I love having a place like Indiesew to not only share what I’ve made but also see how others used the same pattern. There is so much rich content and inspiration to be found there.Being part of the Indiesew blogger team has been just the nudge I needed to try out many patterns that have been on my “to-make” list for awhile. The more garments I make the more I realize that one of the most important factors of any garment I spend my time on is that it be practical for me to wear. Unless its something really, really simple, making your own clothes is a labor of love. It takes time. Lots of it. I hate when I spend a bunch of time on something and it just ends up sitting in my closet because it doesn’t fit into my everyday lifestyle. It might be a beautiful thing that I’ve made. I may even love it, but the truth is if I can work into into regular rotation it’s probably not something I will ever make again, no matter now pretty it is.
Lately, I’ve really been trying to pay attention to what I gravitate towards on the daily so I can make more conscious choices about where to best spend my time on projects. I didn’t used to do this. I used to buy almost every pattern I saw that I liked. It wasn’t until I had both a few duds and a few successes that I realized I needed to be more discerning so I could get the most out of what I worked on. I think that is definitely one of the key things you discover when you begin your handmade wardrobe crafting journey. That is, which patterns are worth your time and which are not. To be clear, when I say some patterns aren’t worth your time I’m not saying that the patterns are “bad.” On the contrary, many if not most of them are amazing and the garments fit great, and look super cute, etc… The thing is, if I’m going to spend hours on something I expect to wear it more than once. Heck, I expect to grab for it once a week if the season is right. The hope is to wear it to death because I loved it so much and then make another. Thats what this is all about for me. Using the skills I have acquired to craft my life in a way that suits what I do and how I live. To make things that are both practical and beautiful.
Enter the Lakeside Pajama pattern from Grainline Studio. These are a perfect example just such a practical pattern. You see where I live it gets hot in the Summer. Really hot. It is not uncommon to have as many as 2 or more consecutive weeks of 100 plus temperatures with no break in heat. Its also not uncommon to wake up in the morning to a sweltering 85°F. We are fortunate enough to have air-conditioning but believe me when I say that the heat can feel smothering even still. I am always hot at night in the Summertime and its frustrating because theres nowhere to go to get away from it. When I was pregnant I used to wake up at night feeling like my feet were on fire and I would get up and go stick them in the freezer or bring ice packs back to bed with me. Then there were the restless legs. Ugh. It was misery.
Which brings me to why I love these so much. I made these pajamas out of Liberty Lawn and they are quite literally the perfect summer pjs for the climate I live in. I love Liberty fabric. Who doesn’t, right? I am always looking for patterns to use with Liberty that don’t require a lot of yardage. Lets face it, Its not the kind of stuff you will get lucky and score in the bargain bin at your local fabric store. Its pricey and if you want more than a yard and a half that dollar sign can hits triple digits pretty quickly. I love that I can buy a smaller amount of fabric and have it be enough to make a complete ensemble that feels beautiful and luxurious. I chose this dark color because even though the fabric is thin its opacity lends a bit of modesty. Liberty Lawn is 100% cotton so its super breathable. It basically feels like nothing when its on which is exactly what I want when its hot. For the trim I used another lightweight voile or poplin that I found in my stash. Its just now getting warm enough to wear them and I can already tell that these are going to be the first thing I grab every time they are clean. I love the loose fitting top and open back of the cami. It doesn’t cling at all and I have full range of motion without any part of me feeling constricted.
I highly recommend this pattern. It is geared toward the advanced beginner with the most difficult part of construction being the bound edges. I have found that a little bit of glue basting can go a long way toward helping me get perfect, professional looking bindings on both my garments and my quilts. It has quickly become one of my most favorite can’t-live-without notions. I use plain old Elmer’s school glue with a Super fine applicator tip. I think I probably use it in some way on nearly every project that comes out of my studio.