As I’ve mentioned before, I decided that I wanted wanted to learn how to sew in part because of the horrible pajama pants that stores are trying to pass off as worth $20. I bought the pattern for Simplicty Its So Simple 2040 Mens and Misses Pajama Pants and Blanket while envisioning gorgeous and well made pajama pants that fit me perfectly. I bought some nice cotton poplin from Little Lisette at 50% off to get myself motivated. I guess the fabric is for kids, but its perfect for cute girly pajama pants. I was excited to use apparel fabric instead of quilting cotton because the texture felt so much more smooth and comfortable. Perfect fabric for a pair of perfect pajama pants! Feeling optimistic and confident, I began to sew.
Alas, due to my lack of sewing experience it was not to be. What a fool I was to think that I could make these pants. Problems:
- The pattern runs big. Really big. Huge, in fact. I made a size small, which should fit me decently. Unfortunately, it seems that as this is a unisex design that the size options on the pattern don’t compensate for the need for a good fit. I am all for loose, comfy pajamas. Instead I made a pair of hammer pants.
- The waistband instructions do not make sense. They are vague and confusing. Ok, maybe to a non-beginner they might seem clear and precise. To me, a novice with no instinct, they are gibberish. The pattern instructions basically say: make the waistband. To which I say: how?????
- Urkelism: The waist is ridiculously high. Again, this seems like a symptom of the one-size fits all pattern. The waist height is the same for all sizes, which means that its intended to fit both an extra small woman and an extra large man. You don’t have to be a sewing genius to realize this is going to be a problem.
Ok, so I failed at this project. I am trying to look on the bright side. Positive points and things that I learned:
- I used the button hole function. I’ve never made a button hole before, so this was a major accomplishment. Yes, I did have to painstakingly use my seam ripper to tear out the threads from a failed buttonhole. Twice. Its all in the name of learning. Thank God my new sewing machine has a one step button hole feature!
- I was able to successfully sew the legs and crotch. All the fabric lined up to an acceptable degree (i.e., not perfect but it’ll do). The bizarre “insert one pant leg into the other with right sides facing” to sew the crotch totally worked! Weird sewing magic! Up until this point I was still brimming with hope. Then when it came time to sew the waistband I realized I was in over my head and couldn’t recover.
- I trimmed an inch off of the waist length when I realized how high it was. This meant that I had to make extra button holes for the drawstring to come out of. Hmmm, I choose to view this as an opportunity for practice.
- Even though the waistband is messed up and they run big, I think they will make a good present for my mom. Not a major present like for Christmas or her birthday, ok? I am not going to ruin a holiday with my crappy pajama pants. Just an everyday appreciation present that she might get some use out of. She can always “accidentally” spill bleach on them and throw them away after an appropriate amount of time.
Verdict: So they are not perfect. There is still a lot of potential. I am going to try again, but next time I will use the extra small size, adjust the waist height, and see if I can decipher the waistband instructions.
At least they look like a pair of pants. That’s something.