Active Member
I just started the process of modding an orange Red Kap jumpsuit to a more accurate OT x-wing flight suit.
This was suggested by the Rebel Legion as a cheaper alternative to outright purchase of a $200 or $300 suit.. and since the RedKap suits are around $25, that was a no-brainer. The fabric on the RedKap suits are fairly thin, but will work fine for the time being, until i find a more accurate thicker fabric to create one from scratch.

Here are a couple photos to start.. i began by creating the templates for the pockets out of thin cardboard.
I bought 2 of these suits, in different sizes.. found the one that fit the best, washed both for shrinkage and began disassembly of the second suit for the fabric to use for pockets and alterations.

Ill keep detailing progress here. If you have questions, fire away, otherwise....



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Watching with interest. (y)

Similar to yours, mine was made from a coverall I found at a army surplus store.
My mom modified it using pix from books and magazines, it's missing the chest pockets that we didn't see in the pix. (pre-exhibits)
It was done in time for opening day of Special Edition at the Coronet in SF.

I made a smaller one from scratch for my niece for Ep 3.
Accept for the helmet I made her whole outfit in 3 days.
Nice work!
i am still debating how to do the chest lines.. If i want to do it right, it would require me to disassemble most of the upper portion and splice in other fabric, or just cut the existing and add seams. I have not decided if its important enough for all that extra hassle.
I already need to disassemble a little at the zipper to correct for the wrong button flap panel that the Red Kap suit has.
So i may be in for a bit more than just sewing pockets and cuffs.


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i drew and cut out all the patterns for the pockets and various things i need to alter for the new suit. For those things that i need multiples of, or those pockets that will be reversed, i cut one pattern and i will just use the other side.
I got my measurements for the alteration patterns from a FAC flight suit that i purchased in navy blue. I also utilized some help from the Rebel Legion and Imperial Tie Pilot Corps to see how different my measurements were from theirs, and it turns out mine are within the limits for both clubs. The only real difference between them are the collar at the back of the neck, and the lack of one pocket on the leg in the Tie Pilot.

photos below.


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I have decided that in order to do this suit justice, i AM going to be disassembling the second suit to the point that i can sew on pockets without having to work thru loops and hoops..
I will be doing the legs first, and then the chest and arms last. I think i will remove the crotch and inside leg seams so its one continuous seam to replace, then i can move to the top of the suit for the remaining stuff. I will have to remove the arm seams for the pockets and cuffs, and the side seam to the waist for the chest pockets, also the shoulder seam for the collar and upper chest seam.
Its going to be a lot of work.

I continued to mark and cut pocket material over the weekend.. also i visited an art store to buy colored water soluble pencils for marking on the suit that will wash off when the final suit is washed. I found white, light blue, and a light yellow-orange.

This project is taking a lot longer than expected due to other things i have to take care of on the side of working.. I am hoping to pick up tonight and get the rest of the pockets and other fabric cut so i can begin marking and construction.... next week? I hope.

OOH also, a normal flight suit has zippered lower legs.. i am still debating that part.. its not hard to do, but it will take some planning if i want to, and also buying a couple short zippers.. i will be looking into that idea this week also.

feel free to reply if you have questions or suggestions.

end of update
I spent the last couple evenings finalizing the cut pockets and sewing the edges for mounting. I have a few photos here and still a couple pockets to prepare and the cuffs to possibly redesign, and the neck ring needs velcro before i close that up.
I was hunting for velcro in my stash but found that i am lacking 1 inch sewable velcro for some reason, so i need to get to a store for that before i can finish the pockets and flaps that need it...
I also discovered the zipper on the RedKap suit does not go high enough on the neck so i will be replacing that as well when i get to it.

I ended up using about half the second suit on pocket fabric.. so not too shabby.. i still have a lot of material in case of rework or last minute needs.

fun stuff!


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I worked this weekend on completing the pockets and marking the flightsuit with the locations for all the pockets for proper alignment.. also marked for the additional fabric on the chest for the seamlines that exist on the suits. I'm debating how exactly to do this part, whether I will add fabric or cut the top and replace it with fabric from the other disassembled suit, or cut and resew the existing top torso and lose an inch or so of the torso length.
I did redesign the cuffs a little, i added a back side to make them slightly thicker for better wear so they are the same as the collar, and sewed those to prepare them for adding to the suit.
I got my velcro and sewed all the velcro on the pieces that need those so I can sew the pockets on next.
I also seam ripped the good flightsuit along the outer edge and under the arms so I can begin to add pockets and cuffs. Once all the additions are sewn on the legs and arms I will decide how to attack the chest and zipper and collar before reassembly. I determined I want to take out a little room in the suit for better fit and I should be able to do that with increasing the seam allowance on the existing seams in the suit.. I should not have to remove any fabric (crossing my fingers).

enjoy the photos


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I got both arms done last night.
Sewed on the right arm pocket, flap, and the new cuff
Sewed on the left arm code cylinder pocket, comm pad pocket, and new cuff.
I will close them up when i do the rest of the suit.

