Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Sewing a Smoking Jacket

Poor PJ!  More occasions than not, I am trying to dress him up in girl's clothing.  Most times, it isn't QUITE as blatant as in the photo above.  Ever the good sport, PJ volunteered for the Mz. Good Shepherd beauty pageant at our church an I got to help with his wardrobe.  He is very patient, but not very feminine.  Fortunately, most times I am starting with a woman's clothing item and altering it to make something that he actually wants to wear as a costume.  Usually, I can find so many more options in the women's section of the thrift store that I just make do, especially if I need a really colorful outfit.
When PJ needed a ringleader costume a few years ago, I found a really large woman's red blazer and cut it down to fit him.  I even had enough fabric to make the back of the jacket have tails.  This year, I was reworking the ringleader outfit for me to wear to the now canceled circus wedding.  Lydia was going to be in a miniature version of my own outfit. (No worries, we will resurrect these outfits next year, instead)  Pj looked around on Pinterest and decided he wanted something like this.
I set about making him a smoking jacket and was about half way finished when we realized that we wouldn't need our outfits for the wedding.  PJ decided he still wanted the smoking jacket to wear to our annual witches brew Halloween party ( pictures from past parties here and here), so I have been rushing to finish before Saturday (in addition to averaging grades, planning the menu, getting out decorations, and raising a toddler).  Fortunately the smoking jacket didn't require too much work.  Here is what I did.
I found a size 3X Large Women's red blazer at Goodwill for about $4.  I had a black satin slip from a dress I no longer wear that I decided to sacrifice to the project.  I cut the slip into four long pieces with the idea that two of the lengths could become the left and right side of the collar.  The other two halves became the cuffs on each sleeve with a little left over just in case.
The main adjustment was to the lapels on the collar. the points needed to be cut down to make it a more rounded shape.  After that the satin could simply be sewn onto the existing collar.
I laid out what I was thinking to make sure it looked right before I sewed anything.  I probably could have figured out a way to have sewn it on a machine without the stitches showing, but at that point it was easier to work inside the house instead of out in the studio, so I just sewed the whole thing by hand. It wasn't too bad, since it only really needed to be tacked on well enough to make it through a party.
Here is the finished smoking jacket. Originally it was to get gold braid to become more circus-ish.  At the moment, there are no closures, so I may have to add something to hold it together.  Other than that, PJ wants a fez hat with a tassel.  I suppose, considering the fact that he is currently hard at work adding an extra family room onto our house, I can put forth a little more effort to make him a snazzy accessory or two!
UPDATE:  Here is the finished smoking jacket and fez hat ensemble!

No comments: