Toddler long sleeve t-shirt sewing tutorial

side snap toddler shirt

I love the cute neck detail, and the cute baby of course!

So, our second little miss is growing at a rate of knots. She is just 6 months old and has outgrown her 00 wardrobe entirely and my collection of gorgeous hand-me-downs is all but depleted, so it is time for some sewing.

Coming into winter I wanted to make a few long sleeve shirts that would work for inside during the day and found this fantastic free pattern online at the Small Dream Factory. The pattern is simple and the instructions are great, but when I made the pattern up it seemed to need a bit of a girly detail.

So I played around with the pattern a little bit and came up with this simple side neck snap detail that I really like, and it doesn’t make the pattern any harder to make than the original – fantastic.

As I said, the tutorial that comes with the pattern is great so I am not going to re-invent the wheel by going back through it, I will just give you a quick picture demo of the things I changed.

So, I cut the pattern pieces as per the instructions, but I omitted the extra length for folding at the left shoulder and cut both shoulders with the regular seam allowance:

Cut pattern pieces

Cut pattern pieces

Then I cut the main body pieces out of the fabric adding one additional cut in the right shoulder at the front as shown

Cut fabric pieces

Cut fabric pieces

Next I cut the rest of the fabric pieces as described in the instructions with two deviations;

1.I cut the arms out of 2 different colours, this was because I didn’t have enough of the green fabric, I just added seam allowance to each half so I could sew them together later.

2.I cut 2 additional pattern pieces, rectangles measuring 3cm x the length of the cut in the shoulder of the shirt.

cut fabric

cut fabric

Next, I folded each of the small extra pieces in half lengthwise and sewed them to each side of the extra cut I made at the shoulder. I then sewed both shoulder seams and finished the neck as prescribed in the pattern using the extra opening in place of the open shoulder seam.

Neck and shoulder seams

Neck and shoulder seams

NOTE: You will see in the above pic that my neckline is a bit dodgy, this is because my sewing machine was playing up and i did it with my overlocker/serger. If you follow the directions in the pattern you will not have this problem.

Next I sewed the shoulder seams then one continuous seam from the wrist to the bottom hemline – this is a little different to what the pattern says but I find it easier to do it this way than fitting the shoulder seam after the side seam is sewn.

Side Seams

Side Seams

And as I cut this pattern from existing shirts the hems and cuffs were already done and I just needed to attach the snaps. You could of course use metal snaps, buttons or any decorative closures you can think of.

This is how it turned out:

Finished toddler t-shirt

Finished toddler t-shirt

Finished Toddler t-shirt

Finished Toddler t-shirt

I am happy with it, and it fits bubs pretty well with a bit of growing room (she needs it).

If you have a go at this variation or have a go at a variation yourself please comment and let me know I would love to hear about your exploits!

2 thoughts on “Toddler long sleeve t-shirt sewing tutorial

  1. Hey, glad to have found your blog through pinterest! I use the same pattern, but with another variation. Instead of using ribbing for the neckline, I cut the front and back neckline with about a cm of seam allowance, fold it over to the wrong side and sew. Then I sew a second row so it looks nice and professional (I don’t have a serger). My jersey stretches enough to accomodate my son, who has a bit bigger brain than average. You could also put extra lenght at both shoulders front and back, and put snaps or pretty buttons on both shoulders! I started sewing in August for my 1,5 year old boy because the clothes are all so dark, and I wanted happy colors for my happy boy. I’ll be back to visit more often!

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