A very distinguished fellow


My uncle has received his vest. Fortunately for me, we didn’t make it down to the farm until a few days after Christmas, so I had a few days extra to finish off pesky little things like the back buckle and buttonholes. It fits well enough (OK, it may be on the snug side, but then I feel like the next size up would’ve been too big…), and he’s more than happy with it. The only thing that’s a bit odd is the length—it’s very short. And my uncle isn’t unusually tall—I’m pretty sure that it’s meant to go over antique-style trousers, you know, the up-to-the-armpits variety.


I basted hair-canvas to the vest fronts, and then added in (as per the pattern) two layers of batting, with the edges feathered.


A closeup of the hand-basting and padding in the vest front. I haven’t done this kind of handwork since Gertie’s Lady Grey Sewalong. It was fun, though.


I even padstitched the undercollar.


And then there were the welt pockets. I made samples. I marked. I basted. I tailor-tacked. And still, my first welt wound up uneven and just UGH. I could’ve cried. I couldn’t imagine making two more, when those two had to be… ulp… matching.

So I didn’t. My uncle’s vest has only a single, sad and uneven, welt pocket. I’m not going to mention it if he doesn’t.


I added a patch of outer fabric inside the pocket, which was not in the instructions. The instructions, incidentally, were good but not verbose. They told you what to do, but not how to do it. And I added a few thing here and there, because I could. Like padstitching. And this little patch.


I used shiny silver vintage buttons from my stash. Making the buttonholes was also a beast, although at least my thread matched very well, so their nasty quality isn’t obvious. I was so hoping for neat, beautiful keyholes, too…


The buckle was also from one or another thrift-store baggies. I do wish, in hindsight, that I’d interfaced the straps here. And that I had two-piece eyelets—these are one piece and I’m worried about how they’ll hold up. Although I suppose it’s not a super-high-stress area. (And, yes, the back’s made out of fashion fabric, not lining. This is because I didn’t have enough of the silver Kasha lining fabric left, and my local Fabricland didn’t have any in the silver colour. Yes, I could’ve used another kind of lining. But I hate every other kind of lining out there…)

Understitching would’ve helped this back bit. Although I suppose if the outer back were in lining fabric as well, it wouldn’t’ve been an issue.

All in all, though, I think he’s a very distinguished fellow.

He still wants a kilt, though…



Filed under Sewing

17 responses to “A very distinguished fellow

  1. Zena

    It looks great! If he knows what’s good for him, I’m sure he’s delighted with it 🙂

  2. Ooh! Ahh! It looks great on your very distinguished uncle!

  3. Jana

    Wonderful vest! Thanks for the update!

  4. Shams

    Omigosh, that came out beautifully!!! What a lovely gift from the heart.

  5. Beautiful work!! And he suits it very well.

  6. Looks Great! I think if it were longer, it would ride up when he sits down. He really does look distinguished, and I should know. A wonderful present!

  7. That’s awesome. I love that you made him a vest. It looks amazing. I can see your concerns but still. It’s awesome.

  8. I think it turned out great! We’re always our worst critics, and he looks handsome and happy in his new vest! 🙂

  9. Love this! What a fun tailoring project. The padding in the front is interesting.

  10. I too love this and am fascinated by the tailoring details you’ve given. Your uncle is a lucky man ….. is there a kilt in his future?! Oh and I love your Christmas gold dress. Its lovely and you’re absolutely right to do a scoop neck and closer fit …. perfect.

  11. Dapper and distinguished are very good words for your uncle in the vest.

  12. A very distinguished fellow indeed! Looks fantastic!

  13. Really wonderful job! All that hand stitching, and I love the buckle detail 🙂 Do you think the fit would be different if the outer back was lining fabric? Maybe a silly question but just a thought ^_^

  14. This is amazing! All that incredible hand work! I’m blown away by this make and I’m sure your uncle is too. You should feel pretty damn proud of yourself!

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