One of the best ways to be thrifty is to refashion old clothes into new ones. And this tutorial will show you just about the easiest way possible to do that! Follow along to see how you can change baby bodysuits from winter (long sleeve) into spring/summer (short sleeve) attire.
Long sleeve bodysuits (search your previous baby’s stash, hit up your friends, go thrifting, or check out a local garage sale! Be sure to wash the garment first if it hasn’t been previously washed just in case there might be some shrinkage)
Scissors or rotary cutter
Thread (coordinating or contrasting, depending on what look you like)
Twin needle (optional)
Step 1: Cut sleeves
Step 2: Iron sleeves
Step 3: Sew sleeves
This is really so simple, so let’s get started:
First step: Cut off the sleeves. I measured another bodysuit of the same size that already had short sleeves. If you don’t have that, just give a guess (and add a little); you can always cut off more later if necessary.
I ended up cutting off 4.5″ on this one and a little less on the others, since their sleeves were a bit shorter in the original bodysuit.
Step 2: Fold sleeve under 3/8″ and press. You don’t have to do anything to the edges of these sleeves since they are knit. You could serge or zig-zag the edges if you’d prefer though.
Step 3: Finish/sew the hems. I wanted to try several methods for finishing the sleeves.
First up: single needle! This method is for those of you out there who haven’t invested in a twin needle. I highly recommend a twin needle and they aren’t much of an investment, but just in case you don’t have one, here’s another way to hem your knit edges.
As I usually do with knits, I chose a zig-zag stitch with the shortest width possible (.5 on my machine). This stitch looks straight, but gives a bit of a stretch and is the best stitch to use when working with knits. Then I added a second stitch to mimic the look of a professionally finished garment. It’s
nearly impossible to get the two lines to match up, but I did my best.
As you can see, this finish isn’t perfect. I think I might go back and use the tissue paper method (see below) while using a single needle. But, I wanted to show those of you without a double needle how you can finish the hem of your bodysuit.
Next up: the double needle.
This one turned out fine, but I definitely had to iron the hem to make it a bit straighter.
Finally, I decided to try the tissue paper method I recently read about. I was a bit skeptical at first. I mean, I like to get things done quickly and really didn’t want to add time to hemming. BUT, for the sake of showing different methods, I tried it. And can I tell you, I am a TOTAL convert! I will never sew a knit hem again without tissue paper. Once you finish sewing the hem, simply rip apart the attached tissue paper like so:
And be amazed at your incredibly professionally looking hem:
There you have it. Four “new” bodysuits all ready for your lovely baby to enjoy this spring or summer!
Then let your baby enjoy his/her new clothes!
Here’s the breakdown:
So, what are you waiting for?! Go look through your kids’ baby clothes, bug your friends for some hand-me-downs or hit up the next garage sale and find some bodysuits for updating!
Your baby will thank you!