A Pyjama Party with Independent Pattern Designers

The day has finally arrived!  The lovely and multi-talented Karen Ball, from Did You Make That?, who also recently began writing for The Guardian Fashion Blogger’s Network, is hosting a Pyjama Party and we are all invited!Rosetta-Pajama PartyAlso this month, two very gregarious and skilled sewing bloggers, Kat from Modern Vintage Cupcakes teamed up with Mel from The Curious Kiwi to host Indie Pattern Month, so I have also invited a few Independent Pattern Designers to join the Party!

Sewaholic Tofino Pants Pattern

Sewaholic Tofino Pants Pattern

Colette Sorbetto Top Pattern

Colette Sorbetto Top Pattern

Downtown DIY Sewing Book PJ Bottoms Pattern

Downtown DIY Sewing Book Lazy Morning PJ Bottoms Pattern

For the pajama bottoms, I used the Sewaholic Tofino Pants Pattern, and ‘frankenpatterned’ them by adding elements from the Lazy Morning PJ Bottoms pattern found in the book Downtown DIY Sewing by Alice Chadwick.  I also added a pajama top to the mix and decided on Colette Patterns Sorbetto top.  This is actually a free pattern and you can download the PDF for it by clicking here, then print it out onto letter sized paper and tape together.Folded Colette Sorbetto TopFolded Sewaholic Downtown DIY Sewing Book Pajama BottomsI love the wide legs, shaped front and back and piping design element of the Tofino pattern, but also wanted to add the ridiculously adorable heart-shaped pockets and contrasting hem and waistband from the Lazy Morning PJ Pattern.  Both the body and the contrast fabric for the pajamas are 100% cotton.  I used ivory coloured lingerie piping, which is made of satin, (instead of the ready-made cotton piping), and the sheen really made the pajama bottoms look elegant.  This type of piping would look great with silk or satin fabric.

Sewaholic Tofino Frankenpatterned Pajama Waistband and Heart Pockets  Sewaholic Tofino Frankenpatterned Pajama Piping and Contrast Hem TrimSewaholic Tofino Frankenpatterned Pajama Bottoms2Sewaholic Tofino Frankenpatterned Pajama Bottoms3I had just enough fabric for a small matching top, so downloaded the Colette Sorbetto, as it only used approximately 3/4 of a metre of fabric for the entire top.  This was my first time making this pattern and I just love it!  So simple, but the result is very polished.  Colette Sorbetto Pajama Top 2I used an ivory 1/4″ pre-made bias binding (although the pattern calls for 1/2″) as I wanted it to emulate the thin piping on the pants.  An alternative would have been to make bias binding out of the contrast fabric from the pajama bottoms hem and waistband.  Ultimately, I decided this would have been too ‘busy’ as the main fabric’s paisley pattern was already quite elaborate.Sorbetto Top and Tofino Frankenpattern Bottom PajamasAnd now, you are wondering to yourself, “What is she going to do with two little heart-shaped pockets on the pajamas?  What will she carry in there?”  Well, I can answer that…

Kitty treats!  For The One I Heart.  :)For The One I Heart 2For The One I HeartKitty and I

credits:  First Picture of Pajama Party, circa 1927, taken from http://laughwithrosetta.blogspot.ca/2012/06/pajama-party.html

Bocce Ball: Kitty Selects a Winner for Pattern Pyramid!

Yes, Bocce Ball!  A fun, jam packed exciting lawn bowling game made popular in ancient times during the Roman Empire.  Summer is the perfect time for a rousing match, so Kitty decided to select the Winning Pattern Pyramid Entrant through a game of Bocce Ball!

And, since we have no idea how to play Bocce Ball, we made up our own rules!  Best kind of game ever.

Prepping the Bocce Balls with Entrant Numbers 1 to 28

28 entrants – 28 Bocce balls

We had a total of 28 entrants, so numbers 1 to 28 were stuck onto 28 Bocce Balls.  A Winner’s Circle was set up along with a panel of Judges, to rule on any discrepancies in throws.

Winner's Circle and Panel of Judges

Winner’s Circle and Panel of Judges

LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!…………….

GAME ON!!!!!

GAME ON!!!!!

Bocce Balls began whirling and rolling in seemingly random directions.  That’s mostly because we cannot throw.

Go For It Kitty!

Go For It Kitty!

Where Did It Land

This way. Throw them THIS way.

Kitty takes full charge of the game, never letting any Bocce ball go by, without giving it his stamp of approval and padding after it, (in popular Canadian Curling style) to maneuver it toward the Winner’s Circle.

