1950'S VINTAGE COAT | SIMPLICITY 8509

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

I wonder, what’s the first thing that came to your mind when you saw this 1950’s Vintage Coat? When I look at these photos, I’m in complete awe that I can do this. I’m amazed that I’ve come to a point in my sewing journey where I can create garments that look just as good as (and sometimes even better than) what’s available in stores. When I was in my early twenties, I used to admire a friend who sewed her own clothes . I couldn’t wrap my mind around how she could take a flat piece of fabric and make it into a dress. I never thought that one day I would be able to do the same. It wasn’t until I wore one of her dresses that I was determined to learn this craft. I’m so GRATEFUL!

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

I’m very proud to share this coat for two reasons. First, this 1950’s Vintage Coat almost didn’t make it to completion. Second, it’s an imperfect, absolutely beautiful garment that resulted from a labor of love, and a will to persevere to the end. Today’s blog post is two-fold. Of course, I’ll share the usual details. But I’m also sharing what went wrong. More about that later, but for now, let’s get into the details

1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Pattern Information

Simplicity 8509 is a 1950’s Vintage Coat & Jacket. The original release of the pattern was sold for only 50¢. It was re-released again in 2017 and is still available on the Simplicity website seven years later.

The coat/jacket has a shawl collar, and is designed with lots of extra room, making it suitable for layering on top of other bulky garments. View A is a coat with three-quarter raglan sleeves and deep, folded cuffs. View B is a jacket with long raglan sleeves, deep folded cuffs, welt pockets, and three buttons. Finally, View C is a jacket with a band at the lower edge of the one-piece raglan sleeves, and a single button closure.

Simplicity rates the pattern as AVERAGE (Intermediate), and I agree. If you are a beginner, don’t go near this pattern yet. I consider myself an ADVANCED Sewist, but this project brought me close to demoting myself back down to Intermediate. Hahaha! I encountered several issues that had me scratching my head, taking breaks, and almost quitting. It took me two weeks to complete the coat.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Let me preface the following by saying this: If you’re a sewist who takes issue with others sharing what went wrong, or pointing out mistakes with their garments, you may want to skip the next section. I learn from my mistakes and have no problem sharing them so that others can be forewarned of potential issues. Yes, I know we can be our own worst critics, but I believe there’s a difference between being a critic and allowing mistakes to be teachable moments for ourselves and others.

Since I cater to new beginners, and encourage them to learn from mistakes, I don’t want to give the impression that I always get it right. That is far from the truth. I have a lot of successes, but I’ve also had a number of unsuccessful projects. It’s all a part of the learning journey, and I love it. Except when I mess up good fabric. I’m not gonna lie – that hurts. This was “good” fabric, so I chose to push through. Hahaha! Let’s talk about it.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

What went wrong?

It all started when I attempted to attach the back facing to the front facing. No problem! I’ve done this many times. But, for some reason, I couldn’t figure out how to align the two pieces. I read the instructions and studied the illustrations over and over again. I took a break from the project and came back with an idea. I pulled out the pattern pieces to see how they aligned. BOOM! Problem solved and it was super simple. I’ve included photos detailing the process, just in case you decide to sew the coat and get stuck on this part of the construction.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Fabric Information

When I saw the pattern, I envisioned it with a medium to heavyweight fabric for winter. One day, Style Maker Fabrics was highlighting their new Boiled Wool in lots of amazing colors on Instagram. I knew this fabric would be a beautiful pairing with the pattern, so I went to the website and ordered 2 different colors. This color is called “Ocean” on their website.

I used a cream colored satin for the lining that I purchased from JoAnn Fabrics. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a photo of the fabric bolt while in the store. But here’s the Casa Collection Satin Solids they have available on the website in multiple colors. It offers the right amount of drape and thickness for this coat.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Let’s talk about interfacing because when you’re sewing a coat with a nice wool fabric, a good, quality interfacing is important. Unfortunately, for me, I didn’t have the interfacing that I would normally use for this type of garment. Therefore, I used what I had on hand, this PELLON FUSIBLE MIDWEIGHT INTERFACING. However, if you’re interested in using the best quality interfacing for your coat, I highly recommend the SUPREME MEDIUM-WEIGHT FUSIBLE INTERFACING from Fashion Sewing Supply. They have the absolute best interfacing I’ve come across so far. There is a noticeable difference when using their products. The last time I shared about their company, the website wasn’t working. All is well now, so go check them out. ( I am not an affiliate for the company, but I love their interfacing.)

https://joann.prf.hn/click/camref:1011l3At4n/destination:https%3A%2F%2Fwww.joann.com%2Fcasa-satin%2F3346061.html

Inside the Garment

Let’s take a quick look at the inside of the garment. 

