Reversible Baby Vest Tutorial w/ FREE Pattern

Our friend Carol Van Zandt sent over her gorgeous first fabric collection, Tokyo Rococo, and while most of the collection is beautiful bold florals, this male-friendly coordinate inspired me to sew up something for my favorite little guy. Head over to Babble and enter to win some of Carol’s delish fabric! Since this vest is totally reversible, I finally cut into my Heather Ross Guitars for the other side. I’m seriously digging his little man look. I think this would also look so sweet on a little girl. Want the super easy instructions for how to sew one up? Let’s do it.

Download and print pattern at 100% Pattern is is designed for size – 12 month.

Tape pattern pieces together and cut out.

You will need approximately 1 yard total. 2 coordinating 1/2 yards or 4 coordinating fat quarters. We suggest at least one of the fabrics being a heavier weight like canvas, home dec, wool or corduroy.

Cut fabric pieces according to instructions printed on pattern. There is 1/4″ seam allowance included in the pattern.

Align pieces right-side-facing so that the side seams and shoulder seams match up.

Do the same for the other side.

Sew the sides and the shoulders with 1/4″ seam. Repeat on second set.

Iron all seams open flat.

Fit one layer inside the other with right-sides facing.

Pin in a few key places where seams meet like the shoulders and sides and sew all the way around the outside with 1/4″ seam.

The only thing that will be left unsewn is the arm holes.

Trim the points on any sharp angles.

Through the arm hole, turn the piece right-side-out.

Iron the vent flat.

Now to finish the armholes.

All the way around both armholes, turn the fabric under 1/4″ and pin. Take special care to line up the edge with the other side.

Slowly stitch around the very edge of the armhole through all layers.

Now you could be done…

But we really must insist that you add some adorable buttons. You will need enough for both sides.

It makes it easy to use the same button for inside and out, so you can sew through aligning holes.

Space the buttons evenly and mark with disappearing ink.

Get out that button hole foot and get to work. If you need a refresher or a ‘fresher,’ watch our buttonhole video tutorial.

Cut your buttonholes! Don’t forget the pins, to avoid catastrophe.

Overlap the front panels and through the buttonholes, mark where your buttons need to go. Sew two buttons back to back on either side of the fabric. Keep stitches loose enough that the button can fit through the hole but secure enough for baby shenanigans.

And you have an adorable little vest! If you need a different size, use the pattern as a guideline for shape, and measure a light jacket or sweatshirt for size. I plan to make some for the girls too but with a tie on the back for a more fitted look! Such a cute way to use a few fat quarters.




II was wondering how I would make this on a larger size. I would love to make one of these for my 2 year old son.


I am desperate to make this for 2 and 3 year old boys. Best pattern I’ve seen. PLEASE HELP.
Thank you.


For some reason I can download the pattern but find this tutorial absolutely adorable.


I’m so so glad I found this site i absolutely love this waistcoat <3 thanks so much for sharing it


I’m so so glad I found this site i absolutely love this waistcoat <3 thanks so much for sharing it 🙂

Oh and Melinda i couldn't download the pattern either for some reason, so I right clicked the hyperlink and copied it, then pasted it in an open firefox window and it worked fine 🙂

Lannie P

Thank you for posting this and the detailed photos!!! AaAAAAMazing!! I need to sew a basic go go diego vest for my son’s halloween costume and I can use your pattern 🙂


I’m using this pattern for a Christmas vest for my little guy! I am using an old pair of jeans for one of the sides and then a crisp chocolate brown for the other! So excited!


Love this tutorial! I had a McCall’s vest pattern, but when I saw this reversible one I HAD to mesh the two. 🙂 I made 2 and each time I struggled with closing the armholes. I’m not sure if it was the shape or my fabrics but I kept having small amounts of fabric gathering/pleating. FYI, I use a knit on one side and corduroy on the other.
Any suggestions to keep this from happening?


thank you! so excited to make one for my little guy to wear at the wedding we are attending in 2 months 🙂 will make a matching bow tie as well 🙂 thanks again!


Thank you for this tutorial!! I made a vest pattern (half vest for my girl) and was somewhat lost on what the steps would be… this os perfect!


Hi. do you have a pattern for 18-24m month size? Thank you 🙂 also any tutorials you can recommend on how to do buttons, I have not learned that yet. Thanks for sharing this vest tutorial, I love it.


I am having a hard time down loading the boys vest pattern.. I am really loving this. Help

Marie Danneels

A big thank you for all your work and the free pattern; very kind of you !
Europe – Belgium


Fell in love with this right away – went to make one and it rocks! Have now made 3. I think I’m addicted 😉
Thanks so much, great pattern, great tutorial, and the kids are going to look adorable as soon as I get around to adding buttons to them 😀

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Megan Boddy-Pickard

I found it helpful to cut short slits in the arm holes to facilitate folding the raw edges under. Love how it turned out!

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a spor

Love this instructional exercise! I had a McCall’s vest design, however when I saw this reversible one I HAD to work the two. I made 2 and each time I battled with shutting the armholes. I don’t know whether it was the shape or my textures however I continued having limited quantities of texture gathering/creasing. FYI, I utilize a weave on one side and corduroy on the other.


I am having a hard time down loading the boys vest pattern.. I am really loving this. Help

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