After only 9 months of indecision, my bestest friend Leanne Leanne finally settled on the perfect gift for her 30th birthday - a pyjama sewing class! So yesterday, we headed off under a rather dark sky to Norwich to take a beginners pyjama making class at Make Place, a local craft workshop.
For the class, we had to take along 2.5metres of cotton and a coordinating ribbon in a suitable pyjama pattern. This was the first stumbling block; there's so many beautiful fabrics out there, how can you possibly choose just one?!?! I'm rather taken with the cute little animal patterns out there at the moment, like this one, this one, this one and this one. I took a trip to our local haberdashery for the first time, admittedly, not with very high hopes compared to what I had found on the internet, but was pleasantly surprised to find a good variety, and lots of modern fabrics too. Right in the middle of the sizeable display was the perfect fabric for me - multicoloured spots! As soon as I saw it, I had to have it (I'm so predictable, Leanne had chosen her fabric the day before and had guessed that this might be the one for me). I also grabbed a couple of fat quarters in some cute little designs and a matching purple ribbon:
The class had just 5 students, 3 making pyjamas and 2 making shorts. We quickly decided upon the size we wished to make and set to cutting out our material. After a quick demonstration of how to use their machines (super fancy Juki ones, *swoon*) we overlocked the edges of the pyjama legs. Whilst this is a quick and efficient way of edging the legs and cutting them neatly, I couldn't help but feel like it was somewhat of a cheat to use the overlocker, and it would have been nice to learn how to edge it using a standard machine instead. That being said, I did enjoy whooshing my fabric along the overlocker and it looked so professional as it came out the other side!
We stitched up the long leg seams, ironed them open and then sewed in the hem. Then came the tough part, sewing up the crotch. Although it took a bit of concentration, this went without a hitch and with a bit more seam ironing, we set about making a little channel at the waistband through which to thread the elastic. I took such care and attention over this step; partly because it's what you can see most easily and partly because I really wanted to practice my nice neat straight stitching. It worked! The elastic fitted perfectly, and once the ribbon was sewn on, the pyjamas were complete.
I have to say, I am very proud to show you the first garment I've ever made. Are you ready...
A perfect fit right?! A good length, elastic gathered equally around the top, I think these could pass as a pair bought from a shop. Have a closer look:
Why thank you, you're right, it is rather well matched hem for a first attempt at clothing! Leanne's pjs were just as professional looking:
After the class, we treated ourselves to a celebratory slice of cake and drink before we headed home, but we both love love loved our sewing class, and when I spoke to her later in the evening, Leanne had already been searching online for a sewing machine to treat herself to. Converted! A successful day all round. I can't wait to practice the skills I've learnt, and the new Tilly Warnes book Love at First Stitch which should be coming through my postbox very soon might just help me to keep it up!