Fancy and Not-Fancy Pajama Sets: Sartorial Choice for 2021

The image in the header of this post is from — Valentino, Pre-Fall 2016. Make sure you go all the way to the end of this post to see inspiration pictures!

In 2020 and now 2021, if you worked from home (or not) and listened to the fashion pundits and follow fashion week offerings, you’ll note that there are many sartorial options that are loose, and actually flattering. The comfort rises to nightwear level  – and that is to be expected when people are wisely staying home, and when the verb “zoom” has attained a second meaning.

Bear with me while I reminisce in the next two paragraphs, to demonstrate that nothing in fashion is new. If not, you can skip to the 2021 part.

In the 1990s: As they say, “we want pictures or it didn’t happen”.  Unfortunately there are no photos of what I am describing below, because that was a time when handy phone cameras weren’t even a gleam in Steve Job’s eyes; and obsession with a photo record of every activity wasn’t a thing (unless you were a first time parent).   Back in the 90s, I loved my loose, elastic waist pants, sewn with a DKNY Vogue pattern and I made the pair in the exact fabric and color as the original ready to wear DKNY, a muted magenta, sand-washed silk (are they still manufacturing sand washed silk?). They were not for nightwear, at the same time being exact copies of elastic waist pjs.  In the process, I managed to irritate a real-DKNY-wearing acquaintance. I guess she thought a seamstress duplicating those pants somehow diluted the label. But we were good after that moment of disconnect – she actually appreciated my sewing skills and we became “DKNY buddies”.

Back then, I wore the above mentioned pants with a button down, ivory sand washed silk camp shirt (McCall’s pattern); very pajama-like. No one told me to my face that I was wearing jammies.   I also wore the pant with an ivory handkerchief linen loose top with hemstitching at the neck and wrist (a Vogue pattern). I even threw on a navy jacket (Burda pattern) over the whole thing when the occasion called for it. Other times, I wore the pants with an oatmeal colored, linen/cotton, closely fitted, sleeveless vest. After that first pair of DKNY pants, I made at least two more. And… I wore those loose pants until they started to shred. As I said, there is no photographic proof.

Meanwhile, in 2021: Since I have enough clothing to wear in public, (did you read my last post?) in 2021 I plan to focus on classic pajama sets which are presentable enough to step out to the mailbox, and be able to take in a video call without any sartorial qualms . Therefore, sewing up fancy pajama sets are on the list for 2021. Here are a couple of pj-set wannabes, where one is fancier than the other.

First, the plain-and-unfancy set:

The pj bottom (above left) is made in fabric pulled from the stash. This pink cotton-knit piece was picked up more than 2 years ago, at my sewing group’s fabric swap where the original owner, Becki, thought that it had too many adolescent vibes. I took the piece saying that it was a challenge to make something that wasn’t juvenile. Sort of got carried away by the moment. (You kinda had to be there….).  When sewn up, the funky print is quite likable – notice the white cheetah resting on a bed of pink?  The grey silk top has been worn often, but is ready to be re-configured into a tank-top to go with the pj bottoms; plus, there’s the velvety pink Minky fabric which is a robe wannabe. I’m all set to make this set.

Fancy pajama set:

Print mixing and re-fashioning are the key words for this project.

This (above) is an exercise in print mixing, y’all!  The silk crepe shoe-print top was made many years ago, and has been worn a lot. The plan now is to make it longer as a pajama top.  As it happens, I have yardage in the same print which will become pj bottoms; the navy/white polka dot Banana Republic silk skirt (previous owner is my daughter) will be cut up and used for cuffs on the bottoms and to lengthen the top. Maybe I should add piping to give it the iconic pj look?  At least that is the plan. 


Valentino, Pre-Fall 2016 .

The epitome of fancy pajamas is this set from a Valentino 2016 collection! Also, I have a Pinterest board called Fancy Pajamas . Go see some cool jammies.

How about Doris Day’s Asian inspired set? Love this! Movie stills from the movie “Pillow Talk”.

Well, I need to get busy and complete at least one set. See you then! 


7 thoughts on “Fancy and Not-Fancy Pajama Sets: Sartorial Choice for 2021

  1. Love the pattern mixing on the second set. Checked out your PinTerest Fancy PJs and had to create one for myself. Maybe one of these will inspire me to get sewing again.

    Always enjoy your posts.

    Liked by 2 people

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