For Sew Vintage September, I decided to sew up this vintage, 1960s Simplicity 3736 Brunch Coat. It’s warm, cozy, and now I can swan around making coffee in the morning feeling fancier in appearance than I feel after I get dressed for the day.
I mean… just look at how fancy I am in these real-life I-just-woke-up-and-haven’t-brushed-my-hair-or-washed-my-face photos!
A Closer Look at the Simplicity 3736 Brunch Coat Pattern
I purchased this pattern off Etsy after thinking I might use it to make an actual wrap dress, but after remembering I had a big hunk of black and white large repeat windowpane check flannel, I decided a robe was definitely in order. The Simplicity 3736 Sewing Pattern has three views, with View 1 having no collar, cuffs, or pockets, longer sleeves, and a button closure, and Views 2 and 3 only differing due to the added border decoration.
The sleeves are a simple dolman shape, the skirting is very full, and the pockets on the sides are very generous.
While my measurements would actually place me between a 16-18 for this pattern, I do have narrow shoulders (I’m pear-shaped), so I decided to give the 14 a try and just make the front and back darts more shallow. The wrap-front helped with the adjustability of the waist, and it ended up fitting beautifully in the end.
View 1? View 3? Why Not Both?
As you can see from my finished version, I actually combined the longer sleeves of view 1 with the collar, cuffs, pockets, and tie waist of view 3. Using the longer sleeve option for the pattern presented no issues when attaching the cuff, so this went very smoothly. Since the neckline and facing are identical for all three views, the options here are very interchangeable.
Alterations I Made to the Simplicity 3736 Brunch Coat
Based on my experience with a previous vintage 1960s Simplicity sewing pattern and the weight/thickness of the flannel I used, I opted not to double the collar and cuffs as recommended in the pattern. The collar specifies to cut two (the cuffs to cut four) and stitch them together, turning them inside out.
The previous 1960s Simplicity pattern had a similar double-pieced collar with a facing, and when I sewed it up it had a crazy amount of bulk around the neckline once the doubled collar AND inside facing were stitched to the main fabric. For the Simplicity 3736 Brunch Coat, I instead finished the edge of one collar piece and one cuff piece for each cuff with my serger, turned them under, and stitched the finished edge so that it wouldn’t show from the front.
I think if I would have doubled up on the collar and cuffs, it would definitely had a bulk issue because of my fabric choice. I’m glad I trusted my instincts.
I think if I opt to make a spring/summer version, I could go ahead and do the doubled collar and cuffs without the bulking issue, so that is something to consider if you’re using lighter-weight fabric.
A Slight Mishap with the Simplicity 3736 Pattern…
I might have mentioned previously that I have a short waist. Well, I really do have a short waist. I spent lots of time on gathering/pinning the waist to the bodice and sewing them together. Then I finished the gathered edge. Only then did I try it on and discovered I forgot to make the adjustment I usually make for vintage patterns with this silhouette, which is typically to remove 1-1.5 inches from the length of the waist.
So I spend an entire evening unpicking the whole thing and sorting the problem out, cursing my lapse but consoling myself that it would probably be a long while before I made that mistake again. But… look at that pattern-matching in the back! #worthit
Verdict: Make a Simplicity 3736 Brunch Coat if You Like Feeling Fancy!
I highly recommend this pattern if you can get your hands on it in your size, or if you can find it and know how to grade well! It was, in all, a very easy sew and I now have a nice warm fall/winter robe to throw on every morning.