Monday, 16 June 2014

Negligee, Duster or Housecoat?

Stash busting 2014:  Housecoat

Fabric Used:  3 metres

Buttons:         5   

Thread:          All thread that was used was found in my thread stash. Light blue for sewing, darker blue for gathering stitches and white thread for the serger. I managed to finish off a spool of serger thread during this project.

Pattern:        Style 1111, circa 1975 and McCall's 9424, circa 1968.

So would you call this a negligee, duster or a housecoat? The Style 1111 pattern that I used refers to this as a negligee. Language evolves, as it should according to the folks who uses it. Mama R would never ask for a negligee. She wanted a housecoat.

When I think of negligee, I think of costumes from the 1960s television show Bewitched. Negligee, the word, feels so retro. The pattern I used is just that, retro.

What makes this feel more like a housecoat is the fabric. It is a lightweight cotton and polyester blend that puckered after being pre-treated and resembled a seersucker fabric. I associate negligee in sheer flimsy fabric yet the suggested fabrics on the back of the envelope read,
[l]ingerie cottons, seersucker, gingham, lawn, voile, winceyette, crepe, silk [and] tricot jersey.  
This Style pattern defines negligee quite differently than the stylists and costume designers on the set of Bewitched. Sew, I'm just going to go with Mama R's description, housecoat.  

I actually used two patterns to complete this garment, Style 1111 and McCall's 9424. I used all the pieces for the negligee housecoat except for the sleeve. Mama R wasn't sold on the puffy gathered sleeve so I adapted the sleeve pattern from McCall's 9424 adding some length to the short sleeve pattern.

I picked up Style 1111 at the local second-hand shop. It was in rough shape and missing pattern pieces, thankfully none of the missing pieces were for the negligee housecoat. I will have to transfer and recreate a new pattern since the pattern pieces are fragile, torn and taped. And I really would like to keep a copy of this pattern.

As I mentioned the fabric is a cotton and polyester blend. This fabric was not in my stash and I picked it up this weekend specifically for this project.

It has an embroidered edge that I was able to work into the sleeve and hemline by cutting the pieces on the cross-grain.

The back yoke and yoke facing has darts from the neckline. It gives the garment lovely shaping that I would never find in a ready-to-wear housecoat. Details like these give the garment a lovely fit.  

As per Mama R's request, I added patch pockets.

The buttons were from Mama R's own button stash.

And that is it, a new housecoat for Mama R.

Happy Sewing!


  1. It's wonderful...the fabric resembles seersucker.

  2. Love it, wish there were a current pattern in the books. Very nice.


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