Simple DIY Girls Nightgown

6:12 PM

So I have a habit of randomly deciding to do something and jumping in.... I like to say I'm spontaneous... but I'm not sure that's true. I just get my mind set on something and can't rest until I do it..... Several of my crafting projects have gone this way.... The time I made milo the doll.... when I taught myself to crochet when I was 8 months pregnant.... I could go on. I'm pretty sure it's a trait I acquired from my biological mother. I remember once we went to wal-mart at 10pm to get stuff to make candles bc we just had to do it right now! In some ways I am my mother's daughter. 

So, On to the night gown. My girls have outgrown most of their PJs... and Milo prefers to wear this particular night gown I got her at a consignment shop. I told her I'd go buy her another night gown because she needed one.... but where in the world do you buy a cotton night gown except online?!?!? 

So like most things, yesterday morning I had an idea. I'll just make them myself. Off to pinterest I go!!  Scrolling through photos, I came upon this blog post about turning an old pillow case into a nightgown. I'm a sucker for that sort of thing, but alas, I had no vintage pillow cases I wanted to cut up. 

I headed to JoAnn's because, well, they have everything. Shopping almost always seems like it will be an ok idea with my girls... Every time, I tell myself "It's fine, they'll do great." and every time... I'm wrong. Oh well. Onto the nightgown. 


You'll need:
Pillowcase or fabric
elastic trim
decorative trim optional

and that's it. Its a super easy project. I found this elastic trim in the sale section at JoAnn's. I wasn't sure I would find a fabric to go with it... until I spotted this one. Its gorgeous. Milo also helped pick out this decorative trim. 


I measured around the bust and doubled it since it was going to be gathered. Then measure the length you'd like it to be and add 1" for the hem. 

Before I tell you how I sewed this... Disclaimer... I am self taught when it comes to sewing. The way I do things may not be the proper way. So if you know a better way. Go right ahead and do it that way.  


So depending on the width your need and the size of your fabric, you may need a front and a back. I used one continuous rectangle and there is one seam in the back. I made the seam with a ½" seam allowance. Then turned it under like you can see in the pic above.... then stitched it down like below. See how neat it looks. I did this on the back side, but You could even do this on the outside if you wanted bc it just looks so clean. 


I hemmed the bottom and added the decorative trim. 


Next I ironed the top hem down and did a basting stitch. So If you don't know what that is....its the longest stitch setting on your sewing machine. And you don't want to Back up because you're going to be pulling on the bobbin to create the gathering.  Check out this photo below. I just hold the bobbin thread tightly and then slide the fabric down the thread to bunch it up. 


Once that's done, I pinned the elastic band section on turning one edge over where it met to cover the raw ends. To get this measurement I just used the waist measurement and added about ½". On Milo's I did it ½" Shorter and it was still plenty stretchy but she didn't like it being so snug. 


Before sewing the top band on, I measured the girls for the shoulder straps. Measuring over the shoulder from the top of the armpit on each side.... then add 2". I then pinned the straps on the inside of the fabric. I did it this way in case I wanted to adjust them later. If you want to keep it neater, You could put them in between the elastic band and the fabric. 


Then I did a ZIG ZAG stitch around the top of the band and the bottom of the band. I backed up over the section where the straps were. I also stitched down the area where the elastic band ends met up. 

Now you will need to go back in with your seam ripper and rip out the basting stitch... otherwise, it won't be stretchy. 


and VOILA! all done. 


Some tips to those of you who are not experienced sewers. Let me give you some of the tips I've learned the hard way. Pre-wash your fabric... I used to think this was bogus and I didn't really need to. However, If you don't. Your fabric will shrink up in the wash and your stitches will look puckered and lumpy. Also IRON your fabric. I'm lazy and I only see the end goal and I used to skip this step... Don't. Just don't. Its so much easier if you iron. Always pin. Not that I don't believe you can't do it without pinning, but speaking from experience, it cuts down on the number of mistakes made. Don't Rush. I struggle with this. Like I didn't have milo Try on her dress before I stitched the elastic band.... and she didn't like it that snug... But I sewed that sucker on good. So unless she changes her mind--which she might.... I'll have to take all these stitches out and redo the whole thing... bc you bet I already cut out that basting stitch. 


These things are the things everyone tells you when you start sewing..... but I thought that they didn't apply to me bc I wouldn't mess up.... umm. Wrong. 


So taking pictures of my girls is impossible these days... They are tornadoes of giggles and drama... I just follow them around hoping to get a good shot. 


This is Milo's new token face.... I don't know who taught it to her, but I'm betting it was my husband. 


She's getting so big... She's 4 ½. They're upstairs right now fighting over some toy... Sisterly love. I'm going to be going out of town on Sunday and leaving the girls home with JR. I left Milo with JR once for 1 night. I have yet to leave Lennon for more than 5 hours...and I'll be gone 5 days... I am officially freaking out. I know they will Survive. JR is an amazing dad. Sometimes I sneak back in the hallway to listen to them in the play room. He has tea with them, plays doctor, and horse..... They are so lucky to have him. I know he'll do great. However, I'm pretty sure Lennon will have some separation anxiety..... and I KNOW I will. Any tips from seasoned moms? 


I'm headed to Texas for Young Living's International Grand Convention!!!! It's going to be SO FUN!!! I am extremely excited. 

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