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Turn a Onesie into a Bubble Dress


It’s that time again. 


I’ve been digging through my kiddos’ drawers and finding the “too small” items that need to be weeded out and then deciding what needs to be donated and what can be………….salvaged.  And well, babies always seem to have plenty of onesies that get a little snug in the length but still fit in the top.  So why not give them a few more months of use and adjust them just a bit.  Here’s one idea that I used for my little girl:



Making a little Bubble Dress doesn’t get any easier than this.  Really.



There’s something about that little bubble layer on the bottom that adds more fulness but also looks so clean and polished.  No worrying about a bottom hem.



And because I don’t do well leaving things alone, I added a little flower up top. Ha.



I think she likes it.  (You know what I like?  When babies learn how to blow kisses.  I adore it!)




You could use knit or a woven cotton for this but I used knit.  So it’s still soft, stretchy, and cozy from top to bottom. 


So it’s still a great dress for playing in.  And well, for being curious.



Would you like to make a quick little Bubble Dress out of a Onesie??



Grab a onesie from your baby’s drawer.  Or even go and buy one.  They are a really great base for making a bubble dress.  Then decide on your coordinating fabric for the bubble section of the dress.  (I found this teal knit at Hobby Lobby.)



Then decide on the length you’d like and cut the bottom off the onesie.



Next, decide how long you want the bubble section of the skirt to be.  Then double that number and add an inch for the seam allowance.  For the width, measure the bottom of the onesie all the way around and then double that number and then add an inch for the seam allowance.  So, I wanted to add 4 inches of length to the bottom of my dress and the bottom of the onesie was 18 inches all the way around.  So I cut a piece of knit that was 9 inches tall and 37 inches wide.


Then, fold the strip in half width-wise, with right sides together, and sew the two ends together (shown on the left).  Then, fold that circle in half inside itself, with the right side facing out, matching the raw edges together (shown on the right).



Now, with the horizontal seam along the center back and the raw edges at the top, sew a basting stitch along the top front half and another along the back half, leaving the ends free for gathering.  (Need help with gathering?  Go here.)



Now gather up the skirt section and evenly space it along the bottom of the onesie, matching up raw edges.  Pin in place and then sew.  TIP: Increase your stitch length just a bit while sewing, to prevent stretching and pulling.



Now, you can either do another seam right next to the one you just did, to reinforce it, or you can do what I did next.  (This will just keep it clean and finished but isn’t necessary if you’d rather not.)  I folded the skirt section down and then top stitched right at the very bottom of the onesie section, making sure that the excess seam allowance from the skirt is tucked upwards and is included in this seam from the bottom. 



Then, add a flower if you’d like.  Just fold up some of the flower and sew the base down to the onesie.  (Tutorial for the flower here.  I just added 3 layers, not just 2.)




 And that’s it.  A little Bubble Dress made from a onesie.




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This post is sponsored by:


Ashley Johnston
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Ashley Johnston

Owner at Make It & Love It
Ashley Johnston is a professional DIY costume maker, sewist, crafter, and owner of Make It & Love It. She is a mom of 5 and a wife to a very patient (with the craft clutter) husband. In case you’re wondering, she always chooses crafting/sewing/designing over mopping/dusting/wiping base boards……but bathrooms/laundry/full bellies are always attended to. Whew!
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  1. Rose says:

    How perfect! This tutorial will add to my little one’s wardrobe at a price that won”t break the bank. Thank you for all your wonderful ideas.

  2. Briellemm says:

    omgoshh i love it!
    super easy and super cute!! Will be making this for my little bubba thank you xo

  3. Jennifer (aka Hint Mama) says:

    Great idea! Featured it over at Hint Mama:)

  4. cecilia says:

    OMG I Love it! Can’t wait to make this! I have two friends that have just had baby girls! You are so clever!! I love this site! So practical and my husband is so happy I’m up – cycling thus saving money!!!!! So thanks! :)

  5. Haine bebelusi says:

    Thanks a lot, SO cute!!! Can’t wait to get home and try it out! :)

  6. roxanne says:

    What about doing this while keeping the onsie intact for the snap bottom?
    Ie just adding a skirt to the onesie? How would you recommend doing this, I found ideas online but I love yours so would appreciate your guidance :)!

