Monday Outfit: Alpine Coat Take 2


Good morning! Part 3 of the Debt-Free Life installment is in development, but friends, I was unprepared for how much it took out of me to write part 1 and 2. So I had to take a breather with some Christmas sewing and also put final touches on a coat over the weekend. Turns out, it’s far less mentally taxing to wrangle fake fur than it is to look through all of my old journals during that period in my life to form a coherent post. So Wednesday for sure. As K likes to say, I pinky promise.


Let’s have some outerwear talk, shall we? I worked on this coat bit by bit over the course of a week to see if I could instill a more leisurely style of sewing instead of the manic, all-at-one-go methodology I normally employ. Leisurely sewing is lovely, but I discovered that by the time I finished it, I couldn’t really rustle up any details about the process. In the best of times my memory is sketchy, but I’m hopeless after a week. It’s a major reason I keep a journal and enjoy recording my projects here — otherwise, I would see a vast emptiness where my memory bank should be.

If you have better memory retention than I do and the coat looks vaguely familiar, it’s because I made a modified version of the Alpine coat recently. Here’s an image to remind you:


K has been wearing the “homeless” coat religiously every day, and I finally had to admit to myself that I couldn’t stand looking at it anymore. Even M commented on its weirdness and he rarely comments on the clothes I make. Naturally, I had to make a replacement stat.


This time I wanted to make the Alpine coat with the intended hood instead of my improvised collar. I chose a khaki stretch denim for the outer shell, and used a combination of fleece for the bodice lining and silky fabric (polyester?) for the hood and sleeves lining because I was short on the fleece. I also went one size down and cut the 8, which is still very roomy — in fact, so roomy that it’s almost the same size as the 10.


alpine-coat-khaki4You’d think that sewing the same pattern the second time would ensure a perfect outcome, but nope. I’m trying to think if I’ve ever managed to make anything without a single flaw or mistake, and that would be a no. Anyway, the error is pretty minor and not really obvious: I put the pocket flaps facing the wrong way, so it’s a little awkward and counterintuitive to get the hands into the pockets, but it’ll do.


I love this coat!! The quilting took about seven years, and I had to make do with synthetic batting instead of the uber warm wool batting I used for the homeless coat, but it’s still an eminently respectable winter garb, I’d say. Do you like the way K styled it? We were heading to a friend’s house for a holiday party and she insisted on wearing the blue recital dress I made…


But it had to be twisted and safety-pinned to a rather strict specification on her part…we had a few hairy moments when the dress wouldn’t stay twisted the way she liked. Very exacting standards she has, my girl.


The coat is a success, and a small part of my handmade Christmas gifts have been completed, so it was a good weekend. I’m off to go down memory lane once again to cobble together how I was able to dig my way out of my money mess — I’ll be back on Wednesday!

15 thoughts on “Monday Outfit: Alpine Coat Take 2

  1. Hmm… that doesn’t look like the same coat at all. Funny how much you can make with the same pattern. I am looking forward to Part 3, but equally happy to see some sewing. I have some Christmas dresses to make and I may be avoiding things a little.

    1. Isn’t it amazing how just changing the fabric and adding a hood makes it a completely different garment? And I’m with you on avoiding things, Max! My new year’s hope is to finally address my procrastination habit!

  2. Who is that 16 year old girl in the dress?! The coat is a dream, it looks so well made and expensive. Wow. I have been wrestling with my coat as well for quite some time and I agree, it is a totally different process than than just whipping something up in an evening.

    1. I know!! Doesn’t she look SO much older? It’s nuts. The coat was apparently a huge hit at K’s school and her friends all wanted to pet the cozy bodice lining (it’s a really nice snuggly fleece). I really loved making this coat and found it very satisfying – I bet yours will be gorgeous, Ute!

  3. Wow this looks 100 times more sophiscated than a simple summer dress. Luckily you’ve made it big enough to last till she graduates from university.

    1. Ha! So true…although sometimes it feels like K is growing an inch every hour. Thank goodness I made this coat because now I feel happy every time I see her wearing it, whereas the other coat bummed me out. 🙂

    1. K absolutely loves this coat, especially now that it’s gotten the seal of approval from her friends (“Mama, my friends want to know if you can make them one too,” she said. Um….). Thank you, Greta!

  4. I do have the same memory issues as you. It is kind of frustrating, really. As for the coat, it looks great, and you must be really proud,. It is an important project, and K seems to like it a lot. What else? Here is something to remember.

  5. I really enjoyed your subtle humor in this post.I needed to giggle, and this did it. I think the 7 years to do the quilting was well worth it. The coat looks great!

    1. I’m pretty sad about it, especially since K is truly lacking in winter clothes. For some reason she keeps misplacing all her jackets and warm sweaters. I’ve got a pattern printed out and I hope I can get it done pronto! Thanks, Tracy!

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