Every year on Christmas Eve we eat rice pudding sprinkled with cinnamon sugar and butter for dessert. Whoever finds a whole almond in their treat gets to open a present beneath the tree. Well, the gypsy kids must be lucky because they always seem to find a whole nut! The gift is always the same.... new handmade jammies, a much wanted book and hot cocoa.
The rice pudding tradition came from my husband's time in Denmark as an exchange student.
The jammies, books and cocoa came from my long time friend Tawnya who comes from a family of Scandinavian heritage.
My kids look forward to these traditions as much as Christmas itself! It always seemed so busy to do this on Christmas Eve. So this year, with the kids permission, we've switched this celebration to Solstice. On Solstice this year we plan to have a big pot of vegetable soup (to remind us of the gifts from the earth) a treasure hunt to find some goodies, our rice pudding dessert and we'll be decorating the tree too. This year is the first year we've waited to decorate the tree until Solstice and I must say I like having a simple unadorned tree in my living room right now while we're focusing on advent.
Anyhow, each year I make the kiddos some jammies. This year my vintage stash was finally big enough choose some fabrics from it for us girls. I made some nightgowns for the girls and was so inspired by wearing sheets as clothes! With a matching set of pillowcases; these lounge pants for the mama were born.
Here is a brief tutorial ::
Step one :: Use a favorite pair of pants to make a pattern. Place along the fold and be sure to leave yourself a 1/2 inch seam allowance (except where along the fold) and be sure to stretch the waistband out when you trace. You'll need one pillowcase for each leg.
Step two:: Now you should have two pieces that look like this when they are unfolded....
Step three :: Place the pieces with the right sides facing in (this would be the right/outside of the pillowcase) and then pin the pieces together from waist to crotch on both sides.
Step four :: If you have a serger, us it to serger this seam. If not, straight stitch them leaving a generous 1/4 inch to fold over for topstitching. For serging on a curve, pleat your fabric up on the left allowing you to gently pull the curve into a straight line. (see below photo)
Step five :: Topstitch those seams.
Step six :: Now pin the pants together right sides facing in and follow steps four and five to serger/sew and topstitch the pants together from ankle to ankle.
Step seven :: This is my favorite way to do a waistband without pinning..... I hate pinning! Fold a generous 1/4 of fabric down towards the inside of the pants and stitch it on...
Step eight :: If you want a drawstring, mark the spots you'll need buttonholes at and make those now.
Step nine :: Sew a piece of 1/4 inch elastic in a loop just big enough to fit your waist loosely. Be sure it isn't twisted and place it on the waist of the pants, folding the pants over about 1/2 inch towards the inside of the pants. This sounds confusing, but I hope the picture helps.... holding everything straight and using the guides on your machine, sew around the waist band leaving about a 1/2 - 3/4 inch space for the elastic. Be sure to keep the folded piece nice and even and tuck that elastic up towards the top of the fold. When you get to the end you'll need to pull the elastic around, gathering up the waist to finish it up.
Step ten :: Run a piece of ribbon through the pants for a drawstring, if your feeling extra crafty, sew on a pocket with a bit of vintage fabric. And Voila! Vintage capri length lounge pants just for the mama....
PS - The legs look uneven, but they are not. It's just my 11:30 p.m. photography skills :)
Sorry I didn't get this on here this morning, but our good friends just came back from a month long trip to Singapore and we spent the morning visiting with them. We are so glad to have them home!