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

One thing I noticed is that the sleeve lining is barely long enough to cover the raw edge of the sleeve cuff. I had to press up a tiny hem on the lining so I wouldn’t lose more length. I ended up sewing the lining very close to the edge of the cuff, so I wasn’t able to use my usual invisible hem. The instructions say to sew the lining 1″ above the lower edge of sleeve. The only way that would happen, in my case, is if I had folded the cuff deeper, which I didn’t want to do.  If I were to make the coat again, I would definitely lengthen the sleeve lining pieces. 

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Notions Information

The pattern envelope lists several notions to complete the coat/jacket. They suggest 1/2″ RAGLAN SHOULDER PADS but these are optional. I was going to omit the pads because when I tried on the coat without them, it seemed okay. But when I placed the pads on my shoulders, it was a definite yes. The shoulder pads elevated the frame of the coat.

Views B and C call for 1″ button closures. Although View A doesn’t call for buttons, I wanted to add them anyway. You’ll read about my challenge with the buttons in the alterations section below. I decided to cover my buttons with the coat fabric for a more polished look. Therefore, I used the DRITZ COVER BUTTON KIT to get the job done. The kit comes with everything you need to create the covered buttons, including instructions. These buttons are actually 1 1/8″ but they still fit through my buttonholes. I would actually extend the buttonhole by 1/8″ in the future so that the buttons push through the buttonholes smoothly.

They recommend 1/4″ TWILL TAPE to reinforce the front edge of the coat on the main fabric. I used 1/2″ TWILL TAPE because that’s what I had on hand. They also recommend 1/2″ HEM TAPE to finish the hem of the coat. I omitted that part since the lining covered the raw edge of the hem, and I was ready to be done. Hahaha! I actually think the hem tape is a very nice touch.

Alterations & Construction Details

I cut a size 8 and didn’t make any alterations to the pattern, but I had to correct a big mistake. I sewed the beautiful bound buttonholes onto the front of the coat, totally forgetting that I needed an opening on the facing too. Instead of reading the rest of the instructions for View B that has buttons, I jumped straight into “fix it” mode. Hahaha!

My clever idea was to make regular buttonholes on the facing to line up with the front and tack them together. Genius! Well, not so much. The new buttonholes didn’t line up exactly, creating wrinkles when I button the coat. It wasn’t until after I finished the coat that I went back to read the pattern and saw the instructions were perfectly written to create the opening for the facing on View B, and it was far less work and more accurate than my method. The funny thing is, their method was actually the first thing I thought to do, but I didn’t think it would look right. Sigh! At the end of the day, my coat is still beautiful and I love it. I’ve shared some construction photos below of the bound buttonholes process with captions to explain the steps I followed in the pattern instructions.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Apply fusible interfacing pieces over the buttonhole markings on the wrong side of RIGHT FRONT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Stitch strips of fabric over buttonhole markings on right side of RIGHT FRONT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Slash buttonholes open between stitching and diagonally to corners, then turn fabric strips to inside
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Press fabric strips flat, opening up buttonholes
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Create pleats with strips by folding both horizontal ends to the center of buttonhole opening, and stitch ends to hold
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
A beautiful bound buttonhole
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
Makes for a beautifully polished detail
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
The inside facing with the messy buttonholes because my machine wouldn't finish a buttonhole. I guess it was tired too. Hahaha!

I’m not a fan of hand sewing, but I couldn’t get around it with this project. Sewing the hem by machine on this garment would be pure tragedy. So, I put on some good old YouTube Podcasts and took my time to do it right. I hemmed the outer shell and lining separately. I ended up having to cut away some of the lining on the right side to even out the hem. I’m not sure what happened there but it’s even and looks good now.

