One Cool Cat- Making Do

One Cool Cat- Making Do

Happy fifth of July, ladies. I hope my American readers had a wonderful celebration. My July 4th was a busy blur. I spent the best part of my day at the pool with my grandson. The rest was spent unpacking boxes in the new house and packing to leave in our trailer for 5 weeks. Who scheduled this? #epicfail

We’re excited to get on the road for our annual trip up the west coast to Vancouver Island. I’m excited to spending quality time with my daughter and brothers. My goal will be to forget the rooms filled with half-unpacked boxes and things on counters everywhere.Jennifer Connolly of A Well Styled Life styling a leopard sleep shirt as a dress with straw hat, stretch belt and wedge sandals

Today I thought I’d share a moment of levity from last week. I need to take my laughs where I can get them these days. I figure if you can’t laugh at yourself…you need a vacation.

I spotted a great leopard dress in a window display. It seemed perfect for hot days when a loose-fitting garment is all you want to wear. With visions of how I would style it, dancing in my head, I wandered in.

It took about two nanoseconds to realize my mistake. The fabric is smooth, soft and will be cool to wear. You can’t see through it, it’s a classic shape…but it’s a sleep shirt. It’s part of Soma’s Cool Nights collection.

With the majority of my clothes packed to move, I decided to give it a test run as a dress. I added a stretchy belt, large hoop earrings, a tassel necklace and topped it with a big straw hat. My summer bags were still in boxes so I carried a brown bag that coordinated with the leopard print.

This worked for a quick lunch out and no one knew I was wearing pajama’s…at least I don’t think so. Now that we’re moved in and I have my wardrobe back, this is my newest nightie.

There are lots of leopard dresses around but very few with sleeves. Maybe Soma will begin making day clothes out of their Cool Nights fabric;)

If you like leopard and are in the mood for a dress, here are some options below.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.


  1. Marilyn
    August 3, 2019 / 1:57 pm

    Thanks for the great idea, Jennifer! UPS just delivered my “dress” from Soma, and I plan to wear it to lunch with friends on Friday. If someone asks if I forgot to get dressed, I’ll let you know! ?

    • August 3, 2019 / 9:45 pm

      Awesome Marilyn! Let me know.

  2. mrsben2
    July 27, 2019 / 9:04 am

    Sleep shirt? Well I’ll be da*ned! You styled it purrr-fectly … ☺… as no one would ever guess it is a nightie. You are indeed a clever and talented lady and I do wish you continued success and I admire your down-to-earth approach on the various subjects you cover.

    P.S.: As you probably gather, I am browsing your blog and am enjoying it immensely. (Am 73 years of age and am a self-described hobby sewer (though I do have a son who is in the fashion industry who has degrees in both Fashion Design and Haute Couture) however I definitely don’t consider myself as a fashion diva, as just enjoy it.)

    • July 27, 2019 / 9:53 pm

      Lol! I worn it again tonight to dinner and a show ;). Welcome

  3. Susie D
    July 5, 2019 / 9:02 pm

    I love this leopard print “dress” on you. It is so flattering and non-fussy, perfect for summer, especially the way you have accessorized it. It is perfectly long and lean on you.

  4. Janet Williams
    July 5, 2019 / 7:01 pm

    ?It looks great as a dress! Have a wonderful time on Vancouver Island with family. The boxes can wait – vacation can’t. Tomorrow is move two of three within a month as I juggle three homes. I feel your pain…

    • July 5, 2019 / 9:40 pm

      Oh no Janet…that’s craziness. Good luke and keep your sense of humor. I often find that’s all that gets me through challenging times.

  5. Carolyn
    July 5, 2019 / 6:50 pm

    And I thought I was the only one wearing my nighties for day wear ! Lol

  6. gloria randle
    July 5, 2019 / 5:29 pm

    Not only do I love your hair I love the leopard print “dress”! Thank you!!

  7. Heidi Davis
    July 5, 2019 / 5:22 pm

    Love this look! My vote is for you to continue wearing it as a dress — it is adorable. And that belt is the best. #epicwin! Have a fun vacation.

  8. July 5, 2019 / 4:34 pm

    As a teen, I attended a girls slumber party and the birthday girl was wearing an expensive new gingham summer dress. One of the guests arrived and said, “I just bought the same nightgown for this party!” They had each bought the same dress – one in the sleepwear department, the other in the regular clothing department. Clothing is fluid – it’s whatever you want it to be! You look terrific! Who needs to know?!

    Good luck with all that you have going on. I’m happy you found a nice home near your grandson. It’s a super busy time, but all good things. That’s what keeps us going!

