Baby snuggler tutorial

Happy Monday everyone!  I spent most of my weekend hanging out with my sewing machine, and I thought y’all would enjoy seeing the end result.

Awhile back I pinned this pattern– and I just could not get it out of my head.  It’s similar in theory to my knitted sleep sack, except that there’s velcro involved to keep the baby’s arms in.  I’ve been reading a lot about how important swaddling is with a new baby- so this snuggler seemed like something we should have at least one of in our new baby arsenal, right??

Here’s a picture of my first attempt:

Cute right??  And actually pretty easy to make.  Easy enough that I felt comfortable writing up a baby snuggler tutorial for y’all to have.  You can download the pattern and instructions here, but if you’re like me, having some visual instructions are always nice as well.  So here goes!

You’ll need:

1 yard of a cotton fabric
1 yard of something soft- I used flannel, but the instructions recommend micro fleece.  Whatever you’re most comfortable working with.
Pattern (downloadable from here, and pieced together)
Sewing machine and thread

Start out by washing and drying your fabric and then ironing out any wrinkles.  This is an important first step- that way your fabric is pre-shrunk and ready to go!

Fold your two fabrics in half and lay them out on your cutting surface (I use our guest bed- probably not a good idea since I’m always afraid I’ll cut the bedspread, but oh well- live dangerously right??):

Pin your pattern pieces to the fabric and then cut them out- do this for both fabrics:

You should end up with this:

The instructions then tell you to pin and sew the darts.  At this point I got nervous- how do you sew a dart?  What the heck is a dart?!?  I almost quit- but lucky for you I didn’t!  The darts are shown on the pattern:

And you can also see them cut out in the fabric above.  Basically what you want to do is fold your fabric down the center line of the dart (like you’re making a paper airplane), pin it in place and then sew down one of the diagonal lines.  The instructions recommend marking the darts on your fabric, but I don’t have the patience anything that writes well on fabric, so I just measured the length of each diagonal and roughly pinned out a diagonal line on the fabric.

Here’s the upper dart pinned:

And the lower darts (be sure to consume some starburst candy at this point…you’ll need it after pinning all those darts!):

Then you simply sew down your diagonal line (starting on the widest part of the diagonal and sewing all the way to the fold), on the wrong side of your fabric:

Remove your pins, press the darts with an iron and you’re left with this:

Still with me??

Next you want to pin your two cotton pieces together, right sides touching.  Do the same with your two soft pieces- lining up the bottom darts is a good way to get them aligned properly.

In the above photo the cotton is NOT pinned to the soft layer- I just laid them on top of each other for the photo.  Basically the only part of the snuggler that’s pinned right now is the bottom U shape.  Go ahead and sew those two pieces together, leaving a 1/2 inch seam allowance, and then trim your seams to be 1/4 of an inch.

After you’ve done this, turn your cotton layer right side out and leave your soft layer wrong side out.  Put the cotton layer inside the soft layer and pin everything together.

Now you’re going to sew the two layers together- you want to sew along both arms and back (**make sure to leave a 3 inch gap on the underside of one arm in order to turn the whole thing right side out**) and the top part of the front panel.

Here’s a close of up the 3 inch gap I left on one of the arms:

Turn the whole thing right side out and adjust everything to your liking- you’ll need to use your fingers to poke the corners out and get it looking just right.  At this point the instructions tell you to slipstitch the 3 inch opening closed.  I thought this might look weird, so I chose to top stitch the entire piece- basically everything I’d just sewn, except for the bottom U shaped part of the pocket.

I used a zig-zag stitch in a similar color to the lining, but you could use whatever stitch you wanted to, in whatever color you decided.  Or you could slip stitch the opening closed as the instructions said.

Next you want to place your velcro.  Again the instructions say to transfer the velcro placements from your pattern on to your fabric, but I went ahead and just eyeballed things.

The soft pieces of the velcro (loop) go on the soft layer of your snuggler, and the rough pieces (hook) go on the cotton layer of the snuggler.  I pinned them down and then sewed around each one- I did make sure the snuggler closed properly with the velcro placement before sewing.

And here’s the end result (3 hours later if you’re slow like me…less time if you’re not a sewing sloth):

Oops- hang out, let me get that out of the way for you…


I hope this little tutorial was helpful for you- like I mentioned before, you can find the pattern and written instructions here.  I loved making these and can’t wait to make a couple more- relatively quick and easy.  They’d make a great baby shower gift…or go ahead and stockpile a few for your own child (you know that’s what I’m going to do!)

Linking up to the fall Pinterest challenge!!!


9 thoughts on “Baby snuggler tutorial

  1. This is great. We love our swaddlers. You’ll be so happy to have this. Of you make another, I’d highly recommend using a jersey knit. I find that it’s easier to get the swaddle ready tight with a knit. But either way, you’ll love it. 😉


  2. I second the Jersey knit. The stretchier the fabric, the better it stays on. Then you would also have to make the velco parts bigger to have more flexibility to get the right fit. Nicely done!


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