Hot! The “This Old Thing?” Robe

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Fabric: Rayon, thrifted, $1
Pattern: Simplicity 1799, $1
Year: c. 1942
Notions: none
Time to complete: 4 hours
First worn: October 2011
Wear again? Yes.

Total Cost: ~$2

Here's a little secret about me: I always have full makeup, done up hair and heels when I lounge around my house in my robe. What? That's not what you do?

Here's the real secret: My lounging attire usually consists of oversized sweats, some weird T-shirt that I got at a conference or the pajamas I've had since I was a teenager (I'm wearing the bottoms right now!). The notion that I could actually lounge around in something half-way respectable blows my mind!

So for this challenge I decided to do the unthinkable — make a robe that I actually would wear around the house and not look like a college freshman home for the weekend. Oddly, I had quite a few robe, pajamas and house coat patterns to choose from. I decided to go with Simplicity 1799 from 1942 because I wanted short sleeves and a knee-length robe. 

The fabric I chose was a perfect non-vintage rayon that actually looks surprisingly like a 1940s-1950s rayon. As much as I love rayons, I tend not to work with them that much since they're in my "hoarding" pile. While a crisp cotton would have been easier to sew, I do love the final drape of this rayon robe.

And let me tell you how much I love an outfit that has a wrap closure! No zippers, no buttons and no Mena Tests! I'm starting to think I want to be the crazy lady who only wears robes out in public.

I do sort of wish I had made the longer version, however. Next time.

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Mena Trott

Mena Trott started The Sew Weekly to document her attempt to sew all of her own clothes in 2010. Since then, she's made over 125 outfits and has way more clothes than she needs.


Comments are closed.

  1. You really could wear that out in public – it looks great Mena! I love the print you picked. Lovely work as always!

  2. Beautiful! It looks like a wrap dress so I think you could get away with wearing it out and about.

  3. I totally thought that was a dress! I agree, you could totally wear that out of the house.

  4. I’d totally wear that as a dress, it’s beautiful!

  5. So pretty Mena! Even tho I prefer to make “wear outside the home” garments, I have been thinking a few nice robes would be fun to have. Just haven’t made it to the top of my “to sew” list yet!

  6. This is so pretty.I love wrap dresses and this definitely looks like a dress.. Wear to lounge and wear out.. Have fun with it.. Great job.

  7. Oh, how lovely! I’d be wearing this out and about if I was you, it’s so beautiful!

  8. Robe? Get outta here, that looks like a fantastic dress! Love it!

  9. I love it! I’m in the middle of making a 1920s robe for this week’s theme (which also conveniently works with my Sewing Through the Decades challenge). Mine cost *way* more than $2 though – sigh! I’m using rayon too so I know how comfy your robe must be!

  10. Stunning! I have been musing of more glamorous lounging attire lately – this is very inspiring! p.S your shoes are divine

  11. I have a nightgown project I’ve been waiting to try for awhile. Now I’m doubly inspired! I’m going to repeat the project several times and play with shortening the length to make camis.

  12. I would love to eat my breakfast in a robe like that! Thanks for the inspiration!

  13. you say robe, i say wrap dress! it will be the most comfy “dress” you own and every time you wear it out and someone compliments you on it you’ll feel like you’re cheating!

  14. I love it!
    I have a pattern much like this on my autumn/winter sewing list. As a freelancer, I know all too well how inviting pyjamas can be. I just want to pull something on and sit in it all day. I figured a cotton flannel house coat (i.e. wrap dress) would be just the thing.

  15. I just learned of this website today. This post was SO inspiring. I LOVE the robe idea, it truly looks so dressy. I’ll be around more often for more sewing inspiration.