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14 Easy Ways to Refashion a Winter Coat!! {tutorial}

 I love a good refashion.

I’ve refashioned shirts, sweaters, skirts and accessories. And with the Winter months coming, I thought it would be fun to try some Coat Refashions!!

We all have a coat that we’ve had for years. It’s good quality, and keep us warm, but it might be a little on the blah side or a little outdated. Instead of giving it to the thrift store and spending money on a new jacket, why not try updating your old coat?? Or, find an old coat at a second-hand store and refashion it — save yourself mucho $$$.

Wednesday I went on my local morning show Studio 5 and shared my coat refashions. It was so much fun! I also shared the tutorial on how to make a Detachable Faux Fur Collar.{ I am having a bit of a crush on faux leather and fur right now. I bought mine at Joann’s and I was surprised at how affordable it is! Plus, it’s so soft. It was regularly $8 per yard and was 50% off the week I bought it — so $4!! And I can seriously make 8-10 collars out of a yard of material.}

I also was really lucky to have a couple FB friends bring over their coats for me to refashion. It was so much fun!

So instead of donating that old coat, keep it and update it. Here are 14 easy Ways to Update Your Old Coat:

1. Add a little ribbon or lace to the bottom, sleeves, or up the front of the coat.

2. Shorten the sleeves. A 3/4 sleeve lets a pop of color come through from your sweater or shirt underneath and add so much interest.

3. Add a Faux Fur or fabric collar. Bring in some texture or color with a different collar that you sew right over the existing one!

4. Change out the buttons. New buttons can really update the look of a jacket. Add some brightly colored ones, or even some sparkly ones to dress up your garment.

5. Add embroidery trim to the bottom or sleeves. Pom poms can add some whimsy to your coat, or even a nice fringe.

6. Add a belt. A belt will give your silhouette a nice fitted look. Go for a leather one, or a thick stretchy belt will accommodate even the bulkiest jackets.

7. Make a brooch or pin and add it to your lapel. This is a way that you don’t have to alter the existing garment at all, yet it will add a pop of color and bling to your jacket.

8.Shorten a long coat. If you have a long, outdated coat, shorten it to hit or even waist level and it will transform your jacket!

9. Add a fur or fabric cuff to your jacket. If you have a jacket that is a little worn at the end of the sleeves, cover that up with a fauz fur cuff. You can buy faux fur at your local craft store and line it with satin. then stitch it on top of those worn cuffs.

10. Embroider the front panels or the bottom of your coat. Get out your floss and add a fun design to your coat. You can find designs online.

11. Add a detachable collar to your coat. If you aren’t sure if faux fur is for you all the time, make a detachable collar with snaps and you can add the fur for special occassions.

12. Instead of buttons, sew on a faux leather belt. You can buy faux leather material at your craft store. It’s thinner than regular leather and you can make a belt out of it and then sew it right onto your jacket. It really updates your look, plus the tie lets you cinch the coat up and gives you a great leaner look!

13. After shortening your coat, take the left-over material and make a ruffle. Attach that to the front of the coat.

14. Or, after shortening the coat, take the left over material and make a brooch. Make a flower using die cuts, then attach it to the front of the coat and put a vintage button in the middle.

 Here’s what I did to refashion my 6 coats:

1. The first coat — I found this at my local thrift store for $4. It was in sad shape. A little boxy with outdated flap pockets and a worn collar.

  • Take in the waist
  • Cut off the fake flap pockets
  • Stitch on a faux leather belt {Joann’s}
  • Cover the existing collar with a shawl faux Fur collar.

2. The second jacket — this is my jacket and it was in pretty good shape, except for the collar which was a little worn. I solved that problem by making a Detachable Faux Fur Collar. the fur collar really dresses up the jacket. And for days when I am buzzing around town in my yoga pants, I can remove the fur collar for a more relaxed look.

  • Add a Detachable Fur Collar.

