42 answers

What to Do with TONS of Baby Blankets

We were blessed to receive about 40 hand-knit baby blankets when my son was born. There are far too many for us to actually as baby blankets so does anyone has some good ideas for what do to with them? I know I could donate them but I'm a little torn about that. They are all so beautiful and I know a lot of care and love was put into making each one. When my son is older I want to show him and say, Mrs. Lawrence made you this one and Ms. Sharon made you this one, etc. I could just box them up and stick them in the attic but I'd love to hear if you have some good ideas for how to make them useful!

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Thank you everyone! Tonight I started taking pictures of my son with each of the blankets for his baby book. We'll keep 2 or 3 of the extra-special ones (like the one made by his great-grandmother) and donate the rest to CARE Package, Crisis Pregnancy Center, and Project Linus. Thanks again for great advice, moms. You all made me realize there is no need to keep all of the blankets when there are so many in need who will use and appreciate them! Mamasource never lets me down!

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Sew them together and then sew a twin/double/quenn/king size blanket on the back. You'll have a warm comfy quilt for years to come. That's what I did.

Wow, I would of loved to get that many blankets. I think you should make a couple double sided quilts out of them. Although they won't be appreciated until he is much older.

hi T.,
sew some together, put a backing of sorts on them and make one big quilt for a larger bed for when he is older and in a big boy bed. You could also make wall hangings of some of them.

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I'm suprised to see how many responses suggest putting them all together into one big afghan, quilt, etc. My mother is a professional quilter who does her own work as well as quilting and binding other people's work. First of all, as someone who has been a bit of a sounding board to my mother, it would be an absolutely wretched project for anyone to undertake. Especially due to the nature of the blankets (knitted), it would be awful trying to get them to work together in one big piece, not to mention a visual nightmare. Also consider the fact that they are probably composed of various different blends of material. The first time you wash that baby, it will destroy the continuity of the whole blanket since they will all invariably shrink differently. I could not think of a worse solution to your problem.
Just some thoughts. I hate to refute the good intentions that people have had in suggesting it, but I truly believe it would be a disaster to do that with so many beautiful little blankets.
The suggestion that Jen C made gave a truly touching view of the donation option. I would keep a few of your favorites and donate the rest. Is there any way you could get pictures of the blankets via people that received them? How cool to have in his album a picture of one of the blankets and the baby that befitted from it.

1 mom found this helpful

I have the same "problem." The only thing I can think of is to go to a fabric store and see if someone can make one big "patchworkout quilt" out of them... then we could use it as an extra blanket for the bed, or whatever. I'm looking forward to the other responses to your question! Good luck.

There are quilters who will make things like this into quilts.

Is there any way you can make a quilt out of them? You could take a patch of each one and make it into a quilt. If you have extra time/money, use the rest of the blankets to make other quilts to give to friends who have babies, make a larger quilt for you and your husband, or donate them to a shelter.

Hi T.,

This has been suggested a couple times already, but I like the idea of putting them all together in one large afghan that you could make for a bedspread? If that is feasible of course. Otherwise if you are interested in donating some of them, like some of the other ladies, I also highly recommend donating them to your local crisis pregnancy center. I work at a pregnancy center and we love to receive baby blankets, especially crocheted/knitted ones. We take the blankets and put them into a baby layette for our pregnant girls to receive when they are in their 7th month. It means so much to the girls and I'm sure their babies appreciate it too!

Like others I thought of making a big one (or a few big ones since you have so many) And put it on his big boy bed as well as use it for years to come.

I can mail them to WA and let my mother- in-law mail them to Mexico to an orphanage she provies for!
Or I could give you her address and let you two talk!
My son just mentioned that he and his Dad are going on a missions trip to Belize this August, they can carry them to the people there.
Let me know.
P.

Sew them together and then sew a twin/double/quenn/king size blanket on the back. You'll have a warm comfy quilt for years to come. That's what I did.

Hi T.,

How about donating them to the Crisis Pregnancy Center.

Include on the blanket the name of the person who had knitted them. "Hand knitted with love by ..........."

