Convertible Car Seat Poncho (Discussion and Tutorial)

Good morning!

I think today is the special day that I will finally write up the tutorial for the latest car seat poncho that I made.  Both kids are sleeping in, and I have a few quiet moments to construct a tutorial that makes sense!

I adore these ponchos.  First off, I love them because I get to make them.  A very close second is the fact that my kids just drool over them.  A.S. would have one for every day of the week if she could.  (And I might be crazy enough to sew that many if I didn’t anticipate my husband questioning all those extra fabric purchases!)  As for safety, they are just so much better for car seat use than a big, bulky winter coat.  Both A.S. and A.W. get in their seats, hold up their ponchos for me to buckle them in, and then drop the ponchos down to snuggle in.  The fact that they’re reversible and fairly water-resistant when you use fleece are just added perks to their cuteness!  I have seen many of these popping up from other crafty moms, so I think it’s a trend with some staying power.

Chances are, if you’re here, you are a personal friend who I’ve made one of these for or you’re a sewist who wants to see how I made it and maybe make one yourself.   Whoever is here reading this, I’m glad you’re here.  These take a lot of time and patience, but they are worth it.  Many car seat ponchos that you see are quick and easy to make.  The addition of tulle edging that I use in my ponchos for girls is tedious and very time-consuming.  But, seriously, I think it really shows in the end result that the crafter took the time and effort to make it over-the-top!  That’s what I’m going for.

One friend of mine in particular received a polka dot w/ pink tulle poncho (will show picture in this tutorial) for her daughter’s third birthday.  This was the first one I had ever made, and I spent hours on it trying to make it just right.  They still get compliments on it and tell me how much they like it.  That is the reason that I sew and give in a nutshell!  The only thing better than giving something that you have made from scratch is getting that great feedback from the receiver.  It makes me feel good and motivates me to keep creating!

So enough of me ranting about how sewing gets me all emotional. We need to dive into this before one of my kids wakes up and throws a wrench in my plans of completing this write-up today!

Here’s what we’re going to be making today:

Convertible Car Seat Poncho (with snap sleeves).
Convertible Car Seat Poncho (with snap sleeves).

This particular poncho is a different shape/design than the ones I have made in the past.  I was experimenting with making the arm area shorter and the overall body of the poncho longer.   This is for A.S., and she’s very tall and thin.  To get the overall length she wants (like a ballgown, of course!) and for a nice circular shape, her arms are basically buried under the fabric.  This was a good compromise for us as she refused to let me make any cut-outs for sleeves for her hands.  Having said all that, I think I prefer the look of this one anyway:

Basic circular car seat poncho with tulle.
Basic circular car seat poncho with tulle.
Back view.
Back view.

This is the one that was gifted to a friend, and it sits so nice with this shape.  It was created by eye and has two snaps (or three, I can’t remember) for the closure.

This tutorial will work for whatever shape you’re going for, so not to worry.  I will give rough ideas for how I made the convertible one, and you can choose what parts of that poncho you like and use them if you wish.

Let’s get started!

Of course, first we have to get the material together.

I used:

1.5 yards each of a solid and a polka dot patterned fleece fabric (I had extra, which I like for making matching hats, scarves, mittens, etc.)

1 yard teal tulle



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