the eco-conscious parents choose this fabric over others. It’s great for sensitive skin and is thermal-regulating, meaning that it will adjust to a child’s body temperature and consequently the body is, less likely to become too hot Other Fabrics: It may be tempting to buy pretty printed fabrics in polyester and nylon or sequined knits as well as add trims like synthetic lace and crinoline petticoats. Remember that a child’s skin is very delicate and she / he doesn't care that the pretty dress she is wearing is dazzling to others- the kid just wants a comfortable dress in which she can run around, free as a bird. The fabric you select go a long way in making him or her feel that way. So choose wisely. Conclusion Having a base knowledge of the right fabrics to buy is a good skill to have. As a parent you don’t need to overload with information or obsess over each fabric but a basic understanding goes a long way when you’re shopping for your kid or kids and trying to decide what to get. Always remember that comfort is king.