May 14, 2013

Pillowcase Nightie: Version 2.0

I’ve debated for some time how to address sewing on my blog. To be honest, I’m never going to be a pattern or tutorial maker. It’s just not where my talent lies. I can sew from patterns and tutorials, but I don’t think I’ll ever have the ability to make my own.   Since my mission is to make homemaking easier, I decided the best way to handle my sewing is link to tutorial and patterns I use, show you how they turn out and give them a bit of a review.

A few weeks ago, Littlebit made the startling announcement that she was out of pajamas.  I really didn’t think it was possible that she or Baby Bee could run out of anything in their dressers (they are two very well dressed little girls), but it was true.  Littlebit had grown some and she was down to just a few night things, far less than a week’s worth (and, really, I think you should always have at least a week’s worth of whatever because otherwise, you’re doing a lot of laundry in an emergent situation).

I sewed a top for Baby Bee (I’ll share that next week) and then it was Littlebit’s turn.  I asked her what she wanted me to sew; a top for her like Baby Bee’s or a new nightie.  She thought it over for a minute and said she thought she needed a new nightgown.  I, of course, had the exact tutorial I wanted to use, the pillowcase nightie from Everyday Chaos.  I pulled out some old fabric from my stash and sat down to sew.

First, let me be honest.  This nightie takes a LOT of fabric.  This isn’t a project for our treasured, hard to find fabric.  This is a project for the “why did I buy this?” or “this was cheap, but what will I do with it?” fabric.  Little bit’s nightie took two panels that were  the width of my knit fabirc (which I think was 60″ wide) by 25′ long.  It then took three bands of 60″x4″ for the ruffles and the tie.  This is no small fabric project.

I repeat, no small fabric project!

And it’s heavy.  REALLY heavy.  This is a lot of fabric, folks.  It’s a lot of heavy fabric.  It’s a heavy nightgown.

But, my word is it pretty.

The tutorial provided by Bridget at Everyday Chaos is really easy to follow. This really isn’t a hard nightie to sew.It’s very simple and mostly straight sewing and a good way to try your teeth on some knit fabric if you’ve never sewn with it before.  Sadly, my serger is out of order but it even came together nicely on my regular machine using a stretch stitch (but it would have been so nice had the serger worked.  Really).

Also, this came together in the time time it took Cinderella to go to the ball, to marry the Prince and for Hercules to become a full hero and fall in love with Meg..  About three hours from cutting out to string trimming, which is pretty quick.  It’s definitely a good nap time project.  I sewed a nightie for the Princess following and it went together even faster, having been through the pattern once.

In all honesty, ladies, if you’ve been debating on sewing something up for yourself, this nightie could be it.  Bridget suggests using panels that are 60″ wide giving you a total garment width of about 120″.  That’s going to fit, well, most people if not all of them.  I made one for the Princess (who is now probably 5’4″) using the same general formula as I did for Littlebit’s.  I used the width of my knit fabric to make two panels (this was another nice, wide knit) and cut it to 36″.  It comes just to under the Princess’s knees when I added the four inch ruffle.  The Princess declares it comfy and perfect for summer.

The one problem we’ve run into is that we’ve had trouble keeping Littlebit’s shoulder strap tied.  Of course, we have a lot of options to fix this and Littlebit has used her own ingenuity and simply double knotted it.



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