It is hard to do that but you are sharing love to those who have no love. They wouldn't be in that situation if there was love enough to share.

Hope this helps. Good luck. D.

if sewing isn't your thing and you don't want to quilt them together, then how about cutting swatches out of them and gluing or tacking them them patchwork style on colored poster board. then put the patchwork in a nice frame behind glass, and put it on the wall in his room. It probably will be fun to look at.
and keep in mind there are many needy children and families out there. In the long run, ALL of these blankets probably aren't going to mean that much to your son. But taking pictures of the blankets and donating them could later turn into a teaching experience with your son about the gratification of donating to others in need. He will feel good about himself knowing that his blankets are helping other cold girls and boys.

You may not like my idea because of the sentimental ties, but here goes.... I belong to a group (Friends of VA Beach Animal Control) that always needs items. I gave them my extra blankets. The next time I was at the shelter, there were puppies sleeping on them. Made me feel good.
Also, for the really nice blankets, you could donate them to Children's Hospital. Its a nice problem to have.

I can understand the sentimental value of them, I have one from when I was little that has now gone from me to my brother and to each of my 3 girls! If I were you though I would donate the ones you don't want anymore, there are a lot of people out there that could use them that don't get to see the kindness that others have to make a special blanket for them. In the long run your son probably won't care much anyways.

Hi T.,
Here is a good idea take a square from each blanket and crochet them together so you can have a blanket filled with a piece of everyones love. So when you your child grows up you can say here is the part so and so did and so on. Then crochet the other blankets back together and take them to CHKD and donate them. This way you get to keep a piece from everyone and you did something good for other children as well. One day your child will think it was really cool of you to do and I know the family members involved with also be happy with solution. Hope this helped.

If you felt up to it. you could cut them up and make a big blanket for him .

Ha -- We have a ton of blankets too. It's nice on one hand because there is a never a rush to do laundry due to running out of blankets. You can keep one or two in the stroller so that you have something to lay the baby on at the park. Keep one or two in the car in case of emergency. If there are some that are particularly pretty, you could hang them on the wall like art.

First, I just want to say I think it's so great that you and your husband are working hard towards having more time together with your son, my husband and I are of the same mindset and will do anything to be with our 7 month old as much as possible. I think it would be great if you could take them to someone who quilts and have a larger piece done for him that incorporates the other blankets. 40 blankets is a whole lot to work with however, have you thought about possibly donating some of them to an orphanage? I think it would make him feel good to know he helped someone feel special, one of those blankets could be so comforting to a little guy (or girl)who isn't getting much affection. It could be really rewarding for everyone. I hope this helps!

How about making larger quilts by sewing together 4-6 of them?

You also could move them seasonally - pick one for each month of the year so that he always has one on his bed. Tag them with names so he knows who made it "Mrs. Sharon, November." Have a special one for Christmas, and a special one for his birthday, and a special (extra-soft) one for when he is sick.

If you do donate, which would be so kind, take a digital photo of each one to show your child when he is older. You could blow them up to make a beautiful artsy collage. Save a few special ones for cuddling and days home sick.

Here are a couple of donation links.

http://www.newbornsinneed.org/smaryland/index.html
- donate to needy new parents and parents of stillborn babies

http://orphan.org/index.php?id=27
- donate to teens who have aged out of foster care and are on their own

My mother makes patriotic quilts for wounded soldiers and donates them through a group called Quilts of Valor. If some of the blankets are not too young-looking you may be able to donate them through a service to our veterans. Good luck!

you can make your own quilt with them

I would suggest taking digital photos of all the blankets and making some sort of quilted scrapbook page for him so he can see them as he gets older. It will allow you to save the precious memory and not have to take up space. As for what to do with the actual blankets--I am a foster parent and I know that your local social services agency would love to have them to send along with babies that come into care. It would be a lovely gift and security item for them to be able to take with them wherever they end up. That would also be something wonderful for your son to know that even as a baby he helped other kids feel better.

