I found this pale green and white striped knit skirt at our thrift store for $1.49. The fabric is very soft with no pills. It is a straight style, with few seams, in a large size. That translates to yardage :).
My daughter Heidi is growing so fast that her summer nightgowns from last year were too small. I welcomed a break from remodeling projects and took a few measurements, transferred them to this schematic and drafted a pattern.
I wish I had a video elf so I could show you how easy it is to draft a knit pattern like this. Perhaps another day? The front and back pieces are identical. I simply drew a fold line on a large piece of newsprint. Then took 1/4 of the girth measurements and the exact length measurements and transferred them to the paper, connecting the side seams, neck and arm hole curves with a French ruler. I added 3/8 inch seam allowance. Her nightgown doesn't need extra ease because the knit fabric gives her room to move.
To prepare the skirt for recutting, I cut off the waistband and the center back seam.
I placed the nightgown front on the fold to cut out and found that my skirt was too full to fit. No problem, I redrew it just slim enough to fit and folded over the excess.
Since the back of the original skirt had a seam with a kick slit, I had to add a seam to the back of my nightgown. I just cut it out with a 3/8 inch seam down the back and serged it together. Knit has a tendancy to stretch out of shape. To help, I lengthened the stictch and steam pressed to help it shrink back. The first time the item is washed and dried it usually recovers it's shape.
To construct, I sewed the side seams. Then turned under the arm holes 3/8 of an inch and hemmed with a cute tricot stitch.
Then I cut 26" of 1/4" width elastic. This was 6" for each neckline plus 8" for each shoulder strap. I cut several 1 inch wide strips of knit from the scraps and stitched them together quilt binding style. Then I used my longest straight stitch to sew the elastic down the middle of the wrong side of the strip stretching the elastic as I went. When I came to the end of the elastic, I cut off the excess knit strip.
Then I stitched the elastic strip in a circle and pinned it to my front and back neckline, centering everything. This created a finished neck edge and the shoulder straps. I stitched on top of the previous stitching on the necklines and left the shoulder straps free. What a cute ruffle!
To finish the nightgown, I used the same tricot stitch to hem the bottom, but this time I stretched the fabric as I went. This made a nice ruffly hem with a scallop. An alternative to the scallop hem is to add the same ruffle as around the neck.
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