Minoru Jacket – The Undoubted Star of 2012

minoru jacket

With thanks to Amanda Herbert Photography

As far as I’m concerned, there’s one sewing project from this year that deserves a massive round of applause. It’s Sewaholic’s Minoru jacket that I completed in February. I have hardly stopped wearing it all year – which tells you a lot about English summers.

It’s been on sewing outings with me…

Birmingham Sewing OutingWith thanks to A Sewing Odyssey for the image.

It’s been on the swings with me…

On The Swings

And it’s been on some very muddy dog walks with me…


I’d say that the addition of patch pockets was nigh on essential. (Template and tutorial here.) Where else would I stuff my tissues, poop bags, gloves and house keys? Interestingly, I haven’t used the internal pockets once – not once. I also think that the decision to line it in silk was a fabulous one. Every single time I pull this coat on, it feels special – and warm.

I was initially concerned that the camel wool was a boring colour choice. I couldn’t have been more wrong. This colour goes with everything, including my Honey Cowl.

Coat and Snood

I have sworn blind that as soon as this coat falls apart, I’m making another one. I’d like to make a red wool version. Wouldn’t that be swoon worthy? Why don’t you try this jacket yourself? I’ll let you in on a secret. Lean closer. It really isn’t that difficult…

Ode To Minoru

I love you Minoru, you’re the best

You put my sewing to the test

I wish you’d marry me, coat of mine

Sewaholic’s bestest design!

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45 Responses to Minoru Jacket – The Undoubted Star of 2012

  1. Vicki Kate says:

    I whole heartedly agree. Mine has been worn to death too! I don’t use the internal pockets either but the inseam ones are always full of ‘stuff’. When it dies, I’ll be making another!

  2. I’ve had the pattern on my shelf for a while and am planning on a Minoru in the new year. Is it ‘just’ wool and silk lining? I.e., did you interline it at all? How warm is it? My current coat is dying a slow, painful death while I contemplate whether a wool Minoru will keep me warm enough. And then, how do you pick the right wool? I still find buying fabrics intimidating and confusing…

    • No interlining! It’s pretty warm. I have noticed that if I cycle in the freezing cold and wind, I can feel the wind going through the jacket – that’s when my windproof North Face jacket comes out. So I wouldn’t wear this for sub-zero excursions but as day-to-day winter or autumn wear, it’s perfect. Many fabric shops will have ‘coating fabrics’ – which are often wools. I’d avoid anything with too loose a weave, that will stretch and bag with wearing. But other than that, I’d say trust your own instincts! Handle the wool and try to think if you’d see it on a coat bought in a shop. You know more about fabric than you realise, I’m sure. Good luck!

  3. Tilly says:

    It’s a beautiful jacket, Karen. I don’t usually go for casual jackets but your version looks so chic! xx

  4. CherryPix says:

    Me three….my Minoru wins the Most Worn creation of 2012… A great jacket…took a while to perfect the toile…but well worth it! I added in-seam pockets, as per Sew Well’s tutorial…but patch pockets are a definitely planned for my next version.

  5. alibobs says:

    I made my Minoru as a lightweight rain coat, so only got a month of wear from it before I had to (very reluctantly) get out my winter coat, but I’m sure I will get lots of wear from it in the spring! Seeing all the makes on blogs I didn’t do the inside pockets and just made huge fleece-lined patch pockets which were the best decision ever!

  6. Kathi Giumentaro says:

    I’ve had my eye on this jacket since you posted your finished jacket. It is lovely.

  7. Kerry says:

    Yours is so lovely, I have this pattern and really should get it made up.

  8. Rachel says:

    Gah, I want one. Maybe, just maybe I’ll have a go this spring.

    Gorgeous jacket, gorgeous pictures.

  9. Kay says:

    I want one too! It is really one of the best!

  10. Heather says:

    Aah! Minoru! I’ve also fancied making this for a while now. It was the combination of orange, fabric, length, and practicality of it that attracted me initially. Now I’ve seen how great yours is…. I’ll defo have to give it a go.

  11. Mary says:

    I love my Minoru and will definitely make another! I am eagerly awaiting my Cordova pattern. Tasia does a great job and I love her patterns!

  12. Angela says:

    LOL Tasia couldn’t pay for advertising this convincing! I don’t have that pattern because where I live is so generally warm that I would rather spend my limited sewing time on other clothing. But you do make this sound so tempting!

  13. liza jane says:

    I’ve always like that pattern. You may have just convinced me!