3. The third coat — This was my new FB friend Lauri’s coat. Can you believe it was a petite? It was so long and a little bit boxy. I cut off about 8 inches from the length and took the bottom 4 inches of seamed material and made a ruffle going up the front of the jacket. To cover up the exposed bottom, I wrapped a long piece of black faux fur along the exposed cut and sewed it up. I love how soft the faux fur is! I saw the idea of ruffling the left over coat material on the FAB blog — Grosgrain Fabulous. Be sure to check out her tutorial.

  • Shorten the length.
  • Take the left-over fabric and make a ruffle. Attach it to the front.
  • Add a Faux Fur length to the bottom.

4.  The fourth coat — this one was another one from my closet. I dressed it up with a new collar and cuffs. It really perks up the coat. Plus, when I put it on the mannequins at the studio, I added a belt and that really made the jacket have more of a silhouette. A belt is an easy, fast way to change the look of any coat. And if you have a bulky coat, just add a stretchy belt.

  • Add a Faux Fur Collar and Cuffs. {Joann’s}

5. The fifth coat – this was my neighbor’s coat. You know those trench coats that were all the rage in the 90’s? They actually have a wonderful figure-flattering fit. So if you have one, don’t throw it out. Just add some gorgeous lace to the bottom and give it a new look. I also made a brooch that I added to the lapel. Another idea is to add the brooch to the belt and showoff your figure.


  • Add some thick cotton lace to the bottom. {found it at Hobby Lobby}
  • Add a brooch to the lapel.

6. The sixth coat — is from another FB friend and reader, Erin. There were only 5 dress forms, so I was not able to show this one on the air, but this is a coat from Old Navy a couple of years ago. It’s made out of that sherpa material and is so warm. The problem with this coat was it was so long, it kind of swallowed Erin up. So I took off about 5 inches in length. I took the leftover material and used my Big Shot die cut machine to make a little embellishment out of the material. And to top if off I sewed on a vintage button I found at an estate sale. To dress up the coat, I added some cotton lace to the bottom and stitched it on.

  • Shorten the length.
  • Used the left-over fabric to make flower embellishment. Add a vintage button.
  • Add trim to the bottom of the coat.

I’d be glad to do more in-depth tutorials if anyone is interested. Leave me a comment if you would like me to do that. I have tons of step-by-step pictures.

Thanks Brooke and Darin and the Studio 5 team for having me on again. Here’s a link to the segment if you want

to check it out :)



PS — I’m linking up to these fun parties!!

Today’s Creative Blog – Get Your Craft On Party!


Tidy Mom’s I’m Lovin’ It!!

PS — It’s Friday!! How did that happen???? I’m excited to party with you tonight. Come show off YOUR Great Ideas!! I love featuring you!! The party starts at 6 pm MST. I hope you can join us!!

PPS ––  Nothing brings the feeling of the season into your home more than a festive Fall mantel or shelf vignette. I’m sharing 24 of my favorite Fall mantels at The New Home Ec today :)


Happy Creating!!




  1. I love these! I always see coats at thrift stores that I love. I try them on and they don’t fit or there’s a wear or tear in it somewhere so I pass on it. Seriously!? Never again, I never thought about refashioning a coat before! I’m so excited for this fall now. I always felt so blah in my coats because they were covering up a cute outift underneath… now my coat can be cute too!? Yeah! thanks for sharing 😀

  2. Hi Jen

    The fourth coat is exactly what I am hoping to do to an old jacket of mine.

    Would you please share the tutorial on how to make the fur pattern to match the collar? And how to attach the faux fur.

    Love your ideas !

  3. Loved your post! You could also consider using our patent pending button wrapz, stretch fabric coverings for buttons. These easy to use button covers offer an instant, affordable change;-)

    We’d love to possibly use your piece on you blog. Would you consider??


  4. How about how can transform my long coat to a poncho coat? Please give tips on how to do that

  5. Hi Jen First time to your site. I was looking for ways to refashion several jackets and a coat of mine, The collars are a bit out dated, and they are all boxy. I loved your ideas! I would love to see tute’s on all of them. You are one heck of a sewist and creater.

