Thursday, December 16, 2010
I'm breaking my vow to not post anyone's Christmas presents on my blog until after the holidays for two reasons: 1) so I can qualify for Finny Knits' sew along where this month's challenge is to make anything from One Yard Wonders, and 2) because I'm impatient and eager to bask in the praise that is sure to come as soon as I reveal what I made. Plus I'm not convinced that any of my real life friends read my blog so I think I'm safe.
I'd bought some cutesy unicorn fabric at Jo-Ann the first time I spotted it on the shelf because unicorn fabric is extremely difficult to come by. I have a friend who, despite the ravages of age and the obvious decline in the state of our nation, has managed to maintain her childlike innocence and adores things like unicorns, dragons, and fairies. Start singing any Disney song around her and she'll immediately chime in with the rest of the song. Heck, if you don't stop her she might continue to sing every song from the movie. I'd had my eye out for unicorn fabric for ages and was starting to wonder how difficult it would be to draw horns on some horse fabric when I spotted Jo-Ann's offering. Yes, the colors are bright, bordering on neon and yes, it's clearly designed for a child but it had unicorns on it and that was good enough for me. Hopefully good enough for her too. After that it was just a matter of figuring out what I'd make for my friend using the silly fabric. I settled on the sleep shorts from One Yard Wonders so she wouldn't necessarily have to wear/use the ridiculous fabric in public.
The good: The shorts sewed up pretty quickly; in less than one afternoon I had the completed item and that includes the dreaded process of cutting out the fabric. Aside from fabric the only other supply required was some 1/2 elastic. You do have to draft your own pattern but the directions walk you through it with a helpful diagram. Only two simple pattern pieces are needed.
The bad: The pattern is customizable based on your measurements, which is nice in theory but makes it difficult to sew as a gift. Fortunately my friend is about my size so I know that if it fits me it'll be OK on her but I would have appreciated a little guidance and perhaps some sample measurements for small, medium, and large shorts. I also had a hard time coming up with the measurements for the rise. I loosely based them off of some other lounge shorts I own but because those are a little on the short side I tried to add a few inches to those measurements to cut back on the hoochy factor. Not sure I got it perfectly right as there's some poofed out fabric below the waistline after I took it in with the elastic. I don't know if that's because the pattern doesn't take curves into account or if I did something wrong with my measurements, but I was afraid that if I made the hips any smaller they might not fit. I guess a little loose is always better than too tight. I also might try using wider elastic and adding a drawstring next time as a wide waistline seems to flatter me the best, but those are just personal preferences. Honestly, I'll probably forgo this pattern altogether the next time I want to make sleep shorts since I own a Simplicity pattern for the same thing. I was just too lazy to dig it out and cut out the pattern pieces but it might be worth going with a standard pattern next time to ensure proper fit.
Since it's being given as a gift I decided to go all out and pair it with a top to create a pajama set. I found a blue t-shirt at Target that perfectly matches the blue unicorn's mane and tail and appliqued a green unicorn onto it to complete the set. Despite my qualms about the fit I do think it makes a nice gift and if it's the only pattern you have on hand you can make it work. Plus it's probably easier to make for yourself so you can model them and adjust the seams and measurements accordingly.