DIY Military Jacket

The military look is pretty popular right now, and can be seen in varying degrees of detailing and embellishment from designer to designer. Obviously in most cases, the more detail, the higher the price tag. Ralph Lauren’s Denim and Supply line is one of my favorites right now. Intricate gold trim and velvety textures adorn many beautiful jackets and outerwear options. But for those of you on a budget or who just like to do-it-yourself, there is a simple and affordable alternative.

First you’ll need your canvas. Here are a few options for jackets from Forever 21:

Forever 21 – Cotton Utility Jacket

Forever 21 – Buttoned Pocket Utility Jacket

Forever 21 – Cotton Twill Jacket

Once you’ve decided on a jacket, you’ll need to figure out what you want to decorate it with. Common things seen in many military style jackets are epaulettes, patchwork, gold and red trim, stars, eagles, flags, embroidery, etc.  The first thing I started with was the epaulettes (these will go on the shoulders of your jacket). There a several types, but for my jacket I went with red braided epaulettes (seen above). I bought mine off of eBay for approximately $4-$5. You can scroll through several types simply by searching “epaulettes” or clicking the link above.

Next you’ll need some patches. Again, I went to eBay for these as well. I searched “military patches,” again you will have several pages to scroll through. I bought mine with the intention to place them on the arms of the jacket.

Last (although I chose to skip it for my jacket) you may want to buy some gold star-shaped buttons for the front breast-pocket area of the jacket. These can be found at Jo-Ann’s, eBay, Michael’s or any other craft or sewing store you prefer.

Once you have all your supplies you can begin the creative process. All the patches I bought were iron-on, so attaching them was super easy. The epaulettes were sewed by hand (also very easy) because they were slightly too thick for my sewing machine to handle. Or if you want the super-duper easy method, just buy some fabric glue and start gluing away until your little heart’s desire. *If using glue, just be aware of how your glue washes… dry-cleaning may be necessary to keep your jacket looking great.

Polka Dots


Toms1Ok, so polka dots aren’t for everyone… I happen to think they are one of the greatest patterns out there, but I get it…to each his own. 🙂 I really like to use them more as an accent, (in most cases) they can be used sparingly to enhance an overall look. For example, adding a polka dot scarf to a handbag, or throwing on some polka dot tights under a solid dress, or sliding into a pair of polka dot flats as seen above can instantly up your style quotient.

Photo Information: Shoes – Tom’s Polka Dot Women’s Classics, Jeans – Hollister Ryan Super Skinny Jeans in Medium Wash

Vintage Jewelry 


I love, love, love finding vintage jewelry, specifically necklaces. Most times I search out these treasures on eBay, such as the one pictured. But if you are lucky enough to live somewhere that has nicer thrift or antique stores and/or in a neighborhood where estate sales are plentiful, then you can often find some beautiful jewelry there as well. The advantage to adding a few vintage pieces to your accessory collection is that of originality. Most likely, no one else will own what you have. If you like standing out fashionably, this is for you. Another advantage is quality. Vintage jewelry was built to last. The only disadvantage is that of having to sift through the rubble to find your treasure. It can be time-consuming and tedious. But anything worth having is worth waiting for, right?! 😉

Photo Information: Bodysuit: Forever 21 – Plunging Neckline Bodysuit, Necklace: Vintage 1970’s