  6. How would you refashion a down jacket that has the old puffy sleeves? They are gathered at the shoulder and puff up there.

  7. Is there anyway i could send u a hoodie thats to big for u to “refashion” it?

  8. I love all these! What a fantastic idea and a great way to save Money!

  9. Love these, Jen! The ruffle down the front is my fave, but all are so nifty! Great way to upcycle, I need to head to a thrift store, like, today!

  10. KATHLEEN O says:

    oh my very nice and inspires me to kepp on upcycling see me on facebook
    TIA The Irish Apple

  11. Nilceia Santos says:

    Fantastic! You´re so creative… congratulations and thanks for the ideas…
    Hugs from Brazil

  12. good day. I have 3 jackets;2 leather: collars are badly damaged. what to do? the other is covered in a plastic like thing which is coming loose. how can I make a total new outside?

  13. I love what you have done with these coats. I found an old parka last week which is too big for me now and VERY boxy but so comfy and warm, you’ve given me some great ideas for what to do with it and it is no longer destined for the charity shop!!
    Thank you for sharing, you’re inspiring!

  14. Do you know anything about dying a cashmere coat? I have a long trenchcoat that was left in the sun and some of the color faded. Any thoughts?

  15. Wow, thanks for all the great ideas!! Would love to see a tutorial or even just some more detail photos of the detachable collars to see where you place snaps and such. Can’t wait to get my JoAnns on this week :)

  16. Ooh! I have two black coats, and I only need one the way it is. I am going to totally add a ruffle to the bottom of the cheapo one. Maybe a lace and wool ruffle. Thanks for the inspiration.

  17. Hi there!
    I would love some basic instructions on adding fur to my coat collar. I have a basic black wool pea coat that needs some new life…desperately!
    More specifically, I am wondering if you were able to use your sewing machine for this…did you use a special needle to get through the bulk? and does the fur hide the stitches? I may just use a fur scarf or wrap to not have to worry about the seams.
    Many thanks!!

  18. I like the black and white coat the best. great job!

  19. I can’t decde if I like the 3rd or the 5th coat better but they are all very cute. I showed your site to the girls at work today and now they all want to come over to use my sewing machine. Maybe I’ll have a coat refashion party :)

  20. These are so cute! I found the link on Pinterest, and thought all these were adorable!

  21. I was just at the store looking at new coats today. I’m so glad I didn’t buy one. You have inspired me to update my old ones…. Thanks

  22. Hi! I featured a link to this post on my blog, hope you don’t mind:)
    You can check it out if you want!


    <3 Leney

  23. Jen, I’d love for you to come link this up at my Tuesday Time Out Party!



    Reasons To Skip The Housework {The Blog}
    Tinker B Boutique {The Shop}


  24. Leigh Anne says:

    How awesome! I’m visiting from U Create and love what you’ve done! Was wondering if you did a tute on the fur collars?? Or if you could do one! That’s my fave part of the refashions :)

  25. Love the black on w/the ruffle & faux fur on the bottom! I have a beautiful red cashmere/wool blend coat that’s looking a little tired, but is too nice to get rid of so that could be a great makeover!! I do need an idea of how to cover some moth holes on the shoulders….maybe a large faux fur collar????

  26. I love these ideas!!! I can’t wait to try this out on some of my jackets :)

    Do you have any ideas for a leather coat? I have a black leather coat that hits about at my hips, I’m a long waisted person. I no longer wear it because I don’t like how it fits. Anything I could make it into?? haha Other than a leather bag perhaps :)

  27. So, have you ever taken in a coat that is too big? My cousin gave me her wool pea coat, and it’s big and unflattering right now, but so warm! Any tips on doing that? Thanks! Love the re-dos!

  28. Wow I love these, having spent weeks looking for a coat that fit me and satisfied the huuuge list of requirements that I had for it, I think this is a brilliant idea.

