A personal nap mat is required at some day care centres and preschools. You can make a machine washable homemade nap mat for day care in just a few hours. Nap mats for preschool age children often range in size from 20 inches by 50 inches to 27 inches by 56 inches, but you can make one in any size desired. Choose a print in 100 per cent cotton or flannel that features your child's favourite colours or character for the mat and put soft polyester batting in the centre. You can even add an attached lightweight blanket made from warm, snuggly fleece.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Fabric, 100 per cent cotton or flannel
- Fleece for blanket (optional)
- Straight pins
- Sewing machine
- Twill tape, 3/4-inch wide
- Double-fold quilt binding
- Hook and loop tape
Determine the finished size of the nap mat. Measure your child and make the mat large enough for stretching and movement during sleep. Follow day care centre guidelines, if necessary.
Cut 2 pieces of fabric and one piece of batting to the finished width of the nap mat and the finished length, plus 1 inch for hems.
Lay the batting on a large, flat surface. Lay the fabric for the outside of the nap mat face up on the batting and the fabric for the inside face down on the outside piece of fabric. Pin the ends together through all three layers.
Sew the mat together at each end with a 1/2-inch seam. Turn the mat right side out with the batting in the centre. Press the fold at the seams and stitch across each end 1/2-inch from the edge.
Start the Nap Mat
Cut the fleece 18 inches shorter and twice as wide as the nap mat measurements. Sew around the perimeter of the fleece 1 inch from the edge to prevent stretching.
Place the nap mat with the inside facing up on a flat surface. Align the side of the fleece with the left side of the nap map, with the bottom edge of the fleece placed 3 inches above the bottom edge of the mat. Pin the blanket in place through all four layers.
Sew the fours layers together 1/2-inch from the edge.
Optional Attached Blanket
Cut a piece of twill tape 2 inches longer than the width of the nap mat. Pin the twill tape along the outside top edge of the mat, with the ends of the tape even with the sides of the mat.
Sew close to one side of the twill tape from the edge of the mat toward the centre. Pivot the mat and sew across the tape at 3 inches from the centre and then pivot again and sew back toward the edge of the mat. Repeat at the other end of the tape to create a carrying handle.
Cut 2 pieces of double-fold quilt binding 7 inches longer than the nap mat.
Place the nap mat with the inside facing up on a flat surface. Unfold the quilt binding and align one edge with the side of the nap mat so that the binding extends 1 inch beyond the bottom of the mat and 6 inches beyond the top of the mat. Pin it in place through all the layers.
Sew the quilt binding to each side of the nap mat along the fold of the binding. Please note that the blanket is attached on the left side only.
Fold the quilt binding over the edge to the outside of the nap mat, tucking the 1-inch piece in neatly around the bottom edge, and pin. Stitch the binding into place along the full length of the mat. Sew along the loose folded edge of the binding by hand or sew it by machine close to the loose folded edge.
Fold to the inside 1/2-inch of the end of the quilt binding that extends beyond the top of the nap mat. Match the open binding end and edge on each side and pin. Stitch the open ends and edges closed to form straps.
Cut two 5-inch pieces of hook and loop tape. Sew the hook side of the hook and loop tape to the inside of the straps at the top of the nap mat.
Lay the nap mat out flat with the inside facing up. Fold the blanket in half and roll the nap mat to the inside from the bottom edge. Lay the straps at the top end along the rolled edge of the mat and mark the location for the loop side of the hook and loop tape.
Unroll the mat and sew the loop side of the hook and loop tape in place as marked. Roll the mat up and secure with the straps.
Finish the Nap Mat
Tips and warnings
- Buy a small pillow and make a matching pillowcase. Roll the pillow inside the nap mat for transport and storage.