Vest making, Shaping and Taping, Hand sewn facing

Here we have a double breasted, peak lapel vest during production. The vest was basted to try-on, fitted  and then ripped and re-marked ready for final assembly.
The front edge is chalked, a running basting stitch is used to transfer this line to the wrong side. The canvas inside is paired back behind run baste and a bias lining tape is drawn off a long the  front edge and hem. This should be drawn 1/8" for every 2".

The baste stitches are placed evenly apart drawing the edge slightly with each stitch.

The armhole is drawn off like the front edge and hem. 1/8" for every 2".

The bias lining tape is pad stitched to the canvas only. The fullness is distributed between each of the padding stitches. Color matching,  machine 100 % cotton thread is used.

A prick stitch is sewn through the front edge, hem and armhole chalk line, attaching the cloth to the lining tape.

Using a wooden block, place behind the vest forepart when pressing. This keeps the shape in the chest and the vest short on the inside when pressing, preventing the front edge from stretching and shrinking away the fullness.

Turn back the front edge, armhole seam and hem and baste.
All baste stitches should be loose and merely hold the edge back. 
It is firmly fasten down using a padding stitch through to the canvas only.

Once the edge, hem and armhole are turned and fasten, the edge and foreparts are pressed.
The lapel is cut on the straight warp of the cloth. Two layers of cotton pocketing are used to bag out the lapel and give it structure.

The lapel is basted to the front, lined in it position. Measure across the lapel width and come down collar length from the shoulder. A diagonal basting stitch is used to hold the lapel to the forepart. The lapel is folded over the front edge and basted to the vest. Excess cloth should be trimmed back and stepped to prevent thick edges. The lapel is firmly fasten with a padding stitch to the canvas.

The facing is now added to the inside of the vest. A piece of cloth is basted on full.

The fullness is distributed between the basting stitches. This fullness complements the draw of the tape and prevents the edge becoming tight when worn.

The cloth is turn above the top button and a long the hem line.
Using a felling stitch and silk hand sewing thread and stitch the facing to the vest.

The lapel edge is prick stitch as is the front edge. The collar detail should be caught to the shoulder for the first 1". The lapel is also caught to the vest for the last 1" of the belly.

Here we see a horizontal peak lapel detail.

The vest forepart is now pressed inside and out using a hot and cold dry iron,
 water applied as needed to create steam.

The forepart is ready for its inside lining and back with buckles.


  1. Splendid fully-canvassed vest.

    Is this vest/waistcoat without a collar, i.e. in that the laid-on lapels and part collar are sewn in with the shoulder?

    On a vest like this do you still cut a grown-on extension for the back neck. Or perhaps seam one one?

  2. I can not understand how this color was to the vest. Is the notch in one piece or two at the notch.