How to Make a Chef's Jacket

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A chef's costume is incomplete without a matching chef jacket.
A chef's costume is incomplete without a matching chef jacket. (Image: NA/Photos.com/Getty Images)

An authentic-looking chef costume must include a chef jacket. The most widely recognized style is the traditional white, double-breasted jacket. Genuine professional chef jackets can be costly, but you can easily make one out of an old shirt and scrap craft materials. This homemade design can be completed in about an hour and requires minimal sewing. If you lack sewing skills, you can easily substitute glue wherever needle and thread are called for.

Things You'll Need

  • Large, white button-down dress shirt
  • Fabric scissors
  • 6-inch-wide strip of white fabric
  • 12 matching buttons
  • Sewing needle
  • White thread

Pull an old, oversized, white button-down dress shirt from the back of the closet or purchase an inexpensive one at a thrift store. It should be a few sizes too large for you and loose enough so that you can put it on after it is buttoned.

Cut off the collar with the fabric scissors. Cut neatly directly along the seam. After this step, the top button should remain intact.

Button the shirt almost to the top, leaving the highest button open. Lay it out smoothly, face up, on a flat surface. Lay the pre-cut 6-inch strip of white fabric centered perfectly in the middle of the shirt. Pull up the top of the strip just high enough to cover all the buttons. Because the top button remains open, there should be a small space at the front of the neck where the ends of the shirt collar do not quite touch. Cut the bottom of the fabric strip even with the bottom of the shirt.

Attach the fabric to the shirt. Sew right along the edges and corners of the strip to avoid untidy overlap. If you choose to use glue instead of thread, wait until the glue has dried completely before moving onto the next step.

Sew the buttons onto the strip of fabric. Arrange them in two vertical lines of six to create a faux smock effect. Place the buttons so that they are spaced about 3 inches apart up and down and correspond with their horizontal partners.

Fold the cuffs of the sleeves up until they reach just above your wrist.

Tips & Warnings

  • Add extra embellishments for a personalized chef jacket. Use bright-colored thread or fabric paint to write your name ("Chef Smith") on the front.

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