Hooded Vest Pattern and Tutorial

hooded vest
Hooded Vest Pattern and Tutorial

Its been a quiet week around the blog! We were celebrating Easter, and birthdays, and had toddlers recovering for some time away from home. To make up for our absence today we have a free pattern and tutorial for you! We’ve hit the 40-50s around these parts (finally) so it’s vest season.

You’ll need:

3 pattern pieces, for 2T-3T Download the pattern HERE

Size depending between 1/2 yd-1 yd of Exterior fabric

Size depending between 1/2 yd-1 yd of Lining fabric

Size depending between 1/2 yd-1 yd of Batting or Fleece

2 buttons

and the regular notions

Sew everything at 3/8″ unless noted


Getting Started

Free pattern hooded vest


1a. Cut the back. We are going to cut the back piece on the fold.

Cut 1 of each of your fabrics exterior, interior, and batting/fleece

1b. Cut the left side of your vest. The left will have your buttonholes on it. So cut your full pattern piece. Remember your interior and exterior fabric pieces need to mirror each other. To save time I cut my pieces out with my two fabrics sandwiched wrong sides together, like this:

Free pattern hooded vest

1c. Cut your right front. This is where you will sew your buttons. Mirror your pattern piece (so now you have a right front) and fold over your one inch buttonhole tab. Your piece will look like this:

Free pattern hooded vestI didn’t have batting on hand, but I did have a lot of fleece, so I used that. I cut one of each piece above out of my fleece separately.

Your pieces look like this:

Free pattern hooded vest

2. Cut out the hood. I made my hood exterior and lining out of cord, and I didn’t add the fleece lining. If you need a full rundown on drafting your own hood go HERE. We are going to attach our lined hood slightly differently for this project. But draft the pieces the same and cut four.

3. Join your fleece/batting and exterior fabric. I serged all around the edges, you don’t need a serger of course. From now on these pieces will be considered one and referred to as the exterior fabric.

Free pattern hooded vest

4. Sew the shoulder and side seams.

Free pattern hooded vest

Do the same with your lining pieces.

5. Sew your hood pieces together to form two unlined hoods. Like this:

adding a hood

6. Attach them to your lining and exterior separately.

adding a hood

You’ll now have two pieces that look like this:

free hooded vest pattern

7. Join your pieces.

free hooded vest patternRight side together, pin your pieces together. Sew from the bottom of the button tab all the way up around the top of the hood and back down.

Flip it.

8. Tuck under the remaining open edges, the bottom and armholes, and topstitch.

free hooded vest patternI topstitched the seam we just closed also to keep the lining from rolling forward.

9. Add the buttonholes to the left hand side. Need a good buttonhole tutorial? I like THIS one.

10. Using your buttonholes as a guide sew on your buttons.

Put on your child! Smaller than you anticipated? Grumble, deep sigh. Put on your smaller child! Adjust blog post to read 2T-3T size…..That might just be me.

Download your 2T-3T pattern for the vest HERE


Hooded Vest Pattern and Tutorial


If your looking for more vest inspiration we collected some more great tutorials on our boy Pinterest board HERE. Zippers, buttons, collars, and hoods lots of choices out there!

Happy Sewing,




{ 32 comments… add one }
  • Amy Mayen April 5, 2013, 8:40 pm

    That’s an awesome vest! Perfect for our weather- we have been layering. Very cold mornings, hot afternoons, throw in unpredictable rain. I love it! Thanks for the link to the pattern!

  • Amy Mayen April 5, 2013, 8:41 pm

    Just looked at your pattern- great job!!!

  • Tara April 5, 2013, 11:59 pm

    SO cute! Thanks for the pattern!

  • Pam April 6, 2013, 6:07 am

    I like the idea of corduroy teamed with a fun print. Thanks for sharing the pattern to make this great hooded vest.

  • T'onna April 6, 2013, 11:45 pm

    So cute! Thanks for sharing this pattern/tutorial!

    Navy Wifey Peters @ Submarine Sunday Link Party

  • Karen Schulz April 7, 2013, 5:24 pm

    visiting from sewing barefoot. This looks great. When my boys were little they would have loved it.

  • lisa April 8, 2013, 7:30 am

    An adorable piece! I love have the two different fabrics on there! I’ll save this for next year when he’ll fit into it 🙂

  • Jill April 9, 2013, 12:16 pm

    What a great piece, love it! I’ve only just started making clothes so it may be a little beyond me at the moment but as soon as my skills improve I would love to make this for my son, love the superhero fabric!