Hemming the main coat by hand while enjoying YouTube podcasts
Hemming the lining by hand and still listening to YouTube Podcasts
Hand sewing the sleeve lining to the main sleeve

If I were to sew this coat again, I would definitely use the self fabric for the back pocket piece that’s next to the body, so that you wouldn’t see the cream lining from the front. I didn’t think that one through.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Styling Options

After all that hard work, I can’t tell you how pleased I was to step back and look at this coat on the dress form. My heart was happy! Do you ever get heart happy after sewing a garment?

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

My original plan was to sew a new Nikko Dress in a cream color to match the lining. But then I remembered my Burgundy Cable Sweater Knit Nikko. OMGosh! These two colors together are beautiful. To bring it up a notch, I added my fascinator headband, black elbow length (evening) gloves, black velvet clutch, tea time lapel pin, burgundy pumps, and rhinestone jewelry. I love it so much. 💕

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

I’m ready for the Winter Tea Party, or any special occasion that requires dressy attire. The swing coat is a timeless piece that can be dressed up or down though. I plan to wear it with jeans  and trousers too.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT

1950's Vintage Coat with Boots

When 1950’s Vintage meets the present! Oh, YES! Simply pairing the swing coat with a pair of modern boots demonstrates how timeless the garment remains today. 

1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT
1950'S VINTAGE COAT

What do you think?

What do you think about this 1950’s Vintage Coat? I would love to hear your feedback. Scroll to the very bottom of this page to leave a comment.

1950'S VINTAGE COAT

Thank you for stopping by today! 💕

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This Post Has 105 Comments

  1. Sonia

    This is a gorgeous outfit! It looks great on you.
    I love the colors and I hope to make it some day. I had seen the pattern but wasn’t interested because of the shape but the drawing on the pattern doesn’t do it justice.

    Thank you for taking the time to share your great work!

  2. Linda

    Anita you slayed this coat. The color was gorgeous, the accessories were perfect.

  3. Tonya Hurst

    This is so gorgeous….I wish I could sew like this!

  4. Delores

    Love your coat.

  5. Lynne

    Hi Anita love your coat❤️I have this pattern so than you so much for all the information 🥰

  6. Brenda Berndt

    I want to come stay with you and sew and talk about God. Lol

  7. Janice Bates

    I just loved that coat with the sweater dress. The colors just made my day two of my favorite. You are inspiring me to go back to sewing garments. Something I haven’t done in a few years.

  8. Lorraine

    You look like you stepped out of Vogue magazine.
    I would prefer a lining that matched the coat.
    You did a great job.

  9. Marita

    I love 1950s style and that coat looks superb on you.
    Hopefully my health will eventually allow me to make a coat for myself. For now I’ll be happy to make anything.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Marita! Thank you so much. I pray you will be well soon and able to get back to sewing. 💕

  10. Elizabeth

    The color is just stunning! Combined with the Nikko dress was an OMG that is gorgeous moment when it popped up in FB. Just LOVE it and you look stunning. Love the fascinator!!!
    I have a New Look coat that is very similar. I cut it more than a decade ago. Yup, that collar area stumped me. It got packed away in the UFO pile. Three months ago I got it out and bam, it made sense. 45 minutes of sewing and it was basically done. But the lining is all kinds of catywompass! But I am going to finish it by Easter! Same issue with the pockets so I took them out but I think I am going to put them back in as the fashion fabric in the back and lining in front. Contemplating one – JUST ONE – bound button. Your bound buttons had me thinking visits to the spa would be the only way that was going to happen…
    Thank you for all the inspiration and yes I do learn from mistakes!!!!!

    1. Anita Morris

      Elizabeth, thank you so much for sharing with me. You had me laughing out loud for real. 😂 Isn’t it something when that “AHA” moment happens and you GET it? I believe you will finish that coat by Easter. You can do it, Elizabeth! I’m rooting for you. Have fun completing and wearing your coat. 💕

  11. Katherine Lighthall

    What an absolutely stunning look! Beautiful work–incredibly professional looking. It’s better than you can buy in stores! Your skills are so top notch. Love it!

