I want my kids to wear clean pajamas to bed every night. I just think it is icky to put on previously worn clothes on freshly washed skin. That said, I simply CANNOT bear the thought of spending money on multiple sets of new jammies every six months. Then I remembered THIS blog post I saw back in September from Making the World Cuter. (Check out this blog - It is really fun and of course, CUTE!) In this post, Tiffany shows how she made pajama pants for her children from used sheets. Sheet fabric is awesome! It is ideal for making sleepwear because you were sleeping in before anyway!
I thought, "Hey, I've got a ton of old sheets. I can sew. I'll just make my children new sleep shorts for summer. I can get them all done in a day." HA HA HA HA! Ahem, sorry. I usually have big ideas that take vastly more time in the execution than I originally estimate.
|Super Sleepy Shorts|
Seriously, this was a totally easy project. It just takes time to crank out 18 pairs of shorts. (At least it took me some time.)
First, make a pattern. Trace a pair of shorts that fit. *Be sure to leave enough space around the pattern pieces for seam allowance!*
I first drew out the pieces on freezer paper. Then, I cut out a demo pair and got to sewing. Naturally here the tweaking began. My son's shorts fit him, but just barely. He loved them and insisted on wearing them to bed that night. My daughter's shorts were way too tight. I fixed the demo pairs by trimming the side seams and adding a contrasting stripe of fabric all the way down. (As I said before, I'm fugal, and I wasn't about to toss two pairs of nearly useable shorts. You can see them in the photos at the bottom of this post.)
My sewing machine is big and clunky and doesn't sew small seams well so I decided to put on the appliques before I stitched the pieces together.
|The finished applique'|
|I poked holes in the wing to get the correct placement.|
|I stitched around the outline of the bird after I attached the wing.|
|I trimmed around the stitching leaving about a ¼" of extra fabric.|
|Sew the outside seam and the inseam of both the legs. Then zigzag to finish the seam! :)|
|Hem each leg.|
I opted to hem each leg before I attached the legs together because these shorts are not intended to be seen by the public. I just needed them to be hemmed . Amazingly, you cannot even tell that I didn't meticulously measure and remeasure before sewing.
|Slide the legs into one another right sides together.|
|Sew the crotch together.|
|Sew a casing for the elastic. Make sure you leave a space to thread your elastic.|
|Feed the elastic through the casing.|
|Stitch the ends of the elastic together and sew up the hole.|
You will notice the crotch seam. I made sure that I kept the seam direction uniform as I sewed around the waist. I didn't want it to be strange and twisty.
Here are some after shots:
|Here's that bird again!|
|Faux chenille - My daughter says these are her favorite!|
|My son got striped shorts!|
My kids absolutely love these shorts. It is a challenge sometimes to get them out of their sleepy shorts and into "real clothes" in the mornings. My son's only complaint is that he can't tell which way is the front on his shorts. He wants me to sew in a tag. I'll have to come up with something, I guess.
Here are a few shots of the finished shorts...
|The "O & X" shorts gave me the most trouble.|
|My favorite applique' is this flower. The edges ravel nicely after laundering.|
|My daughter loves the HUG and KISS!|
All in all, this project took me about a week to complete. I am still amazed that I thought I could finish in a day. Believe me, you can totally do this project! The hardest part for me was making sure I was sewing the applique to the "right" side of the fabric. I messed that up once which set me back several hours while I picked out the mistake. (See the "O & X shorts above.) I'll be honest, though, it wouldn't be a sewing project of mine if there wasn't some picking out involved!
These shorts were nearly free. I needed to replenish my elastic stash and get a new spool of thread. In all, each pair cost around $1! I paired them with plain cotton t-shirts like THESE. These summer pj's totally fit my frugal nature. Plus, I have tons of fabric left over. I used two pillowcases and a full fitted sheet for my son's shorts and not even all of my king-sized fitted sheet for my daughter's shorts. I already have plans for the remnants!