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Michael Miller Fabrics' Citron-Gray Nursery: Fitted Crib Sheet

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You can never have too many baby bed linens. Changing the crib several times in one day is not unheard of... let's just say babies are kind of "leaky." This super simple crib sheet takes just a couple yards of fabric, a length of elastic and about an hour of your time. Why settle for boring old white sheets when it's so easy to add color and design? Today's project is just one of eight pieces in our new nursery series sponsored by our good friends at Michael Miller Fabrics, and is created using their new Color Story concept. Unlike most fabric collections that are filled with coordinated prints in multiple colorways, color is what this story is all about, like our selection: Citron-Gray. This baby nursery has a sleek, modern style yet is still wrap-your-arms-around-it warm and cozy.

This project is sized for a standard 52" x 28" x 6" deep crib mattress and is based on an original tutorial by Joanna Armour for Michael Miller Fabrics.

Michael Miller's Color Story concept combines hues that consistently work so well together, they create their own ambience, their own feeling... their own story. These fabric color pairings are also currently prominent in other areas of fashion, interior style and pop culture: Citron-Gray, Aqua-Red, Cocoa-Berry, It's a Boy thing, It's a Girl Thing, Lagoon, Orchid-Gray, Retro, Rouge et Noir, Sorbet and Urban Grit.

Like good friends who hang together over time, Michael Miller's eleven Color Story pals will evolve from one release to another. Their stories will update and build momentum as color trends evolve, but their compatibility will remain. You'll be able to add new fabrics within the same Color Story, knowing they'll fit in and work well together.

Welcome to the Citron-Gray Color Story and our custom baby boy nursery. It's a story with a very happy ending.

For more baby projects, take a look at our original Shower Power Baby Gifts.

Sewing Tools You Need

Fabric and Other Supplies

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Where to Buy

Michael Miller Fabrics recommends the following online retailers as great places to shop for and buy the beautiful fabrics within the Citron-Gray Color Story as well as many other Michael Miller collections:

Hancock's of Paducah: 10% discount on Michael Miller Citron-Gray Color Story fabric. Use promo code: Citrongrey

Fat Quarter Shop

Quilt Home

Fabric Depot

CityCraft Online

Hawthorne Threads


Getting Started

  1. From your fabric, cut ONE rectangle 45" wide x 69" long. For most fabrics, this will mean that you use the entire width of the fabric, including the selvedge.
  2. Using your see-through ruler (or a square you've drawn and cut from paper as a pattern), draw an 8" x 8" square at each corner of your fabric rectangle.
  3. Cut out the 8" x 8" square from each corner.
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At Your Sewing Machine & Ironing Board

  1. This crib sheet features enclosed French Seams. This step is not required, but we recommend it since crib sheets get washed frequently. An enclosed French Seam helps prevent raveling and gives the inside of your sheet a nice, finished look.
  2. We have a tutorial about this technique and other machine sewn finishes.
  3. To make each corner's French Seam, first fold the corners WRONG sides together. You are matching the raw edges of each corner cut, which will create a little "triangle fold" in the fabric at the inside point of the seam. Pin in place.
  4. Stitch, using a ¼" seam, wrong sides together from top to bottom.Trim down the finished seam allowance to 1/8".
  5. Make this seam at each corner.
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  6. When all four corners are finished, turn the sheet wrong side out (right sides together), and re-pin each corner for an additional seam. You are making the same four seams, but now the fabric is right sides together and you will be encasing your original seam in the new seam. Pin each corner seam in place.
  7. Using a ¼" seam allowance, stitch together from top to bottom.  
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Create the casing tunnel for the elastic

  1. To create the casing tunnel, make a 3/8" double-fold hem. To do this, fold under 3/8" and press all around the bottom raw edge, then fold under and press an additional 3/8".
  2. Edgestitch close to the inner fold all the way around, leaving an approximate 2-3" opening between you starting and ending points. This is where you will insert the elastic. Remember to lock your seams at both ends, ie. at either side of the opening.
  3. Cut the elastic to a 60" length.
    NOTE: We used 60" of elastic for our sample. Some folks who have made the sheet recommend using the full 2 yards (72").
  4. Attach a safety pin to one end of the elastic. Slide the safety pin into the opening of the casing and work it all the way around until it comes out again through the opening. Gather the fabric along the length of the elastic as you go, so the unpinned end of the elastic does not accidentally get pulled inside the tunnel. It also helps to hold on to 6"- 8" of the unpinned elastic end to keep it from slipping into the casing. 
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  5. When the safety pin comes out of the other side of the tunnel opening, remove the safety pin and overlap the two ends 2"- 3". Pin in place (or just hold the ends together), and secure with several rows of zigzag stitching. Be generous with your stitching so the elastic ends do not pull apart. You want to be able to stretch the sheet over and over again; baby linens get changed a lot !
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  6. Pull the tunnel hem straight so the remainder of the elastic disappears inside the tunnel.
  7. Edgestitch the tunnel opening closed, matching your new seam to the start and end points of the existing seam.