Now on to the legs!


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great work! youve inspired me to go the extra mile i think. i just got my redkap suit delivered today! i was wondering where you sourced yours? i had to pay $40 for mine and was planning on trying to get a yard or 2 at joann or somewhere as close of a match as i could get.. also what did you have planned for your flak vest? im currently trying to recreate mine from scratch from pics online..
great work! youve inspired me to go the extra mile i think. i just got my redkap suit delivered today! i was wondering where you sourced yours? i had to pay $40 for mine and was planning on trying to get a yard or 2 at joann or somewhere as close of a match as i could get.. also what did you have planned for your flak vest? im currently trying to recreate mine from scratch from pics online..
I have a lot to post today, but i will answer you first..
Thank you!
This has been a fun project so far.. not as hard as i thought it would be if you take it one step at a time, and i made a lot of progress over the weekend.
I got my RedKap from... 2 RedKaps actually.. from eBay. I found a seller there that had multiple sizes so i could order 2 different ones to check the fit first. I got them for 29 including shipping each. I'm not sure if i can mention the seller here, but i could PM you if you need it.
I looked for months for fabric. I even sourced Joann, but no dice. I found a lot of options, but i also ordered a lot of different swatches and even ordered 6 yards of stuff i thought would work because the photos looked right. THEY DIDNT WORK. The fabric was either the wrong color when i got it, or it was not the right fabric... i tried different types and different sellers all over the internet.. even one seller didnt ever ship me the fabric at all. I sent more fabric back than i care to remember. No local shops had any that was workable. The only thing i found at Joann was the thread and the zipper. I had to order sewable velcro even!
After my last order of fabric, which i think ended up being the closest i could ever get to what i was looking for, before it arrived, i decided to try the RedKap suggestion from the Rebel Legion boards. I have some thoughts about the RedKap suit which i can detail when i get finished i suppose.

If you decide to do the RedKap route, i suggest getting 2 suits, checking the fit to get the best fit for you by ordering 2 different sizes.. then use the other one for your pockets and alterations. I still have fabric left over after what i think will be my last alteration. So you have some left for repairs if needed.

As for my flak vest.. i should probably make a thread for that too.. i created mine from scratch using patterns i made from reference all over the interwebs. Rebel Legion, various pinterest posts, the "Ultimate rebel pilot" costume thread here, and a lot of photo research from books and movie stills, and then i made a vest that i wanted... not necessarily super screen accurate to one particular film, as the films have slight differences between them all ( i went with a mostly ANH version with a slight deviation for a RO upgrade) but close enough to fool 97% of anyone. I found the right fabrics that were 200% easier than finding flightsuit fabric, and it went fairly well and quickly. I still have enough probably to make a second vest.. which is what i planned on. Ill post a couple photos for you here.

As it gets close to completion, everything on my xwing pilot will be done from scratch. I do count this RedKap project a "semi-scratch project" as i am actually disassembling both flight suits to complete it. Even though the arms, legs, chest and back are all "pre-cut" i am having to reassemble everything, including adding a new longer zipper.

If you think a flak vest thread would be beneficial, let me know and i could start one and populate it pretty quickly.
thanks again!


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That looks great too! Really good work on keeping all the lines straight especially. I think a good build thread with plenty of pictures and some sort of basic template, maybe links to the RL standards if its allowed. Speaking as someone currently working through the process i can say it would be nice to have everything in one place.

It was funny reading through your post and later reply and seeing bits and pieces from all the same sources and places I had just been. All the dead links on the RL sight, the 40+ page "ultimate x-wing" thread. I bet you had most of the same 20-30 tabs open as me including the custom props ones with the watermarks!

One thing I've noticed is you've got to be careful about mixing things from different pages. With all the different movies you could end up investing a lot of time on making 2 things that don't actually go together at all in terms of screen accuracy. I really really liked the the resistance flak vest but as i understand it the suit that accompanies it is an insulated nylon type suit that is most likely far beyond my sewing capabilities so.. .. I wasn't able to get ballistic nylon at joann's so I went with the white denim which I think is an acceptable substitute but i did manage to find a nice tangerine color fabric that is a nearly perfect match for the redkap suit. I was literally working on the vest when I saw this so ill try to include a pic of the progress. Can't wait to see the rest of your build.



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I went for the local shops first, and like you said, Joann does have some alternatives, but they generally do not carry specific types of fabrics like ballistic nylon or certain grades of muslin etc. After my trip to Joann, i didnt want to start my vest with the wrong fabric so i hunted fabric stores online. The problem with that is that you get a few "stores" that are less than legit, and you will get hits on the exact fabrics you need, but when you go to the site you will find it tends to be a bit shady in their listings, or you will order and never get what you paid for, or the listing is not exactly as described and you cannot return. So take extra time and make sure you are buying from who you think you are buying from.

