Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Make a Vest from Old Work Pants!

Got a pair of work pants that have been worn thin? I have, and needed a special vest for Falconry. So I figured out how to make a canvas hunting vest (with game pouch in the back!) from an old pair of pants and a shrunken sweater. The sweater part is optional but saves you from having to do the work on installing a zipper, button holes, or toggles. Okay. Here's what you do:

1. Get out those pants. These are a size 14 women's canvas pant. I have lost some weight and they no longer fit. But I loved them, so much. The inner thighs were worn through, stained from blood and mud, so they live on as a hunting vest!. Pro tip 1: If you can get a hold of bigger pants than what you wear, this will be a lot easier. So ask your friends with more posterior for their old work pants.

2. Cut as pictured here: Don't be fussy, just kinda cut it like this. Great job!

3. Now, cut up the inseam, to one close side of that industrial sewing. You don't want to cut the seams, but aside it, just through the fabric. Now you pretty much have two sides of a vest. At this point, I suggest ironing them flat. It makes sewing easier.

4. Get out a needle and thread or sewing machine. I used needle and thread since machine died.

5. Sew both pieces together to make the back of the vest. I let the thick seams of the pants and inseam become the front and bottom hems. If the pants are big enough, at this point all you need to do is lay a vest that already fits you on top and use scissors to create the proper armholes and neck hole cuts. You can install a zipper, or buttons, or grommet it and use paracord to lace it up. If the pants fit you (or recently did, like in this case and you happen to have breasts) you're going to need more front coverage. Enter SWEATER!

6. An old sweater, the hooded kind is best, is a great addition. This one shrunk on me, so I cut out the faux fur hood and the chest area, and sewed them into it. This saved me from any actual talent requirements and made it wearable sooner. I didn't have to measure side panels!

7. Pouch in back was sewn using the butt of the pants, and even came with an extra rear pocket! Not pictured because of reasons.

8. And there you go. No pattern (I hate patterns), no fuss, just go with your creative instincts and if confused or unsure, but it on and adjust from there. You probably have a lot of these potential vests sitting around!


Blogger Cat H said...

This is excellent! I have jeans and a sweater that are too big now. I'm going to have to look at your vest up close and pick your brain to make sure I get it right. Thanks!

September 17, 2014 at 10:07 AM  
Blogger Tanya T said...

That looks like such a cozy sweater. Back pouch not pictured because of "reasons" lol.

September 17, 2014 at 10:51 AM  
Blogger Jennie said...

What a clever idea! Sustainability at its best.

September 17, 2014 at 4:06 PM  
Blogger Ngo Family Farm said...

So great! Thanks for showing how you made it. Excited to read about your hunting adventures with Italics!!

September 17, 2014 at 10:25 PM  
Blogger Robin Follette said...

I'm pretty sure there isn't anything you can't do. Clever!

September 22, 2014 at 6:21 AM  

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