  12. Rhona

    The coat is beautiful and perfect fit. Awesome

  13. Jackie Edwards

    Your coat is stunning! I absolutely love your thoroughness of the details on all of your work❤️

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you, Jackie! I’m glad you can appreciate the details. 💕

  14. Ellen dempsey

    Anita you look stunning the coat is beautiful 🧵🙏

  15. PJ Harrison

    I love this coat and I especially love the detailed blog post with all the details you provided of not only the positives, but also the negatives (that I must say you turned into positives, evident by your stunning coat.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, PJ! I’m so glad you enjoyed the blog post and all the details.

  16. Yolanda W

    Anita you nailed it, gorgeous as always.

  17. K. Miles

    Thank you for sharing all your ups and downs with this 1950’s coat pattern, I plan to make it and will be using the Boiled wool also, She’s a beauty.

    1. Anita Morris

      Awesome! I”m so glad you appreciated the details about the ups and down. Have fun making your coat.

  18. Marilyn

    Hi Anita. As always you knocked it out of the park with this one! It’s just beautiful. When I see what you’ve made, I’m always inspired to try something new. But my outfits don’t look as good as yours. but I’m going to keep trying. Thank you for sharing. You always look so amazing.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you, Marilyn! I’m glad to hear that you’re inspired. Just keep sewing because the more we sew, the better we become. 💕

  19. Tenia Nelson-Cobb

    Very nice. You could also wear this over leggings to dress them up.

  20. Karen McDonald

    I love the coat and the color looks good on you

  21. De

    This look brings back precious memories of the era when women looked so fabulous in dresses, swing coats, hats, purses, jewelry, makeup and gloves. It was such a glamorous time! You did an excellent job!!! Thank you bunches for sharing the hiccups; a lot can be learned from them. Vintage sewing has so many details but that contributes to the unique look it offers. Combining the coat with your burgundy Nikko dress is a smashing fashion statement. I’m so happy pattern companies are reintroducing patterns from past times. It’s good to see women look chic and stunning. Put another notch on your sewing machine, Anita! Without a doubt, this is a first-place winner!

    1. Anita Morris

      Oh, thank you so much, De! I love the way women dressed back then. Such elegance and class. Yes, indeed, we learn a lot from our experiences and I’m here for all the lessons. I’m glad you like the coat and it’s definitely a winner in my book too. 🤗💕

  22. Yvette

    Anita you have created some really outstanding outfits! But girl!!!!! You outdid yourself with this one. Omg this is positively gorgeous and the color! I have no words lol! This coat is incredible. Wish there was a sew along! For this because you knocked it outta the park. Bravo 👏🏻

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, Yvette! I’m telling you, I feel the same way. This is definitely at the top with a few other favorites I’ve sewn over the years. Every time I look at this coat, my face and heart both smile. 💕💕💕

  23. Marcia

    Absolutely stunning! You always look so beautiful in your photos but THIS is my absolute favorite (so far)! I ordered the pattern so I can make it too following your instructions. I really appreciate you sharing the good with the bad and including what you would do different next time. Thank You! I now have the courage to follow your example in sewing and in life.

    1. Anita Morris

      Oh Marcia, my heart! Thank you for your beautiful words. I’m so glad you enjoyed the details in the post and will be sewing your swing coat. YES! Thank you for making me smile. 💕

  24. Mary Jean Cunningham

    Your coat is just gorgeous!!! Haven’t seen bound buttonholes in a loooong time – my mom always looked for quality details like that when she was shopping for coats, and in fact, this pattern reminds me of photos of her from the 50s in similar styles. I also really appreciate it when you or any other sewist includes details about the good and the bad of sewing something – if I think I make mistakes and no one else does, it becomes very discouraging, plus sharing difficulties and how they are overcome is so helpful for others – we’re here to help each other, right? I sure hope so! Anyway, the coat is just beautiful!

    1. Anita Morris

      Yes, yes, YES! We are here to help each other. I love it when I can learn from others because it helps me to improve my skills. Books are a great resource, but seeing someone else put the skills to practice is so inspiring for me. I’m glad you appreciate those details.

