Fitted crib sheets are essential for a baby nursery but can become costly. You can make your own fitted crib sheets and customize your crib linens to accentuate the nursery decor. Novelty prints are available in a variety of styles and colors. Prewashing softens and shrinks the fabric to prepare it for use. Skipping this step may result in the fitted crib sheet not fitting after it has been washed once. This is an easy pattern to undertake for a beginner sewing project. These instructions are for a sheet to fit a standard crib mattress measuring 28 inches wide by 52 1/4 inches long by 6 inches thick.
Prewash the fabric. Lay the fabric open on a flat work surface and square it up. It should measure 45 inches wide by 72 inches long. This will provide a good extension around to the bottom of the mattress to hold it in place. It is fine if the squaring and prewashing decreases the measurement slightly. Cut an 8-inch-square notch from each corner.
Match the short raw edges at each corner and pin. Sew the pinned edges using a 1/2 inch seam allowance. Iron the seams open. Go over the raw edges of the seam allowance with a zig zag stitch to combat seam fraying.
Fold the edges of the fitted crib sheet a 1/4 inch to the wrong side of the fabric and iron. Fold the edge over again a 1/2 inch, iron and pin. Top stitch as close to the pinned edge as possible to form a casing. Leave a one-inch opening at one corner of the fitted crib sheet to thread the elastic through.
Measure and cut a length of the 1/4-inch-wide elastic, 90 inches long. Attach the bodkin or safety pin to one end of the elastic. Thread the elastic through the opening of the casing and around the fitted crib sheet. Remove the bodkin or safety pin. With both ends extending out of the casing, pin the ends of the elastic together and stitch, using a zig zag stitch. Slip the elastic back into the casing. Top stitch the opening.