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little pajamas

As many of you know, I design all the visuals and graphics for Oliver + S, a company my good friend Liesl Gibson started that sells sewing patterns for children's clothing. Last year when we were thinking about the new fall line, I suggested we do a pajama pattern. Growing up in my family, we always opened new pajamas each Christmas Eve. I've continued the tradition, but the pajamas in the stores were just ho-hum and I was hoping that with a new pattern from Liesl, I could make something the kids would really love...  Enter the Bedtime Story Pajamas pattern.

I'm fairly new to sewing, but the Oliver + S patterns have eased me into garment making. I'm not as fast as Liesl (who once made these pajamas for her daughter in one evening between dinner and bedtime) but I'm so pleased that I can follow the step by step instructions and without too many mishaps, end up with something close to the illustration (not always the case with children's patterns!). I finished Bee's set before Christmas, but at about midnight on Christmas Eve I threw in the towel on C's top..  he did get to wear his pants to open gifts Christmas morning, and the top finally got finished a few weeks ago.

I am a bit of a skimmer when it comes to directions. Though I'm new to sewing, I always kind of peruse the illustrations and then start sewing without reading any of the actual instructions. (Probably why I don't mind using Japanese craft books..) After sewing a few things with Oliver + S patterns, I've learned to trust Liesl and to actually read them step by step. She'll often give you a hint or make things easier for you if you just listen and do things in the order she has specified.

The fabric I used comes from Purlsoho. I didn't want them to match perfectly, or to make them from the same fabric, I just wanted them to be in the same color family so they would look cute together. Bee's is mini garden from Kobayashi in the blue color and C's is neighborhood, also from Kobayshi in the blue color. The trim fabric is just a solid color, I think these were from the Kona cotton line.

I tend to spend more time sewing for my daughter than I do for my son. It just happens that way, it's not intentional.. skirts and dresses don't scare me, pants and shirts do. He really gets excited when I am working on something for him. He tells me he sleeps better in these pajamas because "they're made with love."  And he's right.. they were made with love. And somehow I think they can feel that when they wear them.

Just to clarify: When I say I do the visuals for Oliver + S, I don't mean the actual illustrations on the Oliver + S patterns, those are done by the very talented Dan Andreasen. I design the packaging, logos, website, tradeshow booths and that sort of thing.. just wanted to make that clear.

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Reader Comments (43)

wow, i'm very impressed. i'm not a sewer myself, so that looks incredibly intimidating. i have to say, i had never heard of olive and s until last week.i ironically i found your blog and discovered these patterns on the same day. i was in the local fabric boutique and the amazing packaging caught my eye! i really wish i were a seamstress now... i just want to own one of those patterns. even if it just sits un-opened on my desk, it's so cute to look at:)!

02.19.2009 | Unregistered Commenterchelsea

really great jobs done...
you lucky one have this unlimited access to these great fabrics, here in europe everything a little above average comes from IKEA (not really useful for pyjamas) or you have to order from internet...grmpfh
take kind regards from austria,

02.20.2009 | Unregistered Commenterdolores

Oooh, I've been looking for a great pyjama pattern! I am also new to sewing and have an Oliver + S pattern sitting on my desk just waiting for me to find the time to jump in. I love that you do the visuals for O+S, I was only looking at the pattern today thinking how cute it was and how it really sets them apart from all their competitors. Great job!

You are a fantastic sewer. Great work! I love the pajamas.

02.20.2009 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

I love this pattern I made pyjama's for my whole family last Christmas (matching too!) and wish I had had this pattern. I guess there is always next year ;).

02.20.2009 | Unregistered CommenterBeachMama

Super cute!

02.20.2009 | Unregistered CommenterKatieG

oh, those are so sweet! i just bought one of leisl's patterns from purl on tuesday to make some new dresses for my girls. now i'm kind of wishing i'd gotten the pj pattern as well. but i guess i have some time until christmas :)!

02.20.2009 | Unregistered Commenterlynne

These jammies are fantabulous. I'm a vintage seller myself and have just started offering Childrens vintage so all things "kids" and "adorable" are catching my eye and these p.j.'s are perfect.

02.20.2009 | Unregistered CommenterSt. Cecilia

I haven't sewn in quite a while but my first grandchild is on the way and I'm thinking I need to get back in to it. I love this pattern and you did a beautiful job!! Where can I get this pattern?

02.20.2009 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

Your blog is just fantastic, although I have followed it from the start... pj's are especially cute when they aren't covered with Barbie or Hot Wheels.

02.21.2009 | Unregistered CommenterSasha

ooh, such cute PJs! :) kawaii!!!

02.22.2009 | Unregistered Commentergyoza*girl

I too got pj's on christmas eve!! thanks for the info. just another great idea from your blog.

02.23.2009 | Unregistered Commenterlana

your graphic is phenomenal. i just kept staring at it. the pj's are adorable too and we are seriously into pj's over here. and my little one is named Oliver. I'm in heaven.

wonderful fabrics!

03.2.2009 | Unregistered Commenternoica

I just saw these cute patterns yesterday at a local fabric store and remarked to my friend how well-designed the packaging was! You've done an excellent job sparking interest, even amongst those of us who cannot quilt or sew one bit :)


03.4.2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

these are so well done, i wish i knew how to sew.

03.27.2009 | Unregistered Commenterhena tayeb

Just picked up one of these patterns this weekend for my daughter....mostly because I've admired the design for a long time and now I have an excuse...

04.9.2009 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly

Those are gorgeous. I'm imagining my little kiddo wearing one of those pajamas. I wonder how much it cost.

11.19.2009 | Unregistered Commenterclothing labels

I've got to check the link you posted above. Just in time my daughter needs new pajamas.

Liza of clothing labels

11.19.2009 | Unregistered CommenterLiza

These are beautiful! I love the fabric and the piping and the cut of the shirts...

01.11.2010 | Unregistered Commenternauli

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