Men’s Tropical Print Blazer


This month I sewed for my partner, Michael (that’s him above).  I hadn’t made him something in a long time  — as he sometimes reminded me!

Last month at Mood Fabrics in NYC I found this bold, tri-color hibiscus print in a lightly coated cotton canvas and, without a particular project in mind, snatched up two and a half yards.   Back home, I draped it on Michael.


It was too heavy for shirting, however, and too stiff for pants, and I wasn’t sure what to do with it.  My blog readers — a jovial lot — were leaning toward beach umbrella (!).   I decided to make a blazer out of it.   (A medium-to-heavy cotton print would be ideal for a jacket like this.  You can find some beautiful print sateens at Mood here and twills here.)

I had recently bought Vogue 9445, an Ivy-style blazer pattern from 1958, on eBay. I thought the bold print would work well as a conservatively cut, slightly vintage-y jacket.



I made version A, which has a single-welt breast pocket and two double-welt pockets with pocket flaps (which are lined with cotton gingham from my stash.)


The jacket itself is lined in a cream-colored  satin (a half lining, actually).


The buttons are vintage plastic ones from my stash. I made all the buttonholes with my vintage Singer buttonholer.


The only alteration I made to the original pattern was to shorten the length by two inches. There was a lot of hand sewing involved — mainly to attach the lining — but the blazer went together easily.

The result is a one-of-a-kind garment perfect for sultry summer nights in the City.  Michael’s wearing it with a creamy yellow shirt and white linen pants, both Mood Sewing Network projects from April 2013.

I’m open to styling ideas: black Bermuda shorts and white shirt?  Red gingham shirt and khakis?






I love sewing basics but sometimes it’s fun to create something more playful.  Michael loves the blazer and looks forward to turning a few heads in it this summer.

Thanks for reading!

(Color-coordinated hopscotch, anyone?)




  • Nancy
    May 19, 2015

    This is my favorite of all the things I have seen you make!

  • carolyn roemer
    May 19, 2015

    I love it. Any man should have fun with this jacket. Hawaii any one. Your button holes are amazing. Keep sewing.

  • fitz
    May 19, 2015

    SUCCESS! it fits like a glove.

  • Becky
    May 19, 2015

    Love it!!! So cool.

  • LinB
    May 19, 2015

    Go with the South Pacific island theme of all those hibiscus blooms, and find/make a sarong or a dhoti in that middling blue.

  • Clary
    May 19, 2015

    I would have gone with the beach umbrella, but I’m so glad you didn’t. Fantastic jacket! Michael looks awesome in it.

  • Gail
    May 19, 2015

    i just couldn’t imagine that fabric as a jacket but my goodness what a fantastic jacket it is. Stunning!

  • Dayna
    May 19, 2015

    I think he looks awesome in the blazer. Love it!

  • Barbara Christensen
    May 19, 2015

    orher way round… Red gingham pants (shorts?) and white linen T shirt.

  • Boyd Savage
    May 19, 2015

    The jacket is fabulous! Well done!

  • Nancy K
    May 19, 2015

    Fabulous! A tad different than the pattern envelope!

  • mag
    May 19, 2015

    Michael is one lucky man to have someone like you who can make lovely clothes for him!

  • Eileen Ostrowsky
    May 19, 2015

    Very beautiful on handsome Michael. The buttonholes are perfect! Now you need to go on vacation and show off.

  • Rhonda
    May 19, 2015

    I love this jacket. Good choice!

  • Sandi
    May 19, 2015

    The jacket is beautiful and well tailored. Michael is handsome and looks great in the jacket.
    Well done, you.

  • Jet Set Sewing
    May 19, 2015

    Wow, it looks like something Tony Curtis would wear in Some Like It Hot (when he was playing the playboy). Your best accessory is a G & T!

  • Brendan
    May 19, 2015

    As a tailor a few comments the overall fit is too big, the sleeve is too wide especially at the hem,the upper welt is too long and from the back the sleeve heads are collapsing,the right sleeve seems to have too much head ease, the sleeve head needs a small pad or a least some wadding to support the ease and fill it out. Tailored jackets are difficult but keep practising.

  • DeniseM
    May 19, 2015

    Since the pattern was vintage… the fit is right on for the late fifties look which was worn much looser than modern cut.

    • splendidcakes
      May 20, 2015

      I second this.

      • sylva
        May 21, 2015

        I agree. it looks gorgeous on Micheal.

  • Karen
    May 19, 2015


  • Lori
    May 19, 2015

    That is one fabulous jacket, love it!

  • Diane
    May 20, 2015

    Amazing work – sewn with love …

  • pia
    May 20, 2015

    Omg that first photo especially is GQ/Esquire worthy! Well done (again)!

  • Beth Briggs
    May 20, 2015


  • Sewgirl66
    May 20, 2015

    Michael….you look fantastic in that jacket!! Peter, as always, your creativity and eye for the unusual has triumphed. Beautiful.

  • Sallieoh
    May 20, 2015

    Wow!! What a fun jacket! Truly inspired fabric and pattern pairing! I think Michael looks fantastic as is – my only styling suggestion would be to add a deck chair and a cocktail! Amazing job, as always, Peter (especially love those buttonholes)!

  • Faith
    May 20, 2015

    Truly stunning jacket. I recently bumbled upon your blog and am loving it. Very impressed with your sewing skills. Would love to have you as a neighbor/sewing buddy here in San Antonio!

    May 20, 2015

    Thanks for making the world a more colorful and joyous place!

  • patsijean
    May 21, 2015

    Striking and fun, and terribly flattering on Michael. Much better than an umbrella or laundry bag.

  • Sew Well
    May 21, 2015

    What a wonderful jacket! I really like it on Michael. And, it seems like he really likes it, too!

  • Peter
    May 22, 2015

    Thanks, everybody!

  • Ginger
    May 24, 2015

    This is so fun! Michael looks so cute in it! It’s just so happy and cheerful… Let’s see, if I was his stylist, I’d pair it with slim blue trousers rolled up a bit at the ankle and a pair of white deck shoes!

  • Fiona
    May 25, 2015

    Such fun Peter! It’s a playful garment you’re right but I can see the amount of beautiful skill you’ve put into making it. I’m just tackling putting in sleeve heads and shoulder pads for the first time at the moment so have got a bit obsessed with looking at shoulders and armholes and yours are perfect! Love your lining choice on those pocket welts as always!

  • Annie
    June 3, 2015

    I have just ‘discovered’ you and your website and the jacket and fabric pattern bowled me over! I love it. What a fabulous bit of summer fun. I am so motivated to make something breezy and summery for my man too. Thank you for the stimulation!