Sunday, November 13, 2011

How to Keep the Kids Warm & Toasty

November goat shenanigans lead to April babies....and April can still be pretty durned cold and windy here in New England.  Here is a quick tutorial on how to make some warm baby goat coats with minimal sewing skills.

All you need is some of that fleece know the stuff.....made from recycled plastic bottles, supposedly.  It is rather warm and somewhat wind-proof and best of all it needs no hemming.  It won't unravel and looks great after many washings.  It comes in many colors and designs and if you get it on clearance you can make a bunch of coats for a mere pittance.  Be sure to pick up some coordinating velcro from the bargain bin at the fabric store, too.  Not the sticky kind, the sew on kind.  You don't want it to blend in, just coordinate.  If it matches your material too closely, you will hear me saying, "I told you so!" when you are trying to close those coats on wiggly kids in a poorly lit stall.  I'm telling you.  Listen to the voice of experience.

These coats are great for jumping into piles of hay:

Or falling into piles of hay:

Or when helping with spring yard clean-up.....with proper supervision, of course:

First use newspaper or a rag to make a rough pattern and try it on your kids to get the fit correct.  You will be making this to fit a variety of sizes of kids and you will want it to fit them as they grow, so don't obsess too much.  It really just needs to keep the chest warm.  Keep some extra fabric and velcro on hand so you will be prepared to whip one out if you get any unusually large or small kids.  Over time, you will have a vast collection of these cute little coats.  It is very handy to have two per kid so you can dress them all warmly while they are drying from being born, then change them all into fresh dry coats when they are all fluffy.  The fleece material does a great job of wicking moisture away from damp babies.

Inside of the coat....notice the long, long pieces of velcro to allow for multiple sizes and growing kids:

Outside of coat:

Coat as it will fit on the baby....note the forward placement of the belly band to accommodate the buckling'  And the healing umbilicus.  The width of the band makes it more comfortable and adds some warmth:

Best of all, a nice warm goat coat makes it possible for baby go out with the big girls!


  1. Thank you so much for this goat coat pattern. This will be my first year with little ones of my own on the farm...I am going to make a few..just in case.

  2. Yup, you never know when the temps are going to plummet or there will be a chilling wind....They are very handy to have and make the kids look even cuter, if that is possible!

  3. Can you give some rough measurements for baby size? I have Alpines & would like to make some.

  4. I'm so sorry I missed this comment! Must've come in when my computer crashed....

    The black one you see on the picture with the dog is about 18" as it lies flat, from the front edge with the Velcro to the back. It will be a little big for a newborn Alpine but will quickly be too small. It measures about 12" across the back, and the belly band is about 12" including the part that is stitched onto the coat.

    The red plaid ones are slightly bigger. I have a few that are smaller and very thick, for small newborns. They outgrow them VERY fast!