Vest to Jacket Pattern Hack (my almost-sewing-fail)

This jacket story is more like a saga. I found this amazing pink and red wool flannel at my thrift store and neeeeeded to see my jacket vision through immediately. This must-have-it-now attitude sort of backfired on me this time! Long story short, after putting in a lot of pattern hunting time, then pattern hacking time into it, the jacket was just slightly too small for me.

BUT, there is a happy ending! The jacket is perfect for my daughter. Meet Natalie's new coziest-ever-super-cute-really-well-made jacket.

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How I used to Hero Vest pattern to make a jacket by adding sleeves (and all with thrifted fabrics!) || PIn Cut Sew Studio #diyfashion #teensewing #jacketpattern #sewing

It's SO cute and seriously, the wool flannel is the coziest ever. The dark navy sweatshirt fleece I used for the sleeves, lining and hood lining is also thrifted. It was originally a very nice quality sweatshirt fleece blanket! (I've blogged about thrifting for fabrics here.) The inside of the lining is sewn so that the soft side is against her body, like a sweatshirt would be.

I could not for the life of me find a pattern for the jacket I knew I wanted to make with these two things, so I ended up using a vest pattern and adapting it to include sleeves. The Hero Vest pattern by Make It Perfect was the closest I could find (I wanted both pockets and a hood). My fatal mistake was not making a muslin! I've even blogged about why I started making a muslin every time! Ugh, Nikki. I didn't take my own advice and it backfired on me, for sure. Lesson learned, though!

How I used to Hero Vest pattern to make a jacket by adding sleeves (and all with thrifted fabrics!) || PIn Cut Sew Studio #diyfashion #teensewing #jacketpattern #sewing

If I had made a muslin, I would have realized how small the sizing runs. I did make my size according to the chart, but I should have cut the front and back out of muslin fabric, just to make sure it would fit. I even added four inches to the front opening in attempt to make it work (see the navy bands down the front) and it was still a little snug. But again, the silver lining here is that it's perfect for Natalie and she really loves it. She’s worn it to dance a couple times and has gotten lots of compliments, which is always a good feeling.

How I used to Hero Vest pattern to make a jacket by adding sleeves (and all with thrifted fabrics!) || PIn Cut Sew Studio #diyfashion #teensewing #jacketpattern #sewing

As for my changes, I added sleeves by using the sleeve piece from a hoodie pattern I had in my drawer. Then, since the vest pieces have lower armholes than a garment with sleeves would, I altered that line using the front and back pieces of the hoodie pattern as a guide.

Also, there are instructions on the designer’s website for how to encase the zipper into the lining, which I used and that worked awesome. This way, the zipper tape doesn't show if you wear the jacket unzipped.

SO, despite my troubles, I actually would recommend this pattern! It turned out so cute and I might reprint, figure out the correct size and try again. Just beware the size chart!

While I was hunting for a pattern for this project, I came across several amazing vest patterns, which I recently compiled into a blog post here. So check that out, if you’re inspired to try a vest this cold season!