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Faux Vest Onesie…with Interchangeable Bowties

About 1 year ago, I was still pregnant with Oliver (who is now 8 months old) and we just found out he was a boy. From that moment, I started making little boy things for him.  Baby hats, minky blankets, receiving blankets, guaze swaddle blankets, onesies with bowties, cardigan onesies, nursery artwork, etc.  Sewing for babies is really so much fun.  It’s usually a lot faster, it takes less fabric, and let’s face it……anything mini is ridiculously cute!




When I made the cardigan onesie and the suspender onesies (linked up above), I had every intention of making a onesie with an attached vest.  Something simple, yet really handsome!  In fact, I got started on it back then….but never finished.  I’m not sure why.  But if I have to blame something, it was probably the dirty laundry’s fault. ;)


Anyway, now that the weather has warmed up……I thought it was perfect to jump back on this project and make it for Oliver.   And I’m so glad I did, because my gosh, so CUTE!



A simple vest, attached directly to the onesie, with a variety of interchangeable bowties.




Since the vest is attached right to a onesie, this is quick to make but also really comfy.  And would be perfect to whip up really quick for Easter this Sunday!!!  (But it also reads really casual…..and would be cute any ol’ day of the week!)



No matter the mood, you can switch out the color and print of the bowtie.  So much fun.  And these are the same bowties Oliver’s been wearing with the other Interchangeable Bowtie ideas linked up above.  Once you make a set, they’ll last for a long while!



And even if you don’t have a baby of your own…….a new mom would surely love a set as a baby boy gift, don’t you think??




Little Ollie can’t stand alone yet and he won’t lay flat on his back anymore (without wiggling), so you can’t really see the whole look uncrumpled on him.  But, you still get the idea.


Man, this kid does a number on my heart! :)




Want to make a set too?  (or three?)


Let’s jump right in…




First of all, you need a paper pattern piece.  I was going to create a pattern piece and share it but onesies are so wonky and always a different shape, that I was worried that the shape that fit my onesie brand in the size I was using, may not fit your onesie.


So, I encourage you to create your own, custom fit to your onesie or baby tee. You will end up creating 2 vest pieces that are exactly the same shape.


Create a half vest piece first that fits the contours of whatever baby shirt/onesie you decided to use, and crosses over the center line of the onesie by about 1/2 inch.  (This is so that the 2 vest piece will overlap in the middle.)  Cut a second vest piece the exact same size and place the 2 pattern pieces on the onesie and check for sizing.  Make adjustments as needed.



Now, use one of the vest pieces and trace around it onto another piece of paper.  Add 1/4 inch around all edges (for a seam allowance) and create your new main pattern piece.  And then use it to cut out 4 vest pieces — 2 for the left and 2 for the right.



Grab 2 of your vest pieces, place them together with RIGHT sides together, and pin in place.



Sew around all the edges, using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.



Trim down all the corners and clip both curves.  (More on clipping corners and curves here.)



Cut through the center of one layer of the vest (the layer that will be considered the “back” side of the vest piece once it’s turned right side out) and make the slit long enough for turning the vest piece right side out.  Once you do, all the edges are perfectly sewn and uniform and there’s no need to tuck any sort of opening inward and sew close.



Turn right side out, gently poke out all corners, and iron flat.  The slit will be on the “back” side of this vest piece and will be completely enclosed, so don’t worry about it.



Repeat with the other piece, making sure that your 2nd finished piece is mirror image to the first one.



Place the finished pieces on top of your onesie (or baby shirt) and line them up just how you want them, overlapping the centers.



Remove the piece that is overlapping on top and pin the other piece down, making sure to only pin through the top layer of the shirt.  Line up with side seam of the vest with the side seam of the shirt and be sure to tuck the top of the vest piece under the overlap at the shoulder of the onesie (if yours has that).



Sew around all the edges of the vest piece, attaching it to the shirt.  You will have to open up the onesie from the bottom and move everything out of the way while sewing in each particular area, only sewing through one layer of the shirt.  You’ll have to manuever a little bit….so, sew for a bit, adjust, and sew some more.  Take your time and it will work out!



Always feel through the shirt and peek underneath, to be sure you’re only sewing through one layer.  (And be sure you fold the shoulder flap out of the way while you’re attaching the top portion of the vest, so that you don’t sew through it.)



Place the other vest piece on the shirt, overlapping at the center, and pin in place.



Sew in place.



Then, hand sew each of your buttons in place, down the center of the vest.



Attach your snap to your shirt, just like the Interchangeable Bowtie Onesie tutorial.  Be sure to put 2 small circles of cotton fabric, on the inside of the onesie, before attaching the snap (for added strength.)



Create some little bowties, just like the Interchangeable Bowtie tutorial linked above, in any ol’ color you want!  Just be sure that you add the opposite snap piece (from the one you attached to the onesie) on the back of each bowtie.




And enjoy!



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  1. karen holzschuh says:

    Thanks so much for sharing! I made a couple bow ties and I’m working on suspenders from your other tutorial. I found a site where the suspenders are snapped on, that seemed pretty smart too! Then I went looking for a vest and wolla!, your site came up again! Thanks for the ideas and instructions! Karen

  2. Zoe says:

    Really love your work it is so cute! But can you please send me the vest pattern ´cause I’m beginner on this sewing stuffs and I’m afraid to mess up everything, I’ll adjust your pattern to my onesie, so, pleaaaase, can you send me?

  3. Caroline says:

    Who else thought of the 11th doctor from Doctor Who? Google him and you’ll see what I mean!! ;)

  4. Jannie says:

    I absolutely love this idea!! This would make a great gift idea for baby’s first birthday, not to mention an inexpensive way to dress him up for Sundays and parties. I just might make one for my little guy. Thanks for posting this!

  5. Katy says:

    This is too adorable! I love the little “hipster baby” look :)

  6. Keeper says:

    Thank you for all the sewing tutorials. I have been meaning to learn how to sew. The lab gown I made back in high school was such a failure. But seeing all this lovely projects encourage me to “make it” and “love it”.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Adorable! You have such lovely ideas Ashley :)

  8. Marge says:

    So cute. I know a couple who just had their first baby, a boy! Gonna make this for baby! So easy, too!

  9. katiasafia says:


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Hi, I'm Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

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