Last autumn I was asked to repair an old hunting coat for a friend. I don’t usually do repairs – especially if the items were not made by me, but it was a favour and I agreed. The coat arrived in the post a few days later and I must say it was only then that I realized the scope of the necessary repairs. After a few long phone conversations with the owner we agreed on what could be done. The jacket is vintage and very much damaged – the repairs were to prolong its life, but preserve as much as possible out of the original. Not an easy task. Still – the jacket was quality – after all, it turned out it was made in Savile Row, and the quality of the original workmanship showed. So worth a try…
Working on the jacket was not the most pleasant task ( I did have to air it for a few days first..), but it turned out to be very rewarding – not only because an old and tattered thing was given a new(ish) life, but also because taking bits apart revealed the secrets of the Savile Row tailors – so very educational!
First, the coat before:
There was a lot to be done… and difficult to see where to start – but after putting all the jobs on the list, some sort of order started to emerge.
The list of things to be done:
* buttonholes reinforced
*pocket flaps relined and edges reinforced
* hem tidied ( trimmed and folded anew, taking 1 inch of the jacket length as agreed with the owner
*collar reinforced at the back
*repair the underarms 0 outside and inside lining
*lining – cut away damaged bits, patch up with similar fabric. preserve all original bits that can still work
and the work in progress..
And the results….
It was a struggle, but i have learnt a lot ( i am not a tailor and haven’t got a clue about modern clothes tailoring and construction techniques, so that was definitely something new for me. Plus, I hope the owner will enjoy a few more seasons in her old trusted friend of a jacket:-)