{DIY} Easily Adjustable Box Pleat Crib Skirt, Part 1

by Thao on 02.04.2013

I started this whole crib bedding thing with the assumption that it would be the one thing I WOULDN’T DIY. I kept playing around with looks on Carousel Designs since they were they only retailer offering grey chevron bedding at the time…

crib bedding idea from carousel designs

…but my heart kept aching when I added up the costs. It’s expensive! The beauty about ‘clean and modern’ is that straight lines and simple pleats are no big deal. I sew. Why not make the bedding myself?

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

The following describes how to cheat and make a height adjustable crib skirt. I’ll add more information about the bumper later. I didn’t make the fitted mattress sheet, because they I was OK with plain grey ones I found at Babies ‘R Us.

This very easy box pleat skirt is actually four separate pieces.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

I started going into this with a full one-piece design that would have to be resewn to fit the height of the crib when it gets lowered as he gets older. BUT, it was more work than I wanted to invest. I wanted it to be adjustable, but easy to do so without the requirement of busting out the sewing machine later.

This tutorial will be written in parts because 1) I’m lazy and 2) It would be a suuuuuper long post if I didn’t. Let’s focus on the easy, short sides.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Tools for entire project:

  • fabric – I went with grey Riley Blake chevron (I had leftover after using some for this corkboard project)
  • muslin liner – enough to back all of the fabric pieces above
  • (8) 5"x1" sew-on velcro hook (goes on skirt)
  • (8) 2"x1" stick-on velcro loop (goes on crib mattress support springs)
  • tape measure
  • scissors
  • sewing machine
  • iron and ironing board
  • sewing pins

Even though this tutorial specifically focuses on the short sides, it makes much more sense to buy all your fabric at once so here’s how I measured for it.

Standard cribs are sized 52" x 26". I chose a decorative chevron fabric to go around the perimeter of the crib and used white muslin as a backer on the inside. I made our crib skirt with a pleat on the 52" lengths of the crib so for those long sides, I added another 16" of fabric (68" total in length). Our crib frame was positioned at the highest available setting and that’s how the maximum height of the cib skirt was measured. Mine was 10". From here, the crib skirt essentially needs to be ‘shortened’ as you drop your mattress. For a typical 43"/44" bolt width of fabric, I purchased 2 yards of the chevron fabric to cut these sections out of it. You need the same amount of muslin to back the pieces.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Note: If you want the pattern to match up all the way around the crib, you might need to do some more careful planning as the yardage I’m showing accounts for optimal fabric area usage, not pattern-matching. I did not bother with this since the bars on the crib generally hide the pattern. It may be different for your crib so think about it.

The crib we purchased allowed an adjustment of about 5 inches from the tallest position to the lowest position. This 5" measurement will be what I cut the sew-on velcro hook side length to.

The width of the two short side panels, when complete, must be 26"x10". For seam allowance, I cut mine 29"x12". Cut the fabric and muslin down to size.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Place the right sides of the fabric together and then pin around 3 sides of the perimeter (down the short vertical sections and the bottom)

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Sew, leaving your desired seam allowance. Remove the pins and turn it inside out to iron if your fabric allows it. The width of your panel should be 26".

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

As part of the prep work, I measured approximately where I would place velcro onto the metal crib frame. That gave me a reference as to where I was going to put the velcro onto the crib skirt. These measurements could be different for you so please check. Don’t adhere the velcro to the frame yet; it will be easier to locate based on the skirt later.

Cut two approximately 5" sew-on velcro hook sections down for this next step.

Pin the two velcro pieces at the edge where you measured the mating velcro loops to go on the crib frame. I put the velcro loop about 4.5" from each end of our crib frame, so I pinned the velcro on the muslin only about 4.5" in from the ends of the crib skirt. Again, only pin to the muslin. (See where I positioned the Velcro relative to the fabric tape measure).

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Then, sew around the perimeter of the two velcro pieces through the muslin only.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Once all two pieces of Velcro were secured, the skirt was turned inside out, and I sewed the last side shut with approximately 1/2" seam allowance. Leave an opening to turn it rightside out.

Turn it rightside out again and hand sew the opening shut with ladder stitch. You can use your machine; I just like to hide stitching.

diy easy to adjust modern pleat crib skirt

Repeat and make the second short side crib skirt panel.

Now check back for the instructions on how to make the long side panels and where the actual cheating comes into play.

Edit: Here are the instructions for the long panels.

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Debra February 23, 2013 at 10:00 am

I’m loving your tutorial. Planning to make it TODAY! I also am blogging about finishing up our nursery. Can I link to your tutorial?


Thao February 24, 2013 at 8:48 am

I’m glad you like it! I would love it if you linked it :)


Debra February 26, 2013 at 6:23 am

I did make it and it turned out perfectly!! I added a couple of extra box pleats for fun, but the velcro is GENIUS! Love love love!


Reta September 10, 2013 at 4:59 pm

Are all of your seam allowances 1/2” or is the last one 1/2” and the rest are 5/8”?


Susie Siegesmund September 17, 2013 at 11:17 am

Did you make the elephant cover for the diaper pail? It would be perfect for my daughter-in-law’s elephant-themed nursery.


Susie Siegesmund September 17, 2013 at 9:02 pm

I’d love to make the elephant diaper pail. Did you make this yourself?


Thao October 1, 2013 at 9:57 pm

No, actually, I googled “elephant hamper” and found it on Amazon! I adore it!


New Mommy P. February 3, 2014 at 4:12 pm

Oh my gosh, I just bought my fabric from baby bedding with the intent of making my own crib skirt as well!! I ordered fabric based off of another tutorial but it looks like I’ll be changing to this one!! Looks simple and beautiful!! Thank you for sharing!!


catie July 25, 2014 at 12:47 am

I love the tutorial and am going to follow it to make baby #2’s nursery bedding…. I have to ask where you got your bight lime green rug from?!?! I have been searching everywhere for one like that!!

Thank you :)


Thao December 5, 2014 at 12:34 pm

I actually bought a basic rug from IKEA and painted it! Instructions here!


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