  7. Linda says:

    I would love for you to visit by blog and see my version on this dress!

    1. Ashley says:

      Those turned out ADORABLE!! Love those polka dots! :) (sorry, I couldn’t leave a message on your post for some reason.)

      Thanks for sharing!

  8. Carissa says:

    I used your tutorial to make three of these for my daughter this morning. I LOVE the way they turned out! Thanks for the inspiration!

  9. Reecea says:

    I love bubble dresses! I shared this on my blog Baby Stuff – Best Onesie Makeovers on Pinterest here:

    Thanks for teaching us about this!

  10. Tracy says:

    I just found your site and I absolutely love it! My only problem now is finding time to do all your wonderful ideas. :) Working on this bubble dress now. :) Thanks so much!

  11. Marisa says:

    So adorable! I need to try this with a couple of too-small onesies of my daughter.

  12. Pam says:

    Thanks for the great idea! Here’s the dress I made for my daughter –

  13. Eva Scott says:

    Aaaaa, SO cute!!!

  14. sandra says:


  15. Courtney says:

    This is so, so cute! I have one question… do you ever have a problem stretching the part where the skirt and the shirt meet? I made a t-shirt dress for myself and I had to wiggle and squirm to get that part over my body. It fit just fine once it was on, but getting it on was a hassle. And so I haven’t made any t-shirt dresses for my girl for fear of not being able to get them on her. So I guess my questions is… how do you make the part where the skirt and shirt meet to stretch? Would it help to use elastic thread or a zig zag stitch?

  16. Delia says:

    Such a simple yet BRILLIANT idea. My kids tend to grow long rather than out, so I will definitely be using this for my little Natalie. Love it.

  17. Biz says:

    I will definitely be putting this idea aside for use in the near future.
    My baby girl is 7 months, wearing 12 month clothing and out growing nearly everything by leaps and bounds. This is just the idea I needed to stretch her wardrobe!

  18. Blanca says:

    Thanks for this amazing idea I been having trouble looking for a dress for my newborn girl 1 and a half month so I was thinking of making one myself and this idea saved me a lot of trouble it loos easy I will make her one or should I say lots she is my only girl I have 2 boys one is 16 and the other is 12 almost 13 in 2 months.Thanks and keep up with more ideas.

  19. Molly Sloan says:

    What an amazing idea! I think we will wait to see the sex of our next baby and then I think all of my favorite onesies will be turned to dresses. Esp. since we cloth diaper so all of them start out a little short!

  20. Lana says:

    Ok well I just went and dug out the onsies out of the salvation army bag that I have going! They fit her fine but with the whole potty training thing going so well I didnt feel that snap crotch was something that she could handle…BUT then I saw this post. That dress is adorable and I can hardly wait to make one.
    Thanks so much for sharing and for your perfect timing!

    PS…will be posting on my blog about your knitting tutorial. I have finished 4 washcloths and I am just so tickled with them! I taught myself to knit about 6 years ago then had a midlife baby and everything kinda stopped. Now getting back into the swing of things and wanted to refresh my memory and your tut really helped. Love your site and will be stopping by again I am sure!

  21. Tracy says:

    sweet! I can re-purpose those extra onesis for a gift for my sister’s new little girl!!

  22. arina says:

    Justi Love It! Thanks a lot. Can’t wait to get home and try it out!

  23. Rachel Hipps says:

    love this!

    your daughter is incredibly adorable!

  24. Ceara says:

    LOVE this! Fantastic job :) I will have to try this out for my little girl.

  25. Sami says:

    You´re so clever, even though I have no small babies, I keep some of your wonderful ideas to sew for future grandchildren! Your little girl looks adorable.

  26. i.ikeda says:

    Absolutely adorable! Both the dress and your little girl. :)

    Thank you so much for the tutorial. With a new little one on the way, this will come in handy for sure.

