Picture of Make a pattern and sew a hooded vest
This instructable will show you how to make a pattern from your favorite piece of clothing, and then make another one without having to rip all the seams.

This project can easily be completed in a day if you are well acquainted with your sewing machine. If you are new to sewing, it will likely take a whole day, perhaps a weekend if you take it slow.

Don't let the number of steps throw you off, you'll be creating a pattern and sewing a lined garment in just a few steps.
Recommended fabrics: Fleece or sweatshirt fabric for newer sewers, these are easy to handle and very forgiving if you need to rip a seam. If you're and acomplished seamster(ess), anything you can imagine.
What you’ll need for this project:
1.     Fabric – I am using an old sail that was donated to me for my outer fabric. If you are going to use non stretch fabric, make sure you add about 1/2” extra so you can breathe, in addition to your seam allowance.
a.     If you are lining your garment you’ll need an additional fabric. I’m lining in scrap fleece and sweatshirt material from other projects.
2.     Zipper – I have several on hand, check your garment to see what size you’ll need, shouldn’t cost you more than $3-4 without a coupon for any standard separating zipper. Mine will be a 24” Coats & Clark separating sport zipper.
3.     Scissors – you’ll want to use fabric scissors for this so you get nice cuts. I have huge shears, but have found that a nice new pair of cheap $3 scissors from your local store will get you started. Just make sure you don’t use them for anything else or they’ll dull quickly.
4.     Marking device – I started with pencil but then went over the lines with sharpie so you can see them.
5.     Original Garment – I’m using my favorite Hoodie since it fits me well.
6.     Measuring device – a tape works well for measuring your garment, you’ll see I use a square later for making a long piece and a special fabric ruler ($.99 from any fabric store) for hemming.
7.     Sewing machine – it is possible to sew a garment by hand, it just takes a long time.
8.     Iron – again you can work without this, but you will save some sanity by using it.
9.     Compass – remember these from those long ago math classes? I use one to create my seam allowance. Super simple, just set to your seam allowance, drag the metal piece along your seam line and voila, instant seam allowance.
10.  Patience – oodles and oodles especially if this is your first time making a pattern from a garment.
11.  Seam ripper – for when you put a part on backwards and have to redo (sigh).
12.  Potentially access to laundry – if you are using new fabric, you’ll need to wash it first so it doesn’t shrink.

If you are buying fabric, for adults you'll need about 1-1.25 yards, I usually buy two with a coupon and keep the scraps for later. It takes 1.5 yards to do a women's medium hoodie with arms using 55" fabric.
*Disclimer: This is for your own personal use only! Please do not try to make patterns of clothing for resale.*
CrazySheep5 years ago
Ohh! *3* I must try this!
You used a sail? Crazy! XD
... I might just have one lying around somewhere :L
stussylad5 years ago
thankyou thankyou thankyou !!! i was going to buy a pattern for a hoodie and now you have saved my wallet !

ya gotta love instructables !

b1russell5 years ago
Very nicely done, with clear text and visuals!
qapla47 (author)  b1russell5 years ago
 Thank you