Franken PJs

I love wearing nightgowns to sleep in. They are just the most comfortable PJs. However, I wanted something that stayed around my legs instead of something that ended up getting twisted up while I slept. I wanted a nightgown with pants on the bottom.

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My major inspiration for this romper was the Sunday Romper from Smash and Tess. Since I’m such a pair shape I’m guessing that  if I bought a ready to wear romper like this it would be too tight in the hips causing the fabric to bunch up around waist.

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I used the Grainline Studio Lark tee pattern and the Hudson Pants to hack together this romper. To get in and out of this romper you have to go through the neck hole so I knew I was going to have to make the neckline bigger. I still haven’t mastered my coverstitch machine – the hems on the sleeves and pants are a little wonky but since this was just a muslin of PJs I’m not too worried.

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Pattern modifications:

Lark tee modifications:

  • Sized up 1 size from my bust measurement which put me at a size 6
  • Deepened the v-neck – To do this I started by tracing the largest size neck line but this didn’t seem deep enough so I slid the pattern down an additional inch and traced 1 inch deeper than the largest size.
  • Added center front and center back seams to the lark tee. This means the pattern pieces will not be cut on the fold but would instead need seam allowance added on. I traced the pattern pieces and added 1/4″ seam allowance to the center front seam.
  • Flared out the sleeves slightly – I slashed and spread the sleeves to give a slight flutter to the sleeve but its a little too subtle so I’d do a bit more for my next version.
  • Straightened out the side seams a bit for less shaping at the waist

Hudson Pants modifications:

  • I cut the Hudson Pants based on my hip measurements which put me at a size 10
  • The Hudson Pants have a slashed pocket. I changed the pocket so that it is in the side seam instead. When I traced the pants front piece I taped the pocket piece behind so I could trace them as one.
  • I then had to modify the pocket slightly to make up for the fact that it wasn’t being sewn in to the waistband. I just extended the curve of the pocket to where the side seam would hit.
  • I wanted the capri length pant but I didn’t want to use the cuff so I extended the leg length by the length of the cuff and made sure the leg tapered in to approximately the width of the cuff.
  • I also dropped the crotch curve by an inch to make for a slightly more slouchy look

Combining the Patterns:

To combine the top and the bottom I laid the Lark front on top of the hudson front, overlapping the patterns a couple of inches since I figured my t-shirt would overlap with my pants a couple of inches. I made sure that I was overlapping the same amount for the front and the back. I lined up the center fronts and taped them together. I then smoothed out the curve from the top to meet the hips of the Hudsons.

And that is all for pattern modifications! On to sewing!!

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Sewing:

The Hudson pants have a 3/8″ seam allowance but the lark tee has a 1/4″ seam allowance. I decided not to do anything to the pattern pieces to account for this but just to sew at the 1/4″ seam allowance since a little extra room in the pants is not going to hurt.

Here are the general order that I followed, which is not very detailed. Let me know if you have any questions!

  1. Sew shoulder front seams to shoulder back seams
  2. Sew sleeves in flat
  3. Sew pockets to front and back pieces, matching at notch
  4. Sew side seams, going around the pockets
  5. Sew leg inseams
  6. Sew back together, stopping at the crotch seam
  7. Sew neck binding around neck while it is still open
  8. Sew front seam
  9. Hem legs and sleeves
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Suki Kimono

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I wear my Blackwood Cardigan by Helen’s Closet all the time – so when when Helen asked me to test her new Pattern, the Suki Kimono, I was totally on board. I already have two robes – one is a really fluffy light pink bath robe that my Grandma gave me for Christmas one year and another one is one I got at one of the Victoria Secret sales a couple of years ago. To be honest I don’t really wear either of those robes… but I was pretty sure that this one would have something to offer that neither of those have.

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I chose a rayon satin from Harts Fabric. I wasn’t really sure what rayon satin is since I’ve never worked with it before. It turns out that rayon is the material the fabric is is made of and satin refers to the weave of the fabric. The satin weave is what makes the fabric smooth and glossy looking.

One of the great things about this pattern is how customizable it is. You can easily make the sleeves longer or make the front band extend all the way down. I made view B without contrast bands. I used a size S bust and graded out to a size M at the hips. I also shortened the front and back pieces by 2 inches.

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The most frustrating step in this whole project for me was cutting out the fabric. The rayon satin was extra shifty and slid around easily, which made it super difficult to cut out. It ended up taking me way longer than I expected to cut out the pattern.

Once I had everything cut out though it was pretty smooth sailing. I appreciated that Helen had you do some of the smaller steps ahead of time like making the loops. That way you can get them out of the way while you still have a lot of momentum going.

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I length of the sleeve is perfect – they aren’t going to get in the way at all but also add a little bit of drama to the robe. The inner ties and the tie that is secured at the back really help to keep everything in place. I don’t ever feel at risk of the robe falling open. I also love how high up the neckline is. It really makes a huge difference in how comfortable I feel in the robe when I’m not worried about it staying in place.

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I used french seams for a clean finish on the inside. Helen added instructions for how to do a clean finish in the final version, but I sort of winged it. When I got to the front band I also wanted that to have a clean finish so I ended up sewing the outer neckband to the front, sewing the front seams, including adding the front inner tie, and then folding the front band over the front edge, and hand sewing the inside of the front band down. In the end I’m really glad I decided to use clean finishes on this since I wanted something a little more special than the two robes I already have. This definitely fits that. I can see myself wearing this in the mornings on the weekend and wearing it to sew in when working on a project where I need to try on something multiple times.