Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Pajama Party

The newest trend to hit the streets of New York City is.. straight out of the bedroom! Pajamas, robes, kimonos. Now before you roll your eyes and think, "how lazy is that!" let me explain. We're not suggesting that dolly rolls out of bed and onto city streets in her jammies. What we've done here is to  borrow a few of loose-fitting, easy to wear garments for an interesting eveningwear look OR pair one or two components with denim to add a touch of luxury to dolly's everyday urban style.

The Kimono
This is everybody's favorite garment. Think of finding one of those marvelous brocade robes in a Chinese boutique and using it to enhance daywear look or incorporate it into eveningwear. If you haven't made this garment yet, you can find the tutorial by clicking HERE. What I've done differently is to create a cuff.

1. Cutting a longer sleeve and rolling it back is not an option because the seams will show. So here's a tip: After stitching together the shoulder to sleeve seam and pressing flat, add a rectangle to the hem of the sleeve.
2. Fold the edge and press.
3. Fold the edge once again and baste in place at the side seams.

4. Complete the rest of the kimono.

Silk Pajamas

Of course, dolly loves silk pajamas. I used a simple top from the basic bodice (without the darts) and the one-piece trouser pattern which you can find by clicking HERE. The fabric makes this a simple yet stunning look all by itself.

Or when worn underneath the brocade kimono we just created.

Here's another tip. For this kimono I used a polyester brocade. This fabric frays horribly! You can use a fray check, but sometimes this product leaves an unsightly residue. So long as your fabric is 100% polyester (and NOT a natural fiber), you can use a flame to clean up the edges. What happens is that the fabric will melt and thus seal the fibers (much in the same way as a laser cutter). Light up a candle. Hold the fabric with two hands, then very quickly swipe the edge of the fabric against the flame. The fabric will not burn, it will melt. If a small flame appears, simply blow it out. But what you want to do is to make a very rapid swipe. Practice with a few strips before committing to the fabric. But DO NOT try this with anything other than 100% polyester!!! I used this for the edges of the hem as well as the edges of the pockets in my efforts to reduce bulk.

Print on print

The kimono can be cut in any fabric including sheers. What I think really looks stylish is to layer a sheer print against the pattern of the garment underneath.

If this is all too much for your tastes, you can play it down by throwing the same kimono over the shoulders of an urban wear ensemble.

This is precisely why pajamas are such a fun trend. You can dress it up for eveningwear with fancy jewelry, a belt and heels.

Or layer it for a funky daywear look. Here, I took an abstract printed pajama set and paired them with a denim sheath dress worn with sneakers.

Grandpa's Pajamas

But what would a pajama party be without traditional PJ's?!! This is a look consisting of an unlined jacket in a soft fabric worn with a matching pair of pants, both of which have piping on the edges.

Piping is a small piece of cord trapped within bias tape. You can buy this already made or you can make it yourself. The piping I've used for the outfit here is 1/4" though the finished ridge is 1/8." Using it is pretty simple. I used the regular pants pattern (with side seams).

1. Pin the piping against the side seam of the front pant pattern, raw edge to raw edge. The fold of the piping with be faced down away from that edge. With needle and thread using a running stitch, baste. This will keep it from moving as you sew.
2. Place the back pattern over the piping, with the right side facing down against the right side of the front pattern. The piping will be sandwiched in between.
3. Now stitch 1/8 away from the edge.
4. When you have finished, open the pants out and press along each side of the side seam near the piping. Complete your pants.

5. Again, my concern is about bulk around the waist. For these trousers, I use a 1/2" of black ribbon basted to front of the pants at the waistline.
6. Fold the top edge over to the back and press. Stitch the ribbon down. You should use a hook and eye to close.

The same steps are used for the jacket with shawl collar which calls for a facing.
1. Pin the piping, raw edge to raw edge around the edge of the collar and down both front edges of the jacket.
2. Baste then sew.
3. Lay the facing over the piping and front jacket along the outer edge. Baste then sew 1/4" away from the edge.
4. Turn right side up and press well.
Worn with sneakers and a bra, it has a very sporty look.

I also like to use lace trim for the waistband.

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  1. Hello from Spain: I like very much this trend. I like pajamas in the street. Your creations are fabulous. Great pics. Your dolls are beautiful. Keep in touch

    1. Thank you, Marta. I love this trend as well. Glad you enjoyed this post. See you soon.

  2. I always loved pajamas! Kimono amazed me, it looks fantastic ♥
    Hugs ^-^

    1. Thank you, Rikka. I've always loved this trend. It takes me back to the days when I'd go into a boutique selling brocade robes and silk pajamas and think, "I could totally rock this as part of my everyday wardrobe!"

  3. Hi, how beautiful <3 <3 I love all yours fashion clothes :) Hugs

    1. Thank you Urszula. Glad you enjoyed this post.

  4. April, if you ever decide you have too many doll clothes, I have a non-profit you can donate them to. Me! I love these pajamas. All of them!

    1. LOL!!! We're getting to the point where my ladies have an ENORMOUS wardrobe and I wonder if I should do something with part of it. But I fear, for the moment, I'd have a revolution on my hands if I dared give away any of their stuff. I, too, love this trend. (My own wardrobe is full of it! LOL!!!)

  5. Witaj! Jestem zachwycona Twoimi projektami! Wybrane materiały są piękne a modelki wyglądają wspaniale!
    Pozdrawiam serdecznie!

    1. Olla wrote: Hello! I am delighted with your projects ! Selected materials are beautiful and the models look great !
      Best wishes!

      Thank you, Olla. Glad to know you enjoyed this post. This was a really fun project. See you again soon.

  6. My three-year old is just getting into Barbies and has been VERY specific about the clothes she wants (like pajamas) that we can't buy anywhere! I'm so excited to have found this! I'm in awe of this blog - you have the best stuff! Thank you! I'm so excited to use it to try to make my daughter some of the things she wants!

  7. Welcome to my blog, Monica. Here you will find a world that marries current and high fashion with...Barbie dolls (& their 12" friends)! I must warn you, though...this is a very addictive hobby!! Long after your daughter has outgrown dolls, you might still find yourself making fashions for the dolls (like the rest of us). Enjoy. Come back any time!


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