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:05 pm

      That’s a funny story Marian. Things do cross over easily. It’s hectic getting packed but I’m sure I’ll enjoy it once I’m on the road. Thank you.

  9. July 5, 2019 / 3:48 pm

    We never would have known if you hadn’t told us! After reading this and some of the comments, I’m going to look at sleepwear in the stores with new eyes.

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:06 pm

      Let me know what you find:)

      • July 5, 2019 / 10:26 pm

        I promise if I find sleepwear that I decide to wear as daywear, I’ll write a blog post about it and send you a link!

  10. Laurie
    July 5, 2019 / 2:05 pm

    I have a “dress” from Soma. I think it is the same fabric as the cool nights pjs. It is a different pattern, but the weight and drape of the fabric seems the same as the pajama fabric.

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:06 pm

      I bet it’s super comfy too

  11. Pat
    July 5, 2019 / 1:37 pm

    I love this outfit on you. I am especially appreciative of the links that you provide for the entire look. I have been shopping using the links for the last several months. I don’t even need to go to the mall anymore. It save me money because I don’t buy random things on impulse and I can coordinate the whole outfit. Even You also keep us abreast of sales. Thank you. I am in the process of ordering the dress and belt. (I’ll use it as a nightie, dress, and cover-up when I travel). It will be great for work in September and October when it’s still hot but I want to wear fall colors.
    I have a question for you and all of the other readers. How do you feel about wearing mixed metals when the individual piece does not contain mixed metals? I love this belt, but the buckle is silver. Most of my new jewelry and accessories are gold.

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:11 pm

      It will be great in the fall. I love that idea. I mix metals all the time so it works in my book. In fact some of my jewelry is a combination of metal colors. I wouldn’t wear a bright gold necklace with thick silver earrings but in belts, shoes or handbags.. it coordinates nicely.

  12. Eileen
    July 5, 2019 / 1:35 pm

    I look everywhere for things, sleepwear , men’s, junior dept, kids dept, swim dept, you name it, clothes are clothes, if it fits and works, why not? And being petite means getting creative.

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:13 pm

      You’re so right. Being petite makes it more of a challenge.

  13. Eileen
    July 5, 2019 / 11:40 am

    Jennifer, what a fabulous idea. Makes me want to buy that nightshirt instantly. Thank you for this creative idea. I will be moving soon and will undoubtably find myself in a similar situation.
    Best of luck for the rest of your unpacking and have a great trip. I am sure you will enjoy seeing your daughter and brothers.
    And don’t worry about the unpacked boxes. They are not going anywhere. Now onto the Cool Nights collection for that leopard “dress.”

    • July 5, 2019 / 6:15 pm

      Thanks Eileen and good luck with your move. Wouldn’t it be fabulous if little elves would come and unpack while we sleep?

  14. Eve
    July 5, 2019 / 11:32 am

    Accessories can work wonders on a simple black Tshirt and black jeans. Make it uptown dinner out with heels, necklace or scarf and jazzy purse. Or add a jacket and you can go anywhere.

  15. Beverly Glotzbach
    July 5, 2019 / 11:14 am

    The fact that it’s a nightgown makes me like it even better! An inside joke always makes me smile! And it has to be comfy!

  16. Lori
    July 5, 2019 / 11:09 am

    Love the “dress”. I am looking forward to reading about your trip. We aret eager to take long trips in our trailer when we retire.

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:07 pm

      We love to get away in our trailer. Ours is tiny so things get cramped but that’s part of the adventure.

  17. Carolyn
    July 5, 2019 / 11:07 am

    Very creative friend of mine took a black v-neck nightgown, jeweled it, and wore it for formal night on a cruise Never had any idea until she told me what it was!

    • Arell
      July 5, 2019 / 2:42 pm

      I had a friend who did the same thing and she looked fabulous and sexy too! No one knew it was a nightgown!

  18. Marina
    July 5, 2019 / 10:39 am

    I just did the same thing! I ordered a long-sleeve Roudelain nightshirt with a floral pattern on clearance from Hudson’s Bay. When it arrived, I thought how great it would look as a dress paired with black leggings, flats and a pendant necklace. The material’s soft and sweater-y, and it even has pockets. Since I won’t be wearing it until it gets cold again, I have a few more months to decide which way to go with it. It could also pull double duty when traveling.

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:08 pm

      Smart lady! That sounds fabulous.

  19. July 5, 2019 / 10:37 am

    I have a Natori night shirt I like to wear in public…no one knows. Just go enjoy your family…there is plenty of time to nest in your new home.

