Simplicity 8554: DIY Unstructured Grey Cupro Trench Duster Coat

Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro

Hey All,

Simplicity 8554 has been on my to-sew list since the beginning of spring, and I finally got it made up this week. This is a really great smart-casual piece to add to my wardrobe going into autumn, with a laid back, relaxed vibe to it. I made mine in a grey cupro from Rainbow Fabrics. It feels very light to wear and is breathable (being  made from cellulose pulp, similar to viscose/ rayon), although it doesn’t take a press to well, and I was glad to have my walking foot on  hand to handle sewing this particular fabric.

Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro
Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro
Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro

Aside from dealing with the sewing of the cupro, the pattern itself is an easy one, well drafted and I made hardly any adjustments to it at all. It is unlined, so bear that in mind with your seam finishes. I went for binding the front and back facings, and overlocking the armscyes/ sleeves/ side seams and pockets.

Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro
Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro
Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro
Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro

The only other thing to consider is that if, like me, you make the view with the storm flaps, the pattern suggests that you should self line them (with self fabric). Due to fabric limitations, I lined mine with the same viscose lining that I used to make the bias binding from. I don’t mind the occasional flash of pink, but if I had had a choice, I would have bought more fabric.

Pattern Review

Pattern Description: 

Sized for miss and miss petite, easy to sew soft trench and jacket are the perfect layering pieces. Length options include short, mid and long with side slits with optional pockets and ties. Simplicity sewing pattern.

I made view B.

Pattern Sizing:

6 – 22

I cut a size 18 through the bust and shoulders and graded out over the hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?


Were the instructions easy to follow?


What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I love the whole unstructured, casual, slouchy vibe. Plus points for having separate upper and under collar pieces, although I probably should have cut the under collar in two pieces, on the bias. I didn’t, and it’s fine. Nothing to dislike, although there is an error at step 27 – don’t fold the belt in half.

Fabric Used:


Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • I cut view B and added 5 and 3/4 inches to the length to get a more midi length (FYI I am 5’3″)
  • I shortened the sleeves by 2 inches
  • I did a 1 inch full arm adjustment
  • I didn’t have sufficient fabric to cut self lining for the storm flaps so used a viscose lining I had in my stash. I also used the same lining to make the binding for the facings. 3 metres of binding should be adequate to do the binding for this project
  • This coat is unlined and I used a combination of bias tape to finish the facing edges and my overlocker on the armscyes/ sleeves/ side seams and pockets. Because of this, I didn’t clip into the back seam allowances at the ends of the pockets as the instructions describe. It’s still fine.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I don’t know if I would sew again, just because I don’t need another one of these in my wardrobe. I do recommend.


Easy to sew, fun to wear and a great transitional piece.

See you soon!

Simplicity 8554 unstructured trench duster coat made in grey cupro


Posted by

By day I work in the exciting world of pharmaceutical regulatory affairs, registering medicines (!), but by night I turn in to a sewing diva, making all manner of clothes in my beautiful sewing space (which you can tour using the link at the top of this blog). I love how sewing and sewing clothes that fit my curvy body continually challenges me. I enjoy working with all different types of fabric, and whilst I don't like to put restrictions on myself and say I won't buy RTW, the truth is that I probably rarely do buy it, preferring the fit of my own me-made clothes. I love to use natural fibres where ever possible and colourful coats are an obsession of mine! Sewing is both my addiction and my therapy. You can contact me at

15 thoughts on “Simplicity 8554: DIY Unstructured Grey Cupro Trench Duster Coat

  1. I’m glad you made and reviewed this. All your work is lovely. I’m trying to plan a coat wardrobe, and as you said, this is a great transition piece. Am I correct in seeing this looks like it’s pockets are plenty roomy? Nothing worse than finding that a cold gloved hand having to be very careful reaching into a just barely big enough pocket is more trouble than making a whole new coat.

  2. I love this! I’m making this next but I’m a bit concerned about the sizing. I measure at size 22 and beyond the size chart. So looking at the finished garment measurements (bust) , id fall under a size 16. I always have problems with commercial patterns. So I’m wondering what size I should make. I guess I should make a muslin, but wondering if you experienced any issues with the sizing chart/your measurements. Anyway, I hope mine comes out as good as yours 🙂

    1. Hi Diana, in my experience of sewing with commercial patterns I always take my measurements and then look at the finished garment measurements. It depends on the garment type but that determines how much ease I like. For a coat like this which will be worn over things you need some ease so I would say look at the finished measurements and go from there. I don’t make muslins often but I do tissue fit. If you have any doubts a muslin is always good 🙂

  3. Hi Manju,
    What a lovely colour. I’ve seen a few of your coats lately on PR – you’ve chosen such lovely colours that look so happy, and you look wonderful in them.

    I’m thinking of getting this coat in the Simplicity sale – but since I live in Canada (land of drab winter colours, sadly, not like yours!) light flowy materials aren’t that practical most of the time. I’m wondering if you think that pattern could work in a heavier material, like perhaps a light wool or mixed fibre?

  4. I know you made this coat 2 years ago but I just bought this pattern and am so excited to get started sewing.I’ve been researching to se how it worked out for others. Your coat looks great ! I like your choice in color,I’m going with navy. I appreciate your pictures! Thank you for sharing!

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