DIY Muslin Swaddle Blankets

With my most recent baby I discovered muslin blankets (which I’m pretty sure weren’t around with my other 2 babies). And I absolutely love them! Maybe it’s because she’s a summer baby, but I love the stretchiness of them and how light weight they are. They are big and great to feed under too! But they are kind of spendy.

The fabric they are made from is called gauze and not muslin. Although they call the blankets muslin. If that isn’t confusing then I don’t know what is! I made a trip to JoAnn’s in search of the gauze fabric and all our store had was a cream color. I didn’t love, or even like the color, but brought home 4 yds and a box of Rit dye. Because the gauze was 44″ wide, I cut the fabric 44″ long to make them squares. Then I hemmed the sides. I used pink thread because my cream thread was a polyester blend and I wasn’t sure it would take the dye and I didn’t want cream thread on the pink blankets.

I followed these instruction on how to ombre to dye the 3 blankets. One blanket fades from dark to light and another I folded in half so the middle of the fabric is the darkest and fades towards the edges. And the 3rd is dyed a solid pink.

The color faded quite a bit when I washed them for the first time. I actually stood watching the wash color turn from clear to bright pink and wondered if my blankets would come out the original color. But I’m really happy with the end colors, they’re much calmer than they started out. The ombre is subtle, but adds a fun touch.

minky_blanket_2-600x450 If you’re looking for a blanket for warmer months, I suggest checking out my minky baby blanket and don’t miss the simplified instructions too!

You can find all of our baby projects here.


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      • Kimmi says

        The holidays are the best time to get the fabric. With sales and coupon, I paid $14 for 5 yards, enough for about 4 blankets. Add the dye, and in total, they cost about $4. Not too bad versus $40 for three at the boutiques in the area.

  1. Rachel says

    Thank you so much for this post! I love the “muslin” blankets and went to JoAnns looking to make my own. I looked through all the muslin thinking, “none of this seems right!” I’m so excited to go find me some GAUZE! Wahoo!

  2. hosander says

    I made these for my baby, I found the fabric on, they have lots of COLOR choices. And it was about $4/yard.

  3. Conny Beauchamp says

    Went to Jo-Ann’s and could not find the muslin gauge. Asked someone to help and they could not find it for me.

  4. Julie says

    I have heard they are called “muslin” because that’s the word they use for “gauze” in other English-speaking parts of the world (e.g. Australia, GB?). So if you buy “muslin” at Joann’s in the states, it’s not the same stuff. As other posters mentioned, look for gauze! My Joann’s doesn’t carry it, though, so I’m looking online.

  5. carebear says

    I too have a now 2 year old that is addicted to the A and A blankets. At $30/set in the stores and slightly less online, I also went searching for the fabric. Love that the fabric is found online as one person has said, I am so looking for it now as well. I made the same mistake when searching joanns for it and discovered the gauze myself about a year ago.. love the dye idea. Not sure why I didn’t think of that before, especially since I have tie dyed several of the solid blankets that came with the set. Just fyi. Wal-Mart sells a set of 5 “dish towels” for $5 made of very similar fabric. I bought some of them and tie dyed those as well. They are a little rougher at first, but soften up quickly after a few washes. Of course they are Much such smaller than the Aand A blankets, bit I use them as travel “winkies” as my baby refers to them..

  6. Christina says

    I’m definitely going to make these, since I’m due in June when it will be 100 degrees in Texas. However, instead of RIT dye, which isn’t permanent (it will continue to fade) and which will transfer color if you wash the blankets with any light-colored natural fibers.

    I suggest using Jacquard dye, which you can find at JoAnn Fabrics in a kit for tie-dye. Those kits use a dye (brand name Procion) that actually becomes part of the fiber and won’t fade or wash out if you dye according to the instructions. We tie-dye a few hundred t-shirts at a camp where I volunteer every summer, and none of my t-shirts has faded or ever colored anything else in the wash. It’s a more complicated dyeing process, but its worth it for the intense colors and permanence.

    The tie-dye kits come with three colors from which you can easily make a six-color rainbow of shades. You can mix the liquid colors to get your preferred shade before dyeing, too.

    Thanks for the great idea!

  7. Leslie says

    After dyeing them I would recommend washing them with the usual amount of detergent and a 1/4 cup vinegar. The vinegar should set the color and keep them from fading.
    I love your idea! I love any way to save money when looking for photo props.

  8. Shaneen says

    Great tutorial, but you should never use rit dyes on baby items. Fiber reactive dyes are the only ones that should be used on baby items.

  9. Lindsey says

    I love these and am going to have to make some as my next project! For baby products though you really should use fiber-reactive dyes like tulip or dharma. Rit can bleed in to baby’s mouth if she sucks on it.


  1. […] 1. Muslin or Bamboo Swaddles – These things are great.  A wonderful invention (ahem, they are swaths of cloth).  They cost anywhere between $35 for four or $45 for three, making the person who thought of whipping up these little blankets and packaging them, a genius.  We used at least two a day in the first few weeks.  We full-swaddled [for the first day or so until little Houdini told us to cut it out] and then swaddled our boy under his arms in the blankets at night.  We use them over the car seat and stroller on warmer days when we need the sun off baby.  We now use them to wipe the drool that has started these past few days (early teething?)  The more you wash them, the softer they get!  We have ten of these blankets.  Can’t picture spending that much on these lightweight swaddles?  You can easily make your own (especially if you are still pregnant with your first child and have time to yourself).  Check out these instructions! […]

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