Introduction: Patchwork Pajama Bottoms
Creating patchwork pajamas is a great way to use up scraps and keep cozy warm.
These were a fun project - not too challenging, not too tedious.
1.5 yard of muslin, or pajama bottoms pattern
1/4 yard each of 6 different colors/prints of good quality/weight fabric
yard of 1" wide elastic
sewing supplies/equipment - scissors, tape measure, marker, pins, cotton string, machines, serger and reg sewing machine
Step 1: Create Pattern
First we want to create a pattern. Do not be afraid! I will make this easy and fun. Since we are making a loose-fitting pajama bottom, the front and back are combined into one piece.
You will need 1.5 yards of muslin(or cheap cotton) tape measure, marker, several feet of cotton yarn(no stretch) or twine, and scissors. Follow along with photos.
1. Measure your outseam. This is your waist to the floor. Take your tape measure and step on the beginning of it, so that your heel just covers the # 5. Take note of which number on the tape is where your waist is. (Mine is 46.) Stepping on the # 5 adds the amount needed for hem and waistband facing.
2. Spread out your muslin. In the middle, mark a vertical line of 46". At bottom, create straight line, extending 9" each way from center. This is the bottom of the pants leg.
3. To create waistline, use tape measure to get your fullest hip measurement. (Mine is 37) Add 5" to your number, then divide in half. Cut a piece of yarn this number. Place the middle of the yarn at the top mark of the muslin, extend to the left, dipping down in a slight curve, extend to right, rising in a sight curve. Duplicate this line with your marker. Denote front and back on your pattern.
Step 2: Create Pattern(cont)
4. To create rise, measure from baby-making hole to belly button. (mine is 12") Add 5" to that number and cut out yarn/string. Place in front section of muslin, starting at waist. Slightly extending left while down, then left to create crotch.
For back, place tape at b-m hole, extend over one cheek and up to waist back, then squat.(mine is 18") Add 5", cut yarn/string.
Place in back section of muslin, starting at waistback, slightly extending right while down, then right to create crotch. Duplicate lines with marker.
5. Create inseam. Using (2)36" lengths of string, create outside lines of legs at front and back, curving inward at top. Yarn will extend above crotch and below hemline. Duplicate line with marker.
Wasn't that fun, and easy? You just made a pattern piece!
Step 3: Create Fabric
Next step is to cut the squares, and create our patchwork fabric from scraps. I used high quality wool, leftover from a braided rug project.
(Make sure all of your fabric is prewashed and dried, for shrinkage.)
6. Creating patchwork fabric. (Have a podcast or two queued up.) Using six colors of the same weight, cut out (20)5" squares from each color. I like to use a rotary cutter, ruler, and cutting mat. Of course you can cut out the squares with scissors, just be mindful of keeping grainlines straight.
7. Decide on a pattern/order for the 6 colors. This repeat will be your guide for sewing the squares to one another. Now sew all squares together to form a VERY long strip. Press with iron. Serge/overcast all raw edges.
Step 4: Piecing It Together
8. Create fabric. Lay beginning of strip on pattern at bottom, with a pleasing arrangement. Cut. Lay strip again upon fabric, offsetting squares, overlapping previous strip about 1/2" to duplicate seam allowance. Cut ends and sew two pieces together. Press well. Continue this process until you reach the end.
Step 5: Finishing Up Pants
9. To create second, symmetrical pants piece, lay piece you just made right-side-up, and use the end of patchwork strip as your new starting point. Create second pants leg pattern in the same manner as first, mirroring by placing strips face down.
Where the front fly and back seam will be sewn together, the squares should be perfectly symmetrical, but the legs can be slightly randomized. Cutting 120 squares gives enough for about 5% waste.
Step 6: Sewing the Seams, and a Cellphone Pocket
10. Sew front and back seams together, lining up squares. Overcast raw edge. Press seam well.
11. Create cellphone pocket. Pull pants on to decide best spot for pocket. Create pocket slightly larger than phone, using same squares colors from where it will be located. Pin to pants and topstitch on.
12. Sew leg inseams, overcast raw edges and press out.
Fold waistband down 3" and press. Press 1" seam and stitch down, creating casing, leaving 2" gap at back.
Step 7: Waistband and Hem
13. Cut elastic several inches more than your waist. Feed through casing, pin, and try on. When happy with fit, zigzag elastic at seam for strength, and close up casing gap.
14. Hem. Pin pants approximately 2", matching pattern square lines. Try on to determine desired length. Sew hem and press.
Step 8: Finished Pants
These are the nicest, most comfortable pajama pants I have ever owned.
A unique and very warm pair of high-quality house pants. I'll take care of these to enjoy them for many decades to come!
I hope these inspire you to make your own patchwork garment.
Participated in the
Sew Warm Speed Challenge