Any mom will tell you — swaddling is a miracle. The results are incredible and have helped many a new parent get some much-needed sleep, but the actual implementation can be difficult.

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Which way is best?

Everybody has a different method or a different product that they swear by. The storebought swaddles, with all of their straps and pockets and velcro, are often even more complicated than the methods of wrapping baby in a blanket yourself.

Then, after a few months, when you’ve finally got it all figured out, you have to transition them out of the swaddle! There are even more products for this, from one-armed swaddlers to “swaddle straps” to “magic sleepsuits” that are so thickly padded that even though baby’s arms aren’t tied down they are still mostly immobilized.

An even easier swaddle

But with my third baby, I finally found what truly is the BEST and EASIEST method! I was inspired by some of the swaddling products on the market and an amazing swaddle that I had gotten as a hand-me-down from a cousin. It was basically a pair of zippered jammies, but with no arms.

I loved it so much that I looked it up, wanting to buy more, but I found that they were over $30 each. No thank you! So instead I headed to my local thrift store, bought a few pairs of jammies, and sewed up the arms myself.

The next step

When it was time for Charlotte to transition out of the swaddle, I came up with this pattern, and I have to say, it is one of the most brilliant things that has ever come to me. And the best part is it is SO easy!

If you have a sewing machine, or even a needle and thread, you can make one for yourself in just a few minutes.

Making your own super simple transition swaddle

  1. Start with a pair of 3-6 or 6-9 month zippered pajamas. I like to get all of my baby clothes secondhand, but new ones will still be much more cost-effective than a specific swaddle outfit.
  1. Turn the pajamas inside-out.
  1. Sew the sleeves closed about 2 inches from the shoulder seam.
  • This may seem especially short and like not enough room, but baby’s arms will actually end up with their elbow at the “armpit” of the outfit and their hands at the “shoulder.” The purpose is to give them enough room to bring their arms up into the ideal position and to have enough room to lift their heads or roll back over if they roll onto their stomach, but still be restricted enough to keep from hitting themselves in the face with the startle reflex.
  1. Snip off the ends of the sleeves, turn it back right-side-out, and zip up baby for a safe and cozy night’s sleep!

This transition swaddle can be worn by itself just like jammies, over their outfit for naps, or layered with wearable blankets on top or warmer clothes underneath in colder weather.