Bocce Ball Inspection

Each Bocce Ball Must Be Thoroughly Inspected by Kitty

Kitty inspects each throw, psychically willing every Bocce Ball to land within the Winners Circle.

Kitty impatiently awaits the release of yet another Bocce Ball.

Throw Another One!

Throw Another One! THROW IT!!

Kitty is quick to point out that VERY few Bocce Balls are actually entering the Winner’s Circle.  Which is quite sad, since we did, indeed, make up our own rules, you’d think we’d be able to get at least one into the Winner’s Circle.

Did Not Make the Winners Circle Throw Again

Wow! 0 for 0. You are terrible at this game!

Kitty takes pity on the ball players and opts to offer up some strategic advice for throwing the Bocce balls.

"Throw it a little more to the right.  The right!!  Not YOUR right, MY right!  That way!"

“Throw it a little more to the right. The right!! Not YOUR right, MY right! That way!”

Oh my goodness!!!  Upon Kitty’s sage advice, the game begins to pick up!  Miracle upon miracles!! One Bocce Ball finally enters into the Winner’s Circle!!!  Immediately after, a second ball quickly follows suit.

So Far Two Made it Into the Winners Circle

Two Bocce Balls in the Winner’s Circle!!

The excitement is palpable, Kitty is duly impressed! And, it’s hard to impress Kitty.

Wonder Twin Bocce Ball Powers ACTIVATE

“Excellent Job!” says Kitty. “High Five – Paw.”

Wait!! What’s this??  A third Bocce ball enters the coveted Winner’s Circle.  The judges are bowled over!  (Literally. I had to set them back upright a few times….)

Three Bocce Balls Make It Into the Winners Circle

Three Bocce Balls Enter the Winner’s Circle. Kitty and the Judges are overwhelmed.

Ah, but now, which of the three is the winning Bocce ball?  Lucky for us, Kitty is able utilize his astonishing powers of intuition to sniff out the winner!

Which One Do I Like

Kitty circles, attempting to intuit the winning Bocce ball.

He circles and circles, he is practically vibrating, his spidey senses are tingling.  He peruses and paces….Honing in, getting closer…..

Yes I Feel as if This One is the Winner

“Yes, I’m sensing THIS is the winning Bocce ball.”

And, amazingly, he does it!!Kitty Randomly Selects Bocce Ball 10 from the Winners Circle

IMG_3754YES!!!!!!!!!  Winner Selected!!!!!!!!!!  Bocce Ball Number 10.  And, from the list of entrants, number 10 corresponds to………….(drum rolll)………………….:

"Here.  This is the Winner.  See it?  See it?  Look Closer!  It's the 10."

“Here. This is the Winner. See it? See it? Look! Look Closer! It’s the 10.”

List of Entrants

Fiona Parker from Diary of a Chain Stitcher.

Congratulations Fiona!  Kitty and I are very happy for you!!

Please email me with your specs so that I may get the Pattern Pyramid to you!

"My Work Here is Done"

“My Work Here is Done”

 

Great Gatsby Sew-Along, The Cat’s Pajamas (One Giant Leap for Womankind)

Beach Pajamas By Tree2The phrase, “the cat’s pajamas” was coined in the 1920s in reference to the unconventional spirit of the female flapper (“cat”) and, combined with the word pajamas (a relatively new fashion in the 1920s), it formed a phrase used to describe something that is the best at what it does, thus making it highly sought after and desirable.Beach Pajamas and HatFor the Great Gatsby Sewing Challenge spearheaded by Miss Crayola Creepy, I decided to sew a pair of Beach or Lounge Pajamas from a Butterick 4177 Pattern.

Butterick 4177 Jumpsuit Pattern

Sewing Pattern I used: Butterick 4177 Jumpsuit

1920s dresses bird silhouette print

1920s dresses with bird silhouette print

Pajamas were the new lounge wear of the 1920s, no longer limited to actually sleeping in.

In the 1920s and 1930s, these garments, made of soft satin and embroidered “a la Chinoise,” became not only acceptable, but a chic, stylish item for women to wear to soirees in the homes of their bohemian friends.

Art Deco was also popular in the 1920s and fabric prints reflected this.

