Added Nov 21, 2009
I had a great vintage men’s Nehru jacket, which was too tight in the chest, but I wore it till it literally fell apart, because it was made from this neat black upholstery fabric that I’ve never been able to find anywhere. I thought I might remake it, but with room for a D cup and female hips and lengthen it from hip length to knee length.
I tried a Full Bust Adjustment, which made the whole bust area ridiculously large and shapeless. After adding three sets of darts, one in back and two in front, it started to come together, but was still too big above the bust point area.
My girlfriend sent me a link to a cool looking pirate coat, and I decided this Nehru jacket didn’t thrill me as much as a piratey coat would. Unfortunately I had already cut the fabric and began constructing it, so the notched collar and cuffs would have to be added after the fact.
I’ve never made a coat, cuffs or a collar before, so I just flew by the seat of my pants and I’m totally surprised how easy the upper collar was to figure out. I realize from looking in my closet, that the big bottom half of notched collars should have been part of the bodice front pieces and just folded over, and not sewn on after the fact, but that’s what I get for changing my design after I’ve already started construction.
I learned a lot about how coats are constructed and now I’m not afraid of cuffs and collars any longer. I’m going to attempt a remake in the future with different fabric, and then perhaps I’ll be able to make it properly. Hopefully by that time I might have learned how to do a lining as well!
Of course I’m still scratching my head over how to make the original nehru jacket fit a full busted female without the pouchy-ness above the bust point, and without adding a bunch of additional darts. I think the armhole and shoulder area may have gotten too big with the FBA. I’ll have to go back to the drawing board on that.
For now at least 4 friends are willing to be seen with me in public wearing my piratey coat!
Wide Welt Corduroy (4 & 5 W) and shank buttons
Make something special and practical for your friends and family this holiday season!
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