Satin Crib Sheets for Hair Protection


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(Pretty quilt by Lauren)

Many African Americans with longer hair wear satin or silk sleep caps at night to protect their hair from breakage and preserve complicated styles. Ideally, they also use a satin or silk pillowcase for a double layer of protection. With proper maintenance a hairstyle can last for weeks at a time. At 21 months our daughter is not very interested in “proper maintenance”. About 90% of the time we find her sleep cap on the floor in the morning. Her styles only last a few days at best thanks to rubbing on her cotton sheets, and her hair easily dries out and breaks. Like many toddlers, Annie wiggles laps around her crib at night, so there’s little likelihood she’ll keep her head on a pillowcase either. Satin sheets seemed like the next best option. No local stores carried them and online options ran around $30-$40. For a toddler? No, thank you.

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I grabbed a few yards of navy satin from the JoAnn’s (on sale for $2.99/yd, not including the two additional coupons I used) along with a pack of quarter inch elastic. Two crib sheets came together quickly following this tutorial. The measurements are perfect. Many fitted sheets only have elastic at the four corners. I like that this pattern calls for one piece of elastic all the way around the hem. It holds the sheets snugly against the forces of thrashing toddlers. Next up, a pack n’ play sheet and some pillowcases. I’m also stitching up a few Christmas gift bags while the machine is out.

Lest you think the kids’ room always looks that pristine, let me show you what happens when I think “Oh, they’ve been doing so well playing alone in their room lately. I’ll give them an extra ten minutes.” This:

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4 thoughts on “Satin Crib Sheets for Hair Protection

  1. What a pretty room! (And the last picture made me laugh.) And what a great deal on fabric! I’m so impressed that you’ve made your own crib sheet; they’ve always intimidated me. I hope that Annie’s pretty hair-do’s last MUCH longer. 🙂

    • Thanks! It took me a year to work up the motivation to sew the sheets. I assumed it would be complicated, and that it wouldn’t fit after I’d put in a lot of work (pessimist, much?). Thankfully it’s the world’s easiest pattern – one piece of fabric, four straight corner seams, a hem all the way around, then threading elastic and you’re done. Sitting with you while you sewed was what inspired me to finally pull out my machine again.

  2. honestly, $30 for a sheet isn’t that much to me even for a toddler b/c a) we only buy one set (at our house) and sameday wash if issues happen. and 2) its for haircare purposes, not fancypantspurposes. like… it makes sense, you know, its an investment?

    That being said, great DIY! on the cheap! but it sounds so hard (to this sewer) lol that i would pry have just bought them 😉

    • Heh, yeah, if it were just one sheet I might have caved. But since I needed a crib sheet for each crib plus one for the pack n’ play where one of them naps each day (same room during the day results in waking up suuuuper early from naps), I was looking at $90-$120 vs. $15 (not to mention matching satin pillowcases, which nobody sells in toddler pillow sizes). Around here we had like…six? cotton crib sheets (all but two gifts or handmedowns), and they all got a workout thanks to Baby PukesAlot. With 40-60 spitups in one day, there’s just no way the washer and dryer could get one set clean before the next nap – esp. when they’re tiny and napping four times a day. If not for him, one or two sheets each would’ve been fine. I like the basic Target brand ones someone gave us. They’re maybe $8, fit easily, and hold up well. The Walmart basic $5 ones, meanwhile, are just disastrously bad quality. Never again.

      I’m glad I bit the bullet and sewed them, though. They are super easy – if you’ve ever made one of those beginner sewing projects like a drawstring bag it’s the same principle, just four sides to sew up instead of two, and threading elastic instead of cord. There are many things I cannot do, but being a good denim jumper homeschooler did train me to sew in my sleep :).Now that I’ve sewed these three sheets I’ve got an easy and inexpensive pattern for homemade baby gifts.

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