This new job I'm at has the smoking area in the middle of the parking lot which is roughly the size of a football field, and the past few weeks have been extremely cold. I always try to remember my hat but racing out of the house I'm always forgetting it. I thought a couple of times about getting a new winter coat with a hood, but I love my old wool coat. So for awhile now I've considered trying to add a hood to it but I didn't want the hood hanging out the back all the time. It needed to be hidden or "Tactical" (out of the way but easy to access). I tried a couple of different ways and learned a bit on the way to making this work.
How to add a secret "Tactical" hood to any jacket w/ Bonus Surprise!!!
Step 1: Materials
Old Sweatshirt that doesn't fit anymore and a good matching color that suites your taste
Thread (Color Matching or Black)
Grease Pencil (or a sliver of bar soap will work too)
Sewing machine (or plain old sewing needle)
Hobby Knife (though if you have it I've been told to get a Hem puller supposed to make tearing stitches easier)
Step 2: Cutting Up the Shirt
The bulk of my sewing experience is mostly sewing a wound shut with a small sewing kit in my arm and a camera holster i'ble I've done earlier, So to those of you who are great at sewing forgive my hack job at trying this, I'm still new to trying this out.
Take an old sweatshirt and tear all the hems you can find so you have some raw fabric to work with.
With a pair of scissors trim the excess fabric off to make 2 big squares out of the front and back of the shirt.
I made a couple of mistakes along the way and this next step was one of them (If your following along making a hood you can skip to step 4 "Changing the design" to save yourself from making my mistake)
Next sew the 2 squares together to make one long rectangle.
Step 3: Making the Design
Hey nobody's perfect, I'm including this step as just a reference not to make this mistake it worked well with my Halloween costume robe but was for crap with an everyday hood. My wife said I looked like a monk wearing a robe and trying to hide it under the coat was big and bulky not at all what I was going for.
The pictures depict how I used a sliver of soap to do a circular hood style it made the hood way too big.
On the bright side it still gave me enough fabric to cut it down to a good size.
Step 4: Changing the Design
After my initial testing or first try at this project, I had to go back to the drawing board. So my first step was to rip all of the first stitches from the previous try.
Next take the two squares of fabric and pair them up, it helps to have a way to pin them together like a couple of needles through the fabric.
Then take the fabric squares and drape them over the side of your head from your collar over the top of your head, make sure to mark the center using your nose as a guide as the center.
Take a piece of string to a loop on one end and going from the corner at the bottom stretch the string to the center mark you made and try an additional loop there.
Place your finger into the bottom loop and a grease pencil or sliver soap in the other loop and draw a quarter circle.
Then take your scissors and cut out that quarter circle.
Step 5: Final Sewing
Keep the two halves matched and sew the edge of the hood around the circle.
Then open the hood and with a wide stitch sew over that stitch which should mash it down making it comfortable to wear.
Then from the center of the coat start sewing inside the hood edge to the inner edge of the collar line (Make sure to leave 4 to 5 inches of fabric not hemmed at each end).
Then create a loop by sewing a couple of inch's at the corner (this will be for the bonus step however if you don't use the bonus you can continue to sew all the way to the corner).
Step 6: WARM and COZY
Now you have a warm hood for those cold days that hides easily under your coat and leaves enough room to slide it up or back depending on your mood.
But wait my face still gets cold when the wind starts blowing, and hey I have some extra fabric left over...
Step 7: The Bonus!!!
With the extra fabric left over, I got the idea to add a quick face mask by sewing it to those extra fabric pleats I left inside the hood!
Using my own head as a measuring tool again I wrapped a piece of extra fabric around my face and marked behind the ears then cut at those marks.
Finally I sewed (from the inside) a hem to each of the pleats together with each of the edges of the fabric; so if I want to use the face mask it slides easily over my head and holds tightly at the bridge of my nose. Or I can fold it back and hide it cleanly in the hood.
Now that I've tested it there is an added benefit to wearing the face mask it keeps the wind from blowing the hood off my head.