Party in my Pants

1

“Are all your items going to be quilted?”, a friend asked.

I didn’t even realize that I was just dabbling in one area of sewing — I could see why she’d asked this. I was creating quilts of all sizes. I was making pillowcases and cushion covers, which aren’t quilted but they all fell under one category — the Home Decor Department. *yawn*

The Pattern

So at that point, I decided to get out of my comfort zone and into a pair of comfortable party PJs. <– see what I did there. I had this free pattern downloaded for a while but had no plans to do anything with it. I had an interest in making clothes but feared the quality wouldn’t be there if I gave it a go.

Quilting is the gateway to sewing clothes. Or maybe it’s the other way around. -Me

The Fabric

On one of my weekly Dressew visits, I came across this fabric! *swoon*

Polka Dot Brown Fabric

Why are polka dots insta-party to me? They remind me of confetti or flashing bulbs on a disco dance floor. I fell in love. But then I saw this on the selvage edge:
warning on fabric

*Gasp!* I’m not sure this fabric could be used for anything other than a pair of PJs so I was a bit miffed by this warning. Later though, I came to the realization that the fabric probably wasn’t fire retardant and that as long as I didn’t wear my party pants near an open flame, I’d be fine. I bought three meters.

magnetic wrist pin bracelet
What time is it?

Cutting out the Pattern

Firstly, I must give credit to Cloud 9. They provide this pattern for free and I have to say it’s the perfect sewing project for the beginner-sewer or like me, the n00by-garment-sewer.

Once you’ve printed out the pages of your pattern pdf, tape them all together. The pattern ends up being ONE piece that you flip over and create a mirror image of, for a total of two pieces. Your pants consist of two legs essentially. Easy-peasy sewing project, right?

2 cutouts of PJs

Next, just follow the straightforward instructions listed on your pattern…but I have a few recommendations.

My Recommendations

Let’s make these PJs even better by:

  1. Using fabric that has a touch of stretch or a lighter cotton. I used a heavier quilter’s quality cotton and my pants are a bit stiff (no give) but this may ease up over time. Cloud 9 suggests these fabrics: Cirrus Solids, broadcloth, voile, annel, baby wale corduroy, double gauze, and knit. I don’t know what half of these fabric types are but if you go fabric shopping, check the bolt labels and if they have any of these names + you like the design, giddy up!
  2. By using an elastic waistband or a combo of a tie and elastic. The pattern suggests using an elastic waistband OR a tie to keep your pants up but when I used just the twill tape, my poor pants didn’t stay on when untied. I would recommend making your waistband with both a tie and elastic for the most professional look. If you look at any PJs you’ve bought from a store, they have both an elastic waistband and a tie for the ultimate fit.
  3. Adding proper buttonholes. If you do opt to just do a tie or a combo of both, I would highly recommend making proper button holes where your ties exit. This would be done with a machine but I have heard of some people hand-stitching this area; seems like a lot of work though. Because I only used the twill tape, I made some serious tears in my fabric just by adjusting the pants a few times. This might be for a level-up-sewing-player but a lot of the newer machines now come with button attachments where your machine will be able to whip through this task perfectly.
  4. Check that length. I’m 5’8 so these pants were a bit too short so make sure you get the length you want. Cloud 9 even suggests making a pair with fabric you don’t care about before you use the good stuff.

PJ pants shown on a personPJs on a hanger

Moral of the Sewing Story

Things I learned from my first go at garment-sewing:

  1. The fabric you buy for your projects seem to be of much better quality than the clothes you buy at stores
  2. It’s a lot easier than you think to create clothes and for some reason my mind is still boggled at the fact you can make.your.own.clothes — *wha*?!
  3. It can be a bit more expensive for the fabric, especially if you include your labour, but it’s one-of-a-kind and you can make the item fit your perfect specifications
  4. So much more care has been put into something you’ve made, rather than something made in Bangladesh or Cambodia in horrendous work-conditions. Check out this documentary to learn the real cost of cheap fashion.

I hope you’ll give this project a try! If you do, please tag me on Instagram or Twitter. I’d love to see your finished Party PJs! 🎉

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