Snuggle Sack (and Bonus Hat!)

The Snuggle Sack is designed for total toastiness. Made out of soft merino wool, it will stow your baby inside a warm hug!

This project celebrates Purl's new line of YKK Zippers, which come in a wide variety of sizes, styles and colors. Zippers are too wonderful a convenience to avoid, so if you have fears, conquer them with our new Zipper Tutorial. It walks you through the easy steps of sewing a zipper into a knit garment. I promise you will wonder what all the fuss was about!


The Materials

Knitting Materials

  • Alchemy Yarns' Temple, 100% superfine merino (superwash too!). 5 skeins of the Main Color and 1 skein of each of the five Contrast Colors. These colors are:

Sewing Notions


The Pattern


6 stitches = 1 inch in stockinette stitch 

Finished Size

To fit an infant, 0-6 months old

Circumference = 24 1/2 inches

Length from neck to feet = 20 inches

The Bottom

With the Main Color (MC), cast on 150 stitches.

Place a marker and join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit until the piece measures 1 inch from the cast edge.

Knit through the following chart, starting at the lower right corner. Read across the chart to the lower left corner. Repeat that row until the end of the round (5 times). Then move one line up the chart, starting again at the right side of the chart, reading left. (Please see the Materials list to clarify which colors represent which yarns.)

(If you would rather make up your own fair isle pattern, check out our Design Tutorial for tips. Make sure that whatever you design divides evenly into 150 stitches.)

(Or, if you would rather not do any fair isle, just knit until the piece measures 5 1/2 inches from the cast on edge and proceed to the Zipper Band Prep section.)

Once you've finished the chart, knit 3 rounds with the MC.

Zipper Band Prep

Round 1: K70, place a marker, [k1, p1] 5 times, k to end of round.

Round 2: K to marker, [p1, k1] 5 times, p1, k to end of round.

Round 3: K to marker, [k1, p1] 5 times, k to end of round.

Repeat Rounds 2 and 3.

Next Round: K to marker, [p1, k1] 2 times, p1, bind off 1 stitch, [k1, p1] 2 times, k to end. (149 stitches)

The Main Body

To begin:  Remove the end of round marker, k to the next marker, [k1, p1] 2 times, k1. (You're only half way around the work at this point.)

Turn the work so the purl side is facing you.

From now on, you will be working back and forth in rows, knitting 1 row, purling the next.

Row 1 (wrong side): [k1, p1] 2 times, k1, slip marker,  p139, place a marker, [p1, k1] 2 times, p1.

Turn the work so the knit side is facing you.

Row 2 (right side): [P1, k1] 2 times, p1, slip the marker, knit to next marker, [k1, p1] 2 times, k 1.

Turn the work.

Row 3: [K1, p1] 2 times, k1, slip the marker, purl to next marker, [p1, k1] 2 times, p1.

Repeat the last 2 rows until the piece measures 9 inches from the button band opening. End with a purl side row.

(If you find the markers more annoying than helpful, just remove them and remember to do 5 seed stitches at each end of every row.)

The Shoulders

Row 1 (right side): [P1, k1] 2 times, p1, k28, k2tog, place a marker, k4, ssk, k67, k2tog, place a marker, k4, ssk, k28, [k1,p1] 2 times, k1. (4 stitches decreased, 145 stitches)

Row 2 (wrong side): [K1, p1] 2 times, k1, purl to the last 5 stitches, [p1, k1] 2 times, p1.

Row 3: [P1, k1] 2 times, p1, knit to 2 stitches before first marker, k2tog, slip the marker, k4, ssk, knit to 2 stitches before the next marker, k2tog, slip the marker, k4, ssk, knit to the last 5 stitches, [k1,p1] 2 times, k1. (4 stitches decreased)

Repeat Rows 2 and 3 sixteen more times. (77 stitches remain)

The Neckband

Row 1 (wrong side): *K1, p1, repeat from * for 38 stitches, p2tog, **k1, p1, repeat from ** to last stitch, k1. (76 stitches)

Row 2 (right side): *P1, k1, repeat from * to end.

