It’s a bird…it’s a plane. No. It’s…
Da, da da dah!
I know cape tutorials been done back and forward in blogland…but today I have one that uses just fabric and thread. That’t it! No velcro, no buttons, no snaps. No snags in your laundry from velcro attacks, a cape small hands can put on and take off independently, and a safer alternative to just tying it on.
It looks knotted, but it’s knot, er not….
…well it is, but it’s knot. :) One side is knotted which passes through an opening in the other side.
Let’s make one and you can see better what I mean…
Disclaimer: This cape should come apart when pulled very hard to help prevent strangulation, but I make no promises. Please use cape with adult supervision. Recommended for ages 3 and up.
2/3 yard fabric A
2/3 yard fabric B
(you may keep it all one color and simply use one 2/3 yard cut if it comes 55-60 inches wide)
matching or contrasting thread
Fabric Notes: You can use almost any type of fabric. Wovens, knits…just make sure they are both the same type of fabric. I prefer fabric with some drape. I like to look in the clearance fabrics for strange, cheap, drapey stuff. I find some of the best shiny stuff for really inexpensive that make great capes!
First, print my free pattern HERE.
*The pattern includes just the top portion of the cape so you can customize how long and wide you want the rest of your cape. (Forgive the wobbly lines. I am still making my patterns in Word and am working on learning Illustrator :) But hey…it’s free yeah?).
*There are no arrows. Just cut the page border off of one of the pages and match the lines before taping it together.
* Cut it out and you’re ready to go.
CUT OUT CAPE
*Lay both fabric A and fabric B on top of each other – right sides facing. I used a heavy colored pencil cup to keep the slippery fabric from sliding around and off the table. Several pattern weights would work great too.
*Trace the top of the pattern, then take a ruler and measure down 1.5- 2 feet. You can flare the bottom out a little bit by angling your ruler outward. (I cheat and use whatever writing utensil I can find, because the markings won’t show later. I save my fabric marker for projects where disappearing ink matters more. :))
*Measure how much you angled it out and repeat on the other side.
SEW CAPE TOGETHER
*Cut both fabrics out, right sides facing.
*If you want to add any embellishments to your cape, add them to the right sides of the fabric now.
*Pin all the way around, right sides together.
*Sew all the way around with 1/2 inch seam allowance. Leave a 3 inch opening at the bottom of the cape.
*Trim the corners down,
*Cut notches at the curves that round out and clip where the curves round in.
* Be sure not to clip through the stitches. With slippery fabric I often slip and clip a stitch or two. Simply reinforce those spots with more stitching.
*Trim down the seam allowance to about 1/4 inch to reduce bulk.
*Turn the cape right side out through that three inch opening. A chop stick can help you get the tight spaces at the top all sorted out. I admit it’s a tight squeeze through that little bottle neck on one of the sides.
*Press with a warm iron (hottest your fabric can handle).
*Press the opening in place with the seam allowance tucked in.
*Top stitch around, sewing the opening closed in the process. I find that a lengthened stitch provides a nice finish and can reduce puckering that is so easy to create when sewing slippery fabrics. You may want to put the needle down and lift the presser foot from time to time, as you sew, to help the fabric loosen up.
**Alternatively, you can blind stitch the opening closed and omit any top stitching, or just top stitch along the bottom straight edge of the cape.
*Now tie a knot in the longer end. Measure how big it is with your buttonhole foot.
*Sew a buttonhole in the smaller end – right above the bottle neck. If you need a tutorial for this, I have one HERE.
*Snip the middle of the button hole with sharp scissors or with a pin and a seam ripper.
*The knot you made in the other end, passes through the button hole. just. like. that!
Edited to add: If your buttonhole stretches out over time and doesn’t hold the knot well anymore, or if you accidentally sew the buttonhole too large, try double knotting the other side.
Reverse it, flip it…whatever your little super hero needs to save the day!
I made this cape with just a slight flare. Flaring and widening it even more would make an awe.some evil villain cape or maybe just a more flamboyant super hero! :)
I have been meaning to make a cape pattern like this for a while, but I finally got myself to do it, because it goes with the post I’m sharing tomorrow. Can’t wait.
See you then!
P.S. Reid’s shirt is from THIS post.
P.P.S. Update: the post I made this cape for is live – HERE.