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Frock Coat Pattern

Page history last edited by Shylaah 7 years ago

This version exclusively for the Confessions of a Jackaholic wiki.  Do not copy and paste elsewhere.








POTC 5 is out and attention once again returns to that dashing Captain Jack Sparrow!
Going to try to spiff this page up some, add things that have been noted on here to be added forever......
June 2017


Mid May, 2010--a Dream Realized when I got to go see the real deal coat on display at the CUT! Costume and Cinema
exhibition at the Florida International Museum at St. Petersburg College, St. Petersburg, Florida.

The coat in the exhibit was made by British costumer Cosprop Ltd.and is from Curse of the Black Pearl. You may notice that
Jack's belt, baldric and other effects in this exhibit are not what we see on screen and in other exhibits.That is because this is
a Cosporp  exhibit, not a Pirates of the Caribbean movie exhibit.

Exhibit web page

Looks like that web page is 404.....but I looked it up on the wayback machine and here is the snapshot that they have



Short video about the exhibit

narrated by museum Associate Curator, Christine-Renc-Carter. 

Or directly on youtube


Or another advertisement video mentions and shows Jack's coat




this is just a rough draft.....so no complaints please!!!  and don't start your frock yet using only what's here because it is INCOMPLETE... Jack Sparrow Frock Coat pattern Pirates of the Caribbean Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell No Tales


I have nearly all of the commercially available patterns, and many, scaled patterns near Jack's period of early 18th century.  None are SA, all would need some tweaking.  My recommendation at this time is the JPRyan 1750 Military frock.  It requires the least amount of adjustments.  It has good instructions, actually tells you how to do the pleats instead of 'now do the pleats'.....more on the pattern later, fabric, yardage, etc.....



The coat pattern pieces for the front and back are big and wide because of the pleats and you need to have these pieces laid full out when you do the pairing of the lining pieces to the coat fabric pieces to do the basting.  If you don't have a table anywhere near big enough to do this, here is a simple and inexpensive solution.  Buy a sheet of foam sheathing insulation available at Lowe's, Home Depot, hardware stores and lumber yards.  It's that blue stuff you see being nailed up on new housing construction.


It comes in 4X8 foot sheets and you want to bring it home uncut so I hope you have a pick up truck or a friend with one or some other way to get it home in a whole piece. It is very light weight, so bring something along to weigh it down or tie it down in the back of the truck so that it doesn't blow away on the ride home!


Depending on how and where you will be working on your project, you can lay this board over your dining room table, which not only makes for larger working surface, but also protects your table.  It is so light weight that it is no trouble at all to move about if you can't leave it in one place for the duration of your project.  I do all my work in an extra bedroom that has a twin size bed in it and I got 4 same size boxes to put one on each corner of the bed to lay the foam board across to raise it up to table height.  Otherwise you'll break your back bending over your work!  Not as good as having 360 degree access if it were on a table in the middle of the room, but having access to three sides is sufficient and once you're working with the pieces individually they slide around easily on the board.


First things first....

Preshrink THE Coat fabric per instructions on THE Coat Fabric page.

Preshrink your lining fabric.


Now don't get confused here, stay with me.  Jack's coat is made on the wrong side of the Ebony 903, not the right side as it comes off the bolt that is a more brownish color with some gold highlight threads and what would be used to upholster a piece of furniture.  You use the wrong side as it comes off the bolt for Jack's coat, the more grayish bluish side.



Since the terms wrong side, right side, correct side, inside, and outside are generally confusing, and compounded confusion because the coat is made on the wrong side of the Ebony I am going to use the terms VISIBLE which will be what you will see when the coat is finished, both the visible coat fabric and the visible lining, and UNSEEN which will be what you will ever see again once the coat is all finished.  If anyone has a better way to go about terming this, I'd greatly appreciate any suggestions!!


Before you begin the process of laying out and cutting out your fabric, mark up the UNSEEN side of the fabrics with chalk. You will be handling these piece by piece in the beginning while getting coat fabric and coat lining pieces paired up, and you don't want to get mixed up and get something backward. I just make running arrows all along the entire yardage length about 5 or 6 inches apart. These will also serve as a marker of the lengthwise grain on your left over fabric just in case you might have to recut something.




