It is absolutely amazing what you can buy online these days. I say this because I found this amazing embroidery patch of a tiger and it looked so beautiful. The best part was the price, although I did have to wait over a month for it to arrive from China. I took it as delayed gratification.
When it arrived, the only thing that annoyed me was how clean/new it was. Don’t get me wrong – I like new things, but this patch just looked too sterile and common! So I did what anyone else would do in this situation, I aged it with tea! Can you spot the difference?
The next phase was to find something contrasting to go with the patch. I instantly decided on a denim jacket as I thought it would look quite cool with a tiger sewn on the back. Although I didn’t have a pattern for a denim jacket, I did have my old work jacket pattern. I thought elements like the collar and sleeve looked similar, so all I had to do was copy the pattern for my work jacket and alter it to a denim jacket.
Obviously I couldn’t alter the pattern without doing some research, so I trawled the internet and also looked at books that gave me more insight into the details of a denim jacket (and the history relating to it). With this information at hand, I opted for a trucker denim jacket and using my measuring tape, I obtained all the important dimensions for the alteration. The result was this denim jacket pattern:
I’ve made it seem like this was a very easy process, but honestly, once you are used to estimating from a picture, it really is. And here’s a useful tip – your measuring tape will give you all the answers you need when altering your pattern.
Sewing the jacket was very straightforward, as it’s sewn exactly the same as my work jacket. I also used bias binding to encase the raw edge and the outcome was amazing – the inside of the jacket looked as good as the outside.
The denim fabric I bought was a raw heavyweight denim. It sewed really well, was not expensive and the best bit was that it was woven in England. I also loved the indigo colour of the denim.
The only mistake I did was sewing the placket. I did not encase it properly, so when the jacket was washed the edges started to fray. I solved this easily enough by sewing some Liberty print fabric on the placket. A happy mistake, you could say!
With the denim jacket completed, I thought about the artwork to go with the tiger patch. Initially I wanted a moon for the tiger to roar at, but it then evolved into a heart! Let’s change an aggressive tiger into one that is in love! I had some red foil left, so what better way to use up my leftovers!
The next few steps were essential in getting the artwork right. I measured the area on the back of the jacket onto a piece of paper, placed the patch and drew a rough sketch around it!
Once I’d finally decided on the size and curve of the heart, I cut it out on a piece of card to create a stencil. This stencil was then pinned on the jacket and foil adhesive applied.
I then let the glue dry completely (extremely important) before starting the foil transfer.
The foil was then placed on the dried adhesive section and bonded to the jacket with an iron on medium heat. Once this was done, the tiger patch was sewn on the jacket before bonding it to the jacket with heat.
I really like the outcome of this project. The jacket fits really well and I’m very happy with the simple artwork to complement the tiger patch.
I have worn this jacket a few times now, once without the buttons (lets just say shopping online can be amazing but misleading at the same time). I’ve had a few words of praise from people relating to the artwork, but the funniest comment I got was from my boss who was surprised that I would take the time to make a denim jacket just to iron a patch on when I could have easily bought a denim jacket instead. But you know me, I enjoy making as much as coming up with the ideas.