Putting a Patch Pocket on Pajama Pants

Found a bargain on pajama pants last week, and I needed some new ones.  On clearance for $8, bright pink and peach plaid.  If you’ve been to Old Navy you’ve probably seen them. They had racks full of them!  No wonder they were clearanced.

Love em!  But they have no pockets, and I need a pocket. I’m addicted to lip balm and need a pocket to keep it in, even in my pajama pants!

No way I could match the plaid, but I have a good stack of pinks and peachy corals, so I found something to match.

I had some little squares leftover from a quilt in progress and thought they were about the right size so I put right sides together,

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

and made a little patch out of a plaid and this funky polka dot.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

I turned it right side out, pressed it and top stitched around the edges of this little square, soon to be pocket.

Now if you’ve followed pattern instructions for putting on a pocket you’ve probably been instructed to cut one pocket and then press back a seam allowance pin it like crazy and try to stitch all those raw edges underneath.

That’s nonsense!

I don’t have the patience to do it that way, so I cut out two pocket pieces. Make a tiny pillow out of them. Press it flat and then stitch it on.

Voila! A pocket. And none of the frustration of lots of pins, and keeping that seam allowance hidden underneath. Ugh! This way is so much easier!

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

I was thinking of those little pocket watch pockets in Levis…. So I thought this would be just right.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

Wrong!

I thought they were “about the same size” and I was right. the pocket and my lip gloss are the same size, which means the pocket is too small.

Maybe it I turn it on an angle.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

Close enough.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

The plaid made it easy to eyeball it so I pinned it and stitched it.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

The little flap is just a smidge off,  but you might not have noticed it if I hadn’t told you.

But this pocket is very tiny.  What if I need a tissue? Or need to have my phone handy?

I guess I’ll make another pocket.

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It pays to have an extensive stash where I can just pull things out at the drop of a hat.

I assembled the pockets (I decided to make two while I was at it) and stitched up my miniature pillows.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

Then I added a cuff on the top.

Now if I’d planned ahead I would have stitched the band on the top first, and then made the little pillow and applied it. But I wasn’t planning ahead so I went the long way around the mulberry bush.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

And I stitched them on, guessing on the placement and aligning them with the plaid. I coulda tried the pants on and marked the pocket placement, but where’s the fun in that? I am quite experienced with the seam ripper if things don’t work out.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

The opening is at the top and the bottom is sealed so I think that’s a win.

But it’s kind of boring. So back to the stash. This time digging through ribbon and trims.

How about some little pink ball fringe?

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

You won’t find ball fringe like this at any fabric store. I’ve been schlepping this around for a couple of decades.

Decades! I promise you.

They’re smaller than you’ll find today, and not as fuzzy.  And I have about a yard. Had about a yard. Now, after trimming two pockets, I have about two feet of it left.

I stitched it on by hand  so it will be easy to remove if I change my mind.

Pajama Pant Pockets on JanMadeIt

If I’d been planning to use this all along, I would have machine stitched them into that seam, but this works too.

What’s with all this planning ahead?

I have another pair of pants that need pockets. They’re white twill, and soooo comfortable, but the pockets will have to be set in the side seams. It will take less than a quarter yard of white muslin. I have some of that in my stash too.  I’ll do that and show you how I pull it off.

Have you had to add pockets or otherwise make amendments to a ready made garment? Was it easy? Did it work how you wanted? Did you wing it, or plan ahead? I’d love to hear how you pulled it off.

Jan

 

 

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Got a pattern? Make a dress!

I love patterns. I don’t think I’d yet outgrown Christmas toy catalogs when I discovered pattern books.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

I didn’t realize turquoise was such a huge color in the 60s, but it keeps showing up on pattern envelopes from that decade. These two patterns are very different, one is understated and the other is ready to party, they equally represent the style of the era.

I used to spend forever flipping through those huge volumes looking for just the right dress or outfit for my wardrobe.

