Something that I have really struggled with, once my kids have grown out of their infant/bucket car seat, is the cold weather and the car seat recommendations to not put winter jackets under the straps (read more on that via a Globe and Mail article here). I know you can put their jackets on backwards… but let’s be honest here, what kid likes that!? I know mine sure don’t. Solution? Well how about a quick and easy at home sew!? And who doesn’t love a FREE Pattern, The Snuggle Bunny Poncho has been such a great solution for us already. My youngest is 2 and oh those terrible tantrums have begun, she has become independent and super picky. When I made this poncho during testing I used this amazingly soft, super stretchy, fabric I picked up at my local Fabricville a few years ago. It was the perfect choice! Super warm, but not too bulky. I made the most simple version with just a plain, single layer cape and a single layer hood. The result… she loves it! Every time I put it on she exclaims “Thank you so much Momma!”.
The pattern has a lot of options for being a freebie! “The poncho has unlined, lined, and reversible options for both knit and woven fabrics; as well as an optional elastic casing at the neck (for lined hoods only), and decorative bunny ears in multiple sizes. There is also a mini tutorial for adding armholes.” (taken from the pattern listing, because she says it best). What I really love is the band around the face, it works nicely for keeping out the wind and holding in that extra bit of warmth.
The pattern comes with a disclaimer for smaller children, since a baby may turn their face into the hood and have difficulty breathing. As such it is recommended for children 18 months and older. It goes up to 14, which I think is awesome, since it’s like having a cuddly hooded blanket in the car (I wish it came in my size!). This is also great for babywearing and we love using it for stroller walks too, especially those bone chillingly cold morning walks to the bus stop!
The hood is a nice size, and allows room for a hat if the extra warmth is needed. See the drape at the back in the photo below.
I will also be putting her fleece Campbell Jacket under it as it gets even colder. The Campbell Jacket is another Goober Pea Designs pattern and I made this one to be thin enough to be worn under her car seat straps. So with this jacket under, and the poncho over, we will be good to go for cold temps and trips in the car.
So what are you waiting for!? Click here to grab the pattern now, completely free, no code necessary! While your at it, why not grab the Campbell Jacket pattern as well for a perfect pairing. Just make sure you don’t oversize or bulk the jacket for under the car seat straps (read why in the Globe and Mail article linked at the beginning of this blog post).
Enjoy! And happy sewing.
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