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The Palmer/Pletsch Pajama Pants

Kate's husband Fred looking stately (and comfy!) in his new pair of Palmer/Pletsh Pajama Bottoms!
Kate’s husband Fred looking stately (and comfy!) in his new pair of Palmer/Pletsch Pajama Pants!

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.

Pattern Recognition

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.

Bonnie did an excellent job pattern matching this added patch pocket. (Say that ten times fast!)

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.

Tame Alterations

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.

long pjs
Watch out for this pattern’s generous sizing! Even after shortening these pants by 4″ you can tell they’re still pretty long.

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!

This Mammoth Flannel in Green is a cozy as it looks!
This Mammoth Flannel in Green is a cozy as it looks!

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!

Happy Sewing!

P/P Pajamas
Palmer/Pletsch Pajamas & Robe Pattern.
Mammoth flannel Green
Robert Kaufman Mammoth Flannel in Green

4 thoughts on “The Palmer/Pletsch Pajama Pants

  1. Jackie Wedell says:

    Question for Kate on the pajama pants. Did you end up with elastic in the waist casing as the pattern specifies or did you use a drawstring of some type? I am making two pairs for my sons for Christmas (without being able to have them try them on during construction) and would appreciate your advice. The pattern is indeed very long; I shortened them before cutting after reading your blog. Thanks for the advice.

  2. kate says:

    Hi Jackie — Bonnie made these, and she created a casing for the elastic. You could easily use both elastic and a drawstring, or just a drawstring. You’ll want to make button holes in the casing at the center front. 🙂

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