Thursday, June 27, 2013

Alex & Anna Summer PJs and GIVEAWAY!

*I received this pattern in return for my review, but all opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.

Welcome to Day 4 of the Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop Summer Tour! I've enjoyed seeing all the great examples of these patterns this week. Today, I'll be showing off a few of my Alex & Anna Summer PJs. This pattern is for tight-fitting pajamas, with two sleeve options. In total, I made three versions of this pattern. The first was to figure out the proper sizing, and since it turned into a "play" outfit I'll be showing it off next week. But on to the pajamas! First up is a short-sleeved version, made with some lightweight knit from Girl Charlee:

I've had this fabric in my stash for about a year, and it was always destined to be pajamas. This pattern is perfect for showing off great fabric! The sleeves and the leg cuffs are finished with bands (instead of hemmed) and that means it sews up quickly and easily. I used my serger, but you can make these with a sewing machine as well. For this version, I used self-fabric for the bands, but you can also use contrasting fabric (see my second set of PJs below!).

I think she was puckering for a kiss?

I LOVE how RTW these look with the self-fabric bands. The pattern calls for topstitching around all the openings, but I find that topstitching restricts my ability to get shirts over AB's enormous head (95th percentile for head size!). The topstitching does keep the seam allowances from moving around inside, so if that bugs you then you'll want to topstitch.

AB is 16 months old, average height and weight, and I made an 18 month size for the shirt. I did have to modify the head opening and make it bigger all the way around by 1/2" (and also make the band longer to compensate). Here's a photo showing my modification (new cutting lines in red):

The shorts are made in a size 2T. AB wears cloth diapers and my first try with the pattern (in an 18 month size) was too small. Just make sure that if you size up the shorts, you double-check your elastic length in the waistband.

I was able to make the top, shorts, all the bands (and an extra sleeve...I messed up the first one!) with less than 1 yard of fabric. The yardage in the directions is very generous. You gotta love a great outfit that doesn't take much fabric!

The second option in the pattern is for a sleeveless tank. This adorable owl slub jersey is also from Girl Charlee. The contrast fabric is a purple ribbing that I got from my big rummage sale score. Over two yards for fifty cents!

I LOVE the instructions from Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop. If you've ever tried to sew a tiny seam on a sleeve for baby clothes, then you'll appreciate Amy's construction order. Wherever possible, you end up sewing flat instead of sewing in the round. It usually takes me a few days for any project, but I could cut and sew these up in one day without any trouble.

You can print this pattern at home and I've never had any trouble with scaling or printing. Even if you print them in black and white, you can pick out your proper cutting line and outline it with a highlighter or colored pencil before tracing off. I save all my pdf patterns in my Dropbox and then read the directions on my iPad while I'm sewing. It saves me from having to print the directions (and inevitably losing them...). 

Now she's REALLY getting into modeling!

The bonus to this pattern is that you have a great tank top and t-shirt pattern as well. Since these are designed to be close-fitting, you can size up for play clothes and be all set for t-shirts. Remember that most of Amy's patterns go all the way up to size 8 (and some even higher)!

If the constructions looks a any areas, please forgive my newbie serging skills. My Beginner Serging class at Craftsy is helping, but there were still a few times when I wanted to chuck it and go back to my dear sewing machine. I know that the only way to get better at something is to keep practicing. And to keep showing off bad photos on your blog so that you're held accountable!!

If you can, I recommend adding a little tag to the shorts so you can tell front from back. The difference in the rise isn't much, so you could easily mix up which is which. 

I hemmed the shirts using my new favorite stitch! I read on So, Zo... that she used a three-step zig-zag for hemming a knit dress, so I decided to try it for these PJs. A. Maze. Ing. There is WAY more stretch in this stitch than with a twin needle. No more popped stitches in my hems! I do recommend using a coordinating thread...a three-step zig-zag can get wonky quickly and is harder to match at your starting/end point than a straight line.

Thanks to Amy for hosting the Summer Tour, and to my little AB for being such a cooperative model (it doesn't usually happen that way!). And as a thank you to YOU, Amy is giving away a pattern 10-pack to 3 lucky winners! Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter this awesome giveaway, and be sure to check out all the other stops on the tour! While you're at it, head to the shop today and pick up The Madison Dress, on sale for $4 today for Thrifty Thursday! You can read my review of the super cute Madison Dress here.


a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. So cute! I made a pair for my cloth diapered 8 month old and had to size up as well. I also found the neck too tight so I'm planning to alter the neckline on my next version. Glad to see that worked out for you!

    1. Yes, the first shirt I made I had to cut off the binding, and after that it worked haha! So the half inch I enlarged it was sort of a guess. Better safe than sorry with the extra room!


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