Project Concept: Alicia Thommas
Sample Creation and Instructional Outline: Gregory Dickson

Other machines suitable for this project include the Elna 2800 Pink and the Viking Emerald 203.



Comments (50)

Sally Jo said:
Sally Jo's picture

I always go back to this tutorial when I need to make another crib sheet for someone. Everyone raves about how well they stay on the mattress. Thanks for making it so simple.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@Sally Jo - Oh my, same comment as below ... but still excellent. And, you are so welcome.

Beth Sue said:
Beth Sue's picture

Always go back to this tutorial when I need to make another crib sheet for someone. Everyone raves about how well they stay on the mattress. Thanks for making it so simple.

Judy G said:
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Thanks for the great tutorial.  I made a sheet several years ago for my granddaughter's toddler bed, and just finished making 2 sheets for baby presents.

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Judy - You are so welcome. These will be such a welcome gift for the new parents!

Elena Torres Biset said:
Elena Torres Biset's picture

I've made these for my daughter and they worked beautifully!!  However, I am now trying to scale down the size (European crib mattress size) and am having the worse math mental block!! The finished size I am needing is 47.25 x 23.625 x 4. Do I need to cut the fabric to 57.75 x 34.125 x 5.25?  Help!!!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Elena - it is a holiday here in the US and it's not nice to make people do math on a holiday :-), but... here's the basic forumula: your length plus the depth on both side plus .75 x 2 for the elastic channel on each side plus about 3.5 for the "tuck under." That last measurement is a bit unscientific but is what we used. You coud adjust it slightly smaller or larger. The same works for the width. This equals 60.25 and 36.625 in your example. The corners are the depth plus the channels again (.75 x 2) plus .5 for the french seam. This would be 6 in your example. So you were really close - you just needed to take into account all the seam allowances as well as that "tuck under" on the width and length. 

Elena Torres Biset said:
Elena Torres Biset's picture

LOL  I'd rather not "math" on any day!!  Thank you sooooooooo much for this clarification. I added 13 inches to width and length (2.5 inches additional to what I already had seam allowed but I couldn't figure out what they were for (tuck under)). Again, thank you for taking the time to problem solve this! Have a great Labour Day! xoxo

Hillside Momma said:
Hillside Momma's picture

  Hello! I just wanted to drop you a note to let you know I featured your Crib Sheet Tutorial in a compilation on my blog titled 7 Ways to Use Your Snuggle Flannel Stash. You can read the post here:   If you'd rather not have your tut on the list, please let me know!


Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Hillside Momma - thank you for letting us know. The way you handled the link is great. Hope your readers enjoy it!

Rhonda said:
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The link to the Animal Applique Pillows is not working and I can't get to the instructions. 


AshleyH said:
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Trying to make this... You're tutorials are so helpful and easy to understand! I'm very new to sewing and I think I've messed up before I reallyeven got started! I ordered my fabric online and it was supposed to be 44" wide.. 100% cotton... I washed and dried the fabric to preshrink it.. I've read I should always do this if making something I plan to wash, well I did, and now it's only 42"! Can I use this? Or just suck it up and get some different fabric? Should I have not prewashed the fabric? 

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ Ashley H - oh dang - hate that. You were totally correct to pre-wash -- especially something like a sheet that's going to be washed all the time! Before you give-up, measure your own mattress, you might be able to get away with a little less wrap around the bottom. You also have a few inches at the bottom, which you could cut into 1-1/2" strips and sew on to the outer edges to give you a bit of extra width. The seam should be hidden under the mattress. You could actually stitch anything to either side to gain a bit more width -- whatever you have some long strips of. I can't guarantee it will all work, but I bet you can get it to work.