Row 3: *K1, p1, repeat from * to end.

Repeat Rows 2 and 3 one more time.

Repeat Row 2.

The Hood

Row 1 (wrong side): [K1, p1] 2 times, k1, *p11, make 1, repeat from * 4 more times, p12, [k1, p1] 2 times. (81 stitches)

Row 2 (right side): [P1, k1]  2 times, p1, knit to last 5 stitches, [k1, p1] 2 times, k1.

Row 3: [K1, p1] 2 times, k1, purl to last 5 stitches, [p1, k1] 2 times, p1.

Repeat Rows 2 and 3 until hood measures 8 inches from the top of the neckband.

Cut the tail about 20 inches long.

With the wrong sides facing each, use the Kitchener Stitch to graft the hood together. At the end of grafting, when there is one stitch left on one needle and two stitches left on the other needle, work the 2 stitches together.

(You'll probably notice that the seed stitch border gets interrupted by the Kitchener Stitch. Even if you adapted the Kitchener Stitch for seed stitch, there would be a break in the pattern because the two sides aren't the same, so I just accept this as one of those inevitable knitting flaws that make something handmade! Hopefully, you'll see the problem in the same light!)

Sew the tail  through to the inside of the hood.

Sew the Bottom Together

Now is probably a good time to sew in all your ends, if you haven't already. It will be easier to do this next step without a lot of ends getting in your way.

Using a new piece of yarn about a yard long, sew the center front to the center back. (Use the fair isle pattern to locate the center stitches.) Pull the yarn only half way through, so you can sew to the left with one half and to the right with the other half.

Keeping the wrong sides facing each other, sew under a knit stitch on one side (right under the cast on edge).

Then sew under the knit stitch directly across from that one.

Continue in this manner, back and forth, all the way to the corner. Pull the yarn to the inside.

Sew the other half of the seam in the same way.

The Zipper

Gently block the Snuggle Sack, being careful that it doesn't stretch out too much.

Then sew in the zipper. Please visit our Zipper Tutorial if you need some help with this step.

The Button Tab

With the MC, cast 20 stitches onto the same US #5 needle you have been using.

Row 1: Knit into the front and back (kfb), *k1, p1, repeat from * to the last stitch, kfb. (22 stitches)

Repeat Row 1 four more times, increasing 2 stitches each row. (ending with 30 stitches)

Buttonhole Row: [p1, k1] 3 times, yo, k2tog, [p1, k1] 7 times, p1, yo, p2tog, [k1, p1] 2 times, k1.

Next Row: K2tog, *k1, p1, repeat from * to last 2 stitches, ssk. (28 stitches)

Repeat the last row 4 more times, decreasing 2 stitches each row. (ending with 20 stitches)

Bind off in the seed stitch pattern. Do not cut the yarn.

With the same yarn and a crochet hook, slip stitch around the entire edge of the button tab. Cut the yarn fairly long, and pull the tail through the last stitch.

Fold the button tab in half (point to point) and mark the middle with a removable stitch marker or a scrap of yarn. Lining the middle of the button tab up with the center of the zipper, situate the tab over the zipper pull.

 Place a button directly on top of either buttonhole.

Sew that button onto the Snuggle Sack, right through the buttonhole. Remove the button tab, and sew the second button to the other side of the zipper, perfectly symmetrical to the first button.

Replace the button tab by buttoning the buttons. Use the tail to sew one half of the button tab to the Sack (whichever side you prefer - I sewed the right side.). Now the tab opens on one side and stays put on the other, so you'll never lose it!

You're done! Ready to snuggle!

Bonus Baby Hat!

One thing about fair isle is, it can leave you with a big pile of unused yarn. So, quick! Knit up a few of these coordinating hats  to keep baby extra snugly.


The Pattern

Using the US#4 circular needle, cast on 90 stitches. Place a marker and join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Round 1: *K1, p1, repeat from * to end of round.

