I finally finished working on a set of summer pajamas that have been on the “to make” list for quite some time. I gathered and prepped all of the fabric (uh, I think in April 2010…), and then it was a while before I began work on them. And once I did, I abandoned them partway through. Both of these patterns come from One Yard Wonders, which is a great book. The top is Summer Nightie, and the bottoms are Perfect Fit Sleep Shorts.
Obviously, the nightie is supposed to be something that you wear without shorts, but being the long-torsoed girl that I am, I decided to make shorts to go with it. (You could very easily make it longer if you buy more fabric.) The pattern for the top was easy enough to follow, and fits well enough for something to wear around the house. The back is very low (it’s an empire waist) but otherwise I like it pretty well. The main change I made was to turn the straps into a halter, in part because I didn’t want to fiddle with trying to figure out how long to make them. I also decided to just hem it instead of using bias tape at the bottom. I might not have had enough – I want to say I used some of the bias tape I’d bought for this project on something else, but I can’t think of what. You might want to pick up two packages if you plan to make this and are dead set on using the bias tape on the hem.
The pattern for Perfect Fit Sleep Shorts is more like a recipe – it walks you through drafting your own pattern so that you get the fit you want. While this is great, this opens you up to a lot of errors. I have worked with these types of patterns twice now, and I find them frustrating. You absolutely have to make a muslin (prototype), and if you don’t you need to be prepared to figure out how to adjust on the fly. The main problem that I had with these is that I screwed up when calculating the rise. You take the measurement (going around your crotch, measuring where you want the top of the pants to hit in front & back) and then divide it in half. Easy enough, unless you are me and somehow manage to divide twice. So when I tried the shorts on before sewing the hem and waistband (mainly because they looked so huge and I couldn’t imagine that they’d fit), I was a little surprised to find that they didn’t even cover my undies. I wound up adding some fabric to fix the problem, which worked out well enough. The fit on them is slightly odd – they pooch out a bit in the front – but I am hoping that will work itself out after they get worn & washed a bit and the fabric softens up. We’ll see!
Next up I have four lengths of fabric that I need to decide what I’m doing with. Two were brought back for me as a gift from Ghana, and two were purchased with the intent of making a reversible wrap skirt from Craftzine. I still may do that, but I think I might purchase an actual pattern so I don’t have to deal with taping this one together out of 8.5×11 pieces from the printer*.
*Many online patterns are formatted to print on your home printer, which is great because then you don’t have to try to get it printed out at Kinko’s on big paper. But in my experience it is a pain in the butt to assemble them, and I think I’d rather pay the money to have a tissue-paper pattern.