Vintage Matchup: Silky Sleepwear

From the seductive to the soigné, vintage and vintage-inspired nightwear feels just right for the bedroom—and beyond


1 & 2) Slumber Party: A borrowed-from-the-boys ’60s pyjama set turns sweet in super-light satiny cotton. 3) Tender Is The Night: Romantic, ravishing, irresistible. We adore this 1930s bias-cut peach silk gown with lace embellishments. 4) The Cat’s Pyjamas: This flattering ’50s nightdress deserves to see the light of day.


Until the mid–19th century, women bedded down in practical, washable, humdrum undergarments. (Many western historians suggest that designated sleepwear didn’t exist at all until the 1500s!) Then, finally, in the early 20th century, pyjamas took a much-needed turn for the pretty.

Those who can’t resist the temptation to roll out of bed and out the door will do well with this season’s chicest nightwear, which lends itself equally to sleep or street. (Also in your favour, the fall 2013 runways included plenty of menswear-inspired pyjama sets and dresses reminiscent of the best film noir–ish nightwear.) It’s all pretty dreamy. Whether you pick vintage or new for the bedroom, or as an unexpected layering piece with a cardigan or blazer and heels, it’s a pyjama game you’ll definitely win.

Above (clockwise from left): Edward Saykally, $29,; Ian Drummond Vintage, $65,; I Could Be Good For You, $60,


Above (clockwise from left): Eres silk nightshirt, $535, Eres, Toronto; Araks silk slip dress, $297,; Piamita silk loungewear top, $276, and bottom, $285, (323) 655-2142; Lord & Taylor cotton nightshirt, $49, Hudson’s Bay in October 2013; Dia Collections silk nightgown, $220,