If you have a sports coat that you love, but it is no longer fitting you properly, you don't have to throw it out and replace it. Professional alternations can be more expensive than buying a new sports coat, so why not try some of the fixes yourself? You can alter your own coat and make it fit you as well as it did when it was new.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Sports coat
- Matching thread
- Seam ripper
Determine what changes need to be made. Put on the sports coat and see where it pulls or sags or where it needs to be adjusted for a slimmer fit.
Pinch the fabric where it needs to come in and use pins to hold the pinches in place. This can be a fairly rough approximation.
Rip the lining of your sports coat away from the outer fabric with your seam ripper. If you are making fairly simple alterations, you may only need to open up the sports coat enough to get to the outer seams, but if you are doing something more elaborate, consider pulling out the lining entirely.
Invert the pinches of cloth that you took from the outer fabric. There should now be pinches made on the inside of the fabric.
Pin these seams down from the inside of your sports coat.
Try on the coat again. Make sure that the fit is still good and adjust it if it hangs unevenly or is uncomfortable.
Use chalk to redraw the seams on the inside of the coat. Remember that a graceful curve will be more flattering than a sharp tuck in the fabric.
Sew the seam up using large basting stitches. These stitches are not permanent and will be torn out later.
Try on the sports coat again. With the basting stitches in, does the coat hang well? Remember that replacing the lining will give the coat more structure.
Tear out the basting stitches.
Cut out the excess fabric. This will make the seam lie flat when the coat is finished.
Cut the lining down to match the new shape of the outer fabric of your sports coat.
Sew the outer pieces of the coat together again. Hand sewing rather than using a machine will give you more control over the process.
Iron your coat to make sure it hangs well.
Sew the lining back together.
Sew the lining to the outer fabric.
Iron the coat thoroughly. At this point, it is ready to wear.
Tips and warnings
- Two common places where sports coats need to be reworked are the shoulders and the waist. Look at these areas first when you want to do alterations of any sort.
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