Embellishing a jacket

Fashion is about inspiration, its about seeing something new and thinking “I love that, can I wear that or how can I wear that?”


I saw this Isabel Marant jacket in the window of Liberty of London last September when I was there for work and holiday.

The window display reminded me of the 1980s, big hair, big earrings, a woman wearing a tie and a bold windowpane checked suit. Something about it reminded me of my youth and it said fun!


The next day while shopping I was in Aquascutum (a traditional from 1851 & modern English store made famous by its trench coat) and saw an off-white, navy and brown window pane jacket in the winter sale in my size!

It was perfect – the jacket is my colour, it is my shape and is mostly my personality. I purchased it knowing that I wanted to do something to it – embellish it to make it more fun and contemporary.


Next, I popped into my favourite trim shop the gorgeous #vvroueaux in Marlyebone Lane looking for sew on motifs – no luck this time. Then while visiting a friend I ended up in Diss a small rather unsophisticated village near Norfolk and found it the local knitting shop a box of sew on motifs – sometimes granny stores are a goldmine! 

I purchased 6 motifs of a miniature handbag and some navy satin ribbon that toned with the navy strip. I now have my all equipment!

Autumn has now arrived however it is still terribly hot in Melbourne, 32 degrees today. I have not had a need for a warmer jacket however I had a bit of free time this long weekend so decided to embellish the jacket. 

I started out pinning the ribbon and motifs to the jacket in a spiralling zig zag pattern which looked nice on the stand, however when I put it on my body it looked awful – way to busy. 

After several changes I settled with this design, keeping the focus on my shoulder area, centre back neck and pocket flap. 

I stitched the ribbon and the motifs on by hand using a standing running stitch, provided the stitches are small and neat this is completely acceptable and part of the hand made appeal. 

Also what hand stitching makes available is that if I tire of the trims they are very easy to removed and the jacket looks as it once did . 

Enjoy your clothes, make them your own and have some fun.Kx

Shopping for motifs, ribbon, buttons, ric-rac and shoulder pads

In Melbourne I go to:

The Button Shop, 181 Glenferrie Road Malvern

The Brighton Button Shop, 405 Bay Street Brighton

Tessuti Fabrics, 141 Flinders Lane Melbounre

and some Lincraft stores

In London I go to:

VV Rouleaux, 102 Marylebone Lane London W1

Button Queen, 19 Marylebone Lane London W1

John Lewis, Oxford Street, London W1

Barnet Lawson Trimming, 16-17 Little Portand St London W1