Custom Letterman Jackets – A Material and Design Guide for You

Custom Letterman Jackets – A Material and Design Guide for You

Custom letterman jackets were introduced as a uniform for the Harvard baseball team in 1865. Today, these varsity jackets are must-haves for students. After all, these are no longer just woven sweaters with contrasting sleeves. Today, these jackets are available in so many different designs and styles. In fact, you can easily see this transformation in the styles and usage of these jackets. Moreover, you should know that these jackets were simple cold repellant in the past. However, now these varsity jackets are the real street fashion that helps you stand out. Still, the sentiment attached is the only timeless aspect of this jacket.  In this blog, we will discuss the material and design of custom high school letterman jackets. We will explore the fabric options and design guides. So, if you are someone who wants a varsity jacket, you shall read till the very end. You will be surprised by all there is to know about these custom letterman jackets. Let’s start from the very beginning!

What is a custom letterman jacket?

Clearly, it is the sporty outerwear that the principal squad in university/high school wears. Moreover, you can think of it as the balance between bomber and track jackets. It is also known as the letterman baseball or letter jacket. What’s more, it is usually made of wool. It comes in two colors mostly and has a long, collarless, button-through body. Because these jackets are customized with letters, these are called custom letterman jackets. Furthermore, you should know that each letter on these high school varsity jackets has some meaning. After all, it helps the player represent his number and school name. 

Why is Custom Letterman Jacket in Trend?

Hollywood movies are the reason these jackets are such a big trend. After all, every movie that focuses on high school features actors wearing these custom varsity jackets. Thus, it is the prep-meets-sportswear that stays evergreen as a trend. Apart from this, its legacy is also the reason for its success. Clearly, many people think of it as the staple of student life. However, it is not limited to student life. People who know how to design it also wear it in their adult life.  Furthermore, the versatility of these jackets is the reason everyone prefers them so much. After all, these jackets make you look good and go along with any and every outfit. From skirts to jeans, you can combine these jackets with so many outfits and make yourself stand out. Whether you plan a casual look or sporty, you can use these jackets to uplift your sense of style in the best way possible. 

Design Guide for Creating Custom Letterman Jackets:

Now that you know what letterman jackets are, let's move onto their design guide. If you follow the design guide from Varsity Made, you will be able to customize the best-looking high school varsity jacket for yourself. Here’s all you need to know:

Your Choice of Material is Very Important

The material for classic varsity jackets – in the past – was always cotton fleece with leather sleeves. However, now there’s a wide range of options available for you to choose from. Here are the most widely used materials for designing varsity jackets:

Real Cowhide Leather

Because it is readily available, low cost, and versatile, it is the most readily used material in modern varsity jackets. Undoubtedly, it offers amazing protection against the bad weather. Moreover, it is resistant to water. It looks elegant on everyone and comes in a wide range of colors. What’s more, it can scout embroidery and other designing techniques as well. Therefore, it is one of the best options for designing and customization.

Faux Leather

This one looks similar to real cowhide leather. But of course, there is a difference in the quality. After all, it is not real. It is also lower in price. Therefore, with price, the quality and durability of jackets also decreases. However, people still prefer it because it is affordable. Moreover, because it is not made from animals, people like it more. Many custom Letterman jackets today are made with Faux leather. 


When it comes to Letterman jackets, this is the most durable and water-resistant material. Clearly, it is made of tightly woven fabric. Afterwards, the fabric is brushed heavily for a smoother and refined appearance. For people who live where the weather is always cold, this material is the best option. After all, it keeps them warm without any struggle.

Cotton Fleece

For people with allergies, this is the best choice of material. You can think of it as the cheaper version of molten wool. Unlike molten wool, however, it is less bulky and more comfortable to wear. Moreover, it is very breathable. In fact, this is the main reason it is the best choice for people with skin allergies. What’s more, the warmth retention of this material is also very exceptional.

Polyester Satin

The reason people love this material is because it comes in widely wondrous range of colors. Moreover, the synthetic fibers are very long lasting. So, the custom letterman jackets you make from this material are very durable. In fact, the jackets are comfortable to wear as well. After all, this material is very soft and smooth – compared to other available material options. 

Material for Sleeves & Inside Lining

Instead of getting into complications, you can make the sleeves with the same material as the body. The only exception is when you use molten wool for the body. After all, in this type of jacket you are better of with leather sleeves. Clearly, it gives the jacket more dimension. Moreover, you should know that stitching of the sleeves is the big deal. If you do not stitch them properly, it can ruin the whole look of your jacket. In fact, a varsity jacket is only as good as its stitching.  Furthermore, you have three material options for the inner lining of varsity jackets. Namely, cotton, polyester satin, and quilted lining. As aforementioned, polyester is soft and smooth. And cotton is warm. But quilted lining has the best of both. After all, it is smooth and warm at the same time. If you live in an area with extreme cold weather, this is the best material choice for you. 

