Make an Old Coat New: Alteration, Lining & Embellishment

fashion design by Jen PaulouskyRevive an old jacket or coat from your closet or a thrift store. (Don’t buy a new coat for this project.) Take an old coat to pieces and reconstruct it with new insulation, lining, styling and embellishment. Learn some fundamentals of tailoring, alteration  and best practices for re-using textiles, and create something unique and fashionable in the process.

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Course Number


Class Size


Age Range

17+, teens by permission

Skill Level



Basic sewing skills


An old coat

Bring to first class. Try to avoid garments with any large, obvious moth damage or discolorations. If you don't already have one in your closet, buy one second-hand. We recommend:

  • Boomerangs (Jamaica Plain and West Roxbury, MA)
  • Garment District (Cambridge)
  • Goodwill (new store in Jamaica Plain; also in Allston, South Boston & South End/Boston, Cambridge, Quincy, Somerville)
  • or any thrift store

Sewing kit

Bring to first class and all subsequent classes:

  • 250–500 yd. spool of thread, of a color that matches or coordinates with your coat
  • seam ripper
  • fabric pencil or square of tailor’s chalk
  • small box dressmakers’ pins
  • flexible measuring tape or dressmaker’s tape
  • a pair of sharp fabric scissors
  • pencil or pen, for drawing
  • notebook, sketchbook, or loose paper, for sketching your design and recording your measurements          


Students will decide on buttons/closures and any special trimmings during the first class. These can be purchased later and should be brought to the second, third, or fourth class. If you order these on-line, be sure to ask for expedited shipping to you can receive them before the final class session.

 Find out  where to buy supplies.

Instructor, Schedule, and Cost

This class is not currently offered. Let us know if you are interested.