Overview | Principles | Resources | Practical Guidelines | Game Day | Very Young | More Reading

Easy Plans to Make Your Own Pinnies (Practice Bibs)

NB: These have about as many names as there are coaches. We've heard them called 'bibs', 'vests', 'pinnies', 'pennies' and 'pennigs'. They are like a loose tank top in a bright colour designed to be worn over whatever a player wears to practice. In warm climates, they can be worn over bare skin or a t-shirt; where it's cold, they may need to be made big enough to fit over a sweatshirt and warmup jacket. They also will need periodic washing!

If you purchase ready-made pinnies, they will cost about $5 each. For coaches who have limited funds, it is very easy to make enough pinnies for an entire team for around $5-8 total.

To do this, you will need to purchase cloth which is 60 inches wide and cut it down the center fold (so that you have two strips which are 30 inches wide). You are going to cut the cloth into 15 x 30 inch rectangles (i.e.you will get two pinnies per each 15 in length x 60 in wide portion of your original cloth). So, your first step is to decide how many pinnies you want - as this will govern the length of cloth which you will buy. For example, to get 12 pinnies, you will need 90 inches of fabric (2.5 yards).

In general, you will want at least the same number of pinnies as you will field players for a game (i.e., if you play 11v11, make 12 pinnies - as you are bound to lose a few). In addition, it is useful in intra-team scrimmages to have an extra set of pinnies to distinguish one group from another. You only need around 6 or so of these contrasting pinnies. So, if you want 12 pinnies of one color, and 6 of a contrasting color, you would buy 2.5 yards of the primary colorand 1.25 yards of the other color.

What type of material should you buy? Something which is light-weight, doesn¼t fray much, and is durable. Cheap woven polyester double-knit works nicely, and often can be purchased on Final Discount tables for around $2/yard. Be sure to get „loud¾ colors which are easily visible.

How do you make them? After cutting the material down the center fold, put one long strip over the other. Cut every 15 inches or so (obviously, kids come in different sizes, so you may need to make a bit larger or smaller, depending on your team size).

You will then have a stack of pinnies which are 15 inches wide by 30 inches long. Taking two pieces of material at a time, fold in half (so that dimensions are 15x15). Now, all that you need to do is to cut a neck hole.Usually, works fine to cut a semi-circle out of the folded cloth which is about 7 inches wide and about 3 _ inches deep.

If the fabric tends to fray a bit, it is easy to run a quick hem around the edges and neck hole by just folding over the edges and running a quick seam. Otherwise, you can just use „as is¾.

You can sew some elastic or some fabric ties (bias tape works well) to the sides, if you want to keep the sides from flapping. However, the pinnies work fine without this extra effort, and the ties do make it more likely that they will rip. Before you go to this trouble, you may want to use the pinnies for a few weeks and ask the kids for their opinions. They probably will vote „no¾, since most kids love to experiment with ways to wear pinnies (and will viewextra ties as getting in the way of turning the pinnies into turbans, capes, etc.).

All in all, not a bad expenditure of $5-8 (especially when you also can use a pinny as a keeper jersey in very hot weather - or to cover a jacket in very cold weather). Updated 1 November 1998

Overview | Principles | Resources | Practical Guidelines | Game Day | Very Young | More Reading