Repeat Round 1 until piece measures 1 inch from cast on edge.

Change colors and also change to the US# 5 circular needle.

Knit every round until piece measures 3 1/2 inches from the cast on edge.

Next Round: *K8, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (81 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K7, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (72 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K6, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (63 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K5, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (54 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K4, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (45 stitches)

Knit 1 round.

(You may want you to switch to the double pointed needles around now or whenever the stitches no longer comfortably reach around the circular needle.)

Next Round: *K3, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (36 stitches)

Next Round: *K2, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (27 stitches)

Next Round: *K1, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (18 stitches)

Next Round: *K2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (9 stitches)

Cut the tail and sew it through the remaining stitches.

Using a third color and the second smallest pom pom form, make a nice dense pom pom. (For tips on using your Pom Pom Maker, visit our Pom Pom Tutorial.)

Bring the tails of the pom pom through the top center opening to the inside of the hat. Sew one tail under a stitch, then tie the tails in a knot . Weave in all the ends.

Here's a bonus Bonus Hat!:

24 Responses to Snuggle Sack (and Bonus Hat!)

Click here to add a comment
  1. Carrie says:

    If I wanted to skip the fair isle section, how many skeins of yarn would you recommend?

  2. Catherine says:

    Super cute! One easy add-on would be to include two little horizontal slits on the front and back just below the zipper. This would allow the car seat/stroller buckle to clip right through the snuggle sack without having to unzip/wiggle legs out/wake up Baby. And it would be safe (and perfect!) for sleeping if the hood was left off and arm holes were introduced. I would love to say that I plan to make one of these for my baby girl (3 months), but the new combination of two kids running around (2 1/2 yo brother) has greatly reduced my knitting time!

    Do share a photo of your little bundle in this adorable heirloom-quality snuggle sack, Whitney! My first was a January babe in Minnesota, so I, too, know the perils of having a little one in the chill. This will be perfect!!

  3. Meg McG says:

    This is great! I was thinking of making the same thing for my little guy but hadn’t thought it through yet, so this is great! I may adapt ming to accommodate a car seat buckle. Basically I would need to do a large short row buttonhole on both sides.

    Congrats on the upcoming arrival, and thanks for all the great tutorials, I check this site RELIGIOUSLY.

  4. Catherine says:

    Hello! Omg it looks so cute :D I’m thinking in making it for a christmas’s gift so I was wondering: how can I adapt it to make it fit 6/8 months baby? I don’t want to make it too small xD I’m such a fan of you, amazing stuff you do!

  5. purlbee says:

    Hi Carrie,

    I have a feeling 5 would be enough, but you might want to get an extra so you don’t have to worry about it. Don’t wind the sixth skein in case you don’t end up using it – you can return it for store credit within 6 months!

    Thanks for asking!

  6. yvette says:

    thank you for this pattern, i absolutely love it. so cute, and perfect for all of the upcoming babies.

  7. Momma Bean says:

    Now if only your were crocheting ;)

  8. Mary says:

    This is adorable! Thanks for sharing. And now to convince a friend to make a baby sooner….:)

  9. Bonnie says:

    I’m so excited for you expecting a baby! Your knitting is incredible and inspiring. Hope you’ll be coming back ! Blessings.

  10. Joanna says:

    I just had to announce to someone that I saw this back in October and I FINALLY finished mine today! baby comes in about 2 weeks and my snuggle sack is ready to snuggle the little bundle. thanks for the great pattern and tutorial. It was my first time working with color pattern and zippers and it turned out great! thanks again!

  11. Alpaca Farmgirl says:

    This was so cute. Had to share a link to it on my blog for Fiber Arts Fridays.
    Each week we have a Fiber Arts Fridays Blog Carnival. Would luv for you to participate by linking your fiber related blog post next Friday.

    Thanks for this great project!

  12. Chana says:

    I love this and am working on it for my new baby nephew, born just 2 days ago. I’ve gotten to the neck portion and I’m confused. Since it starts on the wrong side shouldn’t it start with k1 p1 seed stitch or does the seed stitch get interrupted here?