  20. Rose
    July 5, 2019 / 10:35 am

    No one would ever know! It looks great as a dress. I’ve seen sleep shirts that look like tops and I’ve worn them anyway!

  21. Laurel
    July 5, 2019 / 10:31 am

    I love that dress (nightgown) and can’t imagine anyone knew the difference. If you didn’t say anything, it would just be seen as a cute summer dress. Very tempted to try that usage myself. 🙂

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:10 pm

      I’ll never tell if you do. I found another belt and shoes to style it with so you may see it again

  22. Mary
    July 5, 2019 / 10:26 am

    Love it!

  23. Susan
    July 5, 2019 / 10:24 am

    I think it’s great! I bought that T shirt dress from Walmart that you showed a week ago or so–wore it as a nightshirt on a trip and now it’ll be a dress with a belt at home. Why not?

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:11 pm

      Bravo!! Why not indeed 🙂

  24. Arlene
    July 5, 2019 / 10:14 am

    I’d you hadnt said it was a sleep shirt I would never have guessed. Looks wonderful as a summer dress ! Have a super vacation. The unpacking will wait.

  25. Brenda
    July 5, 2019 / 10:12 am

    You look great, great idea. I have a pair of PJ’s like that. You will have a great holiday. The unpacking will be forgotten. It is always more fun to do it in a relaxing fashion any way.

  26. Lucretia Roletta
    July 5, 2019 / 9:53 am

    I bought a sleep top at Soma that I wear as a tee shirt. It is soft, draping and so comfortable. It is better made than a lot of tees. Look for items in unexpected places.

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:12 pm

      I’ve done that with a Soma pj top too. It’s hard to tell the difference.

  27. Phyllis
    July 5, 2019 / 9:34 am

    It looks great to me as a dress and I’m not even a fan of leopard print. I don’t really see why it couldn’t be worn as a dress, especially the way you have styled it. You always make things look good.

    I’m in a bit of a slow down on unpacking boxes. I don’t know what to do with the stuff in the remaining boxes. We got rid of at least half of the stuff we had, and still there is too much.

    Enjoy your trip. It will all be there when you get back.

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:14 pm

      I’ve opened several boxes and just closed them right up. Hubs is unpacking everything and jamming things where he can fit them. I want to be more selective. Take your time. Your instinct will tell you what to do.

  28. Nancy
    July 5, 2019 / 9:28 am

    I have a beautiful navy with white piping brooks brothers night shirt I wear with white capri leggings with eyelet trim around the lower leg and my pearls. I feel very classy and comfortable and sneaky.

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:15 pm

      That sounds wonderful Nancy! Bravo

  29. cv
    July 5, 2019 / 9:27 am

    I really like your dress and had no idea it was night wear. Thank you for vision. Have a lovely vacation and do not worry about the unpacking.

  30. cindy
    July 5, 2019 / 9:19 am

    My sister often wears Soma nightmare for going out to dinner its great

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:16 pm

      Your sister sounds pretty creative

  31. Martha Edmundson
    July 5, 2019 / 9:05 am

    I love this look. I had no idea it was a night shirt! I have had Cook Nights PJs but never a night shirt. The fabric is a little hot for our humid weather in NE Arkansas.

  32. Marcia Buczek
    July 5, 2019 / 8:58 am

    Never would think it was a nightshirt….I know Soma came out with Cool Nights bras so maybe they will Branch out to clothing….I love the Cool Nights PJs …

  33. July 5, 2019 / 8:51 am

    I’m going to check this out! It makes a perfect dress and looks cool and comfortable!

  34. Janice
    July 5, 2019 / 8:40 am

    Flax underflax line has pieces that can be worn in public. My employees loved it because it was very cool.

  35. Linda
    July 5, 2019 / 8:09 am

    Great dress/nightshirt!

  36. July 5, 2019 / 8:05 am

    The sleepshirt/dress is lovely. I have purchased some of Soma’s nightwear and totally agree that some of the pieces definitely could be worn as regular clothing.
    I’d be so interested to know what you pack for fa five week road trip!

    • July 5, 2019 / 10:18 pm

      I will take some pictures of my hangers and explain how I organized it. I think I’ve packed too much this time. I’m just so tired I tossed in everything I thought I might need.

  37. Cathy Cunningham
    July 5, 2019 / 8:04 am

    Love this look.❤️

  38. July 5, 2019 / 8:03 am

    I think it makes a fabulous dress – much too good-looking for a nightie! You’ve styled it perfectly!

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