    I have at least one jacket in my wardrobe who’s buttons are falling off so might be good contenders for this treatment, although the arms are getting a little thin for me :(

    Pippa x

  29. Oh my gosh, Jen, you worked so hard on these!! Awesome job. You’re my favorite rock star.

  30. I love these refashions! The black one with the ruffles is my fave. I have a couple of coats that could use some reashioning love.

  31. Jen those are all way too cute! I love #5! Kind of makes me wish it was colder down here in south MS:)

  32. Love these! I’ve been looking forward to seeing your coat re-fashions ever since you put that request on fb for old coats (wish I lived near you so could have done mine!). I would love to see a tutorial on how you made those flowers on that jean duster jacket!

    • amanda » Hi Amanda!! Thanks so much!! Sure – I will make a tutorial for that. It’s really easy. have a great weekend!!


  33. I’d love to see tutorials! I have a boxy wool coat too and can’t figure out how to take it in with the lining and all. Thank you! These coats look wonderful!

  34. I never thought of updating my older coats, but it makes perfect sense. I have some coats just hanging in the closet and I haven’t worn them in a while. I should try one of your tips with a couple of my jackets and see how it turns out! I especially love the longer black coat and how it was turned into a shorter rufflelier coat. It’s just so darn cute! Thanks for the post to get me thinking about this:)

  35. What clever ideas!!!

  36. You are super talented! Great job!

  37. These coats are amazing. What great ideas. I love them.


  38. WOW! I dont even know what to say other than… Jen, you did it again! All great tips (cant wait to try a lot of them with some of my coats that I wont even touch in my closet). The 3rd coat with the ruffles is my fave!

  39. Oh man…. this post is so awesome. Toobad I am moving and just goodwilled 3 bags of stuff. I could have used this about 3 days ago!!!!! Thanks for awesome post!

  40. I just can’t believe how awesome you are…these are so fab! I’d wear every single one of the “after” designs! On another note, I’ve got a project voting party going on right now on my blog. I’d love for you to come vote and be entered into my Tinker B Boutique giveaway as well!


    Reasons To Skip The Housework {The Blog}
    Tinker B Boutique {The Shop}


    • Melanie LaDue » Thanks Melanie!! Your giveaway sounds fun – I will come over and check it out!


  41. Your refashions are amazing! And the fur! The fur…I love it! Beautiful…

    • Jenna » Thanks Jenna!! I am loving that fur too. I might cover my house with it – it’s so soft!! LOL!!


  42. You have such an eye for stuff like this, Jen! It was fun to see you on Wednesday! You did so great! Fun to see the segment in person. :)

  43. <3 woooohoooo! lot of great work!!
    love them all. i mean it.
    i have a shearling jacket that is in perfect condition but in bad needs…. but it's so thick i'm not sure my sewing machine can handle it!! oh, well. the only way to know that it trying :)

  44. These turned out great!!! Love the foax fur :) Cute ideas!

    Fancy Frugal Life

  45. I would love to know how to take in the sides of a coat… I have a wool coat from several years ago that is really boxy. It’s a good coat, but I just don’t wear it because it’s not flattering. I’m afraid to take out the lining and alter it, though…. a tutorial on that would be so great!

  46. Wow…I would *never* hvae thought to do any of those! I especially love the fur collar and the denim one!

  47. WOW Jen!

    You are amazing… I love all the different possibilities!
    Thank you for sharing them all.

  48. These are great ideas! I can hardly wait to drag out some of my old coats that I never wear anymore and explore the possibilities. I really appreciated having several ideas given to get the creative juices going. Before cutting anything, I would probably pin or baste it in place and try it on in front of a full length mirror to make sure my imaginative creation is in line with reality. Thanks again for a really informative post!

  49. Love!

  50. Here I was just out the other day, looking for a NEW winter coat…. I must rethink this…And scour my closet to see what Treasures are lying inside from Winters Past…. : )

    Would LOVE to see the Full Tutorials..

