Back in November I decided that I'd tailor my great-uncle Wally's old suit and give it to my twin brother for Christmas. I went into this with basically no experience, a used $25 Dressmaker 101, and lots of stubborn resolve. The chronicles are recorded here: Concept, initial shaping, some revisions to the plan, finished the jacket shaping, and a brief bit about the trousers.
There was a bit of a delay getting photos of Tom in the suit, so I borrowed it back and took some of my own. Enough stalling, here are the before and after shots.
I started out with this:
All in all, the work was fairly simple and was actually a bit of fun. The hardest part was picking a lapel shape that I liked. I struggled a little with the trousers, but that was mostly because I had never played with a pant pattern before and I had no idea how they went together. Total project cost, excluding my time (which is always free) is roughly this:
Sewing machine: $25
Fair value for the suit: $10
Not bad really. I wish my suits from the store fit this well (I guess they will soon enough). So if you are a young professional looking for a first interview/work suit, or if you want to make an awesome gift for a man in your life, hit up a thrift store and dive in! I'll gladly answer any questions you have along the way.
What do you think? Is it worthwhile to recycle old suits? What are some pitfalls I may have missed or over looked? Leave me some love in the comments below.
I'll sign off tonight with a final side-by-side before/after: