Minoru Jacket Inspiration: Dots!

I saw this jacket picture the other day and instantly thought – Minoru!


And now I’m on a mission to find a navy polka-dot fabric that would work for this jacket. This original is polyester which isn’t so bad if it’s a strong, durable type of polyester. (Nothing that will snag or look too shiny, you know? Or like it should have been a blouse instead.)

I’ve found plenty of quilting cotton options with navy dots but I don’t want it to look craftsy. I like how the dots are spaced farther apart and aren’t too large or dominant. What would be awesome is a dotted raincoating fabric so it feels intentional. In fact I used to have a navy polka-dot umbrella in a very similar print!

I’m thinking of using a gold metal zipper, so it looks expensive and classy rather than craftsy. Playful without looking juvenile. That is, if I can find a fabric that works!

This might be the closest option, from Fabric.com. It’s cotton, but the dots are unevenly spaced and look to be the right side (maybe a touch too large). Even though it’s a cotton, I’m considering giving it a try, and if it doesn’t have the right feel for the jacket when I see it in real life, it’ll be a cute summer dress!


If you see a navy dotted fabric like this, that’s not a quilting cotton, let me know! I’d even be interested in a taupe and white dotted fabric.

I also found this one! I went to a bunch of fabric sites and typed in ‘dots’ into the search bar in case you were wondering how to go about searching for fabrics to buy. This one’s a bit of a dream fabric – silk taffeta! It would be a bit swishy and rustly, but so glamorous! Who says the Minoru is a sporty jacket? It sure wouldn’t be in silk taffeta! But for $30/yard, I’d have to be pretty confident that it would work out. (Although again, it would be a gorgeous and incredibly classic navy-dot dress if I changed my mind about its jacket potential…)


For all my talk about ordering fabric online, I’m still hesitant to take the plunge and buy fabric online myself, especially when the costs are high.

Don’t you wish there was a fabric resource that let you search by ‘navy polka-dot fabric’ and would bring up every possible buying option for navy dots? Wouldn’t that make it easy to find the elusive fabrics we dream of? How do you find the fabric in your mind, or do you settle for the next best thing? How do you feel about navy dots for the Minoru?

29 Responses to Minoru Jacket Inspiration: Dots!

  1. Sue January 10, 2012 at 6:46 am #

    Yes! I totally wish there was a fabric resource like that. I’ve dreamed of it often…

    Would something like laminated cotton/oil cloth work for the Minoru?

  2. Brandy Layton January 10, 2012 at 6:57 am #

    That would be a dream come true!!

  3. patsijean January 10, 2012 at 7:09 am #

    Try here. I only did 17 pages of “dots” and be aware that you will go through several pages of Minkie. This page has a nice blue and white dot. There is probably much more but I stopped here.

  4. Wendy January 10, 2012 at 7:11 am #

    I know Cath Kidson has polka dot oilcloth.

  5. patsijean January 10, 2012 at 7:11 am #

    This page has a deep blue.

  6. Sheri January 10, 2012 at 7:22 am #

    I purchase fabric online. Sometimes you can get a swatch for a small fee.

  7. Jessica January 10, 2012 at 7:27 am #

    HI Tasia,

    I am actually using a taupe cotton canvas with Polka dots for my Minrou. I got it at Harts fabrics : http://www.hartsfabric.com/japanese-import-fabric-cotton-canvas-dots61349.html. In case you are still looking, I’ll be sure to post mine at the end of the sew-along.

  8. Lauren January 10, 2012 at 7:27 am #

    Finding good navy/white polka dot fabric is hard! I spent AGES searching for the exact same thing last year (I wanted to make a dotty Ceylon dress with white piping). Everything was polyester or quilting cotton. I eventually settled for a pin-dot shirting fabric, although I really wanted larger dots.

    Of course, a couple of months after I finished mine, someone else posted a Ceylon in the EXACT same dot fabric I’d been looking for! Meh!

    That fabric resource sounds like a dream come true, basically.

  9. Carley January 10, 2012 at 8:04 am #

    Have you been to Sundrop Textiles in Port Coquitlam, Tasia? They are a bit pricey but they specialize in outerwear fabrics. It’s a bit of a bike ride for you! http://www.sundroptextiles.com/index.htm

  10. Clare January 10, 2012 at 8:35 am #

    I have never tried this so don’t know if / how well it works but someone was telling me about a product called Nikwax that makes clothes water resistant. I wonder if this would help on a fabric such as the polka dot one?
    just did a search and found this product which sounds like the one he meant. I’m tempted to try it on a cheap cotton as if it works it’d open all kinds of possibilities for this jacket.

  11. Christina January 10, 2012 at 8:57 am #

    Hi Tasia, as a fairly novice sewer it’s really interesting to hear you talk about different weights of fabric. This still baffles me when I’m heading out to get fabric for a project. Any chance of a post on different types of fabric and why certain fabrics would or wouldn’t work for dressmaking?

  12. Christina January 10, 2012 at 8:59 am #

    p.s. fabricinspirations.co.uk allows you to search on polka dots – the way of the future perhaps!


  13. jessica January 10, 2012 at 9:21 am #

    Omg I love this idea! I’ve been looking for some sort of subtle pattern or dots to use for mine…I’ve had my pattern for a couple of weeks now and I’m itching to get started!

