diy {ruffled jacket}

When I was pregnant with our oldest I remember walking through Baby Gap. At the time our income was nearly non-existent so the fact that I was even in BabyGap is odd. In the sale racks I saw a little red jacket. It was simple, light weight and seemed perfect for the baby boy I had yet to meet. The only size they had was 12months, but his birthday would be in the spring so I thought it would work just right. One of my favorite pictures of Biggest Brother is of him learning to walk in a park, holding his daddy’s hands and wearing this jacket.

The jacket got passed down to the other two boys. The bright red color has faded quite a bit. It has held up for 6 years. I put it on FireCracker, but it just needed something to make it more her and less her brothers. So a little diy project was born.

Warning: I know basically nothing about sewing. I know only a few correct terms, which I am sure to use incorrectly. If you are a seamstress I apologize now. If you are not, well my tutorial might make sense to you!

Supplies: Well worn jacket & and well faded pjs that are too small. If you use t-shirt fabric you don’t have to worry about edges fraying…

Step 1: Cut the pjs into 1 inch strips. It is fine if they aren’t perfect. Just cut as many as you can.

Step 2: You are going to create ruffles by sewing a gathering stitch. To do a gather stitch put your machine on the dotted line stitch (#5 top of machine) and set the stitch length as long as possible. Stitch down the middle of all the strips. On the end you will have 2 threads, pull on them…one will let you keep pulling. At this point slowly pull the thread as the fabric gathers (or ruffles). Repeat this with all your fabric strips.

Step 3: Once you have made all the ruffles pin them down on the jacket. Since I re-purposed pjs I had several short strips. If you use longer fabric you could do just one long ruffle. I overlapped mine to go all around the jacket. Make sure to move the stitch length back to the shorter end.

Step 4: Stitch the ruffles down the center.

Step 5: Once the ruffles are sewn onto the jacket you can go back and remove all the gathering stitches. This is pretty easy, just snip it in a few places and pull.

And an old jacket and passed down pjs get new life….

Crazy to think I bought the jacket when he was just a dream in my head and a flutter in my stomach.

For the life of me I can’t remember who passed down the pjs to FireCracker,

so if you are reading this and can’t believe I cut them…just know she REALLY wore them

and they were getting holes in the feet! Now they are beautiful on a jacket.

Oh the things to think about when you write a blog!

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  • Emily - what a wonderful idea… you’ve got my wheels turning! I can’t wait to do this, but I better get a halloween costume done first! Your family is about the cutest ever, and what a heritage you are leaving them by documenting all the wonders of their growing up! Really beautiful.

  • Reidunn - Great post Ashley.
    The last piture to the right is adorable!

  • Alice H - Firecracker is GORGEOUS!! I love her little smile, those cute little teeth. My son only has his bottom two and they are barely there. He is 8 1/2 months old. What a neat project!

  • shelley venema - love it, great idea. I think I will try it for my granddaughter!

  • Leanne - I LOVE this!! thank you! finally a ruffle diy I can handle.

  • Taryn Smith - So so cute! And so is Firecracker!

  • Desiree - Great idea! She looks so stylish. This makes me want a sewing machine even more!

  • Ruth - What a great idea. And I’m totally digging the skinny jeans. Such a fashion plate!

  • Jane - just gorgeous!

    do you still have the heart that was on the pjs? I was thinking you should sew that onto the back of the hoodie, on the right near the waistband. (hoodie is what we call them in australia – just realised that might be a strange term!)

    I think you should continue refashioning clothing, if this is what you produce as a ‘non-sewer’ imagine your creations with some more practice!!

  • jacqueline - in her more serious faces, i totally see her brothers! great project. i had three boys then a girl, then another (surprise!) girl…

  • jessica h - GREAT tutorial! What girl can have too many ruffles!? :) Maybe I will make one for myself….

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang - LOVE it! So precious!

  • april's craft nest - what a wonderful idea. i don’t think i have seen ruffles used this way-over the hood! adorable! do you think a 2 year old boy could pass it off??? hehe!

  • Jaime - Seriously?! Can you do ANYTHING wrong? Love the jacket… it’s too cute and too perfect!



  • meg duerksen - love it.

  • Candice @ ChiaSeedMe - Oh my gosh – I am dying over here! That jacket is so cute, but that first picture of Firecracker…oh my word. She is a little doll. I love her whole outfit, right down to the little brown shoes:)

    Thanks so much for sharing this idea – adorable!

  • kate - i love this! i’m excited to know another way to make ruffles/gathers because i was going to buy a special foot for my sewing machine… and this saves me that cost! :-)

  • Amy’s Notebook 11.03.10 | The Motherload - [...] love this sweet little DIY ruffled jacket (@ Under the [...]

  • Colleen P. - The jacket is adorable and looks so soft and snuggly! I think for little kids especially “well aged” clothes work better, all the rough edges are worn off.

    I do think you got your moneys worth out of that Baby Gap jacket!

  • Diane @ InMyOwnStyle - So sweet the ruffled jacket and the wearer.

  • Henry & a diy *b* list. {beckynovacekphotography} Omaha Nebraska Baby Photographer » Becky Novacek Photography - [...] Ruffled Jacket. Ashley Ann-oh how you inspire me. So simple, yet seriously freaking cute. [...]

  • Kelly - I LOVE THIS! I am so going to make this and share the tutorial on my blog!

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