  14. Melizza says:

    You look gorgeous. What fab photos! Minoru has been on the top of my to-sew list since spring! I do hope I can get around to making one soon. But I have a hard time believing it’s not dead hard to make. I think the whole it’s-an-outer-garment-yikes! idea has me concerned 🙂

  15. Danielle says:

    That is amazing! You’ve done a beautiful job on that jacket. This is one of those “did you make that?!” moments 🙂 I’ll check out the pattern, but maybe that’s a project for me down the line… The only article of clothing I’ve made is a pair of pajama pants, and that was in a class with an instructor. I’ll need more practice before attempting something like that. As Melizza says above, I too have trouble believing it’s not that hard to do!

  16. CGCouture says:

    Very nice jacket! Though I’m curious about how you managed to get mud quite so high…that must have been quite a feat unless you were on an ATV. 😉
    I’ve been wanting this pattern for a while, but I haven’t bit the bullet yet. Maybe I should do that soon so that I can have a jacket in time for spring!

  17. Amy says:

    I love my Minoru, too. Probably my favorite project of 2012 as well. Glad yours has given you lots of love as well this year!

  18. Juliet says:

    Your coat is beautiful! And the colour is a great one on you as well, hardly boring, you look luminous!

  19. Louisa says:

    I adore my Minoru too! It’s in a water-resistant fabric (I live where Tasia does!) and it’s surprisingly windproof and warmer than one would think but I would love a wool version. It’s one of the few patterns ever that I barely had to adjust to fit me well, just widened the waist a little. Of course I added inseam pockets and yes, I do use one of the inside pockets (for my iTouch) but wish it was a little taller so I could close it up for safety. Next time!

  20. Kat says:

    What stunning photos Karen! I also adore my Minoru – it has been worn to death. I do use my inner pockets – I find they are very useful for holding my iPhone/MP3 player. I did not add outer pockets to my jacket which was a mistake that I plan to rectify very soon. Also, I love the wooly hat you are wearing in the swing picture! Did you knit it by any chance?

  21. sewbusylizzy says:

    This is a glorious Minoru and your photos are just gorgeous. I’m always in awe of your beautiful skin when I see your posts – Australian sun lovely but not so kind to our skin!

    • I agree with you about the Minoru, which is lovely and by which I am sorely tempted as I doubt if I can make my winter jacket last another year, and the pix. Interesting you should comment about the Aussie sun being unkind to our skin. You’re quite right. I remember when living in London that the Aussie boys I lived with – there were 23 of us in the house, so I use that term very loosely indeed – often commented on what lovely skin the English girls had (didn’t do much for us Aussie girls and our egos, but they had a point).

  22. gingermakes says:

    This is so gorgeous! And the photos are absolutely stunning! I desperately want a Minoru… just gotta work up the nerve to tackle a jacket!

  23. Velosewer says:

    My Minoru travels with me all the time and pockets were a must. While making it was a lot of work and getting the fit right was most of the work, I love it and will make it again in 2013. Promise.

  24. Debi says:

    Brilliant ode to the Minoru!! I think you may have just pushed me over the edge….to buying it, that is 🙂 The photos are really lovely too!

  25. I love your photos Karen. You look great. The jacket is great. Can’t wait to see your next version

  26. Zoe says:

    Umm, how bloody gorgeous do you look in these pics?! Damn!

    A red minor would be stunning for reals! xxx

  27. Zoe says:

    minoru that was meant to be, damn autocorrect!

  28. ShanniLoves says:

    That is a great coat! Maybe I’ll give it a go next year…

  29. Faye Lewis says:

    You looked great in it every time you wore it!

  30. shivani says:

    casual but chic – the perfect combo. love it.

  31. Karin says:

    It does look fantastic on you; and if it is comfy and practical, even better!
    I think camel can be a difficult colour to wear, but this shade is very flattering on you.
    Happy 2013!

  32. Lorna says:

    Your Minoru’s lovely – must conquer my fear of outerwear and make myself one! Glad I’m not the only ‘adult’ who loves a playpark! I just pointed out to my other half (gah, what else to call him? Boyfriend? At 40? Man friend? Yikes!!) Anyway, I just pointed out that you looked like a wee girl, and he said ‘is that a grown up? She’s tiny!’ Hope you have a lovely Hogmanay, wishing you all the best for 2013.

  33. grtescp says:

    your jacket is gorgeous, I am just about to embark on making mine in a grey wool and I am already impatient to have it finished!!

  34. Elizabeth says:

    What gorgeous pictures! Happy new year across the pond!

  35. symondezyn says:

    What beautiful photography! Your Minoru is so lovely & versatile; the camel is a perfect mix of neutral & warm; not boring at all!! I may have to give this pattern a second look; yours is definitely a winner! ^__^

  36. ZoSews says:

    hahaha love your poetry! A red version would be smashing.

  37. Pingback: A new year brings a whole new list of projects | The Little Room of Sewing

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