Saturday, November 30, 2013

I got a new doll "Alexis". The girls are having a Pajama Party.

Alexis finally arrived and she is wonderful well worth the wait.  Alexis is the doll (4th from the left)
I purchased her from   As mentioned in an earlier post I used the pajama pattern
by Lil Abbee -    On the dolls with the robes I made PJ's using
Simplicity pattern #5733,  I found a robe pattern from Crabapples that I slightly modified.
 You can find the robe pattern here.

The sewing tips for the Lil Abbee PJ's are on an earlier post so I will just discuss the robe pattern.
I made a few modifications.   Robe notes:   Pockets with the pattern were square.   I rounded the bottom edges for a softer look.  The pattern called for using bias binding technique as facing for the front opening edges of the robe.   I made a front facing pattern by tracing the curve of the front robe piece from the bottom edge to the top shoulder seam and then I made a pattern for the back neckline facing.  I also shortened the sleeves 1/4 inch.   I was impressed with this pattern there were several different design variations included such as piping and ruffles.  If your looking for a quality robe pattern then you may want to check this one out.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Warm and oh so cozy pajamas

Not all flannels are alike.   If I am going to make something with flannel I really pay attention and a few extra dollars for "quality".  Nothing annoys me more than to make a pair of PJ's and have them look fuzzy and pilled even before they are worn.   I usually find most of my flannel at my local quilt store but I have been lucky enough to find some at chain fabric stores.   My current sewing project is making pajamas, robes and slippers. 

The PJ pattern from Little Abbee can be purchased here:
Slipper pattern: designed by Eden Ava.

Sewing info: I was pleased with the pattern but as usual I did make some adjustments to construction.     The only size adjustment I made was to shorten the bottoms and sleeves by 1/4 inch. Construction wise. (sewing info update (12/01/13)  Shoulder seam bulk.  In order to reduce the bulk in the shoulder seam area:  1) Finished raw edges of the shoulder seams allowance with a serger or
zig-zag stitch.   2)  Stitch front and back bodices pieces together per pattern instructions.   3)  Press shoulder seam open and flat.   4)   Hand tack shoulder seam allowance down.

                    The pattern instructions called for "set in" I did follow that for the first 2 pairs.... but I hate "set in sleeves"!!  Then I switched to "flat" sleeve construction so much easier and just as nice.   I hemmed the flat sleeve first and machine basted 1/8"  from the sleeve head.  After pinning and stitching the sleeve in,  I then stitched the sleeve and side seams in one continuous mode.  Top stitching:  After hemming I top stitched up the front and around the neck.  Pockets.....I love the look of them but they do require some extra care to insure multiple pockets are the same size and shape.  On the rounded pocket for this pattern, I marked with a fabric pen the 1/4 stitching line then machine basted along that line.   I  pulled on the thread tails to gently gather the rounded bottom edge of the pocket so it curves nicely and evenly, finger press then iron the pockets to get a clean crisp shape.  Understiching....I  use this technique often and on this  pattern I used it along the neckline of the back bodice and along the front facing pieces.

Slipper notes: I  found just pinning and stitching the 2 soles in place was a bit of a challenge for me sewing on the curves with all those pins, so after the first pair I made I decided to hand baste those pieces in after marking the 1/4" stitching line on the base & sole pieces. Doing that made it easier for me to sew and the seams were spot on. I also used my pinking shears and trimmed the seams to eliminate some of the bulk. On my next pair I am going to shorten the slipper top a scant 1/8" across the top, I felt the slipper top fit just a tad too high on the dolls foot. On one pair I top stitched across the slipper top which looked nice too....