Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Toddler Vest

So auditions are over for SYTYC and although I didn't make it into the competition, I still wanted to share my project with you.  Some of the other audition pieces were great, so I'm not at all surprised.  Especially since my project caters to such a small audience.  But since you read my blog and know what I'm about (which happens to be 50% girls clothing) I figured you might want to see it and know how I made it.  

Toddler Vest, 2 Ways


This project is super easy.  It took about 30 minutes to make both of them (probably another reason why I didn't move on in the competition....but that's how I roll people....simple and fast)

And it comes with easy variations.  There's the slightly-less-fast ruffled collar vest.  The pictures are crazy because the model is crazy.  The hem is not wonky like it looks in the pictures, it's just because she won't stand still for 2 seconds for me to take a pictures.


And the 'plane jane' white vest.


I didn't take pictures along the way, but it's so simple, I promise you won't need them.

Here's what you need to do:

1.  Measure.  
A: The distance between shoulders (armpit to armpit).  Mine- 7.5"
B:  From the top of the shoulder to the bottom of the armpit.  Mine- 3.5"
C: from shoulder to where you want the vest to fall.  I chose below the waist about half way down the leg, but it's up to you and the style you want to achieve.  Mine-17"
**Write all of these down so you don't get half way through and have to chase down your model to get them a second time.  

2.  Cut your rectangle.  Start with a rectangle of cotton jersey.  Use measurement A to calculate how long by tripling the distance.  Use measurement C to determine how long.  Since we're using jersey there is no need to account for seams unless you don't like the raw edges.  Mine ended up being 22" x 17".

3.  Cut your armholes.  Fold your vest in half and place a few pins to keep it in place.  Use measurement A to determine how far in from the fold to cut the armhole.  To determine how far from the top, use 3.5" for small children and adjust up to 6" for larger children.  This all depends on how large you want your collar to be.  Use measurement B to determine how long to cut the hole.  When you cut, you will be cutting both armholes at once so there is no need to repeat this process a second time.  No need to finish armholes because they won't fray.  My hole was 3 3/4 inches in from the side (7/2), 3.5" from the top, and 3.5" long.  

4.  If you wish to have a 'plane jane' vest like the white one, you can stop now.  If you want ruffles like the red one you'll first need to round off your corners.  I did this by tracing the lid of our clothes hamper onto the vest and cutting off the excess.  Then I cut a 2" piece of the same fabric (I had to sew a few scraps together to get it long enough) and ruffled it by sewing a gathering stitch (longest stitch length, highest tension, walking foot if you have one) and pulling the bobbin thread to get desired ruffles.  Then I pinned the ruffled strip around the entire vest on the outer edge and sewed directly over the gathering stitch to secure it to the vest. 

If you have any questions just ask!  Sorry for lack of pictures.  Hope it makes sense.  


  1. I really like the ruffled one, so simple and cute.

  2. Cute vests! And your baby is adorable!

  3. The ruffled vest is adorable. I love a quick and simple project. Thanks for sharing. Sorry you didn't make it into the competition.

  4. I LOVE these vests! I'm totally making them for my daughter! I just love big kid clothes on babies!

  5. Ok Your model is absolutely gorgeous!!! It makes my day just to see her cute face. The vests are so adorable and I love to see your work :)

  6. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! I just got done making the plain jane white vest but I added sleeves so it's the perfect fall jacket! And for the knit fabric I used the good old dollar store t-shirts. A mens 2XL was the perfect amount of fabric! So quick and easy, thank you for sharing!