Interested in making a DIY mobile for your baby’s room?
Ceiling mobiles provide visual stimulation for babies and can help calm and soothe them in their cribs. They’re also beautiful pieces of nursery décor that can be designed to fit any style. And if you’re not finding what you’re looking for—or if you just want to put your artistic skills to use—it’s quite easy to make your own.
There are a variety of different ways to make a DIY crib mobile, and lots of materials that you can use to do so—including paper, ribbons, felt, fabric, and beads. For our purposes here, we’re going to cover how to make a basic DIY mobile using pre-purchased felt pom poms, though if you’re up for a bigger challenge check out this excellent course by Peggy Dean on how to make a beautiful and modern kinetic brass mobile.
How to Make a Mobile
Whether for your own little one or as a gift, DIY baby mobiles are a fun and simple craft that don’t require too much practice to get right. They’re also a great rainy day project to work on with kids.
Here’s how to do it.
Supplies You’ll Need
You’ll only need a handful of simple tools and materials to make your DIY crib mobile, all of which you should either have on hand or will be available at your local craft supply store.
- Embroidery hoop (just the inner hoop) or another type of lightweight frame
- Embroidery floss or string
- Felted pom poms (mix it up by using a variety of colors and sizes)
Step 1: Arrange Your Pom Poms
Decide how many strings of pom poms you want on your mobile and lay out each of them in the order you want the balls to hang. How many pom poms go in each row will depend on how long you want your mobile to be.
Step 2: Cut Your Floss or String
Cut a piece of embroidery floss or string for each hanging row of pom poms. You’ll need enough floss/string to cover each pom pom and the space between them, plus plenty of extra for securing your pom pom rows to the embroidery hoop and hanging the mobile once it’s done.
Keep in mind that for the safest placement, the bottom of your mobile should hang at least 16 inches above the crib mattress, so be sure to measure accordingly. Slightly lower is okay too, however it’s important that your baby not be able to reach and pull on the mobile when they’re laying down, sitting, or standing in their crib.
Step 3: Thread Your Pom Poms
Thread a needle with your embroidery floss or string and use it to thread each row of pom poms in your desired order. The poms poms should stay in place on their own, so there won’t be any need to tie knots before and after each of them. And if you don’t like the spacing, you should also have no trouble moving each pom pom up and down as needed until you get the look that you’re after.
Step 4: Secure Your Rows to the Frame
Using the extra bit of remaining embroidery floss or string, tie each row onto your hoop, spacing them out evenly and leaving plenty of extra so that you can knot all of the floss or string together at the top. Make sure this top knot is super sturdy if you’re going to be hanging the mobile directly above a crib.
Adapt this same method to create a mobile for crib or wall use that uses different materials, noting that some materials may require you to put a knot before and after each object so that they don’t all slide to the bottom. Just be careful to only stick to lightweight materials and not to use anything hard, sharp, or otherwise potentially harmful.
Want to make some matching décor? In addition to baby mobiles, you can also thread felt pom poms onto a longer piece of embroidery floss or string to make a garland. Leave loops at the end for hanging and display over a changing table or bookshelf, or wherever else you think it might provide a colorful pop.
8 Hanging Mobile Ideas and Projects
When it comes to ceiling mobiles, if you can dream it, you can (probably) make it. Here are some of our favorite DIY baby boy and baby girl crib mobile ideas from around the web to get the inspiration going.
1. Brass Beauty
This gorgeous reflective mobile was created by Skillshare instructor Peggy Dean—here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to make it yourself!
2. Sweet Treat
For the baby with the burgeoning sweet tooth, check out this oh-so-sweet mobile for crib use from Icing Designs. It’s made using scrapbook paper, styrofoam balls, ribbon, and a few other basic supplies.
3. Go Geometric
We love the modern look of this geometric mobile, shared by Shea O’Quinn of Not-So-Cli-Shea on Something Turquoise. It does require some welding so it might not be ideal for beginner DIY-ers, but you could take an easier route and buy pre-made wooden shapes.
4. Cute and Cloudy
Some basic cardstock and string is pretty much all that you need to make this simple but stunning rainy day mobile from blogger Lia Griffith.
5. Glittering Globe
How cute is this glitter globe mobile from Delineate Your Dwelling? If you’re worried about the globe being a little too heavy for use over a crib, this mobile would look just in the corner of a nursery or as a piece of décor in an older kid’s room.
6. Origami Magic
No special supplies? No worries. Over at Journey and Creativity you’ll find some inspiration for creating a mobile using origami boat and string—plus a homemade hoop made out of wire.
7. Cardstock Creatures
This DIY baby mobile from Domestic Heights is almost entirely made out of paper, which makes it an excellent choice if you want to create a mobile without heading to the store for any specialty items.
8. Black and White Contrast
Newborn babies can really only see stark contrasts in color, so this DIY black and white mobile from Earnest Home Co. makes a lot of sense.
DIY Mobile FAQs
Safety is always a top priority whenever you are creating something for your baby’s room. We’ve put together this quick list of baby mobile safety FAQs so that you can be sure your DIY project is okay to hang up and enjoy.
Where should I put a baby mobile?
It’s totally fine to hang a baby mobile over a crib, but as we mentioned previously, there should be at least 16 inches from the lowest point of the mobile to the crib mattress. If your baby can reach it at any point, it’s time to move it somewhere else.
Another option is to create a wall mobile, which is just as pretty to look at (and just as easy to make) but doesn’t hang directly above the crib.
When should I remove my baby’s mobile?
As soon as they can grab it. The string on a mobile can pose a danger to your little one if they get their hands on it, and the same goes for any smaller objects that you’ve included on it.
Is a crib mobile necessary?
No, but they do make an excellent piece of nursery décor. Your baby will sleep and develop just fine without the use of a mobile, though many people do choose to use one.
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