Sew Jackets

Jackets for REAL People

Jackets for REAL People - Front Cover
Jackets for REAL People - Front Cover



By Marta Alto, Susan Neall and Pati Palmer

No garment gives an outfit that “put together” look quite as well as an attractive jacket that fits well. With a variety of jackets in your wardrobe and only a few good basic pants and skirts, you can be well-dressed for any occasion. Today, creating your own jacket wardrobe is easier than ever, thanks to updated sewing methods—and a new book, Jackets for Real People, by Marta Alto, Susan Neall, and Pati Palmer.

The book guides readers step-by-step through jacket construction, from pattern and fabric selection through final fitting and hemming. Along the way, it includes more than 900 color photos and illustrations. It also demonstrates the fitting process on four “real people” models of various ages, sizes, and shapes.

 Although the book’s subtitle is “Tailoring Made Easy” the authors emphasize that sewing jackets today bears little resemblance to using the complex tailoring methods of yesteryear. With the latest fusible interfacings, anyone can sew a jacket in the 'Armani style' says Palmer. Another technique that sets this book apart is the ready-to-wear technique of applying the jacket lining entirely by machine (although the book also details other lining methods). 

Australian co-author Susan Neall is Director of Education for Palmer/Pletsch Australia and trains sewing teachers and fashion sewing consumers in Sydney, NSW. Sue has also taught custom hand-tailoring and now the new speed techniques throughout her 30year career in the sewing industry. She continues to travel, teach and write extensively, sharing her experience and knowledge, both in Australia and overseas.

A sewing educator of international renown, Pati Palmer co-wrote her first book on jacket sewing, Easy, Easier, Easiest Tailoring, with Susan Pletsch in 1977. That book has sold nearly 300,000 copies in 26 printings including two revisions. Since 1980 Palmer has designed dozens of jacket patterns for the McCall’s Pattern Co. The first, an “8-hour blazer,” sold a million copies and was featured in Family Circle magazine at the time.

Jackets for Real People co-author Marta Alto began teaching custom hand-tailoring in the 1970s and has since helped reinvent jacket sewing using speedier techniques like those used in ready-to-wear and designer clothing like Armani. She has taught sewing internationally and regularly trains other sewing teachers at the Palmer/Pletsch International School of Sewing in Portland, Oregon.

 Jackets for Real People: Tailoring Made Easy! by Marta Alto, Susan Neall, and Pati Palmer.

Pub. Date, March 2006. 128 pages. ISBN #978-0-935278-66-8.




Pati Palmer                                McCall’s Pattern Service Pty. Ltd

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1728 S.W. Prospect Dr.                Bankstown NSW 2200

Portland, OR 97201                     Sydney AUSTRALIA

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