A few weeks ago, I wrote a post on the Sew Liberated Arenite Pants in which I extoled the virtues of ‘secret pajamas’. Those garments which, though suitable for public activities, possess all the comfort of your snuggliest loungewear. Today, I write about the only thing better than secret pajamas – apparent pajamas!
A steadfast piece in our ever-evolving pattern collection, The Kimono Robe and Pajamas Pattern is part of Palmer/Pletsch’s ‘Learn to Sew’ beginner series. A unisex design drafted for teens and adults, this pattern includes pieces for a robe, pajama bottoms (long or short), and a pajama top (long-sleeve or short).
In non-pandemic times, Kate teaches a five week course for beginning sewists on the included robe pattern because so many bedrock sewing elements are covered in its construction. In this blog post, however, I am going to focus on the pajama pants which Bonnie whipped up for Kate’s husband, Fred, one afternoon last spring.
We used this pattern (specifically the pajama pants) as the suggested pattern for the Robert Kaufman Mammoth Flannel in Green which appeared in our very first Warm Tones Swatch Card. We try, whenever possible, to make samples of our many patterns. This equips us to provide advice to our customers, as well as write the pattern reviews you so enjoy. 😉 Though flannel pajamas as a concept has been thoroughly tested and approved of, not all patterns are created equal, and, we wanted to make sure that the Palmer/Pletsch pajama bottoms were as well-drafted and easy to make as their reputation suggested.
Bonnie’s ultimate impression? Excellent!
The instructions are very easy to follow, the project was completed in a matter of hours, and simple alterations – such as patch and/or side seam pockets – were painlessly executed. What’s more, throughout the instructions, sewing terms are explained and detailed drawings included.
Cut 'em Down to Size
Though this pattern includes sizes S through XL (XS through XL for the robe) because it is unisex, the sizing runs quite large. So, to ensure a good fit, Bonnie compared this pattern’s medium measurements to those of an existing pair of Fred’s best-loved pajama bottoms. She emphatically recommends this method of comparison particularly when you’re trying out a new pattern or pattern company.
Alterations were minimal. Bonnie added a back patch pocket, added 2″ to the waistband casing, and brought the hem up 4″. Bonnie noted that, by using an elastic that includes a drawstring you could eliminate the need for a casing altogether thereby making this pattern even simpler. However, I like the way the casing looks, and prefer the feeling of flannel to elastic on my skin.
Spoiled for Choice
We carry a wide variety of cozy and affordable Robert Kaufman flannels. Soft to the touch and a good weight, the patterns on these flannels are woven-in rather than printed-on. This means the design won’t fade with repeated washing or wearing – a fact that the pajama enthusiast in me loves to hear!
For Montanans, ‘flannel season’ is nine out of twelve months of the year. As such, flannel pajamas are a wardrobe staple. However, if you live in a place with milder seasons, these bottoms would be just as nice made from a lighter cotton like our Designer Plaid Voile in Red or Blue, or even a brightly patterned quilting cotton! Additionally, though this pattern was drafted for light and medium weight wovens, because it is so simple, you could venture into the world of Ponte or French Terry Knits if you so desire.
That's My Jam!
A short and sweet sewing project that’s as fun for a beginner as it is for an expert, we can’t recommend this pattern enough! Spread pajama joy this winter season with the Palmer/Pletsch The Kimono Robe and Pajamas Pattern!