minoru jacket, part 1


I finished my Minoru! I only started it two years ago, hah. I think this must be my second longest unfinished object ever (but these mittens still win). I realized I would have way too many pictures in one post, so the “outfit” ones are here, and I’ll do a second post with detail shots and more construction notes.

Fabric: Denim fabric with some stretch in it. Mom bought it for me one Christmas specifically to make this jacket, from her local fabric store. The purple is actually the wrong side of this fabric! It is much more interesting than the real right side, which was just a duller dark dark blue with a hint of purple in it.
Pattern: Minoru jacket from Sewaholic.
Techniques: Separating zipper, patch inverted pleat pockets, fully lined, interlining, piping, hanging loop.



I finished this jacket just in time for our trip to the Netherlands last weekend, and made use of the beautiful city of Haarlem (ooh, go there if you can) as the backdrop.  The dutch, in my limited experience, are open and have a wry (but friendly) sense of humor. We got some looks doing this photoshoot on the bridge, but in Norway, people would have tried not too look too much and keep to themselves. In Haarlem however, I got several friendly comments from the people biking by – “smile!” and “take a picture of me too!”. It was pretty funny!


This is a very comfortable jacket. I meant for this to be a winter jacket, so I underlined the lining (minus the sleeves) with a wool flannel, so the core of the jacket is warm. It was a perfect weight for the weather we were having, between zero and 7°C (that’d be in the 30s and 40s for you Fahrenheiters). It’s a little heavy, being made from denim and lined with wool – not something I noticed with it on, but it was noticeable while carrying it around in museums.

Seeing the pictures I have a few things I’d fix for a potential next jacket, fit-wise. It’s a little baggy in the back above the waist, so I think a swayback adjustment would be in order. Also, I did a FBA of 2″ total, and I think I could have gotten away without it. It’s not a fitted garment like a dress could be, and the jacket is a little roomier in the chest than it needs to. For a next jacket I think I will extend the waist elastic wrap around almost to the front plackets so it looks a little less flat from the front. I like waist definition!





The hood is usually tucked away inside the collar, and I like the structure it gives the collar. Overall my choice of fabric is maybe a little too heavy to both line and tuck away, so the hood ends up a little bulky, but not unmanageable. I lined the hood as well, since I liked the thought of having a pop of color there, and thought it would be more comfortable against the skin.

I was a little particular when getting zippers, and ended up prioritizing color instead of correct length. Both zippers are actually too short. It’s not a big deal with the main zipper, especially since I have a zipperguard that visually fills the space, but the hood zipper actually needs to be the length specified! I ended up having to pleat a section of the hood to allow it to lie nicely when it is in use. Oops. Don’t do that. Other than that, the hood comes out of the collar easily enough, but I might have to retrofit it with a cord and pullstops – it was a little windy the day we took these pictures and the hood blew off my head several times from being too wide I think.


I love the color of this jacket. I love that it is lightly rainproof (from a round in the washer with Nikwax), I love the professional look from all the topstitching. Living in rainy Bergen means that you often have to choose practical outerwear over stylish outerwear, so most of all I love that I have a utilitarian jacket I can wear in cold or rainy weather but still makes me look pulled together.

Alright, come back in a few days for part 2!

23 thoughts on “minoru jacket, part 1”

  1. I love how you did the front pockets, I may have to “borrow” that idea ;) I just posted my Minoru on my website and found your link on Tasia’s finished minoru page – great job and love the purple!

    1. Thank you Amy! Go right ahead and “borrow” – I love how we can all be insipired by eachother (I’ve certainly “borrowed” plenty of things from other sewers!). Your black version looks great, and suits you so well – both color and fit. Lovely job!

  2. It looks brilliant. We are having similar weather here in the UK. I think we have a high of 3 today…so I am sure you are getting plenty of wear out of your lovely inside out coat!

