Monday, 4 February 2013

Dad's Shirt to Baby's Pajamas

When I saw that Project Run and Play was going to include a men's shirt project, I decided I had to get to the thrift store to look for some men's shirts with interesting patterns or colors.  Between work and the kids, I never made it.  About two weeks ago I sheepishly asked my husband if he had any shirts he doesn't use any more.  To my surprise, he had this charcoal grey one that he hasn't worn in years.  It has a slight stain on in that keeps him from wearing it to work.  He kept thinking he might get it out someday but he decided to hand it off to me.  I love a nice grey but Maya is a pink and purple girl.  I started brainstorming pattern ideas and I kept getting stuck.  I thought about painting on the shirt, adding ribbon, color blocking - all kinds of thing.  My mind was stuck on the idea of making a dress for some reason.  Last week I realized this shirt was destined for someone else - Hannah!  She hasn't gotten picky about colors yet.  I really didn't want to change the color of this fabric.  It doesn't show well in in photographs but their is a black thread woven into the broadcloth of this shirt and it is just lovely.  At the exact same moment I realized that this shirt wasn't going to be turned into a dress.  I was looking at the cuff and all of a sudden I saw them as the cuffs to a pair of pants and PAJAMAS popped itno my head. 

I used one of many pants patterns I have cut to get the shape of the front and back curve for the pant legs.  I kept the sleeves intact otherwise - I just made sure the length was right using a pair of existing pants.  I sewed the crotch seams, folded over the top and added 3/4 inch elastic.   
For the top I used an existing top made from woven fabric to mark the shoulder and the arm holes.  I kept the curved hem of the shirt and I made the top long enough to be more of a tunic length pajama top.  

I used some bias binding I got on etsy to finish the collar and the sleeves. It is grey with samll off white circles that look like tiny bubbles.  At first I cut the neck line perfectly round but as I started to add the bias tape, I didn't like the look of it.  I went back and cut it down a little so that the front has a slight crossover look to it. 
The sleeves were cut from the sides of the body of the shirt so they have the side seam of the shirt along the top.  I like the stripe effect it provides.

Hannah is not the biggest fan of having her picture taken.  She has had the flash go off in her eyes one too many times!

Here she tried to run away:
Don't judge my floors.  My autistic son went through a stage in which he spit on the floors constantly (it was gross) and the damage to the finish is pretty bad.  We are waiting for a wining lottery ticket to re-finish the wood!
Finally we got a smile:

Another look at the bias tape:

Just to re-cap:
The pants were cut from the sleeves
The body of the baby's shirt came from the lower center of Dad's shirt
The sleeves came from the side of the body of Dad's shirt
Everything came from 1 shirt (probably an XL but the size tag only had a neck measurement) and the pajamas are probably a 2T-3T


  1. So cute and creative, these jammies look boutique! Oh, and with 4 kids and a Maine Coon cat I am with you on the floors and our cat likes to use the walls as a scratching post! Looks like we let a mountain lion in!

  2. Love it! Seriously don't worry about the floors either. Think of them as just being "custom aged". :D

  3. That is so cute! I've been having trouble coming up with an idea for this week but I finally got one! Now here's hoping I can actually make a go of it before the week is over. :)

  4. you can never ever have enough pj's!!! Great way to customize to fit your child's style.