Monday, 16 June 2014

Summer sleepwear: Darcy boxers

Yo guys! Long time no blog :-)

Tell me, would this breezy and serene picture give you a heart attack?


No? What if it were accompanied by the words

"FREE Pattern – Unisex Boxer Shorts"


You see, every summer, I have this recurring dilemma about what to wear in bed. For the last x years, it has been old pairs of knickers and even older t-shirts (round here it rarely gets so hot I'd rather be naked, although I fully approve of this as a lifestyle choice) (oversharing? Nah).  But it seems that my nice, warm, wintry Tofino pyjamas have upped this year's style stakes considerably, and over the last few weeks I've found myself increasingly embarrassed - ashamed even - by the tattiness of every. single. item in summer-pyjama rotation.

Cue intense dithering over the most perfect solution (because of course the point of making your own stuff is for the stuff to be PERFECT).  Lakeside pyjamas? But miles of bias tape. Prefontaine shorts? Sadly, just not quite meKnickers? Different knickers? I was paralysed by indecision, and then that picture popped up in my blog reader. I gasped. I clutched my chest. I was so overcome by the title - "FREE Pattern" - that yes, just for a moment, I wondered if this was what it's like to be shocked into cardiac arrest.

The perfect sleep-shorts, in pattern format, for FREE.

So I sewed them, pronto.

Seriously, who irons sheets? No time for that sh*t.

And they are absolutely as PERFECT as I expected.  Guys, this pattern is a corker. The shape is stylish, flattering and comfortable, the pattern instructions are crystal clear, and the detailing, oh! I'm so sold on the lovely little details.  Let me show you.

First, a proper fly with buttons. I constructed it as the pattern directs, just to try the process out, and it's very straightforward (yay!). But then I sewed the buttons on through both layers, as I don't need the fly to actually be functional and I hate sewing buttonholes.

Then there's the tip to attach your waistband elastic with the triple zig-zag. I hardly ever use this stitch, but I love how it makes these look properly finished, like 'real' boxers in shops! (Because the other point of sewing your own stuff is for it to look like you didn't, amirite?) My zig-zagging (you can see it above, just) is actually topstitching, through both the elastic and the additional cotton ribbing waistband I encased it in - I wanted it to be really nice and soft for sleeping and my elastic was a bit scratchy.

Next, there's the slightly shorter length and little side-seam splits in the 'girly' version of this unisex pattern. These are such small but perfectly judged details, which indeed mean it won't look like you just grabbed the wrong person's pants by mistake.

And finally, a close up of my crotch. SEAMS!! Again, topstitching the seams flat is one of those little elements in the pattern instructions that make these shorts come out so nice.  As you can see I pinked the seams to finish - my overlocker is being serviced, and I discovered I now hate zigzagged edges with a vengeance.

All in all, this is clearly a beautifully thought-through and well-drafted pattern. Yes, it's a basic - but in my experience, these are the things it's so easy to get wrong. Especially (and without wishing in any way to denigrate the huge multitude of high quality, free patterns out there) when it's made available for nada. What really has blown me away about making these is not actually the fact that the sewing webosphere read by mind and produced exactly what I wanted.  It's that yet another talented indie designer has put out there yet another wonderfully made pattern. For everyone, for nothing.

Of course, I shall be honouring my gorgeous new sleep-boxers that I love by wearing them with, um, a tatty old tee from H&M.

But at least this one matches.

So readers, what about YOU?

Have you jumped on the underwear-making bandwagon yet?

Or are you heartily sick of everyone proclaiming their sudden addiction to homemade lingerie as if it was the best thing since sliced bread?

What do you wear to bed when it's too hot to wear your (hypothetical) handcrafted-for-winter fleece onesies?

:: :: ::

  • Pattern: Darcy boxer shorts by Measure Twice Cut Once.
  • Size: XL. I used my hip measurement and sized up for a roomy fit.
  • Fabric: some stiff-ish cotton acquired at one of the Belgo-Dutch blogger meet ups. Thanks, unremembered donor!
  • Other: elastic & crochet trim from Veritas, waistband ribbing & buttons from the stash.
  • Verdict: in case you didn't gather yet, HIGHLY recommended.


  1. This is so cute - I love the print! What about a SoZo or Iconic cami to keep it company?

  2. These are so beautiful that you almost gave me a heart attack!

    I can't say how happy I am that everyone is loving their makes from all the knickers and boxer shorts and I'm so glad we could give you the pattern that your heart desired.

    These look wonderful, you must be so happy.

  3. *unremembered donor raises her hand* Love it! I'll be remembering these, I get really warm when sleeping so I sleep in ratty shorts and t-shirts all year!

  4. These look fantastic. Those details-my goodness!
    The fabric is my favourite part though.
    My summer sleepwear is also in a state; so is my winter sleepwear for that matter. Must try this pattern.

  5. haha I KNEW it would be you!! All the most gorgeous swap donations come from the studio of Ms "Impeccable Taste" Tirette!

  6. good idea! Though to be honest I quite like recycling my old t-shirts - as long as I can make them look more or less acceptable :-)

  7. I really am! And I suspect this won't be my last foray into undergarment making - for a start, I now have so many knit scraps that would be great for undies (your stretchy boy-shorts are tempting me already...!)

  8. I'd highly recommend it! The details really are great, it's the little things that making DIY clothes so great. And I've been amazed by now *nice* it is to sleep in good clothes made for the purpose!

  9. SeamsOddLouise.Blogspot.comJune 17, 2014 12:07 pm

    Fab, I have not entered the making undies arena yet. But they do look tempting.


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