  13. purl bee says:

    Hi Chana,

    Eek! You’re totally right! I corrected the error in the pattern for future Snuggle Sack knitters…

    Thank you so much for your help!

  14. leslie says:

    this is really adorable and i’m planning on making one for my little bundle of joy, due oct. 29th, but with all of your super fun projects, i do wish that kits were available. it’s really stinks when i’m able to find everything on your site except for one or two things and them i’m left scrambling!

    keep posting beautiful projects!

  15. Liz says:

    I’ve just finished the major knitting work of this project and absolutely loved the whole process! It’s been a more challenging project that I’ve ever taken on before, and it’s been incredibly rewarding. I did have a couple of questions about it, though I’ve already moved past them. The first one is that when you do the neckband, you end on a wrong side row, and then the hood pattern starts again with a wrong side. I just added an extra neckband row, so it wasn’t a very big deal. Also, when I got to grafting the hood together I was a bit confused. I’ve only done kitchener stitch once before, so I’m no expert, but I thought that you had to have an even number of stitches so that you could divide them evenly between your two needles, but at that point in the pattern, you have 81 stitches. I just added one more row of knitting that included a k2tog halfway around before I started grafting. And maybe if I was more experienced I would have known how to handle kitchener stitch with an odd number of stitches. Regardless, it’s a great pattern, and I really appreciate all of the great patterns you provide for us! I always love the finished result!

  16. Miki says:

    hi, so adorable! I have the same question as Liz did.
    Neckband and the odd numbers.

    It would be great if I can know how to so that I can finish this so amazing project.

    I utterly enjoy and love the blog<3

  17. purl bee says:

    HI Liz and Miki,

    Thank you both so much for pointing out both of those mistakes – I am soooo sorry! I changed the pattern to fix both errors and hopefully you, Miki, and all future knitters of the Snuggle Sack won't run into any more problems.

    And, Liz, thank you especially for your thorough comment!


  18. Linda says:

    I love this pattern and wonder if there's a kit available with all yarn, thread, and zipper? Or if you can throw one together for sale?

  19. Stacia says:

    Love this pattern and have already started on it! Any suggestions on what to do for arm holes?

  20. purl bee says:

    Hi Stacia,

    I think just two slits would be great, making sure to knit the seed stitch border around each one. At the point where you want to start the slits, you'll have to work the stitches of the Main Body in three sections: right front, back and left front. Just work each section separately until the slits are as long as you'd like and then join your knitting all back together and you're on your way!

    I hope this helps! Let me know if you run into any problems and thanks for asking!

  21. Tina says:


    Thank you for the pattern! I have a question about the background, is it a fabric or paper and where is it from? It is really cute!

  22. purl bee says:

    Hi Tina-

    It's fabric! It's from a company called Yuwa and the pattern is called Rakugaki, the color number is RAKU5. It is from 2008 so it's out of print and we no longer carry it. But perhaps you might have some luck on Ebay?

    Hope that helps!


  23. Alison Cartwright says:

    Variations on a theme. I have made this for a grandchild due to be born in Yellowknife, NWT Canada; average winter temperature – minus 25C. My daughter requested arms so I knit them first with a cuff based on the thin fair-isle stripe, also put a version of the stripe around the neck band area and knit the hood like a sock heel and seed stitch all around the opening. I knit the sleeves first and then joined them up with the body matching the decreases on the body with decreases on the sleeves, just like an in -the -round raglan. When the kid is around two – three years old, the bottom grafting thread can be removed and it will make one cute tunic sweater. Yarn used was Zealana Rimu, merino / possum blend. Super soft. I wish I could send you a picture

  24. Debra says:

    I would love it if the Purl Bee patterns would include a schematic at the end with dimensions of the finished piece. I always check my gauge, but I don't always knit something start to finish and sometimes my gauge varies a little. With a schematic I could double check the size or block to size.

    Otherwise LOVE the patterns! Thanks so much!

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