Safari jacket canvas

Started by tmakos, February 11, 2024, 03:39:48 AM

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Hello everyone,

I would like to ask for some help regarding canvas construction.

I want to create a safari-style jacket similar to the one in the picture, but with a slightly more structured version, using body canvas without a chest canvas. My question is, when it comes to the shoulder, should I still insert a wedge as I would when making a blazer, or should I simply cut it the same way as the front side?

The drafting image is from Winifred Aldrich's book; would this drafting be suitable for this style?

Thank you!


Chaudhry Has a very nice pattern. He made for Roger Moore the movie Octopus
Maybe someone can find it.
Canvass, not sure I'd put one in. perhaps cotton duck.


Here's the Chaudhry version as requested by Greger. Canvas yes, but simpel and light.


Thank you both. I've seen this pattern before, but I haven't tested it yet. I asked about this because, looking at the picture I sent, there is no lapel roll; the front seems to be straight.

But the question arises about how to draw the first block. In Aldrich's book, the collar is drawn like that of a shirt, while in the jacket pattern I have (Müller), I draw a perpendicular line at the midpoint of the bust, creating the lapel roll. What other function might this serve?

For the jacket, I use shoulder wedges and waist darts in the canvas (image), but if the jacket is shirt-like, do I still need to include these, or should I cut the body canvas in the same shape as the main fabric?

Also, I'll attach another picture to ask how to draft a coat like this. The other jacket that seems similar, which Kirby Allison received from Mytailor, how can I create that (roughly) using which system?


You can make however you want. The style lines and be moved when you are fitting it. Inlays are added, not just for fitting, but also changing the style. Some of the old blazers didn't have any canvas or darts. They were loose fitting. Perhaps even sloppy. If you select cloth and trimmings for machine washing this is very different from expensive luxury cloth and trimmings. If you make a cheap one first. Finish it. It would be a practical coat for some events. The next one more complicated. You would probably make some changes. The last one you can put all the bells and whistles you want. There is a learning curve for adjusting the pattern to achieve the variations. Sewing skills develop. If you make errors on the cheaper one you haven't lost much. Some beginners don't follow the rules because they don't understand why, and skip a few. Doesn't turn out very well. Didn't follow the rules and for that reason can't make the needed changes. Even journeyman tailors are over confident sometimes. No pay for time and have to pay for new materials. That is two losse$. Some tailors have one pattern that they change into any kind of coat, shirt, vest, overcoat, even cape/cloak. They don't need all these individual patterns. One will do it all. When you know enough you start arranging lines in your head.
Kirbys coat I wouldn't call it a safari. It is similar.


This is in the rundschau this month. Look a bit like Kirby's jacket.


Some thoughts about your canvass.

The purpose of a canvas is to flexilby support and preserve the achieved 3D form of the fabric. In a woolen lounge coat you form the front fabric with ironwork. In the canvass you achieve and secure this form with darts.

So the form of your canvass highly depends on the fabric and the pattern you choose.

A safari jacket is usually made of hard materials like linnen, cotton or very hard twisted tropical wool. it doesen´t take ironwork so well.
Also the pattern is usually much less 3D than a lounge coat. usually a completely straight front edge, wich means a totally uncrooked shoulder. the front armhole is more like a shirt and will never be that tight like in a lounge coat. (wich is a good thing in a hot climate)
Also usually there is no front dart in a safari jacket. Not downwards nor towards the neckhole. The chest therefore isn´t formed that convex like in a lounge coat and doesn´t need the same support like a loung coat chest.
A safari jacket  usually can be closed up to the collar, so it doesn´t have a fixxed lapel roll line.

The canvass (if any) must therefore be adabted accordingly. A highly formed canvass will not fit a flat chested front.

When you prefere a lounge coat pattern with just "safari" details, the canvass will stay mostly the same like in your loungcoat.

Collardrafting: Drafting the collar using the front pattern allows a better adaption of the collar, regarding its form and, most important,  it´s "roundness". The shorter the lapel , the rounder the collar has to be.


Since the wedge is just providing some extra flexibility on shoulder movement, I think it would be unnecessary to use it if you're using lightweight fabric and canvas. However as you say you're making a more structured one, maybe the wedge helps.


Also recently I found a bush shirt (British army bush tunic should be the direct origin of safari jacket) draft from the old C&T forum. Just posted here:


I stumbled across this pattern today and it reminded me of this thread. A nod to the safari jacket, but with a little more shape:

I like the two-tone effect with the yoke more than the others. A bit 70s, but then so are safari jackets in general.


This is a photo from Frank Shattuck

I know it isn't a safari jacket, but I thought since we are all talking about square fronts I might as well show it.