Art Deco Fabrics (Spoonflower)

Art Deco Fabrics (Spoonflower)

Great Gatsby Fabric

Fabric: Art Deco Inspired Print in an ultra-thin rayon challis and Bird Silhouette Print in a poly gauze

I selected an Art Deco inspired geometric print for the Beach Pajamas in a very delicately thin and airy rayon challis, 100% viscose (which was difficult to cut and sew with) and added a silhouette bird pattern fabric (also popular in the 1920s) for the collar and pockets, in a poly gauze.  PantsuitIn the years 1880-1910, the ideal female profile would resemble the letter “S”. Ladies would force themselves into corsets and squeeze their waists down to often below 20 inches in diameter. This would raise their ribcage producing a prominent chest or “pigeon front”. The sides would be pushed back and the rear raised or padded to produce the lower curve of the “S”.

Misses' Polonaise Costume, from Butterick's Delineator, September 1883

Misses’ Polonaise Costume, from Butterick’s Delineator, September 1883

Before the twentieth century, women were technically not allowed to wear pants because it was deemed a masculine item, and they were ostracized if they opted to do so.  The Women’s Suffrage movement gained its greatest victory in 1920 when the 19th Amendment prohibited gender discrimination in the voting polls. This political gain opened a decade of many radical changes in the perception and presentation of women.  One of these changes was the change in the oppressive and sometimes health detriments of women’s fashions of the time.  Dress reformers in the 19th century tackled this issue of female oppression by fashion by promoting social improvement in practicality over trends, for health and comfort over convention, and rationality over conformity

Paul Poiret harem pants

Paul Poiret harem pants

The arrival of World War I (1914–18) gave many women jobs as men went to join the military and many women wore trousers and overalls to work in factories.

Eastern culture inspired French designer Paul Poiret (1879–1944) to become one of the first to design pants (trousers) for women. In 1913 Poiret created loose-fitting, wide-leg trousers for women called harem pants, which were based on the costumes of the popular opera Sheherazade.

Thelma Todd in a late 1920s early 1930s Beach Pajama Ensemble

Thelma Todd in a Beach Pajama Ensemble

Fun in Beach Pajamas1920’s fashion trends were all about rebellion. The 1920’s were a time of backlash. People were lashing out at the rigid formalities of the Victorian era and defying the restrictions that came with the Prohibition era.

1920s Sewing Pattern

1920s/30s Sewing Pattern

1920s Beach Pajamas McCalls Pattern

1920s/30s Beach Pajamas McCalls Pattern

Lounging in Lounge PajamasUntil the 1920s, pajamas were only worn as sleepwear, then sometime in the 1920s, they made their way outdoors as a cover-up over swimming costumes on the beaches of the French Riveria.

Beach Pajamas La Cote D'Azure

Beach Pajamas La Cote D’Azure

During the 1920s, Coco Chanel and Madeleine Vionnet promoted silky, luxurious pajamas as evening wear to wear initially in private after which Coco Chanel began to wear trousers herself in public.  This was a new, ‘masculine’ look that offered loose, sailor style trousers for women to wear at home and at the beach. These ‘beach pajamas’ were an early form of the pants suit.Walking in Breeze in Beach PajamasLe-Sourire_1933

When crepe beach and lounge pajamas were first worn at the seaside, trouser wearing women were a rare sight and still very much confined to only beach and promenade areas while in public.  Society still did not want to accept women in this new role.1926 photo Ready to Strut My StuffBeach Pajamas and Great Gatsby BookFinally, by the late 1920s, beach pajamas appeared outside the bedroom as swimsuit cover-ups on the beaches and boats of the French Riviera, then quickly moved on to the streets of Britain and spread across the globe.

1920s Beach Pajamas PosterThey are comfortable.  They are stylish.  They are cool and breezy.  They are practical.  They are leaps and bounds above corsets, petticoats, cages and heavy long skirts.  Long Live the Lounge / Beach Pajama!!

Kitty Wants

Kitty Wants

Also, don’t forget to enter the Wellington Pattern Pyramid, here.  The last day for entry is this Friday June 7, 2013.

Resources and Credits:

http://www.swingfashionista.com/tag/beach-pyjamas/

http://www.ehow.com/info_8110935_did-women-dress-1920s.html

http://fashionbloglife.com/1920sfashion/

1930s beach and lounging pyjamas…how I love thee

http://weeklysilence.wordpress.com/2011/12/09/research-paper-pants-phenomenon-the-switch-from-skirts-to-trousers/

http://www.fashionencyclopedia.com/fashion_costume_culture/Modern-World-1930-1945/Trousers-for-Women.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tove-hermanson/women-pants-politics_b_541555.html