LAP Chore Coats to be Made by Sew Valley

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I am pleased (very nearly thrilled) to announce that the next round of our Chore Coats will be made by Sew Valley, a small Cincinnati company that seeks to bring manufacturing (and its skills) back to the Midwest.

We found Sew Valley in a funny way. My wife, Lucy May, wrote a story about them for WCPO-TV in May 2018 and told me all about her visit there. At the time I was interested because Sew Valley was co-founded by Rosie Kovacs, who also founded the Brush Factory, a design/build furniture shop in Cincinnati. I’ve been a big fan of her work for some time.

Then our manufacturing facility for Chore Coats flaked on us this summer. So Tom Bonamici and I began searching for a new facility to make our coats. I found one in Tennessee. Then Tom called me and said: “Have you ever heard of Rosie Kovacs?”

Within a week I toured Sew Valley’s facility on Cincinnati’s West End, which is on the ground floor of the National Flag Co. It’s an old facility. The huge Sew Valley space is filled with restored vintage sewing machinery. And I got to meet Rosie in person for the first time.

I think it’s a perfect fit. Sew Valley is dedicated to reviving nearly lost production sewing skills. They do excellent work. And Rosie is a force of nature here in Cincinnati.

Right now we’re moving all our patterns, materials and buttons (how is it we own thousands of buttons?) to Sew Valley this week so they can begin production within the next couple weeks. If all goes well, we should open pre-production ordering in a week or so. And – I saved the best part for last – I think we are going to be able to keep the price the same as on our previous runs of chore coats.

When production cranks up, we’ll shoot some photos and video. In the meantime, here’s an Instagram post of them working on our chore coat sample.

— Christopher Schwarz

About Lost Art Press

Publisher of woodworking books and videos specializing in hand tool techniques.
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28 Responses to LAP Chore Coats to be Made by Sew Valley

  1. This is great news! Will you be able to take international orders on this run, or should I line up one of my regular American tool mules?

  2. Cool! You guys make great products!

    Respectfully,

    Elliott Driscoll 609 647 6779

    Call me if I can help someone who has a substance use or mental health disorder.

    >

  3. I love the chore coat I purchased from LAP last year—Best wishes for continued success with this latest Made in USA initiative!

  4. This sounds great! I can’t wait for the soon to be announced shop vest!!! (I know you’re not Carhart but this seems like a nice collaboration.)

  5. Roger that. I’ll warm the mules up!

  6. Ricky Pattillo says:

    Purely out of curiosity, was L.C. King (or a subsidiary/supplier) the TN company you were considering?

  7. mike says:

    I thought the chore coat was a little silly at first (do I really want to dress like a dead frenchman in my shop?) but then realized it was the perfect jacket for my commute. I walk 2 miles each way from the train to my office and in a given fall day in chicago it can be 25F in the morning and 60F in the afternoon. The unlined cotton construction is perfect – unlike “performance fabrics” (i.e woven plastic – yes your Under Armour is plastic), cotton breathes. It keeps me warm enough on 25F walks but breathes on those warmer afternoons. I love the flapless pockets – perfect for a phone and some leather dress gloves. After a few weeks it broke in nicely and is comfortable enough for sleeping.

    I still can’t believe you are selling these for under $200 (I don’t recall the exact price) All these VC-backed hipster “heritage” brands that offer “crowd funded” clothing would be asking $350 or more.

  8. Martin J says:

    Have you ever considered selling a pattern for this so home sewers can make their own?

  9. James says:

    Hi LAP,

    For us international readers, will the Chore Coats be available for shipping to Canada? I really miss not being able to purchase directly from the Lost Art Press website – Lee Valley Tools doesn’t do the best job keeping up with your newest books and some never seem to be available in Canada at all.

    Kind regards,
    James in Canada

  10. jameslesec says:

    Hi LAP,

    For us international readers, will the Chore Coats be available for shipping to Canada? I really miss not being able to purchase directly from the Lost Art Press website – Lee Valley Tools doesn’t do the best job keeping up with your newest books and some never seem to be available in Canada at all.

    Kind regards,
    James in Canada

  11. I plan to sell ‘End Of The World- Jesus Is Returning Best Repent” sackcloth T-shirts and sports jerseys, please tell these guys to respond to my emails for a price quote. Stitching can be crude.

  12. …Stitching can be crude, does not have to be store quality seams.

  13. Daniel Roy says:

    What about the pants? The world needs pants. Or, britches, too.

  14. Trev Landeskog says:

    Dear Lost Art Press team:

    This may be the first and last time I post a comment on your page for reasons I will explain now. I am a recent follower and so am not familiar with postings you have made in the past regarding unusual offerings. Naively I was happy to learn from Mr. Schwarz’ posting of October 16 of the availability of such a thing as the 175th anniversary Stanley tape measure. Without thought I placed my order with Highland Woodworking and it now sits on my bench, once opened but promptly re-encased for the foreseeable future. But it wasn’t until today’s posting of the imminent availability of LAP’s Chore Coat that I vaguely recalled that when my muse first introduced me to LAP a few months back, that her introduction was “and here is your crack dealer.” My instinctive decision to purchase an LAP chore coat as quickly as they are available called to mind Terrence Mann’s speech from Field of Dreams…”they’ll pass over the money without even thinking about it for it is money they have but peace they lack.” And why this may be my first and last posting is because I will be that one in the virtual corner of your blog, shaking, shivering, an addict in withdrawal because your next posting has not appeared quickly enough. I will follow as long as you choose to lead. And to my muse if you are listening in, I surrender.

    T. Landeskog

  15. wmcdermott says:

    Wow. Those vintage sewing machines use enormous outfeed tables! 😉

  16. kathleenfasanella says:

    I hope it works out for you.

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