Ashley H said:
Ashley H's picture

We'll I finished it, and it fits just fine! Didn't have to add more fabric or anything.. I used 72" of elastic at first but had to go back to cut some out... I like the sheet to look nice and tight and your original measurement of 60" was perfect for that. Thanks for the tutorial.. I'm planning to follow your tutorials for the pleated crib skirt and bumpers with jumbo piping too.. They are so easy to understand, even for a beginner like me!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Ashley H - Glad to hear everything worked out!

melanie m said:
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Just made these sheets & crib skirt to match.  Waaay easier than I anticipated, thank you!!!  Wish I wouldve read comments earlier as I'm going back now to add more elastic... anyway to update the tutorial?  Thanks!!!

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ melanie m - glad you enjoyed the pattern. We have added the following note: We used 60" of elastic for our sample. Some folks who have made the sheet recommend using the full 2 yards (72").

melanie m said:
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Thank you :)  You're patterns are all beautiful!

P.s. maybe my elastic wasn't as stretchy... I ended up with a total of 95"(!) For a good fit.

milnerd said:
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Elastic measurement:  Use the full 2 yards = 72 ".  ( 60 inches is too short for a 6" deep crib mattress.) If your projuect was completed as mine was,  find the opening, pull out existing elastic, cut the joined elastic and attach the 12" remaining elastic to each end, sewing firmly. Stitch the opening closed.

Thanks for the pattern! I made this for my new granddaughter as part of her nursery ensemble.  Fits beautifully! 

Daisy Rogers said:
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Thanks a lot for the fantastic tutorial. After learning from your blog I decided to make a fiited bed sheets for my little son and it helps me alot. Now I made a pair of fitted bed sheets for my kid and as well as for my bedroom and it looks great. Each and every family member praise me that you have done a very great job.

Again thanks to you to teach me!!!

Anonymous said:
Anonymous's picture

assuming i measured correctly; 60" was way too short for the elastic.  i ended up having to open it up and add 12". other than that, the fit is perfect!  love it!

SoniaSinghal said:
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Thanks for the wonderfully simplified tutorial. We have a 6 inch deep mattress. (29 inch wide). Will these measurements work for a mattress that deep ? 29+12 = 41 inches. Plus with the folding for casing makes me wonder if I need to attach more cloth on the sides ?



Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture

@ SoniaSinghal - The standard crib mattress is as described above: apx. 52" x 28" x 6" deep. So the width and length measurements are done without adding in the depth. If your mattress is apx. 29" wide and 6" deep you should be fine. But, there's never any harm in adding more fabric, simply make sure your elastic is nice and taut. And... the cool thing about this kind of simple construction - if the elastic is not quite tight enough when you slip it on, just open up a tiny bit of the casing, shorten and re-stitch the elastic, and re-stitch the casing. 

Abcdancer1 said:
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Is step 2 on casing the tunnel just stitching around but leaving an opening?  Just did my first read-thru before I begin and wanted to make sure I wasn't missing anything...

Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Abcdancer1 - Looks like some copy vanished into the digital void. We have restored it above, but yes... you guessed right - you stitch all around, leaving just the small opening to insert the elastic into the casing.

Twin Momma To Be said:
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So, I just bought fabric to do this yesterday and while it was getting cut, the sales associate was making small talk and said that she's never heard of anyone having luck making crib sheets.  This tute looked so clear and I was so confident - until now...  I'm going to give it my best effort this week, but I'm nervous :(

Twin Momma To Be said:
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I finally just got around to making a few of these this weekend.  Easy-peasy and fit perfect.  THANK YOU!

Natalie Dalton said:
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I love Michael Miller fabrics. This pattern is especially cute. I am loving the gray and citron color scheme. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said:
Anonymous's picture

finally just made this!! it turned out awesome and fit perfect!!


Ms. Elaineous said:
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I just made one of these from a set of Star Wars (twin size) sheets from Pottery Barn. Super easy to make (step 2 in the casing is missing, but I figured it out). These are a gift for a friend of mine who lives across the country! Thanks for the pattern.

