You will need:
- Scraps of cotton material measuring at least 5 inches x 5 inches for the outer layer
- Scraps of absorbent materials (such as flanalette, micro fleece, old tshirts etc.) measuring at least 5 inches x 5 inches for the inner layer (the side that sits on the breast)
- Scraps of PUL material measuring at least 5 inches x 5 inches to sandwich between the inner and outer layer (this material is optional, but provides a waterproof layer which may be beneficial if you leak a lot)
- A piece of cardboard to make a template
- To make the template you will need to find a circular object roughly 4 inches in diametre. Trace around the object onto the cardboard and cut it out. You will then need to cut a wedge out of the circle, which will essentially leave you with a 'pac-man' looking shape. I made my wedge angle approximately 35 degrees and this seemed to work well. Note: Unless you want to look like Madonna with pointy 'cone' boobs, you do NOT want your wedge points to meet in the centre of your circle. Instead, cut it slightly off centre as this will stop the pad from going into a point when you sew the wedge edges together later on. You should end up with a template that looks something like this:
- Next you want to trace the template (ignoring the wedge) onto your material. To make a pair of breast pads, you will need two cotton pieces, four absorbent layers and two PUL layers (optional). The reason we are ignoring the wedge at this point, is that it makes it a little easier to sew if it is not precut:
- Next, using only a single pin in the centre, secure the following together in the order stated: Layer 1 - One piece of the cotton material (this is the outer), Layer 2 - One piece of the (optional) PUL layer (place the shiny side towards Layers 3 and 4) and Layers 3 and 4 - Two pieces of your absorbent material. Using either a tight zig-zag stitch or the serger stitch on your sewing machine, sew around the outside of the circle (I am actually using my overlocker in the picture below as it was taken before I decided I like the finish my sewing machine provides more):
- Next, place your template back over the sewn layers, mark where the wedge is to go and then cut it out:
- Pin the two raw edges of your wedge together and using a wide but relatively tight zig zag stitch, sew together:
- Trim off any excess from around the pad (being careful not to accidently snip the stitches) and cut off any loose threads. If you are using microfleece, you may noticed that the edges look a little bit rough around the outer of the circle. This roughness will disappear once you have washed the pads. Here is a picture of the finished pad. Repeat the process from step 3 onwards to make a pair:
- Remember to use some creativity! Just because they are breast pads doesn't mean they have to be 'booooring'. Check out these ones I made below - just because I could! Do remember though that using bright materials may result in the pads showing through what you're wearing, so be careful.
If you have any questions regarding the tutorial please let me know!