  14. Amanda January 10, 2012 at 9:26 am #

    Oh my goodness, that inspiration photo is a-ma-zing! Must have a navy blue polka-dot Minoru! I’m moving to New York this month and can’t/shouldn’t buy fabric (trying to sew only from my stash unless I need lining, etc.), but I really do need a raincoat and it’d be so fun to find polka-dot raincoating. Hmmm…. I’ll let you know if I find anything!

  15. arlene January 10, 2012 at 10:31 am #

    I luv polkadots! Have you ever checked out Sundrop Textiles in Port Coquitlam? I haven’t been there in many years, but they used to have awesome outerwear fabrics.
    I’d luv to go and have a look to see what they have now – but it’s a long way from Steveston and I just don’t have the time at the moment!

  16. Lizz January 10, 2012 at 10:59 am #

    Although there isn’t currently any polka dots, Gorgeous Fabrics has some great <raincoating. Keep checking back and they might get something like this in!

  17. HipDroppedStitches January 10, 2012 at 11:08 am #

    Oh wow, now I desperately want a polka dot jacket! I cannot wait to see yours!

  18. Debbie G January 10, 2012 at 11:12 am #

    Years ago I made a raincoat out of tan cotton chino. After I finished it, I took it to my drycleaners and had them put a water resistant finish on it. I assume that a good dry cleaner can still do this–you might check with your local one and give them a sample of your material to try it out. It was pretty expensive and has to be reapplied each time the coat is cleaned but it is pretty rare to get a coat cleaned–maybe once a year.
    Good luck!

  19. Wendy January 10, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

    I have also been wondering if oilcloth would be suitable for the Minoru. If so, I have been looking at some of these (though perhaps not dots for myself?)


  20. Dana January 10, 2012 at 12:25 pm #

    Hi Tasia. I dreamed of red and white dots for the Minoru lining but no luck! It is terrible when you know what you want but can not find it!!!! Good luck.

  21. Amanda January 10, 2012 at 1:09 pm #

    That would be a dream search system! I went looking for simple polka dot fabric yesterday and it was tres difficult. Best of luck finding a perfect one!

  22. Corinne January 10, 2012 at 1:32 pm #

    never met a dot I didn’t like!!!!

  23. Andrea January 10, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

    I totally just bought that navy dotted quilting fabric from fabric.com. It’s a lighter weight quilting cotton — very nice for what I want to do with it, but for a coat I imagine you’d need to underline it, if it were to work at all. The inspiration coat is very cute: I hope you find a fabric that works for you!

  24. Ashlee January 10, 2012 at 8:50 pm #

    I haven’t bought my fabric for the sew-a-long yet, and now you have me dreaming of dots instead of solid colors… oh, the options!! LOVE the inspo jacket.

  25. Mika January 11, 2012 at 7:12 pm #

    I loved the inspiration jacket you posted, and went hunting for a black and white dot print for my own. I came across this beige/white print on Etsy, a double gauze cotton. I’m not sure if this would be too light or not, but the dots are spaced similarly. http://www.etsy.com/listing/78372927/cotton-doublegauze-fabric-by-nani-iro?ref=sr_gallery_5&sref=&ga_search_submit=&ga_search_query=cotton+dots+fabric&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_page=2&ga_search_type=supplies&ga_facet=supplies

    • Mika January 11, 2012 at 7:14 pm #

      Hah… just noticed the price… definitely not in my budget!

  26. Pauline January 13, 2012 at 5:31 am #

    I wasn´t sure about the fabric I had for the Minoru and now that I see this beauty, I think I will go into town tomorrow to look for something similar.
    How many of us will end up with navy and white polka dots Minoru jacket?

  27. Majella January 13, 2012 at 8:28 pm #

    Dots are really difficult when you have something specific in mind!!!! I was surprised to have difficulty when I went on a dot saga for my Vivian at the Polo dress (http://www.renaissancebombshell.blogspot.com/2011/11/vivian-at-polo.html).

    I think it’s because there’s just so much dots out there and as someone mentioned above you just have to sift through so much minky (and quilting cotton etc) while you go, no, not quite right, not quite right……. etc. It can take a long time to find the “precious”.

    My Vivian dress is a cotton, maybe a twill???? It’s heavier than i really wanted (I ended up finding it on eBay), but in the end I was happy enough with it. But if I’d known at the time I made it, about Spoonflower, I probably would have spent the extra $$ to have the exact dot print made up in silk cotton or crepe de chine. Yes it would feel funny to order something as simple as dots when there’s so many more “out there” prints on spoonflower, but if, after an exhaustive search, I hadn’t found exactly what I was looking for on the bolt, I’d go custom with SF.

    I just looked at my SF swatchbook and I’m not sure what fabric I would make up a custom print minoru in, but they have a lovely organic cotton sateen, and if you wanted something flowier you could try the cotton silk, and just underline it for a touch more structure……

    But I know… exxxxxxxxy.

  28. Liz Cunningham April 4, 2012 at 12:36 pm #

    I found this 100% spun polyester fabric at http://warehousefabricsinc.com/ODPOTNAY.html. I’m thinking it might be okay, even though it is home decorating, indoor/outdoor fabric:

    – soft canvas fabric feel
    – medium Weight Drapery
    – light Weight Upholstery

    I bought fabric online once and it was a very low risk purchase – Boston Celtics fleece – to make my basketball fanatic son a hooded bathrobe. I’d want to see and feel a sample swatch for something of more value like your beautiful Minoru pattern. I hope you find your perfect fabric!