This free baby car seat canopy pattern is heirloom quality. Not only cover is practical, it’s beautiful. The Peekaboo window provides a quick way to check if your little one is sleeping with out disturbing them. The Window cover also act as a pocket for stashing pacifiers, and other small objects.
You will need the following:
A printed out version of the Free Fleece Fun Baby Car Seat Canopy PDF (on the right).
1 and1/4 yards cotton, flannel or fleece (a little extra of a different color if you want contrasting straps)
1 and 1/4 yards cotton, flannel
1 yard contrasting fabric for outer edge (or 1/2 yard of 2 contrasting fabrics)
6- 8 inches sew on Velcro
Package of double sided bias tape
1/3 yard tulle, netting for window
Thread (you will use lots)
5 – 7 yards small cording (3 packages of wright’s – optional)
Washable cloth marking pen or pencil
extra buttons, ribbon for decorating
Download the free pattern here, tutorial below.
1 – Cut out Pattern
Place the line on the fold and cut 1 from the exterior fabric (fabric that will be facing out).
Finish cutting the exterior fabric by cutting along the window curve line – taking care to leave the fabric attached.
Note: If you are using fleece I recommend only making the topside fleece and making the interior lining a lighter fabric, like flannel or cotton.
Place the pattern on the interior lining cut out again when you cut the window section of the lining fabric you will completely cut out the window (cut straight across on the dotted line. Keep the piece you cut out as you will be using it later.
Note: if using flannel and fleece be sure to wash the flannel so it shrinks before you cut it out and sew.
Cut out 4 of the straps (2 exterior 2 lining). I recommend using the flannel especially on the straps when using fleece to keep it from stretching.
Save your scraps! There’s enough left over to make a cute hat and other things for the baby!
2 – additional cutting needed
A 5 inch wide strip that is 42 inches long (the width of the cloth) of the contrasting interior fabric (you should have enough at the end after cutting out the pattern). This will be the ruffle around the window.
If you choose to make the edging go to step 5 and follow the cutting instructions there. Cutting these strips is easiest with a rotary cutter and ruler.
3 – Prep the Window
3b – Add the tulle
For the interior lining you will have bias tap all the way around the window, so you will only need to tuck on end under. Starting at the top of the window pining, to the end being sure to leave enough to tuck under the other end. Cut a piece of doubled tulle and pin so it completely covers the window. Sew on tape and tulle.
Note: I have seen covers where they put clear plastic here instead of tulle – Do Not add plastic. I think it’s a very bad idea to have something like that near a baby’s face. If you are worried about exposing your baby to the outside elements – just don’t lift the flap.
4 – Begin to sew edge
Personally I love how cording looks. There’s something about cording that says “pro”. Here is how I sew cording.
I pin the cording in place on the right side of the fabric. Lining the edge of the cording up with the edge of the fabric. I like to start in the middle of the pattern where it comes in.
If you are using cording I also recommend sewing cording around the window cover on the exterior as well.
Using a zipper foot, I sew right next to the cording all the way around the cover. (The needle is on the left side of the foot, and the foot is butted up next to the cording)
If you are capable of sewing cording and two pieces of fabric together at the same time – you are awesome, I bow down to you – I can’t. =)
5 – Make the edging (optional)
This embellishment looks amazing, but is not crucial to the construction of the cover. So if you don’t like it or just don’t feel like making it (I have admit it’s a lot of work). Feel free to skip to step 6.
(Because this section is very detail intense I have gallery pictures below so you can see them larger than the other tutorial photos – just click on them and they will get bigger)
For the edging in the example I used two contrasting colors, but you could only use one color.
For two contrasting colors (one on one side and one on the other) Cut 7 strips that are 2 inches wide of each color ( for one color cut 7 strips 4 inches wide)
Sew each strip or one color end to end so you have one long continuous strip.
Then if using two colors with right side together and using a .25 inch seam allowance. Your strip should now be double in width.
If using one color iron long strip in half right side facing out – if using two colors also iron in half right side facing out so you have a long strip ironed in half. Optional – top stitch along the bottom of the edging ( the part where the fold is) .5 inches in all the way along the edging.
Now it’s finally time to pin the edging to the Car seat cover. You should have more than enough to make it all the way around. I like the pinned ruffle look, because it’s very tailored and modern looking. What I did it I let the edging be straight until I reached a curve and then I made a pinned ruffle look. ( look at the pictures to see). To make this all I did was fold it on top of itself using my thumbnail as a rough guide for sizing. it takes practice to do this and you may have to pin it a few times – be patient with yourself.
Notice that I have the ruffle pinned with right side together – meaning the brown side – the side I want showing on the exterior is facing in. This is because once I sew on the interior lining and flip the cover right side out the ruffle will stick out and look correct.
Work all the way around the cover until you reach the end – if you have excess – leave some additional for turning under and then snip off the rest (save the remainder you can use it for other things).
Because the fabric is so thick i recommend sewing on the edging before adding the interior lining. If you have used cording you have a natural seam guide to follow. Just use a zipper foot butted up against the cording and sew all the way around. If you don’t have cording use a .5 seam allowance and sew all the way around.
6 – Pin the lining to the top of the cover
Matching pattern so the windows line up.
Pin right sides together. Pin the exterior and interior lining together (cording/ edging is sandwiched between the two).
There is no need to leave a gap for turning as you will be using the window to turn.
Tip: Pin from the middle of the pattern (where is comes in) out – it will pin better)
If you are not using cording, sew all the way around with a straight stitch with a .5 seam allowance.
With cording, use a zipper foot, butt foot up against cording and sew all the way around. The tighter, closer you are to the cording the better it will look – take your time to make it look right.
Turn the cover right side out and admire your work!
7 – Top Stitch
On the right side of the top piece of fabric, using your zipper foot butt the right side up against the cording, with the needle on the left. This will give you some nice top stitching that will make your cording pop.
No cording – top stitch .5 inches from the edge of the fabric.
Tip – You’re working with a lot of fabric – so careful that it doesn’t fold up under the needle – I like to pin the cover a little to prevent this from happening.
8 – Finish up the window
Remember that window piece I had you save when you cut out the lining? It’s now time to use it. Along the straight top edge sew on some bias tape, tucking under the ends. ( you can all a little ribbon loop to make opening the pocket easier if you would like.
Next take the 5 inch wide piece fabric that you cut earlier from the lining and fold it in half so you have a 2/5 inch wide long strip of fabric, iron, Turn under the raw edged of each end (the short ends) and sew, then top stick .25 inches from the folded edge along the entire length (42 inches) of the fabric.
Now using the method in step 5 pin and gather around window flap, be sure the ruffle in pointing in for turning. Because the fabric is so thick i recommend sewing on the edging before adding the window lining. If you have used cording you have a natural seam guide to follow. Just use a zipper foot butted up against the cording and sew all the way around. If not cording use a .5 seam allowance and sew all the way around.
Next pin on window lining, then on all the way around either using cording as guide or a .5 inch allowance. Be sure to leave the top (the side with the bias tape) open. Turn and admire your work on the flap.
Now pin the exterior window to the interior window so the bias tape lines up. Take care not pinch tulle or other fabric as you are dealing with a lot. Sew from the top right corner to the top left corner – not sewing along the top to keep the pocket open (it also looks better if the flap is seamless)
9 – Make the straps
Follow the cording instruction in step 4
Place right sides of fabric together pin and sew, leaving a gap at the bottom (not the rounded side) for turning of 2 to 3 inches.
Sew, turn, and sew gap shut like you did on the cover.
Then top stitch as you did on the cover.
10 – Add the Velcro
Using the guides on the pattern for reference place the “hook” side ( the pointy side) of the Velcro on the interior of the strap – sew into place by sewing a straight stitch along the edges, turning at corners (all four sides) of the Velcro.
Note: This stitching will be seen on the other side – either use thread that can’t easily seen or make sure your stitches are nice and straight as they are visible.
Again using the guides on the pattern for reference place the other side of the Velcro (loop) on the exterior of the strap. Straight stitch all four sides into place.
11 – Sewing Straps onto the cover
Using the pattern as a guide, mark the stitching pattern onto each strap. This is how you’ll sew it onto the cover.
Pin the Straps onto the cover.
Make sure the lining fabric is flat underneath.
If you have access to the car seat you are making this for – I recommend that you lay the cover on it to gauge where the straps should go. Otherwise you can put them where I have the straps the picture – with the caveat that all baby car seat are different and what works for one might not work for another.
Sew the straps to the cover.
12 – Finishing up the cover!
This cover is different from other baby covers. I don’t like how most just hang from the bar onto where the baby is. This cover is made to prevent that and to stay in place if it’s windy. Just do this final step!
Place you’re amazing looking cover on the car seat if you have access to it.
See how the edges fold over in the picture – with a single pin – pin where the top and bottom meet in the middle.
Using a washable marker pencil draw on the top and bottom where that point is on each side. The mark on the top will be on the interior lining and the mark on the bottom will be on the exterior of the cover.
Sew a small amount of Velcro ( about on inch) the hook on the top interior where the mark is – the loop on the bottom exterior of the cover.
Now your little one will be snug as a bug! You could also make this pattern with flannel, or cotton since all the edges are finished. Be sure to show off your work in the forums section – you can post your finished projects and ideas there!