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Simplicity 2317 – Pyjamas

December 20, 2010

Yesterday I finished making my first set of pyjamas – not for myself, but as a Christmas present for my mother-in-law.  There are many pyjama patterns available: the reason I chose this one was a) I was already ordering some other Simplicity patterns, b) it’s a unisex pattern and c) I liked the variations, particularly the nightshirt which I envisaged making for myself.

I thought it would be nice to give my mother-in-law a home-made gift this year, and mistakenly thought it might also work out cheaper, but it turned out to make the pyjama bottoms and the shirt top, I needed a whopping five metres of fabric, which at £4.99 per metre set me back just under £25.  If I factor in the cost of interfacing, bias binding, piping cord, elastic, thread and buttons, I start to panic!  Now, I could have bought cheaper fabric, but I had already asked mother-in-law what sort of fabric she’d like, and what colour, and once I found what she wanted (turquoise polka dot), the only choice that remained for me to make was whether to buy polycotton for half the price, or 100% cotton.  I opted for the latter of course, because I wanted to make a quality pair of pyjamas which would feel nice and be comfortable to wear.

Sadly, I am not thrilled with this pattern, and although I have made a good job of making the pyjamas, I wouldn’t say I like them that much.  The pyjama bottoms were very easy to make, but I think they come up a bit on the small side.  Admittedly, my hips (40”) are a little wider than my mother-in-law’s, but judging by the size guide printed on the packet I should still fit a medium (hips 39-41), and whilst I can get them on, they are a bit narrow, which I think is a design fault of the pattern.  Pyjama bottoms should be roomy and comfortable, not clingy.  Or is it just me?!

Another criticism I have of the pattern for the trousers is the lack of instructions to use piping.  The pyjama shirt top has piping down the centre fronts, on the pocket, cuffs and collar, but there is no piping on the design for the pyjama bottoms.  Surely the two should match?  As you can see, I did add piping to the hem of each trouser leg to give more of a finished, matching look, but I think that it should be included as part of the design:

As for the pyjama top, it is so long!  I know I definitely did not make the nightshirt by accident, but it’s certainly longer than a pyjama top needs to be, coming quite a way below the hips.  I think it would have been helpful if the pattern included the option to make the shirt with a straight bottom rather than curved, but unless I am completely blind/mad, it did not.  If I was to ever make this for myself, I would have to adapt the pattern.  I also dislike the cuffs: I think they are too deep for a pyjama top.  I’m sure they would look better on the nightshirt variation, however.

I would use this pattern again for pyjama bottoms, but I would always go a size larger than advised.  I still fancy making myself a nightshirt with this pattern, and I think that would work well.  Was it worth the cost and the effort to make these pyjamas?  Personally, I’d say no, but let me know what you think!  I suppose the opinion that really counts is that of my mother-in-law, so I’ll let you know after Christmas…

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