Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How to add gussets to a cloth diaper

Gussets have always seemed complicated and confusing to me...that is until I decided to jump in and try to do it.  I spent too much time looking at pictures and video tutorials only to come up with my own way of adding them that works for me.  So, for all those interested in yet another way to add gussets to your homemade cloth diapers, this is for you!  Hopefully this will give you the confidence to go try it yourself!

This tutorial will describe adding gussets to a diaper cover.
Materials needed:
  1. Fabric
  2. Diaper pattern
  3. Fold over elastic

Step 1:  I used two fabrics: PUL and a decorative outer fabric. If you use two fabrics, begin by basting them together.  Mark your elastic tacking points and the midway point between them.
The small black dots are the points to mark :)
Step 2:  Take a scrap piece of fabric (PUL for waterproof) and place it as seen in the picture.  Take a ruler and line up the two elastic marks.  Use a pencil or marking tool to trace the shape: down the ruler and around the crescent of the diaper.
Here is what it looks like when you remove the material:
Step 3:  Use the ruler to mark out 1/2" around the shape.  You want to give yourself 1/2" allowance. Then cut it out.  it should look like this.  Make sure to fold it in half and mark the halfway point for matching up when sewing:
Step 4:  Begin sewing the gusset to the diaper.  Line up the elastic mark with the outlined shape.  Sew the gusset curve edge to the edge of the diaper:
Step 5:  Attach both gussets.  It should look like this:

Notice how the center dots match up :) and the gusset is sewn close to the diaper edge. I used my basted stitch as a guide here.

Step 6:  Sew the FOE (fold over elastic) to the top of the gusset leaving about 1/4" extra room.  Make sure to back-stitch at the beginning and end, and pull as tight as you can to create a nice elastic binding:
It should look like this when you get to the other side:

Now take a minute to admire your work!  You made a gusset!!!

Step 7: Finish it off with FOE around the rest of the diaper.  Make sure to tuck in the gusset FOE into the binding when you go around.  Stretch the FOE at the leg elastic points and anywhere else the pattern requires.  Here are the final pictures:
Complete diaper!
And that's it! I hope this was helpful.  Now go try making gussets! It is really much simpler than it seems and doesn't take that much extra time.



  1. Can you please explain basting to me. does that just mean you sew it together.

  2. Yes, basting is a temporary stitch used to hold the fabric together. The stitch length
    is usually longer than a traditional stitch.

  3. Love it! Is that your own pattern for the cover?

  4. Thanks! It is an adaptation of the Cloth Revolution pattern. I added the seam allowance to the pattern and used FOE to make a cover. The gussets are 100% made up by me, though :)