I searched and searched for a pattern that would meet my needs (and wants!) for our little bun in the oven, but wasn’t having much luck. I knew I wanted a fitted style diaper because they’re very soft and breathable, but I wanted one that wasn’t thick or complicated so it would wash cleanly and dry quickly (similar to the properties of prefolds — but with the added comforts of elastic and closures!). I took the concept of fold in wings from the “quick snap flap wrap” (qsfw) and “daddy flat” patterns and applied it to a newborn sized diaper pattern (by LaDiDa). I drew up some attached wings that would fold in towards the body of the diaper for all in one piece absorbency and convenience, but unfold in the wash for easy laundering. Anyway, I thought the concept might be useful for others, so here is a little tutorial!
Mine are serged (since I FINALLY got the hang of hidden elastic), but it could easily be turned and top stitched as well. Just FYI, I will not share the pattern itself since it is copyrighted and for sale at the link above, but I can possibly share the dimensions I used for the soaker wings. To apply the wing concept to another pattern, just draw in your desired shape and size of wings and attach to the original pattern for cutting. Keep in mind the dimensions of the diaper width when figuring out your wings.
Ok, here we go…first cut out the layers and stack them (don’t mind the binder clips, I prefer them over pins :blush:), lay out the location for your back elastic (I used hidden elastic since I serged my diapers), and mark your front panel snaps
Then flip the fabric over and trace the leg line of the original pattern so you have it as a guide for your leg elastic
Sew in your back elastic and put on front snaps (I did this here so they would be hidden on the inside, and only through the outer and hidden fabric layers), now you’re ready to serge around
When you get to the V’s between the wings and body, put the blade down and hold the wing up vertically so you can feed it between the presser foot and guard (be careful not to go too far or the looper arm will stab through the fabric — trust me :giggle:). This lets you get all the way into the V. Then once you serge all the way in, lift the presser foot (with the needles up so you can shift the fabric), turn the V and serge on.
Voila, back elastic is in, and diaper is serged
Now you’re going to sew in the leg elastics right on top of the inner layer (don’t worry, they’re covered when the wings are folded in and I figure it would make replacing the elastic a lot easier if ever necessary ;)). Line up the edge of the elastic with the inside of guideline you drew on earlier, this will keep the crotch as trim as the original pattern and allow the wing to fold in and make a faux casing for the elastic. I find that lining up the beginning and end of the elastic with the serging coming down from the back and front panels helps things fold nicely.
Here’s what it should look like after the elastics are in (note: the elastics are inside the guidelines towards the body of the diaper, not the soaker wings)
And here is a pic showing the different views of the finished product :thumbsup:
And one cute picture of all the sweet little diapers ♥ (for reference, the square tiles on my sewing table are 18″ square!)