Take a picture(s) with your son and the blankets. Label who they were from if you still remember. Make it into a little photo album.

Then check into Project Linus, Child Services, Homeless Shelters or Pregnancy Centers in your area. What a wonderful donation to be able to pass along to someone truly in need.

Hi, T.. My oldest child was born in July almost 15 years ago, and we also received many of these wonderful blankets. Some of them were made by individuals who have passed away, and I treasure the time they spent creating the blankets for my daughter.

I have had two more children, and because I saved all of the blankets, each of them will be able to inherit items that were created by people such as their great-grandmothers.

I would encourage you to save these items. Write down a description of each as well as who made them. Although it may seem impossible right now, if you do add to your family down the road, these heirlooms can be shared and bring special meaning to each of your chldren and their children and so on.

box all of them up but say 3 to 5 and use those hnge them on a quillt rack o shelf in his room to diisplay them or to use then after a month switch thm out with those in the attic. that wa y they all get used but arent taking up room. and get the space saving bag so they dont take up so much room up there.

Hi T.,

If you're up to donating them, my charity could really, really use them. It's called CARE Package, and you can see more about it at www.freewebs.com/carepackage - we are desperately in need. Thanks and good day!

Wow, I would of loved to get that many blankets. I think you should make a couple double sided quilts out of them. Although they won't be appreciated until he is much older.

Why not make one big blanket out of all of them by knitting them together? That way you can still have a big beautiful blanket and none of the effort by anyone was lost, then your son can use it for years after that and you can always have it for a lap throw or something like that.

Donate them to your local NICU. My twins spent time in the NICU and people would knit blankets and donate them to be given out to the babies there.

Another option is to donate them to a woman's shelter. They would be greatly appreciated at either place.

Hopefully this idea will help!

We take pictures of everything that has meaning to us, but is not necessary for us to keep, then put them in a on-line folder (later to be printed and placed in an album).

I suggest taking pictures of your baby with each blanket, or just the blanket alone, include the knitter's name and why it is special and create a photo album (or a book, if you want to pay the $$ for these through Creative Memories, Snapfish or other on-line organizations).

Then donate the blankets to an animal shelter or homeless shelter or organization that helps young families. There is always someone in need.

Keeping photos helps retain the memories without cluttering your home. You can always look back at the album and enjoy the thoughtfulness of the gifts and the moments you had with the blankets.

Hi T.,
I'd consider keeping a few favs. and then donating the rest to an organization that helps needy children. I adopted one of my kids from Russia and on one of my visits to the orphanage, a recent shipment of hand crochet blankets and sweaters came in. It was cold there, and it was wonderful to think that now all those kids could benefit from all the love that went into making those blankets. I saw my daughter's group in the sweaters, the kids looked so great compared to the layered rags they usually wore to keep warm.

After the initial parting with the blankets, you will feel so good knowing those blankets helped someone rather than sitting in your attic for years and years! If you are interested in finding an organization that sends stuff overseas to orphanages, I might be able to help you out. I know my adoption agency sends stuff over with parents and it goes directly to the agency. -- J. (mom to 3)

Not sure what all the blankets look like but if they are all hand knitted or crocheted they could all some how be sowned together and then you could just write a memory page of all the people who gave them to your son as a memory. It would be like patchwork, maybe large but could be a nice blanket or king size bedspread.

Hi, T.. I know that you mentioned being torn about donating the beautiful, handmade blankets that your son received as gifts, so you may not like my suggestion. However, as a mother of a child who was born with a random birth defect that kept her in the NICU (and in and out of the operating room) for the first three months of her life, I have to tell you that the blankets she received in her hospital crib were balm to my heart and my husband's. Each of them was handmade through a nationwide charity called Project Linus. Apparently, this organization allows knitters and seamstresses the opportunity to lovingly put their talents to use and donate their beautiful creations to children's hospitals.

Periodically during our baby's stay in the NICU, we would enter the room and see many new colorful, soft blankets adorning the otherwise sterile, cold cribs of each baby. As our daughter entered her third month of life and became more aware of her surroundings, she truly showed enjoyment when a new blanket was given to her. During our stay, we received two such blankets, and they remain favorites of hers--and ours.

