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Arden’s not an exceptionally squirmy sleeper, but she does move around enough to get uncovered and often wakes up cold.  We use sleep sacks – Aden + Anais have nice muslin ones that work great, especially in the summer when you just need a little something – but there are never arms on sleepsacks.  So, I thought I could figure out some kind of a solution to the problem.

My approach to this went through a couple of iterations.  First I was planning to sew buttons to the fitted sheet and then do buttonholes to attach the flat sheet.  I figured I’d have to be sure and use extra-large buttons to ensure they weren’t a choking hazard if one should happen to come off.  I was also concerned that she’d end up lying on top of a hard button and wasn’t liking that so much.  Then I realized I could just use ribbon and not have to worry about buttons at all.  So here’s a little tutorial on how I made stay-put toddler bedding:

What you need:

  • Fitted crib sheet(s)
  • Flat crib sheet
  • About 1 ½ yards of ribbon
  • Sewing machine that can make buttonholes
  • Cute toddler!

I started by first making a cozy crib-size blanket out of snuggle chenille.  We’ve got some super-soft and cuddly blankets that Arden loves, but none are hardly any bigger than her and I wanted this to be a mini-version of an adult bed (minus a pillow).  I also had to make her a flat sheet.  The only place I’ve seen flat sheets for toddler beds is part of a set that includes a comforter and I want to use the blanket from her crib set as a coverlet.  I found a white twin sheet on clearance for $4.99 at Target and cut that down to size, finishing the new edges to match the original.

Tacking Ribbon

Next, I tacked 18″ lengths of ribbon to the bottom corners of the fitted sheets – about 1″ in from the end of the pocket seams. 

And another set about 25″ up towards the middle edges of the mattress.  This length is about the distance from Arden’s feet to her chin.  This way she shouldn’t be able to get her head stuck under the stay-put part of the blanket.

Buttonholes

Then I made pairs of buttonholes on the flat sheet to match the placement of the ribbons on the fitted sheet.  On the top set, I made them about 1 ½” closer to the edge of the sheet so I wouldn’t be pinning her tight to the bed.  My machine does automatic buttonholes using the button to set the length.  I just found a button the same width as my ribbon to guide the machine.

Ribbons Pulled Through Buttonholes

I tucked in the sheet and pulled the ribbons up through each of the buttonholes and tied a bow.

I left the outside center tie undone so we can put her into bed and tie it closed.  I had originally planned to do buttonholes on the blanket as well, but I decided that wasn’t necessary.  As long as the sheet stayed on top of her, the blanket should as well.

I couldn’t resist a gratuitous cute toddler photo of our test run.  She seems to like it, and is snoozing soundly while I put this post together.  I’ll add ribbons to the rest of her sheets, and probably make up another flat sheet with the buttonholes.  Don’t you just love it?  I know I do!

I’ll be linking up to the parties in my Linky Party Directory.

When you embark on the journey to parenthood, it comes with a mile-long list of things to purchase.  Some of them are necessities (crib, clothing, medicines, etc.), and some of them are just nice to have. 

Some things that work for someone else won’t work for you and vice-versa.  I won’t get into the obvious ones like infant swings, Boppy, or jumpers.  Here are a few of my favorite things discovered through my parenting adventure:

  1. gDiapers – An earth-friendly diaper system, they’re the best of cloth and disposable.  And they’re adorable.  And my daycare will use them.  And my daughter rarely gets diaper rash.  And I could go on.  We can’t flush the diapers because of our “nonstandard” 80+year old plumbing, but we do compost the pee diapers. 
  2. Mommy Necklaces – Nursing necklaces, or just think of them as child-proof necklaces.  They’re super cute, come in a wide variety of color combinations and several styles, and have a breakaway clasp for safety.  Fashion you can wear without fear of destruction from your little darlings.
  3. Hooter Hider or nursing cover – It does the obvious job quite nicely, but it also works as a shade for the stroller if baby falls asleep on a sunny day.
  4. Aden + Anais swaddles and sleeping bags – LOVE THEM!  Arden did really well with being swaddled, but in the summer I didn’t want her in flannel, and when she got bigger it was difficult to swaddle her securely in the smaller ones.  These are so soft and lightweight, and big enough to swaddle older or bigger kids (I could swaddle her at 18 months if she’d let me).  Now we use them as her warm weather blankets.
  5. Cedarworks playsets – I don’t have one, but I have a serious playset crush on these.  I think I’m going to set up a savings fund so I can get one when Arden is old enough to play on one.
  6. Bravado nursing tanks – I messed around with inexpensive and ill-fitting nursing bras from chain stores.  Then I was show the light of Bravado.  (insert harp music here)  Super comfy and the tank is great so you’re not showing everyone your post-baby belly while you feed said baby.

Hope something here will make your life easier.  Do you have any parenting products you can’t live without?  Post a comment.