I sewed a cozy, flannel winter nightgown inspired by Saint Lucia’s Day. Well, actually, I sewed two nightgowns; one for each of my girls. Let me show you what I made.
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This past December we celebrated Saint Lucia’s Day. You can read about our celebration and see our Saint Lucia’s Day crowns here. Both of my daughters wanted white gowns with red sashes for the morning festivities. I was thinking about something a little more practical. A few years ago I made them both flannel nightgowns for winter. Those nightgowns were worn frequently and well loved. I decided to make them new nightgowns of cozy white flannel accented with a band of red flannel at the waist. My daughters liked the idea, so I went shopping for supplies.
Pattern: Simplicity 1722
Simplicity 1722 is a Learn to Sew pattern that includes pajama pants, a top, and a nightgown. I had made my daughters two other nightgowns using this pattern in the past: one in cotton and one in flannel. My daughters wore those nightgowns happily until they were way too small to wear. I had made adjustments to this pattern on the previous nightgowns for design interest, so I knew that this pattern would be easy to work with when it can time for the planned band of red at the waist.
Fabric: Robert Kaufman Flannel in Snow and Scarlet
After I purchased the fabric I realized that washing a red and white garment was going to pose a challenge. One wash and my nightgown could have been pink and red. I prewashed the white flannel once. I washed the red flannel separately from the white three times! Each time I used a Shout Color Catcher in the washing machine to catch the extra dye that bled off of the red fabric. This prewashing worked. I’m pleased to report that I’ve washed the finished nightgowns a few times now and the white is still white! I continue to wash the nightgowns in cold water, and I use a Color Catcher with each wash to avoid any problems.
The nightgown is gathered at the high waist by an elastic inserted into a casing. I decided to center my red band around this casing so that the gather would run horizontally down the middle of the red band. To accomplish this I used the elastic casing placement line on the pattern piece as a guide and drew lines on the pattern 1 1/2 inches above and below the casing line.
I cut the pattern on my two new lines and added a 1/4″ seam allowance to the top and bottom of the pattern piece using tissue paper. This 3″ strip with added seam allowances will become the new pattern piece for the red flannel waistband.
I added the same 1/4″ seam allowance to the bodice piece and skirt piece. It’s challenging to see but in the above picture you can just make out the narrow 1/4″ strip of tissue paper that was added to each pattern piece.
I made these same adjustments for both the front and back pattern pieces.
Cutting the Pattern Pieces:
The front and back bodice pieces and the front and back skirt pieces were cut from the Robert Kaufman flannel in snow. The front and back waistband pieces were cut from the scarlet Robert Kaufman Flannel.
Since I was sewing with a sturdy flannel fabric, I planned to finish all seam allowances with a pinked edge. To get a jump start on seam finishes, and to avoid having to pink the 1/4″ seam allowance that I gave to the waistband pieces, I cut those seam lines with my pinking rotary cutter when I was cutting out my fabric. I love a good shortcut!
Sewing the Nightgown:
My first steps were to join the white bodice to the red waistband. The seam allowance was pressed toward the red band and understitched. Then the bodice/waistband piece was sewn to the white skirt. Again the seam allowance was pressed toward the waistband and understitched. Below you can see that I used an edgestitch foot to understitch this seam allowance, and you can see the finished result; both front and back.
The side seams, sleeves, hem, and casings were sewn according to package instructions.
I sewed a size 10 for both my girls. The fit is a bit big on them now, but I wanted growing room hoping for two years of use from these nightgowns. To accommodate for the larger size, I reduced the size of the neckline by using a shorter piece of elastic than what was called for in the instructions. This cinched in the neckline providing a more comfortable fit for the girls.
What do you think? This cozy, winter flannel nightgown has seen a lot of use so far this winter. I think it’s a winner! Have you been sewing lately? I’d love to hear about it. Tell me about what you like to sew in the comment section!