I guess all of this is to say that while not all donations are held as treasures, some really are. Perhaps you could find a chapter of Project Linus or even visit a local NICU that would be willing to give out your blankets with dose of TLC to babies (and parents) in need of a smile. If you choose this option, perhaps you could photograph the blankets so that your son could one day see them, and you could still tell him about all the people who made them for him.

Thanks for reading my response. I hope I did not offend you by suggesting donation.
--Jennifer C.

Hi T. - I am not the crafty person but I do know other moms who have made their children's baby blankets into colorful quilts.
As for the space issue - you could take pictures and label each one. After you have taken the pictures, you could choose which ones to keep and have made into a quilt or three and then donate the others to a hospital. We also have a pregnancy resource center that is always looking for donations - maybe there is one near you. This way, those blankets would be snuggling another little one
Hope this helps!

Contact a local church or shelter to see if they are in need of any. Or know a local non-profit that can use them. Otherwise, you could post them on freecycle.com and someone would probably love them.

T., As hard as it is to give something away that was made especially for you and your son from someone you know and love - what use will they be in a box in the attic?

Why not take a picture of your son with each blanket, label the picture and add a picture of the person who gave it and put them both in a photo album together so that he will know he received it and can put a face to the name and the blanket.

Hospitals are always looking for things to give to newborn babies. (I have made quite a few baby caps with my bible study group and donated them to local hospitals.)

There are always unwed mother groups or organizations that are looking for things for their new mom's/babies. There are so many womens groups who would love the opportunity to give new baby blankets to their moms who wouldn't have them otherwise.

You could always write a special note to go with each one, include a picture of your son, telling your story and about your son/family/giver and how you wanted to be able to share with others.

The joy they will share with receiving you can share with giving!

P.

You couls actually sew the blankets together to make a large blanket that can be put on his bed when he gets older. It's very simple to sew the blankets together. All you need is a coordinating yarn (or even a contrasting yarn) and a yarn needle. Layout the blankets to make a "pattern" that you find appealing and then label each blanket as to their place in the layout. Use a piece of paper and draw out the layout and label that as well for a guide for when you start sewing them together. If you need help let me know!

Good Luck!
K.

Hi!

I would take a photo of all the blankets and store it with about 2-3 that you seemed to use the most. Then I would donate the rest to some worthy cause. I know there are tons out there. Truly, once he is older he probably won't care about who made what, but maybe seeing the blankets in some creative pictures that you can take now would be a lot of fun!

hi T.,
sew some together, put a backing of sorts on them and make one big quilt for a larger bed for when he is older and in a big boy bed. You could also make wall hangings of some of them.

Hi T.,

I know you said you may want to keep them, but the same thing happen to me. I received only a handful of handmade blankets, so I can store them. Before I had children, I used to make blankets for a non-profit called "Project Linus." You should check out this website for further info., http://www.projectlinus.org/ I found that it felt really great to provide a child with some sense of security when their lives were in the midst of trials or tribulations. It's just an idea.

Take care & God bless,
D.

Save a few that would look good together and make a larger blanket out of them. Then donate the rest after you've taken pictures of them. Put the photos in a scrapbook with picture or just the name of the person that made them. Then take a picture of them at the place you donate them to. Many children out there would LOVE to have their own blanket.

Why not keep some as baby blankets and take some and make a bigger afghan for a queen or king bed for when he gets married?

Take pictures of the blankets with the people who gave them and make an album. Then your son will have a picture of the people they came from as well - in case they are elderly and wont be around when he's older.

Hello! This is J.. I am a mother of 3. I am starting an in-home daycare in the Spotsylvania County area. Anyone might be interested, do you know??? BUt about the blankets, how come that you sell them and get some money. I am sure that they are all beautiful, and maybe some other kids/babies will be interested in using them. I have tons and tons of Baby Boy Clothes, do you have any ideas for me now lol.

Thanks J.

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