A Carhartt-inspired jacket : (modified) McCalls 7638

We recently received a catalog in the mail that contained a selection of Carhartt jackets, among other items.  Tim liked the look of this one: a sort of classic, basic mens' work jacket:

So of course he asked if I could make him one!  He has a couple of handmade coats (a faux shearling from a few years ago and a Goldstream peacoat I made in early 2018) but wanted something a little more casual for everyday - but also warm enough for Syracuse winters.

I found my fabrics first: Carhartt Expedition canvas from The Rain Shed with a faux shearling lining (from my stash, originally from Mood Fabrics.) For extra warmth, I tried something new: interlining the shearling with Thinsulate! I ordered a swatch set from the Rain Shed and chose CS100. The website information claims that "the Polyolefin microfibers trap body head and keep you warm even in damp conditions because its fibers absorb less than 1% of their weight in water." OK then!

I couldn't really find a pattern I wanted - I hoped Etsy would yield some vintage men's work jacket patterns but no luck.  I decided to try McCalls 7638, in part because it was meant to be lined with something warm, so I hoped the sizing and proportions would be a good place to start.

I cut a size M, view A.  I made the following modifications:
- welt pockets instead of inseam and patch pockets
- front zipper instead of buttons
- shortened and squared off the shirttail hem

It's a pretty straightforward pattern with only a few pattern pieces and it went together quickly, especially after the $%&@ welt pockets were on😉

I machine basted the Thinsulate to the shearling. The sleeves are lined with Kasha satin (also underlined with Thinsulate) instead of shearling for easy on-off (a lesson learned from lining the sleeves of the peacoat with flannel...)

The shearling was very high quality and easy to work with, with very little shedding, which was excellent.

I trimmed off the facing from the coat front and sewed it to the lining, so that when I attached the zipper it would be sandwiched between two layers of canvas, instead of having the shearling directly next to the zipper. I also interfaced the center front to support the zipper. I bought a 24" zipper and shortened the coat to match, chopping 3" off of the original length.  And that's it!  It was a bit bulky sewing the lining to the coat but no complicated construction elements, really.

Probably the best welt pockets I've ever done. I've peaked! It's all downhill from here.

I almost want one for myself! Tim loves it, and says it's quite warm. He has plenty of winter left to see just how warm and dry it really is.

I know he likes it when he hams it up for the camera.
I really liked this pattern and would definitely recommend it and sew it again, if needed! I'm actually thinking about making another and sewing all of his novelty patches on it. I still have more shearling and some leftover Thinsulate, as well as some different shades of Carhartt canvas in my stash.

Sometimes projects don't turn out the way I imagine them in my head - but when they do, like with this jacket, it's so satisfying (and makes old frustrations worth it!)
Happy Sewing in 2019!


  1. that looks great, and yes, so satisfying to make a jacket like this. You need one too!

    1. Thank you very much! I might need one!! Guess it will go on my long list of coats I want to make :-)

  2. Your pockets look amazing. Great job on the jacket. It is obvious he loves it!

    1. Thank you so much! Welt pockets make me nervous. I'll never be able to make them that well again, and I've accepted it!

  3. Really beautiful. You mention a " sort of classic, basic mens' work jacket". For summer, I really like the foreman : a pattern of merchant and mills. I really like your site and your instagram.

    1. Thank you so much and thank you for the suggestion! I've had my eye on a few Merchant and Mills patterns, so I appreciate the recommendation!

  4. Great keep it up, We provides the latest crew neck sweatshirt collection online. Visit https://www.lesmauvaisgarcons.be/


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