Episode 210:

In the Trenches

by Christine Haynes

Upcycle shower curtains into a trendy trench coat.


  • Ready-made shower curtains (amount determined by measurements)
  • 2 packages of 1/2"-wide double-fold bias tape
  • All-purpose thread
  • Paper clips
  • Baby powder
  • Transparent tape (optional)
  • PTFE presser foot (optional)

Cut It

1.      Download the pattern. Cut out the trench and optional pocket pattern pieces in your size.

2.      Position the pattern pieces over the shower curtain; secure using pattern weights. Cut out two jacket fronts, one jacket back on the fold, two sleeves and two pockets (if using).

Sew It

Use 5/8" seam allowances unless otherwise noted.

1.      Position a piece of transparent tape over the presser foot wrong side, avoiding placing tape over the needle hole opening. Dust a small amount of baby powder along the sewing area on the machine and the presser foot wrong side. Install the foot onto the machine. Select a straight stitch on the machine and set the length to 4.0 mm. Note: Apply baby powder along the sewing area after stitching each piece.

2.      Measure one belt short end; record. Cut a piece of bias tape according to the measurement. Position the short end between the bias tape fold. Secure using paper clips; stitch. Measure one belt long edge, and then add 1/2"; record. Cut a piece of bias tape according to the recorded measurement. Fold one tape end 1/2" toward the back; press. Position the belt long edge between the bias tape fold, overlapping the tape folded end over the short-end tape. Repeat to bind the remaining belt edges.

Tip: Make binding out of fabric using the included pattern piece, if desired.

3.      Bind each sleeve lower edge, following the previous instructions.

4.      With right sides together, align one sleeve front edge with one trench front shoulder; stitch. Repeat to stitch the remaining sleeve to the remaining trench front shoulder and each sleeve back edge to one trench back shoulder.

5.      With right sides together align one trench front with the trench back along the sides. Stitch, beginning from the sleeve lower edge and ending at the trench lower edge. Repeat to stitch the opposite trench sleeve and side seam.

6.      Bind the trench front open edges, neckline and lower edge, following the previous instructions.

7.      Double-fold one pocket upper edge 1/4" toward the wrong side; press, and then stitch close to the first fold. Fold the pocket along the foldline; stitch the pocket perimeter.

8.      Clip the rounded pocket corners. Turn the pocket upper edge right side out, using a point turner to push out the corners if needed. Fold the seam allowance toward the pocket wrong side; press.

9.      Pin the pocket right side up over the trench front right side along the pocket marking; baste, and then topstitch the pocket sides and lower edge. Remove the basting stitches; press. Repeat to stitch another pocket along the opposite trench front side, if desired.


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