1790s Sailor Outfit

November 2013 – November 2014

This is Aaron’s 1790s everyday ensemble, expanded to include another waistcoat and Kannik’s Korner’s “Man’s Double-Breasted Short Jacket 1770-1800.” The sailor hat was shaped with instructions from HMS Acasta’s site.

John Sell Cotman, 1799: Caricature of a Sailor
Yale Center for British Art

The waistcoat (or vest) is nearly identical to the first and made with linen-cotton blend fabric left over from my 17thC jacket. The back and part of the lining are in fine oatmeal-colored linen, while the rest is lined in white hanky linen. (I thought this was kind of neat looking at the armscye where the four side seams intersect.) Some cotton twill tape was tea-dyed for the back waist ties.

Waistcoat side seam intersection
Covered button molds

The jacket is in a periwinkle blue linen-cotton blend, which coordinates nicely with both vests. Construction was fairly straight-forward (the pattern does include hand sewing instructions but I largely ignored these). As with the vest, there is a narrow strip of interfacing at center front and supporting the welt pockets. I taped center front and shoulders, and bag-lined the jacket with hanky linen. The sleeve lining was inserted by hand, then finished at the cuffs. The jacket is hand finished by pick stitching all around. The buttons are made by covering wood molds, a technique which I’d been wanting to try for a while. Given that the jacket calls for large conspicuous buttons, it seemed like the right time. Unfortunately, the pattern itself required significant adjustments. I all but redrafted it, and then decided to make it single breasted. Despite this, I’m quite happy with the end results.