  • Diana Rambles April 11, 2013, 2:04 pm

    Very cute! Great tutorial. Thanks for linking up!

  • Shannon April 13, 2013, 8:39 am

    This is too cute for words… Thanks for sharing at The Weekly Creative.

    Shannon @ Sewing Barefoot

  • Amanda July 27, 2013, 5:47 pm

    Thanks so much for this pattern and tutorial. I’m making a ‘Dalmatian’ vest as a birthday present for a little 3 yo and this pattern is perfect. Thank you!!!

  • Teresa August 20, 2013, 7:26 pm

    How would you adjust this for a smaller (18-24 month) and larger (5T) size?

  • Giuditta December 15, 2014, 5:44 am

    How generous and lovely of you to offer this free pattern — thank you! I think it’s a good choice for boys, since we seem to be so limited in fun patterns to make for them. I’m visualizing using this with a favorite character or team print for the lining.

  • Melissa June 22, 2015, 7:22 pm

    I think this vest is so adorable! Can’t wait to make it for my niece this coming fall when she starts preschool! Going to try the cut & spread method you linked above; wish me luck!!!
    Any fabric suggestions for the exterior and interior fabrics? I’m still an amateur when it comes to selecting the proper fabrics for a project. Thanks!

  • Angelina November 29, 2015, 3:17 pm

    My right and left pieces printed out uneven, is this normal? Tried checking and reprinting and it is the same.

    • onceuponasewingmachine December 1, 2015, 8:11 am

      Yes one side will be wider than the other.

  • Joyce January 15, 2016, 9:52 am

    I have been trying to down load the pattern for the hooded vest. I can not get it downloaded. Is there any other way you can get it to me ( like email)? I have purchased the material and really want to make the vest.

  • Danica Pantelic February 27, 2016, 7:37 pm

    I am new to sewing. I am not sure what you mean by tuck under the remaining seams and topstitch. Do I fold them over maybe a centimetre on each piece then pin the two together and topstitch close to the edge. Can you please explain it to me. Thank you.

    • onceuponasewingmachine February 28, 2016, 9:45 pm

      Yes, that is what you do. You need to close the opening that was used to turn the vest. You can topstitch all around to give a more finished look. Good luck

  • Sheila Robson October 8, 2016, 11:40 am

    Thank you for your generosity in sharing your patterns, I’ve saved a number of them to make when I get time, for my grand-daughters (3, 2 and a half, and 2). However with this one I’d like to know how big the actual pdf pattern is supposed to be. I’ve printed it as A4 but the hood goes off the page, so I can’t tell if it’s printing the right size. I couldn’t see a one inch square or anything. Can you tell me how long the straight lines are supposed to be on the hood? I’m sure the rest will have printed to the same scale. Thanks so much.

  • kristie November 16, 2016, 10:53 am

    Hi there. I can not get the pattern to download! Is there any way you could email it to me?? Really want to make for my nephew for christmas. Really wanto make this hooded vest!

  • Cassie December 11, 2016, 8:55 pm

    Downloaded and cut out the pattern… no clue how in the world its supposed to be put together… frustrating.

    • onceuponasewingmachine December 12, 2016, 6:52 am

      Hi Cassie, Are you having trouble piecing the pattern or sewing the vest? Where can we help?

      • Kecia June 27, 2017, 9:25 pm

        I’m having the same issue. I can’t see how the pattern goes together at all.

        • onceuponasewingmachine June 27, 2017, 9:48 pm

          Hi Kecia, The pages will each have a large number in the center. They will piece in numerical order creating a grid. The triangles on the side and bottom of your pieces will for a diamond with the piece next to and under it.

  • Penny June 17, 2019, 12:09 pm

    I cannot piece this together.
    The numbers don’t piece together sequentially.
    What happened to pages 10, 11, 12? Goes from 9 to 13.
    Very frustrating!

  • doreen March 15, 2021, 5:32 am

    I cannot for the life of me work out the pattern pieces for the hood!!!
    It is not at all clear. the pieces for hood are not labelled and don’t fit with what you show in your instructions

  • Nicole April 13, 2021, 1:59 am

    Hi! Just discovered this lovely pattern and tutorial – thanks for the share
    I’m up to attaching the hood – will it be off-centre due to one of the front sections being wider? I’m assuming the crucial part is for the hood ends to line up with the vest front (rather than it being centred?) Any help appreciated! Thank you

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