Skip to main content
The Utility Jacket - the design of our latest style
25th April 2019

Last summer I became fixated with finding the perfect denim jacket. I've owned several over the years; oversized, fitted, raw denim, sand-washed denim....they are just so easy, a summer staple.

However the classic jeans jacket wasn't working for me. Fashion is changing, the mood is moving away from the overtly casual. Utility is key but the lines are cleaner. I wanted something more stylish - this is what led to the latest pattern design.

Rather than try to replicate a true denim garment with topstitching and stud buttons, I decided to design something new.

I wanted a double yoke as with this I could create a really neat collar finish. It would also give the jacket structure. With the first toile I cut the yoke with the grain, I realised that this felt quite restrictive. I then cut the yoke pieces on the cross; this allowed the denim to shape to my shoulders –much more comfortable.

I then addressed the body and sleeve shape. I knew I'd like to emphasis the cuff in some way and revisited the cuff developed with Keira Fogden for her dress. A deep cuff that was slightly over-long felt right. I decided to mirror this with the deep double hem.

Once I had produced a further toile I was playing around with the idea of slide adjusters. I like the two side ones found on a classic denim jacket and bought those into the design. However I realised I quite liked a centrally placed back adjuster too. Either way it would mean the jacket could be worn boxy or more shaped depending on my mood.

Traditionally on a jeans jacket the pocket flaps extend from the yoke however this broke the clean line I had in mind. When trying the toile on it became obvious that the pockets could be incorporated into the double hem. The seam–line here was at exactly the right height.

That just left the fastenings at centre front and cuff. I bought some pared-back smooth-surfaced metal stud buttons but then decided I wanted the illusion of no fastenings. I chose to just use snap fasteners - oversized on heavier denim, medium sized on lighter weight.

This is my new summer go-to jacket; it works in denim, linen and canvas. I'm now planning on making a lighter-weight one in washed silk.