I love convertible things. If you ask hubby -I am a very non-commitmental person. (Though if you do get me to commit to something I stick to it stubbornly). I think for that reason, I really like to think of ways to make convertible clothing if I cant decide upfront some of the details.
So I made this convertible coat! It has a base coat, plus three optional features that can be attached independently of eachother. It has a hoodie, a vest, and longer-length bottom.
First, check out a video when I just had the coat, vest, and longer bottom:
On top of the base, I added a little vest – this would be the gun flap and the rain guard in the back. The vest has a little slot on each of the side to allow the belt loop to go through. I drafted the vest myself – its actually a single piece – no seam on the shoulder. It is secured by the epaulettes on the shoulder (show on the right side below) which actually unbuttons. The vest came out so well – the gap in the back is exactly as I had envisioned. I actually dont ever wear the coat without this little vest, but having it as a vest rather than in a built in gun flap + rain guard significantly reduces the seam bulk around the arm area – so I’d do the same thing if I were to do this again!
The coat itself is unlined – I enclosed all the seams with Hong Kong bias binding made from a red stripy fabric left over. It was a lot more work than putting in lining, but the end result is quite worth it. Besides, I needed a more light weight coat. The white -based bias binding also resulted in picking white for the label embroidery, as well as the little white button on the shoulder. I love how the white contrast with the red!
Then I also added separating zippers to the bottom hem, so that i can attach the extended length on. The zipper is the thinnest i could find online, but it still does add a little bit of stiffness. It is not obvious at the shorter length, but when I wear it at longer length, it is more obvious. I wonder if i would do snaps in the future – but snapping like 20 snaps would certainly makes me too lazy to attach the thing.
I didn’t think i would wear it often at the longer length, but i ended up wearing it a bunch on a winter trip to Joshua Tree National Park – it was so good at keeping out the wind even though it was single layered! I had to layer it quite a bit, and wished for some buttons 🙂
After the project was over, I had a bunch of left over fabric. I thought about what else I might want – and decided the way I had constructed the collar is rather perfect for adding a hoodie. So I did, hopefully the photo and video below shows how it is done easily.
All in all, there are 8 different ways you can configure this coat – which is quite fun. I usually put on hoodie if it is rainy, and the longer length if its windy.
Lastly, the fabric is a beefy Kaufman Ventana cotton twill from fabric.com. It was my first time working a coat with a 44” wide fabric and I severely underestimated how much I needed. I had to re-order fabric for the first time in my life – luckily this thing is in stock all the time. I bought 8 yards (4 was definitely not enough) total – still have a little more which I haven’t decided what to do with. Do you have any good idea for additional attachment? 😛 I am debating on a vest that could carry bullets on our skeet shooting dates.
Anyways – this has been a long post! There are just so many details to this coat that I am excited about! 🙂 Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed reading about this as much as I did making it!