Turning T-shirts into Baby Pajama Pants

While we’ve been back we’ve rummaged through some old boxes and bags we left behind, including about 5 T-shirts of Scott’s he no longer fits or wants to keep.  Since we’ve been stuck inside the last few days due to the ice and snow here in Texas, I decided I’d whip out my sewing machine and get to work.  It was “sew” nice to sit down to the machine with the pedal under my foot after not using one in a full year—I love it.  I’m no expert seamstress, in fact I’m very much on the beginner side, but I have made quite a few things with my trusty $5 sewing machine.  And I sure do love it!

During the crazy rush of packing up and cleaning our apartment in Costa Rica, I had to throw away Carter’s pajamas because they were still wet from the wash I did that morning.  We were able to borrow a pair of pajamas from Carter’s cousin with the intent of buying him a couple pairs of his own, but I wasn’t in love with any that I had been seeing in the stores.  While traveling we’ve really loved the trend other cultures have of repurposing old things instead of throwing them away, so with Scott’s t-shirts I figured I’ll try my hand at making Carter some new pajama pants!


I came up with the pattern by using the pajama pants that Carter was borrowing and I love how they turned out!  I’ve made several pairs this last week (the snow and ice hasn’t been going away at all, so why not?).  Carter wears one pair all day—they’re pretty comfy and great for running, climbing, and snuggling—and wears another pair to bed.


Baby Belly | How To Make Baby Pajama Pants From Old T-Shirts
Carter wouldn’t let me take a photo and not have his belly button in it.

If you’re interested, I’ve put together a tutorial with pictures of how to make the pattern out of a pair of pajama pants, and then how to turn old t-shirts into baby pajama pants.

How to Make a Baby Pajama Pants Pattern

How to Turn Your Old T-shirts into Baby Pajama Pants

How to Make a Baby Pajama Pants Pattern

Need some baby pajamas? Got some old T-shirts? Look no further: these directions will help you make a pant pattern out of an old pair of pajama pants and make it “sew” easy to put together a few more pairs for your little ones.


  • Baby’s Pajama pants
  • Tissue Paper (or something to cut and overlay for making your pattern)
  • Marking pencil
  • Scissors



1.  Lay out your pajama pants on your pattern paper.  Trace around one pant leg, remembering to include a ½”-1” seam allowance.  You won’t be able to trace the crotch seam with the pants on the paper, so remove the pants and draw the seam line as best as you can.

2.  Cut out this leg piece and label it “1”.  Place it on the pattern paper, trace, cut, and label “2”.

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3.   Lay the pants on pattern piece “2”.  We’ll be cutting out the line for the gusset in the back of the pants.  Make a part on the pattern paper at the points of the gusset line.

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4.   After making your marks for the gusset line, connect the two marks as similar to the gusset line on the pants as you can.  This will be your sewing line.  Make another line ½”-1” out.  This will be your cutting line with your seam allowance.


5.   Take the pattern paper that you cut out from pattern piece “2” to allow for the gusset line and place it on your pattern paper.  Trace it out, then flip it over to mirror the original trace and trace it again.  Connect the lines on top, cut out, and label “3”.  This will be your gusset piece.


6.   You will end up with three different pattern pieces: front, back, gusset.  Label your pieces as much as you need.


Now make your T-shirt pajama pants with your new pattern pieces!

Next Up: How to Turn Your Old T-shirts into Baby Pajama Pants



How To Turn Your Old T-shirts into Baby Pajama Pants


These directions will help you to transform yours (or your husband’s) raggedy old T-shirts into baby pajama pants in less than an hour, which is perfect for a rainy-day activity or if you’re just trying to get rid of some clutter in your closet!


  • Baby’s Pajama pants
  • Large T-shirt
  • 1-1 ½” elastic measured to your child’s waist (18-24 mo was about 16”)
  • Tissue Paper (or something to use for making your pattern)
  • Marking pencil
  • Scissors
  • Thread that matches t-shirt
  • Pins
  • Sewing Machine

1. Prepare Pattern

    • Make your own pattern pieces by using a pair of pajama pants as a guide, or use my guide on How to Make a Baby Pajama Pants Pattern yourself.  Be sure to allow for a ½” seam allowance and add an extra 2” to the height of the pants for the waistband casing.