Trenna said:
Trenna's picture
I really enjoyed your tutorial! And with a little help from my mother in law I now have a matching crib sheet to go with the blanket I made my son! I thought the pictures helped SO much, as I am a beginner at sewing. Thanks a ton! I can't wait to show them off.
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Sara Hanna Originals - glad you were able to find something that was better suited to what you needed.
Sara Hanna Originals said:
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Oh, nevermind. I googled "How to make a crib sheet" and found another tutorial with clearer photos. Their idea for the elastic is not as nice as yours, but at least now I understand the whole "folding the corners together" thing, I think! smilies/smiley.gif
Sara Hanna Originals said:
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I'm still not getting it. How far in do I fold the corners? Do you have photos of the full sized sheet, so I can get a visual? I'm a very visual learner, and trying to follow the instructions when there aren't clear visual directions is making it very hard for me to picture what to do. Also, a photo from the back on how the corners are folded would be helpful. If you have any, and could email them, my address is mrs.sarahanna(at)yahoo(dot)com . Thanks!
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home's picture
@ - Did you purchase a new mattress that is thicker? I haven't ever heard of sheets shrinking up like that ... but what a frustration for you! I haven't tried what you are thinking about doing, so I can't tell you if it will work or not. If the sheets are too short, I don't know that gusseting the corners and added additional elastic will solve the problem; it might help with depth, but you'd be in for quite a bit of alteration to also have to adjust length. Perhaps you could measure the length, width and depth of your mattress and take those in with you to a bedding store. They might have some options that would be easier to work with. Sorry I couldn't be of more help. said:'s picture
Our queen sheets no longer fit our mattress. They seem to short and the corners are very tight and difficult to put. Could they be cut and altered as mentioned above would help with the lenght. How could I adjust the size of the corners of the fitted sheets? I am ready purchase extra sets of sheets and make alterations as I have very bad hands. Thanks Regina
BrandiHooksHelms said:
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Im not sure why,, but even after i read this thing like 10 times i thought the whole time that you were folding the whole sheet in half,,instead of just the corners..and i was like whaaa??? but i read more carefully and paid attention and figured it out,, i love your tutorials, and thier very well writtin.. some people like me just need to pay more attention..thank you alot..smilies/grin.gif
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Patti Hallstrom - no such thing as a silly question smilies/cheesy.gif - yes, the elastic goes all the way around.
Patti Hallstrom said:
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I know this is a silly question, but does the elastic go around the whole of the sheet or just each corner?
Liz Johnson.Editor.Sew4Home said:
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@ Sami - So - your mattress is wider than 28"? You have two options, I think: 1) opt for a different type of fabric that comes in a wider width; you could go with a home decor sateen, many of which are 54-60" in width and still come in some nice colors and patterns -- a bit heavier, but still nice and soft for a sheet, or 2) as you mention, insert panels to give you enough width for your mattress. Because a seam will likely be uncomfortable for your baby to sleep on (remember that princess and the pea story???), I would suggest measuring the width of your mattress and adding the extra inches to each side so your seams are at the very edge of the mattress where they won't bother baby. For example, if your mattress is 32" wide rather than 28", that's a 4" difference - so add 2" strips to each side to start with a piece that is 49" wide x 72". You could even use this to add some additional color -- make the center part of the sheet (the part you will see) in one fabric and the edges (that wrap around the mattress, but do still show through the crib slats) in a second coordinating fabric. In my example above, this would mean one cut that is 33" x 72" and two cuts that are each 9" x 72". With the two sewn seams, you again are starting with a piece that is 49" x 72".
Sami said:
Sami's picture
I'm about to make these but I have a slightly bigger mattress and the material doesn't fit all the way around. How would you suggest cutting the material to cover the extended width? I was thinking an extra seam (or two for symmetry) at the top of the mattress running down the sides?
shoeshoppaholic001 said:
Came across this site earlier today while surfing the web looking for nursery ideas, I love it!!! smilies/cheesy.gif Just made the fitted sheet to go in my nursery. Thanks XxX
thehappyhomester said:
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I totally linked to this on
This would make SUCH a better baby shower gift than the 500 million blankets I kept getting! All my son's crib sheets are worn and torn from washings, so I'll be making a few of these for myself when I find some good discount fabric I like!
Emb1993 said:
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Love this nursery. The clean modern design and cool fabric options inspire me.
Kimber59 said:
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Makes me want to have another baby! Oh wait, I'm 52 that's not gonna happen. Better have a talk with my oldest!
LiahM said:
LiahM's picture
I love gray in a nursery. I did my daughter's room in pale powder pink and gray. I made a gray fitted sheet much like this one. Here's the thing, when I took a photo of Sophie on that sheet, it turned out perfectly every time. We called it the magic photo sheet. I have photos of her nearly every week until she outgrew her crib. All beautiful. Many people think they are professional smilies/cheesy.gif
Elaine Anthony said:
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What a fresh crisp appeal. This set you are making rivals the most expensive elegant readymade I've drooled over and can't afford. smilies/cool.gif