Friday, January 22, 2016

Upcycle an Old Sweatshirt Into a Baby Wearing Cover

Our car is still in the shop. I have been very fortunate to have family that has been able to pick Gavin up from school every day for me. But, on Thursday all of my amazing peeps were busy. Luckily it was warmer than it had been earlier in the week but it was still pretty cold. Olivia has a nice, warm full body North Face coat but I always feel like the wind cuts through my Lillebaby Airflow baby carrier.

I decided to find an old sweatshirt and try to make it something that my carrier can "wear". I found a sweatshirt that I had gotten as a souvenir on a trip to Boston that never seemed to fit me right, then broke out my scissors and sewing machine!

I had an idea in my head for how I wanted it to work, but I wasn't exactly sure how to make it happen. When I am doing upcycling projects I have a cut first, figure it out later philosophy. I knew I wanted the logo and the pocket to face out which meant that I would need to turn the hood around. So I started by chopping off the hood and the sleeves.

The bottom of the sweatshirt was destined to become a pouch for her legs to go in, so I needed to cut the back of the sweatshirt. I decided to cut armpit to armpit.

Next, I cut the top into strips that will attach around the straps of my carrier.

That completed my cutting. Next it was time for the sewing machine. To create the pouch for Olivia's legs, I had to turn it inside out, then sew across the entire bottom of the sweatshirt. As you can see in my picture, I was not worried about making it perfect. The seam won't show and you just need to make sure that it will stay together, so I went over it twice. Also, I didn't have any black thread on a bobbin and I was trying to get this project done with very little time, so ignore the random green thread :)

Now I needed to attach the hood. I pinned it to the top of the sweatshirt, then sewed it together. I probably should have been more concerned with appearance for this seam since it will show when the hood isn't being used, but I was definitely in function over appearance mode! The hood was wider than the top of the sweatshirt, so I left that unattached to be tied under her chin.

The last thing I needed to do was to make it possible to attach my sweatshirt pouch to the carrier. I have Babyville Boutique snap pliers and snaps. They were fairly inexpensive and I have used them for several of my projects. If you plan on upcycling or making anything for babies, they are a great investment to make! I wanted to make sure that my straps would be strong enough to hold it up, so I decided to double up the fabric. I folded it over and sewed along the bottom. Then I was ready to put the snaps on. To use the Babyville snaps, you poke a hole in your fabric then stick the pointy part of the backing through the hole. Take the other part of the snap then put the whole thing inside the pliers and press down. Once I had all of the snaps attached, I sewed along the edges of each strap to reinforce it.

And it was done! With an extra 20 minutes for me to gather all of our hats, gloves and coats! Here it is laid out on the table...

And hanging on the carrier on one of my dining room chairs...

And here it is in action! Gavin took this picture right before we got home. Olivia and I both stayed perfectly warm and one of the other moms even told me I should patent the idea :)

If you are a baby wearing mama, I definitely recommend trying to make one of these. It took me about an hour and was pretty easy! I will probably end up putting a strap on the body of the sweatshirt to hold the middle of it closer to the carrier, but all in all I am very happy with the result!

Happy crafting!


  1. Great idea! Does it have something to help it stay put around baby's legs? I've seen some with a sort of elastic pouch so I was just wondering. It looks great and so cozy!

    1. Thank you! The bottom part of the sweatshirt becomes a pouch for the baby's legs. I think I may add some elastic so that it is a bit of a tighter fit!

  2. Hi Michelle - This is such a great idea. Thanks for sharing with the Let's Get Real Party.

  3. Wonderful idea! Pinning to share!
    Have a great week.

    1. Thank you! You too! See you again next week at Brag About It :)