Updated: Aug 12, 2020
I've been asked how I make my bandanas. They're super-easy and super-quick.
These fit my not-so-small head. If I wrap a tape measure around my head where I wear the bandana, it's 56cm. If you need less, you could shorten the length of the elastic. The finished width of the main piece is 8cm, and they work best in fine cotton.
Cut two pieces of fabric. The big one is 40x18cm, the wee one is 30 x 8cm. I use a piece of 2.5cm wide elastic 18cm long. Seam allowance is 1cm.
On the big piece of fabric, fold under 1cm hem allowance on both short end, and stitch to hold in place. These are going to be hidden away so you only need to fold it once.
Fold the big piece of fabric in half lengthwise and stitch the long edge
Press the seam open and turn the tube inside out. Press it flat. I usually put the seam down the middle.
Fold the small piece of fabric in half and stitch the long edge on the 1cm seam allowance. No need to hem the short edges this time, they're going to be hidden away. Turn the tube the right way out and press. You can see my favourite turner-outer thingy in the photo, it's official name is a Prym turning set.
Thread the elastic through the tube you just made, and catch it down at each end with a few stitches.
Now tuck one end of the elasticated piece inside the main piece. You only need to tuck it in by 1cm.
This first photo shows that the main piece is about 2cm wider on each side than you need. So you need to gather that in.
I do that by folding the main piece into a box pleat on top of the elastic. Photo 2 above shows the top of the bandana, with the box pleat in place, and photo 3 shows the underneath.
Stitch it down then do the same on the other side.
It doesn't really matter how you gather in the main fabric . You could do a running stitch around it and pull it in. This bit of the bandana isn't particularly visible when you wear it.
Here's a close up of the top of my bandana, with the box pleat stitched in place.
And here's the underneath.