McCalls 6226 1978 vest pattern on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

Diane Keaton started a new trend with her style in Annie Hall. I really like the shape of this Annie Hall inspired vest. I might have to make one of these before I sell this pattern.

My back-t0-school shopping started at the fabric store in July. Mom and I sent the pattern numbers I picked to my Florida Grandma and before Labor Day I would receive a box FULL of new clothes ready to wear.

1948 Swing Coat by Simplicity on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

I love 40s era swing coats, and was delighted to find this pattern in my stash. It’s lined, but I think I’ll use fleece and make it reversible. It’s Simplicity 2380, copyright 1948 and the pattern is uncut. I’ll draw my own pattern so this one will be for sale soon.

I have several tubs full of personal patterns and recently discovered the joys of collecting patterns that belonged to someone else.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

This dress has a pieced bodice, and the jacket is pieced along the same lines. It’s the perfect forerunner to the color block styles that made an appearance shortly. I like the little bow that’s on the jacket. It’s something Sally would wear on the Dick Van Dyke Show. She always had a little bow in her hair.

One batch—a baker’s dozen—was tied up with cotton string. The earliest is the 1948 swing coat, which I want to make for myself.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

We didn’t care how much trouble it was to go to the bathroom, these jumpsuits were a huge hit in the 60s. And yes, we managed even with the zipper in the back. These were very cute, and fun to wear.

Most of the patterns in this bundle are from the 60s, with the Nehru blouse set one of the most recent. Seems like about half this batch is uncut. The ones that are used are still very neat and tidy.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

In 1968 Nehru style was a big hit. I love this blouse set. The print on the left is open down the front and can be worn as a jacket. Check out the bell sleeves. The white one fits closer to the body and slips over your head. These would look great over a pair of leggings or skinny jeans. I wonder if I have a piece of vintage paisley somewhere around here.

I started itemizing my pattern collection last week but I  haven’t done the math to guess of how many patterns I might have. Every time I turn around I find a few more shoe boxes, or maybe a grocery sack full of them.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

Can’t you see Peggy wearing this dress to the office in the early years of Mad Men

I realize I have way more patterns than I think I do. A stack six or eight inches tall turned out to be about twenty patterns so a shoe box might hold fifty patterns. I have a LOT of shoe boxes full of patterns.

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This looks like a dress and jacket, but it’s a blouse and skirt. And the blouse has a waistband so you don’t have to keep tucking it in. The blouse buttons up the back. That very tiny slit at the throat was a popular style element at the time. I think Betty Draper on Mad Men would have worn the floral print, with the matching jacket on the right. The solid color with contrast trim looks like something Jackie would have worn. The light and dark contrast and pillbox hat remind me of the pink and navy Chanel suit she wore in Dallas on Nov. 22, 1963. I like the 3/4 sleeves that perfectly line up with the hem of the jacket which makes them just right for those gloves.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

Again on Mad Men this is absolutely something Peggy would have worn after her promotion to copy writer. This dress has a low waist that drops into a V on one hip. There is a sew-in waistband and attached bow. I’m not a fan of the kimono sleeves, but I like the waistline.This is a Marian Martin mail order pattern.

In the meantime, contact me if you see something you want.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

Have you seen Alfred Hitchcock‘s Rear Window? Thelma Ritter played Jimmy Stewart‘s health care attendant in that movie, which is one of my favorites. She showed up as a housekeeper in a few movies of that era, and this dress and coat reminds me of something she might have worn when she worked with Doris Day.  How’s that for six degrees of separation from Rock Hudson?

Some pattern companies have reissued old patterns in the past few years and there are some retro-inspired patterns also available.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

This is your basic “I Love Lucy” kind of pajama set. A loose-fitting button front shirt with elastic waist pants is all there is to it, but I really like the little pouch they included. It’s a simple envelope all decked out with lace trim that matches the pjs. Too cute!

Tell me if there’s a style or specific pattern number you’re looking for and I’ll let you know when I come across it.