    1. Thank you Victoria – yes it’s been a staple in these cold days! I have a rainjacket I reach for every day when it’s wet outside, but we’ve been fortunate to have a dry (but cold!) spell so I’m getting pleanty of wear out of my new inside-out jacket!

    1. Thank you Donna! It’s great to finally have it done (and wearing it lots too!) after working on it for quite a long time!

  3. That is the perfect shade of purple, lovely and muted. It looks very coz. I’ve had this pattern in my stash for a while and haven’t gotten around to it yet. Want to tell us why it sat so long in your UFO pile? Always curious what motivates us to stop working on a project!

    1. Jill – thank you! Ah… the UFO pile. Let’s see. First I stalled because of the pockets I wanted to add. I didn’t know what size or shape, or flaps or no flaps, or if they should be lined, and where they should be added, so the jacket was probably in hibernation for a year before I was interested in tackling that. In addition, I guess I was lazy when I cut out the pattern initially, since I couldn’t be bothered to trace and cut all the patternpieces. I essentially just cut the most important parts (front, back, sleeve, collar, hood) so when I went to sew on the plackets I had to dig out the pattern, and trace just that one piece. I did the same with the lining – I didn’t cut it until the shell of the jacket was pretty much sewn together, and I had to muster up the patience to get all the pieces together and figure out where I put the lining fabric (this was after an apartment move as well!). Basically – it was all my less good choices, and not the patterns fault at all!

      On the other end – what finally motivated me to chip away at it little by little was wanting to wear the jacket for an upcoming travel weekend. So I guess having a deadline on the horizon helped move me along! Thankfully, the deadline was far enough away that I still enjoyed the sewing and the pace, and wasn’t sitting up til the middle of the night because of some self-imposed due-date. That takes away the fun a bit for me. But seriously – it’s a good pattern.

  4. Wow! Well done – it certainly looks like professional work. I appreciate that you chose the “wrong side” because the color was more to your liking. It gives me permission to make such a choice if I need to (I’m new to sewing, so spend a fair amount of time wondering if it’s “okay” to do this or that). Can’t wait to see your next post on this project!

    1. Thanks so much Amy! Oh, and it’s totally okay to do most anything! In sewing there is “better” ways to do things, and “not so sucessful” ways of doing things, but most anything is ok to do. Sometimes I deviate from intended usage and instructions, and I end up loving the result (like the wrong side of the fabric). Other times, I deviate and I realize it was a bad choice (I’ll point this out in the next post, but I trimmed the collar seam allowance a lot more than the instructions would have me do, and now my hanging loop is unravelling because of that! Not so smart). I guess my point is that if you’re wondering if something is ok to do, and you can live with the worst case scenario, then it’s totally ok! P.S. So cool to read about your bookbinding! I took a class a couple of years ago, and *loved* it!

  5. Great job! Hey, it may have taken a couple of years but at least you finished it! It looks very professional (as usual) and I don’t mind the extra fabric ‘pooling’ at the back – looks like it’s meant to be that way to me.

    1. Thanks Lauren! I did indeed finish it! And I think the result is better for taking my (sweet) time, than if I had rushed through when I started it. I definitely wouldn’t have a zipper guard, or have interlined with wool then! I’m glad the pooling doesn’t look odd to you – I have to remind myself that this is a more casual style jacket, so it really doesn’t *have* to be fitted everywhere!

  6. Wow, that is gorgeous! Love the color of the jacket and the zipper. Great job. I’ll wait till the next post to see a close-up of the fabric, I’m really curious as to what the “right” side looks like.

    1. Thank you! I’m really happy with the zipper and fabric colour-combo as well. I’ll take a picture of the “right” side for you!

    1. Takk mamma! I think the fabric is a huge part of the jacket ending up looking so good! You can show the pictures to the ladies at Fellingen if you want – I remember them being a little skeptical (or maybe befuddled?) about my choices to use the wrong side of the fabric and to have moss green zippers instead of matching purple ones. Maybe they didn’t think it would end up looking nice! ;)

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