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How to make a designer hospital gown

When love overflows you get this kind of story!  A reader emailed me with a project she and her sister made for her mother during an illness.

Julie writes-

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My sister and I have had a ball making designer hospital gowns for our mother who has suffered a severe stroke and will be in the hospital for a long time.  We looked for designer gowns online and they started at $50-$96, so we decided to make our own.  We used a free pattern from Lazy Girl Designs.

Our mother, ever stylish, is fully aware but unable to move much yet.  Since we can’t stand to see her in another hospital issued gown that looks like men’s underwear, we decided to make our own.  We’ve made zebra print with pink trim, purple and green batik, Lilly-Pulitzer inspired prints, cowboy print, etc.

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My little sister wanted to learn how to sew and I am a home-ec major so we customized the gowns and have really gotten a kick out of how well our project has turned out.

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The nurses get a real kick out of dressing my mother up and we love to see her in some color.  Even better, you can widen the pattern for a maternity patient by using two right-sides in the back, instead of a right and a left.  What a great shower gift for an expecting friend!

Some recommendations we would make for this pattern are:

-use double fold bias tape for the trim (easy and fast)
-lengthen the pattern at least 6 inches, not 3 as offered on the pattern, as it is very short for some reason.
-cut two right-sides of the pattern and skip the button in the back, using 4 pieces of grosgrain ribbon for the ties
-Use hammered in snaps, instead of Velcro on the sleeves (no sewing).
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We really should send some pictures, but she’s wearing all of the finished ones! We’ve found if you use 2 right sides, you only need about 2 1/2 yards or 2 3/4 yards for each gown. We also skipped the pocket and cardiac monitor slash in the front, because we have yet to see a nurse thread them through the front of the gown and use it.

For bedridden family members, expecting friends, or even surgery or cancer treatment (for which this pattern was designed), it is a treat to give someone something special and practical to wear while they are sick. -Julie May

I could see these fabulous gowns adorned with a flower pin like on this apron! The flower pins would also make cute gifts for the female nurses. I also thought a pocket on the inside front would be perfect for holding any monitors or drainage bags.  I think Julie and her sister went the extra mile to provide their mom extra comfort. Such a caring and thoughtful idea.  I am sure their mom is so proud to have such kind and loving daughters!

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