Whether it’s in the bathtub or at the beach or the pool, children love to play in the water. This hooded towel is easy enough for a beginning seamstress and should take less than an hour to make.

Materials Needed:

  • Bath towel or beach towel
  • Hand towel in a coordinating color
  • Sewing machine and thread
  • (Optional) Ribbon, bias tape, paint, appliques, etc. for embellishing and personalizing

Before You Begin:

If you’re making a towel for a toddler or preschooler, measure your child (this is less important for taller kids). Measure from the top of the shoulders to just above the ankles. Your towel will be folded in half when your child “wears” it so divide the length of the towel by two and make sure it’s not too long.

Most bath towels are 54” long and most beach towels are 60” long. If necessary, hem one or both ends of the towel so that it won’t drag the ground when hanging on your child’s shoulders.

Making the Hood:

  1. Cut the hand towel in half lengthwise (so that it’s long and narrow).
  2. Trim the “rolled” hem from one end of one piece and set the large piece aside for the main part of the hood.
  3. From the other piece, cut a rectangle that is 8” x 9” (do not include the “rolled” edge of the towel). This will be the back of the hood.
  4. Fold the 8” x 9” rectangle in half lengthwise. Cut across one corner at an angle about 3”. (See photo.) This doesn’t have to be exact, you’re just shaping the back of the hood.

Assembling the Hood:

  1. Line up the short straight edge of the back piece with the short raw edge of the long piece and sew a .5” inch seam. If you sew along the long raw edge of the long piece, the finished edge of the towel will form the front of the hood and you won’t have to worry about hemming or bias tape.
  2. When you come to the first corner of the back piece, stop the sewing machine with the needle down and raise the presser foot. Turn the back piece so that the edge is once again lined up with the edge of the long piece. Lower the presser foot and continue sewing around the back part of the hood.
  3. Depending on the length of the hand towel you used, there may be some excess on one side of the hood when you’re done. Just trim the excess so that both sides are even.

Finishing the Towel:

  1. Mark the horizontal and vertical center of the large towel. Cut a slit 12” long across the center (from long edge to long edge). This will be the opening for the towel to go over your child’s head. You may want to try the towel on your child at this point to make sure that it easily fits over his/her head.
  2. With the right side of the hood facing the right side of the towel, begin about .5” from the center of the front of the slit and attach the hood on using a .5” seam.
  3. Flip the towel to the wrong side, press the seam allowance down toward the body of the towel, and sew a .25” seam all the away around the neck opening.
  4. With the towel wrong side out, start at the bottom of the towel and sew each side up to 6” from the fold. This will form “sleeves”.
  5. Use bias tape, rick-rack, or ribbon to add a decorative touch to your towel poncho. You can also embroider, applique or paint to personalize.