Professor Boyfriend isn’t usually a scoundrel, but in the year 2015 he had an excuse to dress like one. This was before our current Star Wars saturation (how many series about morose beardy men mumbling lawlessly around the galaxy do we need?? Though Prof. B.F. loved Andor, so YMMV), when it was hopeful, nay reasonable, to show up to a trilogy premiere wearing a jacket inspired by whatshisface, you know, that lawless grumbly guy. Well, these space operas have a type.
I’m crossing my fingers for the day when there’s a selection of nice, tailored, men’s jacket patterns to choose from, but so far I’ve found few and in 2015? None. So this jacket was actually based off the Colette Negroni! With the exception of a lot more pockets, it’s simpler than the initial pattern; no closures, a band instead of a collar, and sleeves that are merely turned and hemmed instead of vented and cuffed. I straightened the hem, kept the back yoke, and added a front yoke that serves no purpose other than referencing Han Solo’s costume.
Speaking of reference, I don’t remember where I found it, but I assume it was somewhere like this! There’s no shortage of Star Wars support materials!
I used 10 ounce navy duck canvas to recreate this casual Bespin topper, most likely from fabric.com before b. it stopped existing and a. I learned it was owned by Amazon and therefore embargoed (though I will still go into a Whole Foods and eat their free cheese when available. Justice!!). Cotton canvas is durable, cheap, and easy to sew – not very warm, but a lining is always an option. I wanted something sturdy to feel more like outerwear but also light enough to fold easily into the gusseted pockets.
These were the first cargo pockets I sewed, long before the Kelly anorak (for example). I followed this tutorial, just modifying the sizes based on pictures of the original piece. The tutorial is as clear as can be, and cargo pockets are a useful sewing skill to try for anyone who’s bracing for the ongoing 90s fashion comeback. The finished pockets look pretty good, though I say so who shouldn’t, but the extra-thick top edges of the pocket openings make the pocket flaps curl at the corners. Even a hot iron can’t convince them to get flat and stay flat. More interfacing required, perhaps?
Meanwhile, the sleeve hosts a patch pocket instead of a cargo pocket, and its flap sits neatly (hold for amateur sleeve cap easing, please).
I omitted one pocket visible on Han Solo’s costume – the wide flapped pocket on the jacket’s middle back. I believe this sort of pocket, in its original state, was meant to hold an umbrella when shooting? Unless that fact was a spider baby dream, which is certainly possible. In any case, it didn’t look comfortable to wear, so we skipped it!
I took this photo to show how simple the finishes were – folding a narrow hem at center fronts first, and a wider hem at the bottom afterwards, all straight lines. But it also revealed the fact that the pockets aren’t square to the jacket edges! I can be a fussbudget, but I don’t notice this hinky angle when the jacket is in use, so I graciously pardon myself! And then look away quickly!!
All the internal seams are French seamed; the yokes, shoulders, and armscyes are also topstitched (sort of a mock flat-felled seam). I *believe* the neckband is essentially a cuff – two stacked rectangles cut on the straight grain – but it’s also possible I cut two curved pieces based on the Grainline Archer collar stand (that would have been the only collared shirt pattern I owned at the time; the Negroni has a camp collar). The wide-set pleats under the back yoke are pure Negroni, though!
This was an unusual early success for me. There’s not many things I sewed in 2015 that I still feel okay about, and while this isn’t perfect – wonky band collar topstitching, ahem – I actually like it as an everyday wearable jacket. Possibly because of the sedate color/workaday fabric (and possibly because it’s not paired with a chef shirt and stirrup pants), it doesn’t read as too costume-y. Though Professor Boyfriend can still recreate iconic action poses in it!
Because of the collage/trash-diving elements of the original films’ production, it’s probable the Star Wars costume – costumer? Costume team? – just grabbed a jacket somewhere, another reason it might function well in a realistic wardrobe. I think it stylistically suits a smuggler character, being full of pockets, and it turns out to be useful for actual smuggling, too – by which I mean bringing outside candy into the movie theater!
If you share my opinion that Professor Boyfriend looks dashing here, just imagine how happy you’d be to see him if every one of those pockets was filled with boxes of Sno-Caps!
Pattern: Colette Negroni
Pattern cost: long time ago
Supplies: 10 ounce navy duck canvas
Total time: far far away
Total cost: 2,000 credits with the promise of an additional 15,000 upon safe arrival at Alderaan