March 5, 2015


Oh boy - is it the weekend yet? With spring right around the corner (we get an extra hour of daylight this weekend!!!) - I've got clothing for warmer weather on my mind... But it is still cold out, and I have new cozy PJs to prove it.

I've never been much of a pajama set person before (my usual winter bedtime uniform this year has been a sweatshirt and Hudsons) - but I've officially become a convert! I totally want 5 more pairs of Carolyn Pajamas - so chic! So fancy! Plus... if I'm being honest - they still mix and match quite nicely with sweatshirts and Hudsons :D

These pajamas also make me feel like a rich old man smoking a cigar... in a good way! This is mostly due to fabric choice though... on to the details!

Pattern: Closet Case Carolyn Pajamas
Size: 12 (top) / 14 (bottom)
Modifications: Shortened waistband - see below
Fabric: Rayon challis from Angel Textiles, piping and buttons from Joann's

In keeping with her record of releasing patterns that seem to fill an indie pattern/my wardrobe gap (hello Ginger jeans!), Heather Lou released the Carolyn Pajamas pattern about a month ago, and I snatched it right up. I had no specific fabric in mind, but knew I wanted to use rayon - because rayon is the best fabric ever. On a trip to the garment district, I picked up 4 yards of this royal blue/orange/white/black paisley print - and I was lucky enough to snag some silk for my next pair.

For sizing, I match about a 12 in Closet Case Patterns, but I went with my hip measurement on the pants, which put me closer to a 14 (better to have a looser fit while sleeping). The top is a straight 12, but I may shorten the shoulder seams a bit on the next pair, as they seem slightly boxy. I love the feminine shape of the top (the pattern cuts in a lot at the waist which is great), and the pants are about as flattering as pajama pants can be.

I sewed everything up basically as instructed - and I have to say, I really think Heather Lou did a bang up job with this pattern. The instructions are really easy to follow, and her notched collar tutorial is a humongous help. Plus - it's two garments in one (or really 4 or even 6 depending how you look at it)!

This pattern uses facings to create the notched collar - something that I usually hate, but is absolutely necessary in this pattern. Heather Lou does eliminate the back facing, though - which is awesome. I also dislike using fusible interfacing, so I used some voile and a glue stick, ala Tasia from Sewaholic here. And to be real with you - I used an Elmer's disappearing purple washable glue stick, rather than a "fabric" glue stick. This worked out pretty well, but after washing - I did need to iron out the facings (they got quite wrinkly - this probably would've happened with fusible too). But, how incredibly posh to have to iron your pajamas! ;)

I elected to use store bought piping, rather than homemade, and I'll probably just keep doing that out of laziness on future pairs. Multiple people have mentioned using a piping foot to apply the piping, but I found that my edge stitching foot worked pretty well.

The only change I really made to this pattern was shorten the waistband because I only had 1" elastic on hand. Heather Lou has some other suggestions for waistbands here, but I don't mind the more narrow waistband. I will say I might've made the elastic a bit loose though...

My next plans are to make a silk short sleeve/shorts version for spring and summer, as well as potentially a knit pair (I have a ton of knit yardage from trips to the garment district). And I think it would be cool to try to make an actual shirt from this pattern (did anyone see the new Named pattern that looks pretty similar?).


  1. These look awesome! You did a great job - your collar looks amazing! I love the colours!
    I used interfacing on my shirt and it's so stiff - next time I might try your glue trick. I totally want to make a regular shirt from this pattern too! I thought exactly the same thing when I saw the new Named patterns. I'm trying to decide if I would pipe it though. Can't wait to see your silk ones!

  2. These are gorgeous, so posh and glamorous! The piping looks lovely.

  3. Oh my, so posh! Beautiful detailing and such lovely top stitching!

  4. These looks so great!! Love the piping and your fabric choiceI Putting this pattern on my to-sew list for later in the year. =)

  5. Thanks, Heather! I think the glue stick method is here to stay for me (plus you can get like 30 of them for $11 on Amazon - or something ridiculous like that) - and I definitely recommend using voile. On a recent failed shirtdress (I didn't tell you that I screwed up 3 different ones!) - I used a muslin fabric and it was too thick... the voile works nicely though!

    And I agree - a non-piped version of this would probably look more like a regular shirt (and a cute one), than PJs.

  6. Thank you, Sarah! My edge stitching foot is a complete lifesaver for top stitching - and now piping too!

  7. Thank you!! The piping is really the best part!

  8. Thanks!! I can't believe how loud the fabric is, but I love it too! And you definitely should give this a go!

  9. These make me so happy. They are so Versace in the best possible way. You should be lounging around a pool in South Beach ;)

  10. Thank you so much, Heather Lou!! I'm glad I decided to go a bit outside my comfort zone with the fabric - I love the result! (and it's such a great pattern, too!!!)

  11. You really look like a rich old man, in the best possible way! These are so luxe and in rayon challis, I bet they're insanely comfortable! I've been cheaping out on making these (they take so much fabric and I don't have enough yardage in my stash), but my pajamas are all in terrible shape, so I'm pretty tempted to give these a try!

  12. Thank you!! It really is a pain to need so much fabric, but it's soooo worth it. I luckily found silk that was fairly inexpensive in the garment district for the next pair, but I'm just doing the short sleeve/shorts version so I can keep the cost down. Luckily this rayon was only $2/yard!

  13. $2/yd?! Wow! I wish I'd known how to sew when I lived in LA!

  14. yeah i know! the silk was $5... and it's legit (I got three different silks too at those prices). If you're in LA again - I can show you where to get literally pounds of fabric on the cheap!