Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Winter Wear for Baby: The Funny Dots Cuddle Suit

Things got chilly around here pretty quick this year.  We had snow the week before Thanksgiving and the frigid temps look like they're here to stay.  Time to sew the winter wear!  

Our littlest one is 8 months now so ferrying him in & out inside a carrier car seat isn't an easy feat.  Having to carry him sans seat nixes the "toss a blanket over it" easy option, so I needed something that would work better and not cost a fortune either.  So I made this:

I call it a cuddle suit, but bunting, romper, snow suit, or whatever other name it does by, this is my ideal item for this time of year.  Outerwear in snowy climes is tricky with a bigger than newborn baby.  I know because this is my fourth baby in Michigan.  You want to keep them toasty warm, but they HATE being bundled up in something extra puffy.  They loathe most factory made versions.  Babies get squirmy and whiny instantly in most snowsuits because they overheat fast.  This one however is just perfect.

I did a soft interlock outer so it's not heavy and is still breathable:

With a cuddly minky lining to add warmth that keeps the wind out without adding bulk. Strapping him into a car seat or stroller isn't a wrestling match:

The snap front design is genius.  The whole thing opens right up so you can easily lay baby on it and then just snap it up.  No wrangling required with putting it or taking it off on while baby is wearing shoes, which is another plus.

I used the Funny Dots pattern from the Autumn 4/2009 issue of Ottobre Design.  

I'd made it once before when my now 9 year old was just a few months old.  

Of course, I was a sewing newbie back then and stupidly sewed a stretchy velour lining to a quilting cotton outer which was less than ideal.  I couldn't figure out why things wouldn't line up when I was stitching the seams not realizing one fabric had no give and the other was like a rubber band.  Shaking my head at the idea now.  I also was too scared of snaps then too, so I'd used velcro for the front closures which stuck to everything.  PSA: don't do either of those.  

That first version was done in the smallest 50cm size since my daughter was a newborn, but this time I did the largest 74cm for my 8 month old.  Ottobre Design offers generous sizing so I can see this lasting the whole season.  

I kept it inexpensive by using interlock knit for the outer and minky for the lining that I got at JoAnn Stores.  A yard & a half of each was plenty and came in about $18.50 total and I've got enough left of both to make some soft shoes and a few accessories.  The nice thing is that it works with a variety of other fabrics too - fleece, corduroy, even PUL. It's a great sew because there are just 4 pattern pieces.  No set-in sleeves so very beginner friendly.  You'd think it would be more complicated with the placket front, but it's not.

I will say it looked massive until I tried it on my little guy.  I'd been working on it during naps and had this horrible feeling it was going to be miles too big, but putting it on it's totally true to size.  No matter what he wears underneath.  I also like that the sleeves can be cuffed or worn down, so there's some growth room:

We've been using it for weeks now and it's been great.  He likes wearing it and getting him ready to go out the door is so easy.  Despite the early winter weather, we're off to a good and warm start!


  1. This is adorable! I need to get back into making ottobre things!

    1. Thanks! Every time I make something from them I'm reminded that they're my favorite kid's pattern maker.

  2. Just perfect! Love Ottobre Patterns

    1. Thanks Caroline. Me too - need to go through my collection to find some more winter goodies. Also, a little sneak peek for later....I'll be having a women's Ottobre Design giveaway;)


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