  25. Lorraine Guinta

    You look like a page from Vogue magazine.
    My only suggestion would be to use a similar color lining or perhaps a pretty print.
    You nailed it.😊

  26. Susan

    What a beautiful coat. So much attention to detail, which definitely elevates it to a higher level. We all sometimes encounter problems with sewing patterns, thank you for high lighting these. The jacket on the pattern reminds me of a jacket my mum wore when I was a child. Thank you

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you, Susan! I agree that the details really do elevate garments.

  27. Melissa

    So classy! Hoping over from PR. Thanks for the detailed review and helps for those who decide to make this gorgeous coat. You look so classy!

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Melissa!!! Thank you for coming over to check out the post. I’m glad you appreciated the details. 💕

  28. Lynette Patrice

    Hi Miss Anita,

    What a beautiful coat – the fabric and the color. I always liked boiled wool….just something about it.

    Thanks for sharing the highs and lows of this coat and very happy that you pushed through 😊. I think it’s great when you share tips and tricks and what to do and what not to do. It definitely is a big help.

    I am far, very far, from sewing anything like this, but always enjoy seeing how you put everything together and how you style it.

    Thanks as always,

    Lynette P.

    1. Anita Morris

      I’m so glad that you appreciate seeing and hearing about the highs and lows. They both help us to grow in our skills.

  29. Jill Townshend

    Hello Anita, what a stunning, classy and elegant coat! I love, love, love the drape at the back and also the covered buttons. I think the covered buttons definitely add to the polished look and also allow you to accessorise in lots of ways without there being too much going on. I’m so pleased you persevered! If I had made that beautiful coat, I would refuse to take it off!!

    Love from Jill xx

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, Jill. I totally agree about the buttons and that’s why I like using them. No concern about the buttons clashing with anything else. Yes, I agree, the coat is so beautiful that I want to wear it everywhere. 😂

  30. Letitia Wilkerson

    I just love everything you make, but I have a question about the button holes on this swing coat. I noticed you had fabric and interfacing around the hole. Is this something the pattern called for or is it something that you just do. And the coat is beautiful!

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Letitial! yes, I followed the bound buttonhole instructions precisely, adding the interfacing and fabric squares.

  31. Cher

    For years I am looking for a coat I had in mind . This is the one.
    It is gorgious. Your color choices are beautiful.
    One day I will try to make this coat. Thank you for sharing this with us.

    1. Anita Morris

      Awesome, Cher! I’m so glad you’ve found your coat. Have fun when you sew it for yourself.

  32. Marie verdicchio

    Wonderful creation!
    I love how the back drapes.
    All your hard work paid off. Well done you !

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, Marie! I love that back drape too. And, YES, it paid off big time because I will get lots of wear from this coat.

  33. Brenda

    Absolutely stunning! Love it and you certainly have an eye for color choice and style.

  34. Ann

    This coat is absolutely fabulous !! Totally yells “class” !!!!

    I have not made this coat but I would try to match the lining to the colour of the coat. As well, if I made the coat, I would not put the top buttonhole in it.

    This could potentially be my next sewing project 🙂 🙂

    1. Anita Morris

      Yeeesss, Ann! Total class! Have fun making your coat. It’s going to be fabulous with the matching lining. 🤗

  35. Linda

    Beautiful job! Your work is wonderful!
    Hint: if you cut a 2” strip of the wool fabric and attach it to the upper edge of your pocket back, you won’t have the pocket lining peeking out at you when wearing the coat. You can turn under the lower edge and top stitch it, leaving the other edges raw, and continue on constructing the pocket as usual. Many older patterns included a pocket facing piece for this purpose. It helps when you’re using a contrasting lining fabric.

    1. Anita Morris

      Oh, thank you for the tip, Linda! I will see about doing this to hide the lining.

  36. Sue

    The coat is stunning. I love 50’s fashions in general, but you made that one look very up to date. It was worth all the struggles; I bet you will wear it alot, even with a pair of jeans.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you Sue! Yes, I will wear it a LOT!!! 🤗

  37. Wendy

    Absolutely fabulous, love it!

  38. Arleathia

    Hey Anita! I got that very pattern! Your coat looks really nice!😊

  39. Gwendolyn Styles

    You’re The Best Anita! Beautiful job! I need to get myself motivated!