Upcycling Cozy

Is there anything you love more than your cozy old bathrobe?

How about a nightgown upcycled from the robe, after one too many stains from makeup and hair dye? Behold:

A nightgown from McCall’s 7297!

As before, I cut a size 14, which fits well (note the top has very little ease in it) and graded to a 16 at the hips. The only changes to the pattern were that I lengthened it 17 inches, changed the sleeves and didn’t make a shirttail hem. This nightgown is pretty ridiculously short otherwise and would barely cover my rear.

Here’s how I worked with the old bathrobe:

I cut it apart at the seams. No way was I unpicking all that!  The only things I unpicked were  the robe’s two pockets, and I reused one as a breast pocket on the gown. (The other was stained so I tossed it.)

I laid out the pattern pieces carefully. The front of the nightgown is asymmetrical and can’t be cut on the fold, so I used the broad back of the robe for the front of the gown. I pieced the back of the gown using two pieces taken from the two fronts of the robe.


I cut the front and back as long as I could – basically, I tried to get as much use out of the old robe as possible, avoiding stains and holes. After the pattern piece ended, I used my hip curve to continue the line to the hem. Once I sewed the back and fronts together, I trimmed and hemmed it even. The final length is 17 inches longer than the pattern calls for.

I cut off the striped facings and used one for the neckline binding. I simply cut the facing open and made a binding out of it with a bit of wonder tape to fold in the raw edges (this fabric doesn’t take a press).

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I cut open the striped belt, removed the interfacing, and did the same treatment to the raw edges to bind the hem. This didn’t work out very well. Despite my best efforts, the hem and binding both stretched a bit and went wonky in places. It was also about 4 inches short – GAH! I pieced together the rest from what was left of the facing. I don’t think this shows (too much).

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I cut off the sleeves. The size was right, but I recut the sleeve cap to avoid a stain, and so that the sleeves would ease into the armscye well. Then I cuffed them so that the striped facing showed. (Somehow, I had this robe for years and never noticed the striped facing on the sleeves!)

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I estimate I reused 90% of the old bathrobe. All that’s left is a small pile of scraps.

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It’s not the most gorgeous nightgown I’ve ever had, but it’s comfy, and I am wearing it to bed tonight!

Author: shoes15

I live in Connecticut, USA with my husband and my dog, in an old house outfitted with a sewing room, a garden, an orchard, and a big liquor cabinet.

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