To DIY For: From Jacket to Vest to Flannel Jacket!

09/10/2009 11:03 AM |

Finished jacket

My faithful readers, all both of you, may remember from my first post that I went a little overboard this summer cutting sleeves and legs off my jackets and pants in anticipation of warm weather. I knew I would regret it, but I’ve never been one to plan ahead. Well, right on cue, with the arrival of September, came the first glimpse of autumn and, like a true Floridian, I’m already freaking out. I was hoping to postpone this for at least another few weeks, but apparently Mother Nature had other plans. This week I turn a vest that used to be a jacket back into a new jacket (that I’ll probably turn back into a vest at some point).


A sewing machine

One denim vest:

Denim Jacket

One long-sleeved flannel shirt:

Flannel shirt


Cut the sleeves off the flannel shirt: Try to find a size that closely approximates the vest you’ll be using. This way, you won’t have any sagging in the armhole. You don’t have to be terribly precise here, just cut along the shoulder seam. Note: the sleeveless flannel shirt you’re left with will look great belted as a shirt/dress!

Pin the sleeves in place: Align the armpits and begin pinning the sleeves to the vest, working your way up, making sure to avoid any major bunching. After you’ve done both sides, try the jacket (carefully!) on and make sure the sleeves are even. Good? Move on to the next step.

Inside out jacket

Sew the sleeves to the vest: The easiest way to do this is to bribe your fashion designer sister to do it for you on her industrial sewing machine. What’s that, you don’t have a sister or an industrial sewing machine? That’s ok. If you have a regular sewing machine it’ll do the trick. You can even, as a last resort, hand-sew the sleeves on. It will take some time, but since all the stitching is internal, you don’t really need to be as precise as a machine. Just flip the jacket inside out and follow along the edge of the vest to make sure it comes out straight. There you have it, a new flannel/denim hybrid jacket you’ll be so excited to wear that you won’t even miss summer!

Finished jacket