My husband and I stink at swaddling.
Our first baby was 9.5 lb and slept pretty well from the beginning.
Then baby #2 came along.
She would get an arm out and start crying, and we tried dozens of different blankets and ways to wrap or swaddle,
but she still woke up a lot with her little arms out.
So this time, I wanted some jammies to keep baby #3 warm in these winter nights
and help her stay asleep with her arms and legs in a sack or bag.
As I got sketching, I realized I might as well make the sack open on the top and bottom to make it easier to get on and off,
and make middle of the night diaper changes more accessible.
So I went with snaps on top to allow the big newborn noggin through.
Then I decided the best bottom would be a zipper, rather than snaps.
One quick zip in the dark to shut up the bottom so I can go back to sleep!
These were also great for up-cycling.
Being that Izzie was born in the depth of winter,
I used fleece from the long sleeves of a pullover for the white bag.
The other two were knit yardage.
The opening at the shoulder is off center so Izzie wouldn't have snaps right under her chin.
It makes it easy to get her in and out of the bag,
but I've found it's nice to take her arms completely out of the sack when I nurse during the night.
She gets to stretch her arms and it helps keep her awake to eat.
(We do have her wear a onesie so her arms aren't stuck on her bare skin all night)
My favorite aspect is probably the zipper on the bottom!
My sleep sacks I made for the last baby work well to change diapers,
but lots of times her little feet poked out and I needed to worry about socks.
With this bag the feet are stuck in the jammies,
but getting in there to change all the diapers in the night is so quick and easy!
Much better than trying to snap a row of snaps half awake!
I ended up using the first three so much I needed another batch.
I was using the fleece from another sweater's sleeves and didn't have enough fabric
for the separate shoulder piece and just did a regular placket with contrasting quilting cotton.
Having used both this past week I think I kind of prefer the contrasting placket over the knit seamed original version.
Getting the snaps through all the knit or fleece layers was a pain!
So far she does sleep better for me in these bedtime bags rather than regular jammies and that has made them awesome for me!