I was a little shocked when I went to one of those big box stores about 6 months ago to buy a couple of fitted sheets for the Pack & Play (we called these Kiddie camp cots in my previous life) that stays at Grandpa & Granny’s house for nap times and babysitting sleep-overs.

My goodness, they were not all that reasonably priced!? I was SURE I could make them easily for a fraction of that price. However, I had no time right then to make my own as I was rushing to finish my entry for Quilt Canada 2012, so I bit the bullet and bought a set of 2 fitted sheets. They are OK but don’t fit perfectly (I guess they are a generic size) and are made from a nasty poly fabric which really does not “breathe” much  – especially on hot summer days.  Advantage is that it does not wrinkle much when washed (take out the tumble drier, shake & use) so probably 6 of 1 & half a dozen of the other when it comes to fabric choice?

Now my daughter needs to move the toddler into her own room into a toddler bed as she needs to put the new baby into the crib in the nursery. So………… guessed right…….Nanna was called to the rescue! We bought poly broadcloth (44 inch wide) for an unbelievable $2.99pm. Thank you, Save-on Fabrics on King George Highway, Surrey, BC.

I measured the width, length & depth of the toddler bed mattress. I did need to add a strip down the 2 sides as the 44 inch fabric width was not quite wide enough to tuck well under the mattress. But it is fine as this join will be down the side of or under the mattress so won’t affect anything.

I used my ELNA serger set on a 4 thread edge finish to sew these seams for adding the extra strips. SO quick!

Then I serged all the way around the sheet to neaten the edge using a 3 thread wide which lies flatter when you are serging this type of fabric and just the one layer. If I had used the 4 thread, it might have pulled & puckered a bit. It would press flat but I did not want to have to be bothered with an extra step.

Next came laying the sheet WRONG  side up on top of the mattress. Fold a miter corner or tuck as each corner and pin in place. Then remove the sheet and head to your ELNA sewing machine to sew these mitered corners.  I was working on the EL740EXCELLENCE. This is so that the sheet is fitted and does not just wrinkle & pucker at the corners.

Pinned miter to be sewed
Sew a straight seam where you have pinned.  Repeat for all 4 corners.  Now trim (you will cut off a folded triangle of fabric) & neaten this seam.
Pinned, not yet sewn, but gives the idea of what the fitted corner will look like.

Now turn under the edge all the way around the sheet to make a casing for the elastic. Sew leaving an opening for inserting elastic.

Insert a length of elastic that gives enough tension to hold the sheet well on the mattress but not too much that it pulls or curls the mattress (especially if the mattress is quite thin like the ones that typically come standard with Pack & Plays/Camp cots. )

Sew the ends of the elastic together and sew closed the opening in the elastic casing.

You are done…………ready to sit back and bask in the gratitude from your offspring who have just saved themselves some money and you get to have another connection with your precious grandchild who will know that her Nanna/Granny/Grandma made her bedroom so pretty!  I say it is WELL worth those minutes or hours spent sewing. It’s important for a grandparent to build into their little lives…….easy to whip out the “plastic” to buy something…………much more precious when both grandparent & child know something was made specially for a little person with lots of love. Sure gives me lots of joy to do it.

Do you agree with my sentiments????


About lizafrica

I am the National Education Manager for Janome & Elna Canada (including Artistic Creative products) and I LOVE to sew! I have been employed full time in the sewing and quilting industry for almost 30 years so I bring a wealth of sewing knowledge & expertise to this blog. I enjoy all forms of sewing from quilting to sewing garments to machine embroidery and software. Pretty much everything in my life is seen through the eyes of a passionate sewer! I am constantly on the look out for fun, innovative and inspiring ideas to share with you all on this blog. I also love to read, knit , travel and spend time with my family and friends.
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