Style Selection of Custom Letterman Jackets:

Style brings more dimension to the varsity jackets. It makes the jacket timeless and trendy. So, you must focus intently on this aspect of the custom letterman jackets. Here are the style selection guides for body and sleeves:

Style Selection for the Body

Style Selection for the Sleeves

When it comes to front closure, there are two choices. You can either have a zip-up or buttoned one. Clearly, the style rests entirely on your personal preference. Still, you should know that the former is more functional. After all, it gives you a strong seal against the cold weather. However, if you want a chicer look, then the best option for you is a buttoned one. Undoubtedly, it is trendier.  For styling the sleeves, you have two options: Set-in and Raglan. If you want to know the difference between these two, then you need to focus on stitching. After all, you join the set-in sleeves at the shoulder of the body. And you make raglan style with a continuous piece of cloth. Moreover, set-in is more formal and professional-looking. However, raglan is preferable if you are an athlete who wants to perform better. 

Colors for the Custom Letterman Jackets

As aforementioned, traditionally, you could only have these jackets in two contrasting colors. So, either you can go with the timeless trend, or you can innovate it – the way you like it. You can add as many colors as you want. However, most students stick to the colors of their institute uniforms and logo. Besides, the on-going trend is to use only three colors maximum. What’s more, it is absolutely vital that your choice of color complements itself. For example, the colors must increase their own beauty and appeal. Furthermore, you should know that you can choose coloring for any part of the varsity letterman jacket. For example, jacket’s buttons/zipper, hood, pockets, inside lining, etc.

Print Designing the Letterman Jacket: Final Part

This is the final and most fun part of the overall process. So, add as much creativity into it as you want. In fact, get crazy with Bomber Jacket BuilderLet your inner artist reign unchecked! However, there are some suggestions that you should keep in mind. For example, keep the college’s name in the front center – in the limelight. Moreover, you should try not to add more than 12 characters to the jacket. If you do, the jacket will have no appeal as the print will look cluttered. As for the pocket area, you can use it to place the initials, symbols, mascots, and logos. Clearly, the back center is the best area for adding the player’s name or number – or both. What’s more, people generally agree that the team’s name looks cool on the back button. Additionally, the left sleeve is the best place you have for embroidering the player’s number. You can put the team’s mascot on the right part of the chest. If you want to add the graduation year, you can use the right sleeve area for it. For people who still want to add more touch, patches are the best go-to. You can add these anywhere you like. 

Custom Letterman Jackets: Easy Design Guide

Undoubtedly, nothing screams class like custom varsity jackets. After all, these jackets are the forever-here kind of trend. You can thank its customization option for this. What’s more, no matter how you design this jacket, the style and charm never seem to diminish. Some people don’t like to customize their jackets, but it is always better to do so. Clearly, it brings the personality out in your jacket. Besides, if an ordinary varsity is cool, a customized one is at least ten times more so. Here we have a step-by-step design guide for you:

Step 1: Material and Style of the Jacket

Varsity Jacket Builder,you need to have this design guide in your mind. After all, it will help you customize your Varsity Jacket in a better way.


Here’s the quick rundown of material types you can use for the body of custom letterman jackets:

Cotton Fleece

Hypoallergenic and breathable. Clearly, it is a good option if you have sensitive skin or any allergic conditions.

Cotton Twill

Thick fabric with heavy weight. It is ideal if you want a jacket with high durability and easy maintenance. 

Cowhide Leather

Durable and highly comfortable. It is thick and water resistant. Moreover, it is good for year-round wearability. 

Sheep Leather

Softer and smoother. The jackets you make from this are very exclusive. After all, it is highly expensive leather.

Polyester Satin

Silky and luxuriously smooth. Clearly, the synthetic blend of polyester and satin makes for a soft, warm jacket.

Molten Wool

Waterproof and thick. It is very robust and an excellent choice if you want a highly durable high school jacket. 


You should know that sleeves are made from the same material you make the body with. However, this is not applicable if you choose Melton wool. In the case of this material, you can either choose faux leather or cowhide leather. Some people even use sheep leather with Melton wool. 

Style of Sleeves

Set-in Sleeves

Raglan Sleeves

This style comes with a shoulder seem. Moreover, it continues right around the arm of your jacket. As aforementioned, it looks more professional and formal.   There is no shoulder seam or one continuous piece of fabric. Thus, this style gives your jacket a wider underarm fitting. It is sportier and more casual.

