Baby, it’s Cold Outside- Part 1

I really can’t stay (oh baby don’t hold out)
But baby, it’s cold outside

I simply must go (but baby, it’s cold outside)
The answer is no (but baby, it’s cold outside)

This week on the blog, we’re talking about outerwear and staying cozy this winter- just in time for the holidays. Typically when you think of fashion illustrations, jackets, coats, and winter wear are not the first things that come to mind. Instead, most designers want to focus their energy on drawing glamorous, couture ball gowns or trendy, eccentric street wear. They’re most engaged when their sketches are mentally and creatively challenging. However, outerwear can pose it’s own set of challenges. The key to drawing coats and jackets, is accuracy and realism.

In terms of sketching, coats and outerwear have many intricate and unique details to include, such as buttons, button holes, zippers, pockets, hoods, cuffs, lapels, and much more. There are many creative ways to incorporate these details to create a design that is one-of-a-kind. In this tutorial we will be going over the do’s and don’t’s of sketching outerwear. I will be walking you through, step by step, how to draw outwear from start to finish.

Supplies: Mixed media paper, Markers, Pencils, Eraser, Inspirational images, Chalk, Sharpie

Time: 30 minutes

Difficulty: Easy

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Start out by drawing your fashion figure. I’m going to be demonstrating two different looks in this tutorial.

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Start by making a rough outline of the silhouette of the coat and the accessories you’re going to pair with it. In this first look, I will be going with a long, to the knee, belted coat with buttons, side pockets, and an accent lapel and cuffs. I’m pairing the coat with a scarf, leggings and ankle booties.

When drawing outerwear, it is important to make it the focal point. Tone down the bottoms and shoes. The coat is the shining feature and you should focus on the details- silhouette, closures, pockets, texture, and fabric.

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In the second look, on the right, I chose a hooded cape with toggle closures paired with over the knee boots and denim. When drawing, be aware of how the garment would fall on a body. With this in mind, I drew the cape so that it is completely covering both arms with just a hand exposed from it blowing open in the wind.

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I began filling in the outfit on the right with marker. I opted for bright bold boots and kept the rest of the color palette neutral. I applied shading techniques to the jeans and the gathered fabric of the cape. For more lessons on shading click here.


Next, I focused on the second look. Again, I chose mostly neutral colors for the outerwear with pops of color in the gloves and scarf. I chose to accent the green coat with a gray lapel and cuffs. I used shading techniques to give the sketch depth, texture, and realism.

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Here is a close up of the jacket with the accessories and finishing touches with the hair, makeup, and facial features.

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I went back to the jeans on the right look and used chalk in specific areas to create a distressed appearance on the denim. This technique makes the jeans look more realistic.

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Here are the finished looks together. These girls are ready to hit the streets looking chic yet cozy against wind, snow, freezing temps, and whatever else comes their way this winter. Let me know how yours turned out! Stayed tuned for “Baby it’s Cold Outside- Part 2”, where we will be diving into a super easy mitten sewing tutorial tomorrow.

Until next time.


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