Re: Anyone make their own jackets etc.
What kind of jacket was it? $900 would suggest that it's their top of line stuff.
You don't need that. Don't make your own, West marine brand is good for 80% of the sailors out there and it's affordable (it's still not great by any stetch). By the time you get the zippers, velcro, fabric, reflectors, wrists seals, reinforcing patches, reflective hook, shock cord, etc. it's going to be VERY expensive. Then the time and skill to put it together, tape the seams, and provide a warrenty? Just not worth the investment.
Buy some good gear and keep it for 10-15 years.
Merit 25 # 764 "Audrey"