  27. Meags K says:

    Pinned….do you know, I think i have your whole blog pinned on my pinterest! Thank you for another great tip. I still can’t cut up some of their clothes though – we might have another one ;)

  28. Stephanie Hillberry says:

    I always love the resourcefulness of your ideas. Kids grow so fast and I appreciate how you are consistently trying to think outside of the box!

  29. Anna says:

    Thank you for your inspiring ideas. I made my daughter one of these and it looks sooooo cute!

  30. Kati says:

    Very cute! Great job!

  31. Patty says:

    I LOVE THIS!!! Can’t wait to make one!! Thanks so much for sharing!!

  32. Kim says:

    Adorable! And so easy. Thanks for sharing. This little one is looking more and more like her beautiful big sister :)

  33. Vanessa says:

    Hi, Ashley

    I love this outfit. How sweet and easy project to do. Happy Mother’s Day!


  34. Janeen says:

    Super cute, Ashley!

  35. Tara says:

    I look forward to your posts…..EVERYDAY… inspire me to look at my little girl’s clothes differently….and mind for that matter. :)

  36. Erin says:

    Ashley, I stinkin love you! My baby girl is about 6 months younger than yours, so your tutorials are just always so appropriate and helpful. I think a series (or maybe a link up?) for re-purposing the ‘meh’ or ‘just barely too small’ kids clothes could be in order. Although you seem to always do that anyway, so well done! Just love this idea! Off to sort the onesie drawer…

  37. Tiffany says:

    Can’t believe your baby is walking! Dress is adorable.

  38. Valerie Nelson says:

    SO FUN!!! Love your site! Totally keeps me sewing and my wheels turning!

  39. Donna Huisinga says:

    Very creative. I don’t even have anyone to make this for and I want to make one!

  40. Dalila says:

    I love your idea! You should think of something for boys too…

  41. jennie says:


  42. Magda E. says:

    I usually keep all her clothes because I want to have a second, but I guess I have planty of onesies and i just wondered, if I get a boy i’ll never see a baby wearing those lovely onesies again, so i guess i’ll give then a second life as a dress. thanks for sharing your great idea.

  43. Ashley @ Cherishedbliss says:

    Oh my goodness this is adorable! I am pinning it (in hopes that I have another little girl soon) : )

  44. Noemy says:

    OMG it’s soooo cute, my daughter and I did something similar for my granddaughter !!!! , also we add some ruffle to some pants that were short, they look cute……

  45. kreativkäfer Andrea says:

    gorgeous ♥

  46. Evgenia says:

    It’s amazing!! She likes is, that’s for sure!!!

  47. Carolyn says:

    Adorable, as always!

    1. hannah says:

      yep, i agree, but i have a question, would the same work if you were to make the bubble part start from your chest instead of your waist.

    2. Ashley says:

      Yes, starting up higher would totally work. Just cut more off the onesie and make the bubble section longer. Good luck!


    3. hannah says:

      thanx that totally worked, it looks just as good as yours!

    4. Anonymous says:

      I like that idea. I’ll have to try for my niece. Alas, I have 3 boys!

  48. Katie says:

    Oh wow. I was JUST trying to figure out something to do with some too short onsies. I can’t believe you read my mind! Thanks!!!!!

  49. Shandra says:

    I think it would be awesome to add the snap part of the onesie back on the bottom! I loved my daughter’s dresses that had the snaps to help keep them down!

  50. Kelli says:

    Love it, Ashley! And great for baby shower gifts too! I always love to give gifts the Mom can use in the months to come and this is perfect!

  51. Kylie P. says:

    This is adorable :) I’m pregnant with a boy though, so all these cute dresses will have to wait. Hopefully someday I’ll have a girl I can make these for!

  52. Elizabeth @ Southern Color says:

    What a great idea! I love the idea of re-inventing old clothing!

    1. Anonymous says:

      me too, i think its great.
      p.s. your daughter looks sooo adorable in that outfit. she looks so jolly and active!

  53. Sabrina @ Customized Creations says:

    This is PERFECT! My parents bought my daughter a onsie that was sized wrong, so I can do this to the onsie!

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

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