I did find all the correct nylons for the vest, and i found a lot of variety of the orange flightsuit fabric but the colors range wildly even when they are all listed and shown as looking the same. Ordering online is a major hassle with specific fabrics. And i did not just do one method of looking. I used everything from ebay, to etsy, search engines, hunting at specific dealers, phone calls to specific dealers, i sent emails, i talked to RL and 501 friends, etc.. looked for remnants or others needing the same to order a bolt.. i tried it all.
The RedKap fabric is basically very thin. You have to be careful working with it. It will rip, and it will fray. It gets messy. But it does sew nicely, and i am going to use the rips for damage when i get the suit done. I have had to make some major modifications to the suit to get it closer to screen accuracy and i have not seen any threads that show all the process, only a pattern here or there, or a suggestion of what to use. And no one mentioned the pockets and seamlines that the RedKap needs to have fixed.

On another note. I do not care about 100% screen accuracy for any particular movie. I like it when its achievable over time, but not when you are 95% there and there is one detail someone points out keeping you from enjoying what you have made. Having spent 15 years in the Legion, i saw a ton of calls and gripes on peoples costumes because one small thing did not meet the standard, just to have that detail changed the next time a movie or show came out, or a new BTS photo surfaced that made it acceptable much later. I have seen a lot of people leave or be shunned by the leadership because they didnt get it exactly perfect at a given time. They were not "approved" for wear or accepted for membership because of a detail no one would ever notice except upon micro-inspection. Instead of saying "welcome to the club but keep working on this so its better and we will help". So having a 95% accurate costume is completely acceptable to me especially when you are in the process of creation, or you do not have a piece you need for completion, or you created your own character and there is a story behind the difference, or you are on a budget and you made an "executive decision" about your particular costume until you can make the time or funds to get it right.

My RedKap suit will not be 100% accurate because of one seam. You may not notice it when you see it. You will be told about it when i do it here. But i am not needing this suit to be "approvable" by any group. Its for my enjoyment and for helping others get enjoyment out of it. There is plenty of great costuming out there that is 95% but not part of a group. If you want to be part of the group, then just fix this seam and you are perfect.

I need to take more photos today. I realized i did a lot of work over the weekend and didn't really document much of it at all. Taking photos of orange on orange makes for an extremely muddy photo. You can almost tell what you are looking at. :) But i will return today with some photos and a new post. Which i was not able to do last night because of some extenuating circumstances. And actually, tonight is Valentines day, so... i may wait until tomorrow.
I decided to take the top completely off and splice in fabric to include the extra seam lines. then i re-attached the arms and side with pins to test the fit before adding the collar.
next to add leg pockets and test fit before combining the top and bottom for a zipper

this orange on orange is really hard to see.. many apologies


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any new updates on the jumpsuit? I'm about to start sewing in the zipper and modifying the collar on my second suit that arrived yesterday. I decided that even though $40 was a little more than I wanted to spend on what will amount to a half a yard, maybe three quarters of material, I already had a suit sitting here that was waaaaay bigger than I needed ( I had ordered up too far based on the reviews) i got my trusty seam ripper and proceeded to surgically deconstruct most of the lower portion. havent decided if im going to remove the snaps yet or not, may just add the zipper with a small piece to dress it up a little..
i had to take a week or two off due to a need to travel to my daughter who had an auto accident. i plan on being back on this next week when i go back home. sorry for the delay.
i did find a zipper that will fit, but was unable to make progress. she had the accident the day before i posted last and i needed to go.
ill post when i get back to work on it. hopefully finish in about a week.
Oh no! Don't be sorry bro i know how it is with this kinda stuff, you get to it when you have time. I think I was asking the day i was doing my zipper and I was hoping to use yours as a cheat sheet up to now i had never sewn a zipper, turns out it was pretty simple. I've got some pics but I should probably just make a thread, i wouldn't want to hijack yours. I hope your daughter is ok!
Thanks for your response.
She is getting treatment and i am still working with insurance for her medical need and trying to replace a vehicle now, but I am home now and plan on attacking this next step today after work.
I think i will be pinning the top and bottom together and lining up for zipper placement. If i can get the zipper in, that is my goal.
I have not done a zipper before either, but seeing two of these disassembled and having another 2 suits from other makers on hand should make for short work of the zipper portion.. If i can get further than this that will be a plus, but my goal is zipper and fit adjustments for tonight.
the zipper turned out to be no problem at all, aside from me buying a separating type instead of a non separating type which was no big deal either. i basically just lined it up with the existing inside edge on the side without the flap with the teeth butted up touching the finished seam sewed down that side (double stitched) then lined up the other side, pinned, unzipped, sew, turn and sew again.

honestly i had way more trouble with the pockets than anything. definitely put those on before you close up anything. after doing just the comm pad pocket, the code cylinder pocket and one leg pocket i can definitively say i will be splitting a seam somewhere before i do any more for sure! i had no inclination whatsoever that it would be that hard to sew a frikkin pocket on! o_O

good luck with the bottomfeeders.. er.. insurance company i mean!
ill attach a couple pics from my phone in a minute incase they help!


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