1860s Civilian Frock Coat

A frock coat is often regarded as the most difficult garment to make in the world of men’s tailoring. Commercial patterns are often lacking good instructions, or contain simplified construction techniques to make the sewing more accessible. The patterns are often based on later period drafting systems, as well. It is possible to learn to make these coats correctly after years of research and trial and error. A lot of the information is found scattered about in old tailoring manuals, provided you can make sense of the writing style and terminology they usually use. Diagrams are a rarity, and of dubious quality, at best.

Since tailoring my first frock coat about seven years ago, I’ve put countless hours into research and practice, learning the fine art of tailoring during the Nineteenth Century. I would like to share some of that knowledge with you, in hopes of improving the quality of men’s clothing seen at historical events today. I am pleased to announce an online workshop on making a double breasted civilian frock coat. This is a rare opportunity to get detailed instruction from a professional tailor on how to make up a frock coat. Imagine yourself at an event, getting nice comments from spectators and fellow reenactors alike on how accurate and beautiful your frock coat looks. In this workshop, you’ll learn the professional methods and secrets of the tailor that will make your coat stand out from the crowd. Each step of the process will be fully explained, from drafting your pattern, to padding the lapels, to creating buttonholes that rival the originals.

Module 1 – Striking and Cutting

  • Striking the Pattern
  • Proper Cutting Techniques
  • Inlays
  • Piecing the Skirt
  • Fishes
  • Ironwork and Pressing Technique
  • Basting the Coat Body

Module 2 – Pockets and the Body

Padding the Lapels

Padding the Lapels

  • Breast Welted Pocket
  • Back Vent Construction
  • Exterior Pleat Pockets
  • Completing the Body

Module 3 – The Canvas

  • Cutting the Canvas
  • Preparation
  • Installing the Canvas
  • Padding the Lapels
  • Taping the Canvas

Module 4 – Quilting the Lining

  • Stoting the Facings
  • Preparing the Linings
  • Inside Breast Pockets
  • Quilting the Lining
  • Period Quilting Designs

Module 5 – The Facings

  • Installing the Facings
  • Installing the Lining
  • Interior Pleat Pockets
  • Finishing the Back Vent

Module 6 – The Collar

  • Preparing the Undercollar
  • Pad stitching the Collar
  • Attach Collar to Coat
  • Preparing the Top Collar

Module 7 – The Sleeves

  • Drafting the Sleeves
  • Ironwork
  • Constructing the Cuffs
  • Installing the Sleeves

Module 8 – Buttonholes

  • Determining Spacing and Alignment
  • Cutting the Buttonholes
  • Gimp or Four-cord Usage
  • The Buttonhole Stitch

Module 9 – Piping, Trim and Buttons

  • Different Methods of Applying Piping and Trim
  • Cloth Covered Buttons
  • Embroidered Buttons