When you cut out the pattern, allow very wide seam allowances.  Regualr patterns give you 5/8 inch seam allowance, and that is woefully small for working with a chunky fabric like the Raffia Ebony 903.  So leave at least 1 inch seam allowance everywhere and 1 1/2 to 2 inches on the bias edges--curves, sleeve opening, sleeve top, etc. 


You should now have a nice big pile of 'stuff' everywhere!!  Like this....


That you want to eventually turn into 'stuff' like this....



Transfer all seamlines and markings to the fabric. Transfer them to the UNSEEN side of the coat fabric, and to the VISIBLE side of the lining fabric.  The ones on the coat fabric are mainly for guidance, and I recommend you do it with tailor's chalk.  Use a good dressmakers transfer paper to mark the lining as it needs to be very clear and distinct. 


You should stay stitch all the coat fabric pieces about 1/8 inch from the seam line inside the seam allowance.  I did both the coat fabric and the lining fabric, because most of the seams and edges are curved or biased and you want to minimize any stretching or distorting from handling the pieces during construction.  If you're a minimalist, you can get by just doing the curved and bias edges of the coat fabric, though I'd do at least all around all the coat pieces because of the nature of that Ebony fabric.

You can buy a medium weight non woven interfacing   --add info.... or you can use light weight, light colored cotton or linen.  You'll need about 2 yards if you buy the non woven interfacing about a yard if fabric.  Cut the interfacings and mark them on what would be the VISIBLE side if they weren't going to get covered up by the lining.  You need interfacing for the coat front, the back vent,  -- I'll mark out a pattern piece/s indicating where later....interfacing for the cuffs and the pocket flaps.
Lay the pieces out on a large enough surface that they are all on there not hanging over the edge anywhere.  Lay the interfacings on the pieces they go with matching up the seam lines.  Smooth and smooth and smooth these pieces out and together.  Scatter pin the interfacing down to keep it in place while you stitch it down.  stitching illustration later...
When you finish the interfacings, time to do the linings.  Lay a lining piece together with each coat piece, UNSEEN sides together.  Again, lay the big pieces-- coat fronts, backs, on a large enough surface that they are all on there not hanging over the edge anywhere. 
Match up the seam lines and markings and scatter pin to hold things together while you do the bastings....where/how to baste illustration later...
Now you can handle the coat fabric and lining as one piece.  You decide on which way you want to finish your seams.  AT this point you can just sew it as though it was only one piece of fabric and finish off the seams mordern or historical.  The way I did the seams was to roll back the lining and stitch only the coat fabric, trim and press open that seam, then trim and turn under the seam allowance on the lining and blind stitch the lining seam, then went along each side of the seam about 1/2 to 3/8 inch out from the seam line and did a tiny back stitch about 1/4 inch apart. 
You need to use stay tape on the shoulder seam, the arm hole seam, around the back neck, the side back seams and pleat edges and the hem.  You can sew this on when you sew the seams or you can sew the seam then sew the stay tape on stitching just inside the seam allowance, toward the cut edge, very close to the seam stitching.
All the edges that are not joined to anything, the fronts, the pleat edges, the back vent edges, turn the coat fabric on the seam line and baste it down.  Turn the lining seam allowance in until it's about 1/8 inch inside the coat fabric edge and stitch along the edges with a prick stitch.....illustration later of tiny back stitch and prick stitch later..... 
Assembly things more or less in the order the pattern tells you to.  All edges receive the prick stitch either as you go along or after final assembly....
The hem is the last thing to do.  I suggest you take out all the bastings and let the coat hang for a couple of weeks for it to 'sag out' on all those bias curves in the skirt pleats, then measure and mark your hem line.  The hem is done like all other edges, turning in the coat fabric, then turning in the lining shorter.....I used the tiny back stitch to do the hem, cause I like to do that stitch and I like the way it feel like little bumpies when you run your finger along it.....
The Pattern, Which Pattern? 
Sometimes you have to figure out what something is by figuring out what it isn't.  There is not a Jack Sparrow Coat pattern that you can purchase--though Penny Rose should have marketed one!!Not a whole lof of early 18th century stuff out there.  Most commercially available historical period patterns are for the re-enactors market, and not many groups out there re-enacting King Louis XV's Court.  Actual patterns from the period are rare to nonexistent.  A few scaled drawings have survived but with archaic instructions, if any, and making mention and use of many long forgotten sewing terms and skills.
Jack's coat is decidedly early 18th century French, and since discovering this 1721 French painting, I do believe it could have been the inspiration for Jack's frock!

