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The Big Finish – Completing the Fantasy Fur Jacket

The final installment to the epic series of posts on making this hairy beast!  We’ll be covering lining the jacket, as well as final details in this post.

Choosing a suitable lining was a bit of a challenge here, as the outside was so distinctive.  I stumbled upon this plaid taffeta at one of the jobbers I frequent.  It wasn’t ideal, but the colors worked well with the fur, so I took a chance.


On further reflection, I decided that the wrong side of the fabric worked better than the right–it has a Frank Lloyd Wright feeling to it.

I cut the interlining from the same cotton flannelette as I interlined the jacket with–this will give the jacket more warmth, and will beef up the fabric so it looks more luxurious.  The black patch is a welt pocket, as one can never have too many pockets.

When trying on the jacket, I decided that the mammoth shoulder pads I constructed weren’t quite enough.  So, since I interlined the lining, I was able to attach another set of shoulder pads to the interlining.

Use a catch stitch around the edges of the pad, and it will stay in place over the life of the garment.

I like to sew my linings into the jackets by hand, but stitching through the leather facing was problematic.  So, I decided to use the pinked edge as a repeat, and punched holes every second scallop.  To make sure the holes were the same distance from the edge, I marked a line onto the hole punch (see arrow)..Then it was a simple matter, to count over two scallops, and line the mark up with the edge, and punch.

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  1. sgbarnes | | #1

    Interesting technique but who would want to wear that thing?

  2. caprig | | #2

    Dude, you have made my day!

    Seriously. I am like the wig queen, and am always wishing I could find wefting to mess with- I love working with wigs and changing them around, etc.

    Making a coat- OMG you have totally lit the fire of creativity

    My only problem with this would be the abrasive sensitivity of the synthetic hair. Wigs get scruffy pretty quickly from abrasion and some hair is more susceptible than others, which is why I tend to choose leather garments when wearing wigs to extend their life. However, the concept is delightful.

    Reminds me of the time when I had no money at all except for $10 and wanted desperately to create something. I found three huge spools of woven cotton belting and they were all under $10 total. I bought them and created two coats out of them which I treasure to this day even though they are pretty old now.

    You can see them at http://www.caprig.com.

  3. User avater
    CFields | | #3

    Fabulous array of techniques and craftsmanship. This should be the picture next to the dictionary entry for Creativity. But OMG, what an ugly garment! LOL It makes me think of Sully in Monsters, Inc. on date night. I loved the series of articles. Thank you, Mr. King.

  4. imacook | | #4

    The techniques are worth knowing, but like some others, I will not compete; rather I'll transfer the information to creating something else. The oddity of the coat is its worth overall but only because of its exquisite workmanship. Imagine a lesser craftsperson or lesser quality materials and the outcome.

  5. LaurieDiane | | #5

    What a gem of a process and such an interesting Jacket. I bet it looks awesome on. Will you be displaying this in a certain show? When I looked at the first picture of the lining I said "hmmm" but when you showed the back side I said Yes! it works with it quite well and see the "FLW" look to it. very interesting indeed.The shoulders and neck are very stronge which I like along with the gold closures. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and would love to see how you would wear this. Put it on! Let me see it on! What pants/jeans/hat?

  6. Ciarma | | #6

    Kenneth, you are an inspirational marvel! Who would wear this "thing"? I know who--you! I would love to see you in it because I know only you can pull it off. Your sewing tricks are astounding, and I use them often. Thank you once again, Ken, for what you give to the sewing world!

  7. User avater
    jennyebner | | #7

    I, for one, would love to wear it, and personally wonder who wouldn't!! TO each their own, I guess. What incredible workmanship and design. Way to go, Kenneth.

  8. User avater
    andysmom | | #8

    This particular one may not be for me, however, it sure gives me inspiration to create one of my own. Another great masterpiece Ken.

  9. Brabant | | #9

    What a delightful, elegant and to-die-for jacket. I hope I have the time to copy it soon - and somewhere in France to find the materials! Just one disappointment: I'd like to see the jacket from the rear and also being worn by Kenneth King.
    So a couple more pictures pretty please.

  10. User avater
    kennethdking | | #10

    Thanks for all the kind comments--this has been a fun project, and I do look fabulous in it. I'm working with our photographers to get some spiffy photos (both front and back) of me in the jacket, as i feel your patience should be rewarded with a good look at the jacket "in situ".

    And for those who can't imagine wearing this, that's OK. One needs the proper location (New York for me), social set (my Park Ave. gals or my students at FIT who were all over this), and events to wear it to. So, in my world, it's entirely wearable and appropriate.

    And, to paraphrase Diana Vreeland again, it's not ugly I object to (she was referring to vulgarity but they are related), it's having no style that I object to. I'd rather take a chance on wearing something that is too far out there, than pass looking invisible.

    And boy oh boy, I'm not invisible with this jacket!

  11. alaskapsych | | #11

    The craftsmanship is beyond amazing! While I would question whether I could or would wear it, I can truly admire all that it is. I look forward to seeing pics of you in your coat of many colors!

  12. User avater
    michellepaganini | | #12

    Kenneth your work is impeccable and inspiring! After seeing the jacket in person at your PENWAG leather course it is doubly fun to see it here too.

    P.S. Would you do a feature on those amazing slashed jeans you wore during the course?


  13. SusanJensen | | #13

    You are amazing! I love you work and your books. Thank you so much for sharing with all of us! You know what you can't be afraid to wear your style. I look forward to seeing you in the jacket!

  14. User avater
    Katlady | | #14

    This fantasy fur looks a lot like monkey fur. I inherited a black monkey fur coat from great Aunt Dede, who died in 1974 at about age 92. Monkey fur coats were evidently popular at some point in the first half of the twentieth century. It had fierce shoulder pads which I removed so there was more room inside the coat. By the time I moved to Florida in 1990 it had become a bit rotten and I sold it at a garage sale. It had a sort of black passementerie Peter Pan collar. From being enamored of this coat in the 70's, I was embarrassed by it in 1990. Monkey fur was long outlawed by this time. I consoled myself that the monkeys would have long since died of old age. Aunt Dede also had one of those fox shrugs with the beady eyes and little paws hanging down, which frightened me as a child. By the time she died, no fox shrug.

    Anyway, Kenneth's fantasy fur looks a lot like a psychedelic monkey fur coat.

    Hmmm. I see that vintage monkey fur coats are selling for big bucks on line.

  15. User avater
    Daylily124 | | #15

    Hi Kenneth.
    I'm a fan of your style and creativity. I've followed these jacket tutorials and have learned quite a bit as well as quite liking the jacket. I've wondered what it would look like on you, or a model. Well I sort of got my wish. Jeremy Scott designed a jacket for the Fall 2012 RTW line with the same multi-colored hair extensions. I think the hair is a little longer than on your jacket but... it's amazing. Hope you have checked it out.

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