~ instructions by Philo
This cape takes an incredibly little amount of time - I think I
made mine in half an hour. The stylish mandarin collar is achieved
simply by the flat trim that forms the neck, and it fitsanyone,
from little kids to grown ups. There's plenty room for imagination
and design, too, so make sure to check out the Variations
section at the bottom.
- 60" width fabric, where the length is the
finished length of cape
- two 21" pieces of trim, minimum recommended
- your choice of fastening
Cut and finish sides and bottom edges of
fabric as desired. Use your imagination here: the cape can have square
or curved corners, be hemmed or unhemmed, etc. Consider your fabric,
For example, for my cape of knit panne
velvet, I folded the
fabric on the center fold and free-handed a scalloped edge
with curved corners,
then left it unhemmed - the knit kept the unhemmed fabric from
the scallops kept the knit from curling.
Leave the top edge straight
Marking the top edge in ten 6" sections, fold
each section into a 2" pleat. Make half of the pleats going
half going the other, so that the two center pleats meet each other in
the underside center (see drawing below). The fabric should now measure
Baste pleats in place.
Placing one piece of trim directly on top of
other with right sides together, sew shorter ends together with 1/2"
seam allowances. Turn right sides out, match up top edges and topstitch
close to the top edge (forming an upside-down "pocket").
Place the pleated fabric between the unsewn
edges of the trim. Pin and topstitch these bottom edges, catching both
trim layers and pleated fabric.
Fasten the neck edges with a hook and eye,
frogs, or a brooch.
Consider lining the cape for extra warmth, or
using a decorative trim or cording around the bottom and side edges.
To make a tie-closure, use two pieces of trim
where the first is 21" and the second is 21" + the length of each tie.
Mark off the center 20" of the longer piece, then sew the shorter piece
onto this 20" section, tucking under 1/2" seam allowances. Sew the top
edges together as in step 4 and proceed (omitting step 6).
The cape works equally well full-length or
hip-length, like the fauns' coronation capes.