I sew quite frequently for preemie babies and because of that, I’ve created a number of preemie patterns which I sell in my Etsy shop (Kathysheirloomshop). You can click on the shop name and it will take you to my shop.
Recently I was contacted and asked about even smaller size preemie daygowns. I currently have my Prince/Princess Preemie Pattern available for a 4 – 5 lb. preemie.
By adding length to this top (I believe I added 8″ to the bottom of the 4 – 5 lb. size), it becomes a daygown rather than a diaper shirt.
The little bit of hand embroidery adds such a sweet touch to the gown and bonnet!
The person that had contacted me felt that a gown smaller than the 4 – 5 lb. size might be needed. Challenge accepted! LOL! I worked at making a smaller size pattern. I ended up with a 3 – 4 lb. size pattern. I did a test sew of the pattern and it worked out just as I expected. However, because the diaper shirt/gown is completely lined, the sleeves are sewn in last, meaning “in the round”. Sewing the sleeves into this tiny armhole opening was quite the challenge!!! I could only stitch about 5 – 6 stitches, then would have to reposition and repeat. 😱 I also ended up hand basting the sleeve into the armhole opening. It was just to fiddly to have to deal with pins while trying to stitch the sleeve in. 😳
I tried it on a 15″ baby doll “model”. This does make a sweet doll pattern as well!
Because of the difficulty/challenge to sew in the sleeves into the tiny armholes, I have decided to offer this as a free download. I was not prepared for the multitude of questions from buyers regarding the sleeve stitching! You cannot imagine how many messages I get as a seller!!! LOL! So, be aware, the tiny sleeves ARE a challenge, but they can be sewn with a LOT of patience!!!
The download is ONLY the pattern pieces, NO INSTRUCTIONS for sewing are included. If you have purchased the preemie pattern or the pattern for sizes NB – 12 mo., you can follow those instructions. If you want/need sewing instructions and have not purchased one of the patterns, you will need to purchase one of them in order to have sewing instructions.
Today as I worked on a Wee Care gown, I realized that the micro-preemie bunting pattern and instructions that I’d previously shared was one that was lost. Therefore, I’m sharing it again so that anyone wanting to make these and donate to their local hospitals has access to the pattern.
This sweet little bunting has been designed as a burial bunting for micro preemie babies. It stitches up quickly and uses minimal amounts of fabric. Quilting the fabric gives it the necessary body. Small bits of lace or trim can be used for embellishment if desired. A little hand or machine embroidery can be done very quickly.
In the past, I used one of the bunting patterns that was shared online. While I was happy with the finished bunting, it was far too complicated (my opinion).
This bunting is designed to ensure that the baby is securely wrapped. It can be completed in a very short time and it is done completely by machine.
Fabric for the inside of the bunting should be flannel. A variety of fabrics can be used for the outside fabric. If pre-quilted fabric is used it eliminates the need to quilt the fabric. Quilting cottons, broadcloth, satin, lightweight fleece, etc. all work well for the outside fabric of the bunting.
Small scraps of trims or lace can be used to decorate the front flaps of the bunting. These would include ribbons, soutache braid, Swiss eyelet lace, Val lace, rickrack, etc.
12″ x 15″ piece of fashion fabric
12″ x 15″ piece of thin cotton batting *
12″ x 15″ piece of batiste
12″ x 15″ piece of flannel (lining)
24″ of 1/4″ or 1/8″ ribbon
12″ of lace or trim (optional)
blue wash-out marker
ruler with 1″ grid marks
*alternately, 3 – 4 layers of flannel can be used instead of batting
Open the PDF pattern file in Adobe reader on a laptop or desktop computer. Print the pattern. Ensure that the pattern has been printed to the correct size by checking the 1” box. Printing should be done from a computer, not a phone or tablet. Cut out the 2 pattern pieces and tape together, matching the notch. Printing 2 copies of the pattern and taping both together down the center will give the full pattern piece, which is helpful for aligning patterns with designs that need to be centered.
To mark the fashion fabric for quilting, fold the fabric in half lengthwise and finger crease. Open the fabric up. With a blue wash out marker, draw a line along the crease. Fold the fashion fabric in half across the width and crease. Open the fabric up and using a blue wash out marker, draw a line along the crease. Using a ruler with a grid, mark additional lines at 1” intervals along both the length and the width of the fabric.
Place batiste with wrong side facing up. Place the batting on top of the batiste, matching all cut edges and then place the fashion fabric, right side up, on top of the batting, aligning all cut edges. Pin to secure. Starting at the center line of the 15” L, stitch along the line from top to bottom. Moving out from the center line, stitch remaining lines until all the lines have been stitched along the 15” length. Repeat for the process for the 12” width to complete the quilting of the fashion fabric. (For interest, the grid can also be stitched at 45º angles.)
Cut out the bunting pattern from the quilted fabric and another bunting from the flannel. It works very well to print 2 copies of the pattern and tape them together in order to work with the full size pattern.
Tip – the pattern can be traced onto the quilted fabric and then straight stitch along the drawn line. This secures the 3 layers together and is easier to work with. Cut out the shape just outside the stitched lines.
Cut straight across the top of the bunting, leaving the “dip” section in the front uncut.
With a blue wash-out marker, mark the front “dip” section. This will be the dart that makes up the shape for the bunting hood. It is easier to sew the dart in first and then trim away the excess fabric. Mark the dot below the dip as well as the placement lines for the ribbons with a blue wash-out marker.
With right sides together, stitch the dart/seam for the hood of the bunting, stopping at the circle. Repeat for flannel. Trim away the excess fabric inside the dart. Do any embellishments desired at this point.
Cut the ribbons into 6” lengths and pin the ribbons to the quilted fabric at the placement lines.
With right sides together, pin the flannel to the quilted fabric all around the outside edges. Stitch around the entire bunting, leaving a 2” opening between one set of ribbons.
Trim seam allowance a little, clip curves and clip the corners at an angle, stopping before reaching the stitching line.
Pull bunting through the opening to get it right side out. Press. Edge-stitch around the entire bunting, closing up the 2” opening.
Remove blue wash out marker by spritzing or soaking in cold water for 5 minutes.
Fold up lower section, bring outside sections together and tie the ribbons into a bow.
These are so quick to make, it’s easy to finish several of them in a very short time. Be creative with little bits of trim.
I hope that this will inspire you to use up some of your smaller pieces of pretty fabric and create a sweet bunting! I am including the PDF file for the pattern for your use. Click on the link below to download.