Tent Dress on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

Tent dresses, as we called them, were all the rage when I was in junior high. I had a few, usually made by mom. My favorite was similar to this with a rolled collar. It was lightweight polyester crepe, white with huge green polka dots. I remember wearing it the last day of school in ninth grade. It was so cool and comfortable.

Shipping will be about $2 for most patterns. The oversize Vogue Designer patterns, and overstuffed pattern envelopes will cost more to ship and I will combine shipping for multiple purchases.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

This was a “mail order” pattern company. Once a week on the women’s page there was a small ad with one of the patterns and where to send your money to buy it. For fifty cents you could get a catalog.

As to individual pattern prices, it will depend on which pattern it is, and the condition of the pattern. I’ll check each pattern as I list them (which is why this will take a little while) to make sure all the pieces are there.

Stylish Mid Century Patterns on Jan Made It

Matching coats were part of ensembles at the time. The dress, a simple construction with inset waist, sleeveless or with short sleeves, is made more interesting with a matching coat. The coat can also be made with 3/4 length sleeves.

I know some of the patterns have missing pieces and some patterns will be too wrinkled, crinkled and tattered to use for sewing. Those odds and ends will go into a stash and be available for decoupage or other paper projects.

Even if you don’t sew it’s fun to look through the fashions we wore.

Is there a certain style or era that speaks to you?

 

Baby Bibs and Slippers ~ Recycling Denim Jeans

Here’s what I’ve been up to this week.

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I’ve been stitching up more of my Denim Jean Skirts  and of course my mind is wandering over all the ways I can use the leftover denim.

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I was sewing at the flea market a couple of weeks ago and someone came by and got all excited about these bibs she’d been making for friends.

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She was making the kerchief trimmed ones and said they are excellent “drool” bibs for teething toddlers. Then she came back the next week and brought me a sample and a template so I could sell them.

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After I made a couple with kerchiefs I spied a stash of eyelet trim and decided to use it to decorate a few in a different style.

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Then I was checking through pinterest looking at other uses for old jeans and came across some baby slippers, which I adapted with an elastic band around the heel.

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And then I added trim to match the bibs.

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Aren’t they cute?

I have them at my booth at the flea market at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds this weekend and I’ll add them to my etsy store next week.

Do you have an idea for a denim makeover? I’ve made small purses, a small tote, and lots of skirts. What’s your favorite?

 

More Jean-Top Skirts ~ Cute, Huh?

Last year I scrounged up a handful of jeans that I intended to make into purses or aprons.

Since I tend to scrounge up too many things I haven’t done that yet, but I did come across a couple that I turned into few more jean skirts! You can find the first batch I made here.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

First I made these two adult size skirts… too big for me—thank goodness—but I had them, so I made them. The one on the left is a denim skirt with those rarely used cloth napkins attached on the diagonal. Very light and fluttery.

On the right, it’s a black pair of jeans with a cotton skirt detached from the waistband. Both are cool and comfy with all the handy pockets intact.

I admit I should have pressed the hankies before I took this picture, but “C’est le vie”…

So following up on this I wanted to do some more with the cloth napkins… which are bountiful at estate sales, and way underappreciated.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

Again, I should have cleaned off the ironing board and pressed these, but you get the idea.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

This was a Gymboree size 5 jean with pink stitching.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

I found an oversized napkin—only one—and cut it into quarters. I hemmed the raw edges of the napkin pieces and then trimmed the other two sides with rick rack, pink lace, and more rick rack.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

The other pair of jeans was from Arizona & Co., size 10 1/2 Plus.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

I cut three lace edged napkins in half on the diagonal—making six pieces—and layered them before stitching them to the bottom of the jeans top.

Jeans Makeover into a Skirt on JanMadeIt

Cute, huh?

If you want to know how to make one of your own let me know and I’ll post a more detailed tutorial. And these are for sale if you’re interested.

Thanks for reading!

Jan

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