Thrift Store Couture: Sweater-Sleeve Coat

We’re reaching that time of year when I am absolutely sick of all of the cold weather articles of clothing I own—especially coats. Unfortunately in Chicago, it’ll be coat weather for a few more weeks at least. Time to mix it up a bit.

Lately I’ve been coveting the kind of slouchy, menswear-inspired silhouettes that I’ve seen the occasional blue-line hipster girl wear—like so:

slouchy coats

Clockwise from left: Philip Lim sweater sleeve maxi coat, Asos textured blazer coat, Asos vest in longline, To Be Adored coat, Clariana fleck wool drape coat by Theory

But the last thing I want to do in April is spend a bunch of moolah on a coat. My solution? Try to find this 90s-reminiscent silhouette at a thrift store.

I forgot to take a picture of the jacket before ripping the sleeves off the jacket—but you get the idea

I forgot to take a picture of the jacket before ripping the sleeves off—but you get the idea

I loved this coat (left)—it was less than $10 at Salvos—but it was slightly too big through the shoulders. Since I was going to take it apart anyway to work on the fit, I decided to Frankenstein it with a sweater (right).

Pattern pinned to coar

I used an old coat pattern that WAS my size as a rough guide for re-cutting the armholes.

I stitched the sweater sleeves to the coat—lining and all. So no, I didn’t really fix the lining the way I’m sure you’re supposed to. Instead I just made my own binding out of some ribbon to cover the raw edges.

Jacket Lining

You can see the raw edges on the wearer’s left armhole; the right armhole is finished.

Finished.

Finished.

sweater sleeve coat

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I wore this outfit to a jazz club with some friends—one of them told me I looked very Ralph Lauren, and another likened me to Katharine Hepburn. Not quite the look I was going for, but I’ll still take it!

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