I wish I had these seven years ago. I bought a pattern once for nursing pads, but it was really hard to understand and I ended up with 1 inch thick scratchy discs to use. They were horrible and completely obvious. So I gave up on homemade nursing pads and stuck to the purple squeaky plastic ones you buy at Target. But those aren’t soft at all…and you walk around with a funny smell.
A few months ago I was running low on my plastic ones and thought “geez, how hard can it be?”. So I looked at my stash of fabric and gave it a shot. I made my own pattern (by tracing my desk lamp) and held up the layers to see how thick it would be…I didn’t want another set that were thicker than candy bars.
I used diaper PUL, cotton flannel and cotton batting. They’re so soft, and comfortable. And actually work!
I love these things! I made a dozen or so of them, so I can keep a pair while I wash the rest.
They’re freaking awesome!
And they’re affectionately known around my house as “boobie pads”.
They’re good after your supply has regulated itself, and they retain a lot of liquid. The only time they leak is if you use them right after you have a baby…yeah nothing will hold that much liquid, except maybe bamboo or zorb. But I didn’t have any on hand to test that.
Here’s a free nursing pads pattern so you can make your own!
What you need:
- diaper PUL
- 100% cotton batting (low-loft, like Cotton Blossom or Bamboo Blossom)
- 100% cotton flannel
- 100% polyester thread (don’t use cotton or you’ll leak through the stitching!)
For each set (2 pads=1 set) cut out:
- 2 circles of PUL
- 2 circles of batting
- 4 circles of flannel
You can use ANY color of PUL you want and ANY color of flannel. Prints are so much fun!! No one will see these. They go right next to your skin, and I’m assuming you have a bra and shirt on afterwards…so no one will see these. You could have duckies, cupcakes, little monsters, flowers, you name it! 😉
These things are so fast…I actually timed myself. It took 2 mins to sew and serge a pair of them!
- Layer 1 circle of batting between 2 layers of flannel, making a cotton sandwich.
- Through all 3 layers, stitch 1/2 inch away from the edge of fabric. Backstitch and cut threads.
- Stitch an inner circle, 1/4 inch inside the previous stitch line. Backstitch and cut threads.
- Layer cotton sandwich on top of PUL circle.
- Serge (or zigzag) around the edge twice, through all of the layers. Cut threads.
- Repeat above steps 1-5 for other pad.
- Now wash and dry on high heat. (The heat seals the holes in the PUL and helps the pads contour…see, the cupcakes are washed and dried and fit better)
Enjoy your pads!
*You can find PUL in the diaper section of JoAnn stores. They also sell Cotton Blossom and Bamboo Blossom in the batting section.
**These don’t take a lot of fabric. One of those packs of PUL will make more than you’ll know what to do with. I used some of the extra to make myself a case for them. I can carry 3 sets in one little bag and always have extras on hand.
And no, I didn’t get anything for writing this post. I wasn’t compensated. I just did it for fun and had leftover PUL and supplies from diapers and blankets that I made for my babies and others. I just love sharing and hope this helps some other mom somewhere. 🙂
This is a great stash buster for random pieces of flannel! You can also upcycle old flannel shirts or blankets if you want extra crunchy points. And save those 50% off coupons for your PUL! 😉
And before I get a bunch of comments telling me that PUL is bad and will cause clogs…I’ve worn these for 4 months without so much as a clog or infection. As long as you wash and change them, you’ll be fine. And the PUL I use “breathes”, because it will go through the other side if it’s completely soaking wet.
Now go forth and sew a few sets for yourself or a new mom. I would suggest 6 sets as a gift. They’re cheap, fast, easy and so soft and comfy. You’ll never want to use the disposable kind again. 🙂
P.S. Feel free to make and sell as many pads as you want! Just send a little shout-out.
P.P.S. It warms my heart to hear all the ladies that made these for a niece, a sister, themselves….That’s amazing. I’m so happy to help!