Here is a picture of Jack's cot on the far left, and some other examples of 18th Century frock coats.



This sketch is the closet I have seen to Jack's coat. Unfortunately, there was no pattern, just the sketch.




The coat below is made from the pattern above.  It is close to Jack's but as you can see the pleats are VERY full making the skirt too flared even for Jack.  He's a pirate after all, not a ballerina!









$275.00 to $410.00




Frock made using the Lewis & Sheron Raffia Ebony 903...
about 6 yards unless you're really tall will depend on your pattern so you should have a pattern first
before you order fabric. 
Not sure if L&S sells full yards only or not, I need to check on that......
so that's $150 plus shipping.  I think shipping is $15 ....
For the liningI used the already-tea-dyed muslin sold mainly for quilting--about 7 yards gee don't rem price.
let's say 3$ yd. for another $20....If you use linen it's gonna be triple that.
$20 to $60
Buttons on the coat I made for my friend we use the humble little French Marine buttons that was about $35
Simon's frock coat buttons are the best out there.  You can order them HERE in original brass or weathered.
$35 to $88.
Sundries of threads, interfacings, stay tape, another $20 ish.....could be quite a bit more if you do not regularly sew and have to buy absolutely everything, including pins, needls, sissors, marking tranfer items, thimbles, ect..
another $20 ish for mock ups depending on what you use for these.....regular cheapest muslin if/where
available.....I used stuff I got off the old Wal-Mart dollar a yard table, but my Wal-Mart doesn't carry fabrics
anymore, and I think they are getting rid of it in all their stores............so let's round that out at about $50
Plus whatever you pay for which ever pattern you choose.--$5 to $35
$55 to $85
so very roughly, minimum $275.00 ish for materials/supplies...
another $100 or so if you go with linen for
lining and Simon's buttons.....$410.00


170 plus hours



Here's a time chart of sorts from Moony's coat....and it's fairly conservative, I didn't half keep accurate track of the real amount of time I spent.  And this, and the cost above, do not include the time, or materials cost from first body block to final mock up, nor the postage cost of doing all this long distance. 


cut out and mark coat fabric

cut out and mark lining fabric

cut interlining for front edges and back vent edges

5 hours to layout, pin down, cut and mark 18 pattern pieces, 35 garment pieces in total


stay stitch all bias edges on all pieces of the coat fabric and lining

5 hours to machine stay stitch the coat fronts and backs.


Mark and do buttonholes on pocket flaps and cuffs

  25 hours

sew and line cuffs and do the prick stitching

  6 hours

sew and line pocket flap and do the prick stitching

  5 hours

pad stitch interfacing to coat front and back vents

  10 hours

sew sleeves together, sew sleeve linings together, assemble, stitch down seams

sew cuffs to sleeves, prick stitch and finish sleeve/cuff openings

  10 hours

stay tape pleat edges

  2 hours

machine stitch front linings to coat fabric at front edges and pleat edges only

and back linings to back vent and pleat edges only

  2 hours

flat baste the linings to each of  those four pieces, pleat fold

lines and across skirt widths and around all seams

  10 hours

Mark and do buttonholes on back vent

  25 hours

prick stitch pleat and back vent edges

  10 hours

trim and stay tape hem

  4 hours

stabilize stitch pleats,finish top edge of pleats and lay pleats

  6 hours

sew fronts to backs and finish seams

  6 hours

Mark and do front buttonholes

  15 hours

mark for buttons--Moony doing these......

Make pocket opening, sew in pocket linings, and sew on pocket flaps

  8 hours

sew up the center back and finish seam

  2 hours

Measure, mark, and sew on collar and finish neck edge

  4 hours

sew in hem

  6 hours

set in sleeves, stitch down lining

  6 hours

take out all bastings

  20 minutes

Sign it...............

  1 minute



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