Front Closure

After sleeves, you need to decide the front closure of your jacket. When it comes to custom letterman jackets, there are two options: a zip-up jacket or a buttoned one. Clearly, the names are self-explanatory. As aforementioned, the choice between these two styles rests on your personal preference. 

Hood in the Jacket

Not many people know this, but you can choose to have a hood in your custom high school letterman jacket. If you do not like it, that’s okay. But if you like one, you should know that the option is available for you to add one. 

Knit Styles

If you do not know what it is, let us explain. Knit style is the pattern that appears on the banded waist and wristbands of the custom letterman jackets. Moreover, it comes in five designs: Plain, single line, single line with border, two lines, and two lines with border knit. 

Inside Lining

You have two options for this as well. You can either choose the quilted lining or polyester satin. Moreover, you should know that quilted lining is bulky and warm. And polyester satin is heavy and durable. If you are looking for a breathable option, cotton is the right choice for you. 
Note: You can add a ½ zip out lining to your jacket to make it easier to incorporate your own embroidery and patches into the design. This prevents the unsightly threads from hanging out. Moreover, you should know that this does not make the lining removable. 

Step 2: Adding Colors to Your Jacket

As aforementioned, there are usually two colors in the custom letterman jackets. Still, you have the option to design yours in as many colors as you want. However, it is trendy to only use three colors maximum in a jacket. After all, when it comes to letterman jackets, the rule is, ‘the simpler, the better.’ Furthermore, you should use primary colors from your organization’s logo as the core color for your jacket’s body. For sleeves, you can use a secondary color. This will enhance the appeal and depth of your custom letterman jacket. You should also know that white sleeves go along with any and every primary color. You will also have to choose colors for your design varsity jacket’s buttons/zipper, pockets, inside lining, knit base, knit lines, knit border, and hood.

Step 3: Adding Personalized Designs

Till step 2, you were taking care of the nitty gritty bit. This step is where the real fun begins. Here, you can channel your artistic prowess and be the creator of your own style and design. You can do anything and everything. For example, you can add typography, patches, and even badges. Here we have a brief of it for you:

Front Center

Front center is the limelight of custom varsity jackets. So, it is always better that you leave this place for your or your organization’s name. Here, you get a maximum of 12 characters – can choose the font of your liking. Moreover, you can also decide whether you want it straight or in an arc. You can also change the font and border color. 


You should know that pockets are for patches. Thus, you can choose between letters or symbols. In fact, you even have the option to upload your own logo (patch) from the computer. But, if you are choosing letters, the limit is maximum of 4 characters. Moreover, you can choose whether you want it embroidered or felt.  Furthermore, you must know that this letter is always smaller in size to accommodate for space. After all, it goes in the pocket of custom letterman jackets. Thus, it makes sense that you keep it in that size frame. After all, you do not want to ruin the appeal of your custom varsity jacket. However, if you choose a symbol or logo, you have the following artwork choice: badges, flags, and mascots. What’s more, you shall not use any image with poor resolution. It will ruin the final product – your letterman jacket. On sleeves, you can put your school/college logo or your graduation year. Most people go for graduation. The trick here is to not overdo it. If you want your letterman jacket as a memory of your school/college, then it is best that you put your graduation year here. Or if you want to show your pride, then it makes sense for you to use the logo of your school/college instead. 

Back Top

On this part of the custom letterman jackets, you can put your name. You are not limited to your name though. You can also use your nickname or title. Honestly, creative freedom is as far as you like. But, we recommend you to put your name here. After all, it gives your jacket your own personality and brings you the right sense of belonging.

Back Middle

This is the best section – part – for putting the mascot of your organization. Of course, you also have the choice to add a name here. In fact, you can use it for any symbol or logo as well. After all, the design of your custom varsity jacket depends on how you want it to be. So, if you feel like you can use this for your name better, then be your own guest: get it done. 

Back Bottom

In this section, you can put the name of your team. Most of the students do this; you can think of it as standard practice. But you can also use this to put the name of your society or club in your organization. Moreover, you should know that people also use it for putting quotes here. So, if you feel like there is a quote that resonates with you – and how you act. Then by all means use this section and put those quotes here. 

Step 4: Selecting Size of Custom Letterman Jackets

This is the final step of your design phase. After this, your varsity jacket is ready. No rocket science, this is the step where you size your letterman jacket. From small and medium to large and extra-large, the size options are available for all body shapes. Make sure that your size measurements are right. After all, if these measurements are off even by an inch, it can destroy the wearability and comfort of these jackets. Size is very important for Group Orders.
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