Very Slow Fashion: Carolyn Pajamas in Rifle Paper Co Fabric

October 6, 2016
Carolyn Pajamas in Rifle Paper Co Fabric

Carolyn Pajamas in Rifle Paper Co fabricCarolyn Pajamas in Rifle Paper Co fabricThis project really tested me and not in a way that I was expecting.

These are the Carolyn Pajamas from Closet Case Files, made in the Rifle Paper Co rayon from Cotton and Steel. They may be the prettiest things I own. They make me feel like a grown-up (and like I need more sophisticated bedding to match.) They have piping and french seams and I love them.

However, those fancy finishes add significantly to the sewing time and there were several points with this project where I thought, “I could just go buy a pair of pj pants for 12.99 at any store and be done with it.” In 30 minutes, I could have a cute new pair, for the price of a sandwich. There is very little instant gratification in sewing and it’s been surprising to see how trained I am to want something new, right away.

But, they would not be these pajamas. They would be the most basic, cheap things and clothing should not cost the same amount as the lunch special. My gorgeous pajamas are worth every extra bit of time I spent on them. And taking that time is hopefully going to help my brain learn to wait.

Some construction details:

I ended up making a second pair of shorts. The top is a size 6 and fits great, but the shorts are a slim cut and my original size 8 pair just fit. I like a little more lounge in my lounge-wear, so I went up two sizes for the next ones and extended the length of the cuffs. I used the beautiful selvedge edge of the fabric on the pocket and instead of the sleeve cuffs. I tried it as the trim on  the shorts first, but it gave them a bloomer-like effect that I didn’t like.

These pj’s are so soft and floaty! I am delighted with the final product. I will definitely be making flannel pair for the winter.

Project: Carolyn Pajamas in Rifle Paper Co fabric

Total Cost: $109

Pattern: $23 CAD

Fabric: $78

Notions $8

Time: I lost count, but I’d put them in the 15-20 hour range, including PDF assembly.

Fit: No specific alterations, but I’d increase the  width of the arm a bit next time.

What to work on: Patience. Just keep swimming.

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  • Reply Sarah Smith October 6, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    beautiful – very definitely worth the effort!

    • Reply Erica October 7, 2016 at 3:21 pm

      Thank you so much, Sarah!

  • Reply Lynsey October 7, 2016 at 6:45 am

    Gorgeous!! They look so lovely and must be a dream to wear. I’ve just brought some Cotton and Steel rayon (from Porto with love) and whilst stroking it 🙂 I noticed the beautiful selvedge, you’ve given me thought to use it in my project somehow, if I can be brave enough to cut in to it!

    • Reply Erica October 7, 2016 at 3:20 pm

      Oooh, have fun! It’s so nice to work with – not slippery at all.

  • Reply Susana Cunha October 9, 2016 at 8:23 am

    They’re gorgeous!! I have this pattern but I haven’t made it yet, because I didn’t have the perfect fabric for it. I think I’m making a pair in flannel.

    • Reply Erica December 10, 2016 at 1:25 pm

      Flannel would be perfect. It takes a lot of fabric though!

  • Reply Wardrobe Update #1 – The Handmade Wardrobe December 30, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    […] 1 pair of pajamas […]

  • Reply Kelley January 12, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    Hello Erica,

    As part of my January column about sewing trends for Sew, Mama, Sew!, I’d love to share this project. I will share one photo and link to both your project and your main blog address. (you can see past trends posts here:

    the post is scheduled for late January. As per my agreement with SMS i do need your express permission to use one of your photos, so if you’d like to be included, please respond ASAP.

    thank you!!

    • Reply Erica January 12, 2017 at 4:38 pm

      Sure! Thank you for thinking of me. You can always email me if you need more info.

  • Reply Rebekah Jaunty January 14, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    These are gorgeous, and the fabric suits you beautifully. I don’t know when I’ve seen nicer PJs, and I’ve looked at plenty of Carolyns.

    • Reply Erica January 14, 2017 at 7:51 pm

      Thank you, Rebekah!

  • Reply Sharleen May 11, 2017 at 4:42 am

    I love this and I am thinking about copying lol. I keep wanted a nice pair of pjs but the costs are outrageous! Even at 100 for this pair its still not as steep as a nice pair of pajamas. I think the arm detail with the salvage was super cute too! 😉 I hope you patted yourself on the back once or twice lol.

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