refashioners 2017

HelenHelen's Makes8 Comments

Refashioners 2017 – Suits You

I am a little hesitant to share this refashion because it is VERY simple and I don’t want to be presenting this coat as my own make since I only changed a few things. That being said, I do believe that even simple refashions count and I did chat about my project on the Love to Sew Podcast, so I have to share, right? 🙂  This is my entry into the Refashioners 2017 Challenge.

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I went to the local charity shop to source a suit for this challenge, but I ended up finding a men’s coat. I loved the style of this coat with the exception of the sleeves and the collar, so I figured I could take this coat apart a bit fix it up to make it wearable for me. Because it is a men’s coat, the fit is boxier and there was some serious tailoring in there!

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I started by removing the collar and sleeves. I sewed closed the neckline where the collar was and it has a modern look sans-collar. I drafted a new 2-piece sleeve to fit the existing armhole and used the original sleeve fabric for the top portion of the sleeve. For the underside, I cut wool from a pair of old suit pants for a duotone look.

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Apart from the sleeve and collar refashion, I simply mended bits of the lining that were falling apart and found a matching button to replace a missing one on the front placket. It was a simple project but it was challenging due to the very tailored insides and the heavy wool fabric. I am SO pleased with the results and know that this coat will be my go-to winter layer once the temperature dips a bit lower.

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Did you participate in the Refashioners this year? There have been so many amazing things so far and I am blown away by the versatility of suits!


About the author


Helen Wilkinson is the designer and founder of Helen's Closet Patterns. She also co-hosts the Love to Sew Podcast! Helen is obsessed with all things sewing and strives to share her passion and knowledge with the sewing community.

8 Comments on “Refashioners 2017 – Suits You”

  1. This is beautiful! And you met the spirit of the refashioners challenge in the best possible way by creating something that you love and that will get lots of wear!

  2. I like how wearable this is. I usually dislike refashioner makes because it seems gimmicky and most people won’t wear what they’ve done. But this works.

  3. This is perfection!! I love it so much and wish I was brave enough to attempt a refashion like this.

  4. I love this! I am going to check out my local thrift stores for usable mens’ coats. It is humbling to take apart a coat/jacket with good tailoring to see the bones that go into it. I need a wool coat to give a break from the puffer look.

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