Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Mighty Monarch Jacket

  Monarch-wear for everyday!

I have been planning this project for awhile (much to the chagrin of my husband) but he has patiently waited for it. Part of the delay was finding the exact supplies that I wanted. Who knew it would be so difficult to find the proper bright yellow fabrics I wanted? In fact- I really wanted my Batgirl ensemble to have bright yellow in it, but I also really wanted to wear it in San Diego and at my presentation in Pittsburgh, so I used this "gold" color instead. I much prefer the bright yellow....
And the back- check out the butterfly trail.....
I think this is my favorite part of the jacket- and it was all hubby's idea. 

Alright, back to the beginning.....
Patternmaking! I measured hubby and picked the appropriately sized sloper for the project. I then copied the front and back of the jacket pattern pieces in order to draw my accent (yellow) pieces and cut the pattern.
Laying out the pattern pieces for the yellow parts of the jacket.
Cutting out the black fabric of the jacket. That's right, sometimes I use soup cans as pattern weights. 
I had the "monarch symbol" saved from when I made the monarch costume a few years ago. Here I transferred the monarch symbol to the red fabric using Heatbond- a very useful fabric stabilizer that can be fused on both sides. 
Monarch symbol cut out, and ready to be fused and stitched to the yellow fabric.
Using my sewing machine and a nice zigzag stitch with matching thread I stitched all the way around this winding shape. That sucker is not going anywhere! Since I am stitching on somewhat "mushy" knit fabrics I usually put a tear-away stabilizer underneath everything, to keep things from shifting or getting stuck in the machine.
After the monarch symbol stitching was complete, I readied the yellow fabric to be stitched down.

Once that was completed I merely need to assemble the jacket.
The most tricky part of that is to make sure the yellow parts line up across seams, and of course making sure the monarch symbol lines up across the separating zipper- which it does.
Close-up of the topstitching.
There's pockets too!
Here I have made my butterfly stencil. I drew a bunch of butterflies onto parchment paper (yes, baking paper). Then I applied enough masking tape to cover all the drawings, and cut out all of the butterflies using an exact-o knife. 
After finding a placement that I liked, I peeled off the parchment paper, and stick the masking tape into place.
Using fabric paint and a tiny brush, I  paint several layers and allow to dry overnight.
Lastly I simply peeled off the tape to reveal the butterflies.


  1. Awesome! Love Venture Bros and have done a Dr. Girlfriend costume but am not brave enough (or have the figure for) a Dr. Mrs. Monarch costume. May have to try doing a shirt or sweatshirt inspired by your method!


  2. Thanks! I am glad that you like it- I wasn't ready for a Dr. Mrs. Costume either.
    I think a Mrs. version of this would be great!