Being pregnant a second time so close to my first pregnancy, I remember how awful I look in all of my hospital pictures! I hated how large the regular hospital gowns were on me, and when I was nursing, I felt very exposed because the gown would practically fall off of my small frame. Through Pinterest and Etsy, I have seen so many specialty hospital gowns for sale that I started to investigate. I was surprised to see that they range from $40 to $80 in price. I remembered seeing a DIY maternity hospital gown tutorial on one of my favorite sites, the Crafty Cupboard. I love all of Melanie's tutorials because they are quick and easy and that is the type of project I like. It always scares me when someone from class comes in with a tutorial because there is always a step missing, vague directions, or jargon I have never heard. The Crafty Cupboard is usually pretty good about giving easy-to-follow instructions.
CONS: To help you decide if you should use this pattern, I am listing the negatives first.
- SIZE: The finished gown is very small around my underarms. I consider myself a smaller person, and, in the tutorial, she says it is for a smaller person: "pattern is for a smallish person although it can fit bigger with very few alterations;" however, it just really tight under there. If I were going to make it again, I would either enlarge the pattern pieces by 25% on a copier or just draw it out 1/2" around all of the edges.
- FIT: I think the neckline falls really high on my chest. Again, this fit might be because the pattern turned out to be a little small on me.
- PRICE: It takes 3 yards of fabric to make (probably why they are so expensive on Etsy), so that is at least $35 to spending on fabric alone. I personally still think it is worth it, but it is something to consider. If you are trying to stay on a budget since this piece is a one- time-wear garment, check out sale fabric or a basic.
- PATTERN: She tells you to draw an A-line shape to create the pattern. Obviously, you do not want to waste fabric, but make sure you draw a wide enough A-line. I drew my A-line, cut it out, and held it up to my growing belly, and it barely fit around to my sides. I cut it down the middle and decided to use it for the two back pieces then made another one with a much wider A-line for the front. The rest of the pattern was easy to cut out.
PROS: There are definitely a lot of great features about this tutorial, and I think they outweigh the cons.
- STYLE: I love the way it looks over all. I also love that the neck stays on your body while you are nursing. That solves my exposure issue.
- TIME: The project was fast and easy. The snaps do take a minute to put on but are still very simple. I left the arms and the bottom serged and did not hem them because I hate hemming, but I think it still looks good.
- PICTURES: As usual, Melanie gives you a picture for almost every step. This extra detail makes the directions very easy to follow and easy to understand.
CHANGES and things to look out for:
- YOKE: I tried following these directions: "While you are at the ironing board, iron the outer curve under about 1/2”. I think mine ended up more like 5/8”." That did not work out very well. Ironing a curve like that is almost impossible for me and my patience; just look at my picture below. I thought I was good with an iron but my patience is not. I decided to sew both sides of the yoke with a basting stitch and rip out my stitch after I ironed it; then I was ready to stuff the gathered back pieces in.
- SIDE SEAMS: When sewing the side seams, make sure you have the snap tape tucked into the seam correctly before you sew. I made the mistake of just matching up the sides and had to use my seam ripper to get them lined up correctly.
|Snap Tape sticking out|
- SNAPS: After breaking a needle while putting on the snaps around the yoke, I decided to use the Snapsetter to add snaps to the back. I love this look because you get colored snaps and you can put them where ever you want. I spaced them evenly using one of my favorite notions, the expandable sewing gauge
|Expandable Sewing Gauge and Snap Setter|
I really enjoyed making this and would make it again with a few adjustments. Melanie did a great job explaining each step with pictures. Here are a few extra pictures I took.