When a loved one in my family was diagnosed with corticobasal degeneration, she requested that I make her an adult bib. Although it is usually a slow-progressing disease, she lost a lot in a short period of time; including living unassisted, much of her ability to speak, the ability to walk, and the use of her left hand. Due to her illness, she was having a hard time eating and kept dropping food and liquids on her shirt (although you could also use a waterproof backing).

After the request I did a bit of brainstorming on how to make an adult bib to fit her needs – she was in a wheelchair and couldn’t get close to the table – I came up with a smock style adult bib to cover a portion of her legs as well. I chose a pretty fabric for the front and a thicker flannel for the back to help absorb any spilled liquid. Below you will find a beginner friendly tutorial for those with basic knowledge of sewing to make this simple clothing protector.

Dignity Bib Simple Sewing Project

2 yards of fabric
I purchased = 1 yard of a pretty patterned cotton fabric and 1 of a solid flannel.
Sewing Machine


Cut the fabric to the following dimensions – 36″ L x 30″ W.

Put the wrong sides together and fold in half lengthwise. Pin if you feel the need.

Grab a large bowel (10″ works great) to create the neck hole.  Place the middle of the bowl at the center of the fold.  Trace around the bowl and cut out.

UPDATE: See the image below to see how I cut the rest of the bibs – they lay better along the top. The bottom width is 20″ (while fabric is folded in half).  I also rounded the corner and then tapered it up.  The part that straps behind the neck I curved and tapered allowing the top neckline to lay better. This is similar to how I made my son’s batman cape. The first design worked out, but I feel like this one lays better while in use.

Sew around the entire bib, leaving a 3″ gap in the bottom.

Turn right side out. 

Top stitch around the whole bib, making sure to fold in the hem of the opening.

Add velcro to the tabs and you’re adult bib is done.

The adult bib has a haircutting cape vibe, but it does the job perfectly. After delivering the first one, I was asked to make a couple more. I’m so happy that it worked and helped her feel more comfortable and less worried while eating.