2. Prepare the T-shirt

    • Lay the t-shirt out on a flat surface, smoothing out any wrinkles or bulges.  Place pattern piece 1 on the fold of the shirt with the bottom flush with the bottom of the shirt.  The bottom seam of the t-shirt will be the bottom seam on the pant legs.


      • If your pattern piece 1 doesn’t fit below the sleeve, cut along that fold on the side of the shirt going around the sleeve and along the shoulder seam.


      • Fold shirt in half from the center of the neck on the front of the shirt, place the pattern piece 1 on the fold (with the bottom of the pattern flush with the bottom of the shirt), pin in place, and cut.

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      • Fold shirt in half from the center of the neck on the back of the shirt, place the pattern piece 1 on the fold (with the bottom of the pattern flush with the bottom of the shirt), pin in place, and cut.
    • Unfold shirt and place pattern piece 3 on a single layer of the shirt, pin in place, and cut.

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    • Unfold each leg piece and lay on each other, front sides facing.  Place pattern piece 2 on one side, pin in place, and cut. (This will be where you pin in pattern piece 3)

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3. Stretch Stitch

    • With front sides facing, pin one leg piece from the pattern piece 3 cut out to the pattern piece 3.  Using a stretch stitch, sew with a ½” seam allowance.


    • With front sides facing, pin the second leg piece from the pattern piece 3 cut out to the pattern piece 3.  Using a stretch stitch, sew with a ½” seam allowance.
    • With front sides facing, pin the front seam together connecting the two leg pieces and sew using a stretch stitch with a ½” seam allowance.
    • With front sides facing, pin the leg inseams together and sew using a stretch stitch with a ½” seam allowance.


    • Trim any undesired fabric leaving ¼”-½” of material from the seam line.

4. Elastic Waistband Casing

    • Turn pants right side out.
    • Fold the top of the fabric inside about 2-2 ½” and pin.


    • Sew a straight stitch 1-1 ½” in from the fold and leave a 2” opening to insert the elastic.
    • Cut elastic piece according to child’s waist size.
    • Put a safety pin in one end of the elastic and use that as something to grab in order to thread through the opening in the pants, making sure one end of the elastic stays out.
    • Once threaded through, sew the two ends of elastic overlapped together.  Make sure to go over it back and forth several times for durability.
    • Adjust elastic in the waistband and complete the seam to close the opening.
    • Trim any excess fabric on the waistband.

Now try them on your baby!!

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Machine Washable Travel Crib

We’ve been amazed time and time again about how incredible our Lotus Everywhere Travel Crib is, but the fact that you can put it in the washer just blows my mind.  There have been several instances when we planned on washing the crib, but for whatever the reason it never ended up happening.  For example, we’ve taken our travel crib to the beach on a few occasions and planned to wash it afterwards, but the sand just shakes right off so we figured there was no need to just yet.  Well the other morning around 2 a.m. we woke up to poor Carter throwing up.  With it being so early in the morning, we did the minimal amount of clean up necessary and just rinsed the sheet and cleaned off the sleeping pad then put Carter in bed with us for the rest of the night.

The next morning when I was making our bed, I realized that the travel crib smelled like throw up.  Carter had stood up and wiped his dirty hands and face all over the fabric around the frame of the crib so now I had to wash it.  Without even looking at any directions, almost as if it was second nature, I removed the sleeping pad and started unzipping the fabric from the crib—it’s that easy!

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After unzipping it, I unclipped the removable piece from each leg.


It was so crazy to see the fabric crib separated from the frame and even more crazy to me was how easy it was!


I then just threw it in the washing machine, hung it to air dry, and voila!  I had a new, fresh smelling travel crib!


I never thought I’d be able to say that I have a machine washable travel crib because I didn’t think they existed, but they do!  It makes so much sense to have a child’s bed, and a place where bodily fluid accidents of all sorts can happen, be machine washable to help return it to a clean place for baby.  This isn’t just a place for Carter though, I joined him in the crib for a few hours during airport layovers on this last trip from South Africa to Chile!

*Guava Family is a sponsor for Twelve Countries in Twelve Months, but all opinions are our own.  We take great consideration into who we partner with as sponsors because we want to feature products that match our values and we think you will love as well.  Our shared experiences with these products are real and unexaggerated to provide you with honest, reliable information.

Flying Business Class with an Infant


Our trip from Cape Town, South Africa to Valparaiso, Chile was a breeze!  Especially in comparison to our last trip from Morocco to South Africa.  Any trip would be a breeze compared to that one though…

So, I truly believe that the reason that our 44+ hours of traveling were made bearable, and even enjoyable at times, was because we flew business class on all four flights.  We played our airline mileage points “cards” right and were able to get a very reasonably priced business class flights for this leg of our journey.  We decided to splurge a little here because we knew it would be our longest few days of travel of the whole trip.  Moral of the story, upgrade to business class whenever you can!  Especially if you’re traveling with an infant.

Our trip was pretty uneventful considering it all went rather smoothly, so we’re just going to share our favorite things about flying business class.



The Seats

These seats were incredibly spacious.  Carter could comfortably sit next to me on my seat and when it was time to sleep I would turn on my side and pull Carter in next to me.  Oh and did I mention that the seats lay almost all the way back AND had a leg rest that come out!  This was the first time we would have rather been on a plane than in the airport, but unfortunately we still spent around 20 hours in airports.  Luckily we had our travel crib and that made everything a lot more comfortable.

The Separate Bathroom

In business class we shared a bathroom with up to 15 other people, rather than sharing 2 bathrooms with hundred or so people.  It was nice to never have to wait in line, and the bathrooms didn’t smell like urine!  The bathroom situation was a nice aspect of flying business class.


The Food

Airplane food has been nothing special for us in the past, but flying business class made all the difference! We had endless snacks available to us whenever we wanted and 4 course meals served twice to us on each flight (which we ordered based off of a menu).  It’s was obviously still airplane food and not the best, but it was substantially better than economy.  And, who can complain about the quantity?! The meals were plenty for the three of us to share.

The Space

So the seats were nice and comfy, providing enough room for Carter, but our legroom was a different story. Carter was able to stand and walk around in front of our seats as well as sit and color or play with toys.  Scott or I could even get down on the floor with him!  I think this was the biggest factor in having a successful flight.


Being First On and First Off

One perk that I didn’t realize we’d appreciate so much was that we were first on and first off with business class. First on was great because we could stow our luggage and sprawl out in our seats and on the floor, basking in the extra space we had.

Being the first off was fantastic because we were the first in lines for immigration and customs!  This made a huge difference too.  In the above picture, we were the only ones there so we let Carter go through the scanner thing by himself for the very first time!  I grabbed the camera and took a picture as 20+ employees starting yelling “No cameras!”  I apologized and put the camera away, but what they didn’t know is that I had already taken the picture 🙂


The Extra Carry-ons

Even though we had to spend a lot of time in airports instead of on the very comfortable business class seats, we were each able to bring 2 carry-on items instead of our usual 1 so we had all of our bags.  We usually only have to check 1 bag (since having our Lotus Everywhere Travel Crib), but now we had all of our bags which meant several changes of clothes for everyone, toiletries bag for freshening up, all of our electronics, and our travel crib.

Carter slept really well in the travel crib during our layovers and, to me, it was more comfy than the benches, so I crawled in with Carter for several hours at a time.


Don’t let traveling with an infant scare you into thinking that you’re not good enough to fly business class, or you’ll be a bother to all of the “privileged” people in business class.  Save yourself, your child, and in the end all of the other passengers a lot of grief and fly business class!  Everyone will have a much more relaxed, spacious, and enjoyable flight if you have room to stretch.