Thursday, August 27, 2009

Sewing a Hooter Hider

I was given a "Hooter Hider" at a baby shower before Mandy was born. Part of me wondered "how great could it possibly be?" After all, I had somehow managed to breast feed my first child without a nursing cover. But when Mandy arrived and I started nursing her, I found the Hooter Hider to be a wonderful accessory! No more struggling to keep a blanket covering me while trying to wrestle 14 layers of clothing underneath it, all while peaking to see what I was doing. The Hooter Hider has a convenient arched opening that allows the breast feeding mom to see and everything else to stay private. For a modesty lover like myself, I am not sure how I lived without it!

The original Hooter Hider is made by Bebe au Lait and is $35. I discovered how easy they are to sew myself and have made quite a few to give as gifts. Shhh, don't tell, but the supplies cost as little as $5. I just finished sewing three and I thought I would share the easy directions for the Hooter Hider, aka Wrack Shack, Milking Moo-moo, or Titty Tent, whatever you want to call it.

You will need:
  • 3/4 to 7/8 yard washable fabric
  • 1/2 yard boning, 1/4 or 1/2 inch works fine
  • thread
  • two med. sized buttons (optional)

First, cut your fabric to 26" x 38", leaving a strip along the side or bottom from the excess that will be for the neck strap.

Use an iron to press under 1/2" and then 1/2" again to make a finished edge.

Sew the folded fabric in place with matching thread on 3 sides. The long side (the top) will require an extra step because it has the boning. 

Find the center of the fabric and the center of the boning (make sure the boning arches out) and pin the boning under the fold. Then just stitch the entire edge, making sure to sew close to the boning, capturing the edge so it doesn't move.

For the strap, I cut a piece 22" x 5" and folded 2 edges under and then in half, matching the clean edges, wrong sides together (no turning required). Sew the edges together and also the ends.

You want to cover to sit high on the chest so the tented portion does not droop. The original Hooter Hider has a ring to adjust the length of the neck strap, but I found I always used it at the same length. For directions on how to put a ring adjuster on, click here.  I sew the strap in place, leaving about 18 inches on the band (that is plenty of room to take it off over the head and still see down through the cover for nursing. Before stitching in place, try it on for size. On this nursing cover, I sewed on buttons because I think they are cute, not for any functional purpose.

The nursing cover folds up nicely to stay in the diaper bag. I think it would be convenient to have 2, one for the car/diaper bag and one to keep in the house. 

I sewed one for myself as well because my other one is crazy, wild, pink patterned. This cover will be nice for a boy, with a bit of class for mom too. Happy hooter hiding! 



Melanie said...

Thanks, Alysun! It's amazing to me how much baby companies get away with charging for their stuff!

Carrie Jean Peeples said...

Good for you! My mother-in-law has figured out how to make them as well and I get to pick one out from her stash. I'm sure I'll be thankful for such a resource!

Shawna said...

You know what is really cool about making your own is that you have control over the length of the fabric. I bought a 'handmade' one on Ebay (I do NOT sew) and it was too short. I am a big girl and I needed more material to cover my belly, especially if I wasn't wearing a shirt the was nursing friendly and had to lift it up.

I love the pattern you chose! You could make some $$ on Ebay with these I am sure. I would have paid extra for the plus size!

I love the names you picked out. I think Milking Moo-Moo was my favorite! You are hilarious even at this late in your pregnancy!

Only 32 days to go I see!

Linds and Manda said...

I am a huge fan of mine. Thank you so much! Libby and I have enjoyed it immensely. No more wardrobe malfunctions like with Liam when he was a baby. :) I've had so many compliments on it and have had fun telling them about this wonderful woman I know in Oregon! The fabric you chose is great. I'd also have to go with Milking Moo-Moo.

And you are probably wondering..."she's back commenting. Maybe she will post something herself one of these decades." I am getting there. I have several excuses but I won't bore you. I hope to get going again. The time of year has been keeping me out in the garden and attempting to harvest and preserve what I can. The lack of hot weather has been frustrating. You've probably been getting some hot stuff like BC. Well, this comment has turned into a email...that's something else I need to get back to you. Love you lots and hope these latter days of pregnancy are going well.

Elaine said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I have been wanting to make one too. Hopefully I can figure it out in the next nine weeks! :)

Cathy said...

Wow...I didn't expect directions to making my own for grandbaby...if only I had the guts. Maybe I will try. But for now, I must focus on the mini-family reunion this Sunday. Hope you can come!

Dan & Hillary and little Russell said...

Glad you told me the button was just for looks or I'd spend the next few weeks trying to figure it out;-)

Thanks for all the time you spent on this project, and my dress!!