Major jacket reconstruction finally finished! (Updated post 1-30-18)

We took my Mom shopping and I ended up with several alteration projects. This was a key piece, an expensive  skirt-jacket set that built several outfits.

Mom is 82, with serious spinal issues, including a dowager’s hump. Her posture is now like a question mark. The smaller A- line skirt fit, but we had to order the jacket in a larger size due to a very straight cut. Here’s the list of what I had to do to it:

  1. Take out of the collar 3/4″ from behind the neck.
  2. Raise the shoulders 1″ in back, and 1.25″ in front, tucking 1/2″ under the sides of collar stand to give shaping.
  3. Take in center back seam at neck, and release same seam down center back and thru hem.
  4. Reset sleeves, after dropping armholes 1″ at underarm.
  5. Let out side hips from waist to hem.
  6. Let out Princess seam at bust, and take in same seam thru waist.
  7. Steam out all former seam lines.


1 – TOP LEFT: Center Back  over pressing ham and neck, shoulders in lower corner

2- Top RT:  Center back of collar, and collar stand- altered with seams graded

3-  RT. Middle- Not yet pressed center back seam, removing fabric as matches collar;          tapering into center back to allow room for Dowager’s Hump at upper back.

4-LOWER LEFT:  Front shoulder was taken up more than back shoulder. Mom needed      the front of the jacket shortened through upper torso.

5-  Close-up of back collar sections – All these seams had to be opened horizontally to          take in the vertical seams at back of neck.

6- 2ND from RT.- Interfacing going back in on shoulders. The hand stitching was done on pressed seam allowances, over shoulders, around collar area and shoulders. For added stability, I tacked thru the center front seam allowances also.

7- Armhole- Using paper, I traced front and back armhole prior to cutting new line. Then, pinning paper in place; one area at a time, I traced the new cutting line with thread. After stay-stitching 1/4 inch in from basting stitch, I cut thru lining and outer fabric. NOTE: I pinned the lining to match the outer armhole edges, then moved the lining back about 1/8 inch. This was to ensure the lining didn’t become tight . Sew sleeves back in, being careful not to make any pinches. ( HAND BASTE FIRST)

Finally, I’m ready to ship! ( 2 years later)  The entire garment was carefully steamed by hovering the iron just over the areas, using my presser mits and hams as needed.   I lay the garment on the table face down, and folded it sides in to center with lot’s of white tissue paper. Then, turning it over, the front and sleeves were stuffed with paper, including some under the collar folds. The entire garment was then folded in half. Lastly, it was inserted fold first into a 2 gallon Zip-bag, with a couple extra items just for love!

Thanks for reading!   If you have to alter something like this, Please share!









Published by

Karen L. King-Gonzales

Hi! I'm a retired Bridal Designer, and am now spending my time getting back to pleasure crafts! My husband and I are still newlyweds, nearing our 3rd anniversary on October 2. I was single 33 years! We moved across the country from Phoenix Arizona, to Lumberton N. Carolina. The slower lifestyle agrees with us! Both empty-nesters, Jim and I are finishing the work on the 1950's bungalow style cottage. Fortunately, this home has a huge addition.... adding about 40% to the original size. Having to quit the sewing trade due to a disability, I spend my time on projects for home, family, and pleasure- as I feel able. Jim, now a Pastor/Judeo Christian Rabbi; is retired from the tile trade, and currently joins his friend in local ministry. This includes a bible study twice a week at a local prison. Join us as I document the journey in our changing lives!

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