A nursing shawl is an essential in any breastfeeding mother’s wardrobe. If you are still struggling with blankets that slip off mid feed or nursing bibs that barely cover anything, here is the solution for all your problems! Designed to be stylish, comfortable and provide discreet coverage when feeding your baby outdoors, these shawls are now all the rage. Most are made of wash and wear, easy to care for fabrics and can be folded and tucked away in a chic handbag. Let us show you how to make a chic and useful nursing shawl in a matter of minutes.
These are the supplies you need:
Step 1: Choose your fabric. Ideally look for a jersey knit or a similar material that does not wrinkle and folds easily. Cotton may sound earthy and fashionable but shows wear and tear a bit too quickly. Remember, there is nothing that spells messy as much as a crumpled piece of clothing. A polyester blend instead is perfect. If you like bright colors or floral prints go on and indulge – this is not the time for you to be fading into the background!
Step 2: Wash and dry the material before you start to sew as this tackles the problem of future shrinkage and wrong sizing. Once the fabric is dried and pressed, fold it in along its width. If the beginning width is 60 inches you should be left with a rectangle of cloth about 30 inches across.
Step 3: Trim the edges of the cloth and remove any messy or jagged edges for a smooth finish. Measure 25 inches from the outer edge of the cloth and mark or pin this all along one side.
Step 4: Cut along the markings – this will leave you with a rectangular fabric of approximately 25 inches x 30 inches when unfolded.
Step 5: Keep the fabric folded and measure 13 inches along a corner of the folded side. This will be the space for your head in the shawl. Pin the rest of the fabric to keep everything in place and prevent slippage before you start sewing.
Step 6: Sew along the line from the edge of the hole for the head up to the end of the fabric. In case you don’t have a sewing machine, even hand stitched will do. Don’t get intimidated by the idea of doing this yourself – all it takes is matching thread and a needle and you will soon have a chic nursing shawl to use or gift (these make amazing baby shower gifts as well).
Step 7: Flip the shawl over and hem the remaining sides. If you want to embellish the shawl further you can add trimmings such as lace, ribbons, buttons or bows.
If you hate nursing in public or are worried about exposing more than you would like, this shawl is perfect – modest while being stylish! Other reasons to love the nursing shawl include the fact that it doesn’t scream, ‘look at me, I’m feeding my baby,’ it’s also super lightweight and stretches enough to accommodate a growing baby. Another perk of covering your baby while feeding is that this creates a welcome cocoon for your little one while he feeds. This can encourage proper uninterrupted feeding and maybe even allow him to catch a little nap as well.