  51. These were wonderful Jen! I recently pulled some coats out of the DI but I will not be refashioning them. One day I’m going to show them on my blog and you’ll find out why!

  52. Jen, you have such a great style! Once again, I am bummed that I don’t live next door to you. 😉

  53. I was so excited to see your coat refashions you were talking about! You did an AMAZING job Jen!!

    • Kari – Ucreate » Thanks Kari!!!! They were so fun to think up and create. Now I want to go to DI and find some more coats to refashion LOL!!


  54. I’m in complete awe! Fabulous transformations!

  55. Oh. My. Gosh Jen!!! I am so in love with all of these!!! I love the ideas and I have several coats just sitting in my closet that I can use these ideas on – Thanks so much!!

  56. Jacqueline says:

    Thanks! It’s especially fun to see the before and after pictures side by side. If you have time to do a tutorial on the furry collar and cuffs, I’d love to see it!

  57. These coats are ah-mazing! Would love to see a tute on the coat you added ruffles to. I would have never thought to refashion my winter coat! I probably would have just bought a new one! Can’t wait to see more on how you made these happen!

  58. amazing job JEN! i can’t believe what all you did. that was a lot.
    i think my favorite is the faux fur collars & cuffs. but all the details are so well done. that was quite a big challenge to do, but you can do anything. you are so talented.


  59. JEN!!!

    these are all so good. i can’t believe what you did to all of them.
    the sherpa coat has never been one of my favorites, but i must say you won me over with that lace trim. it’s perfect. those faux fur collars & cuffs are WONDERFUL! you added just the right touches to all of them & they don’t look over done. amazing job.


  60. You did an AMAZING job on all of these! WOW!!!

  61. Saw you on the show….looooved a few of em, I have one like the long brown one, I’m gonna try that w it cuz I don’t wear it cuz it’s cheesy :) good job and thanks :)

  62. Love this! I actually showed it to my students who just finished an upcylcling project. :0)

  63. This goes without saying, but you are brilliant!

  64. love all the the refashions! my fav is the petite one. the ruffle adds such a cute touch!! :)

  65. This reminds me that one time in Tulsa, I was at a flea market and came across an old 1910 postcard of a lady. On the front of the postcard was a tiny envelope. I opened it to find a tiny paper folded up. I read this note and it was a woman addressed to her sister talking about the various ways she changed her winter coat to look new and different by changing the collar and cuffs. What was old is new again. I purchased this postcard and have it framed in my bedroom to remind me that I can change anything myself.

  66. Jen!!! These are AMAZING!! I want to send you all of my coats ASAP. Many of them need some love and could definitely used some updates. You’ve inspired me! The denim on is definitely my favorite (love that lace!!), but I would love a tutorial on the fur collar. So fun! Sharing on my Facebook page…

  67. I LOVE THIS POST! I’ve never really considered refashioning a coat! I really want to do this. I am loving the fur trimmed coats and vest but don’t want to buy one! This is the way to go. Thank you for your post!

  68. Hey Jen! Great job on the show. Those were really clever, fun refashions. Great ideas!


  69. NO WAY! Those are UHmazing creations…wow! I’m speechless.

    Happy Friday!


  70. Wow, Jen! You have made me rethink my winter coats! : ) I love what you did to all of these. I usually wind up with basic black coats, nothing fancy, because I can wear them with anything. I’m going to have to look them over and see what I can do, even if it is just new buttons.

  71. Jenni Phenicie says:

    Those coats look awesome! Great job!

  72. I am so amazed at the creativity out there! I feel like we are a part of a movement… women who don’t need to buy stuff to make ourselves happy or beautiful. The idea sharing going on is really something spectacular. Thanks Jen for being such a pioneer and facilitator in this “movement”!

  73. Wow, you made those coats look really special. I love the detachable fur collar. Do you have any tips on how to make one? I’d love to see a tutorial!


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