|Of course, my cape looks nothing like this...|
I followed the diagrams in "Costume Close-Up ," except that I didn't. I had a remnant of blue wool melton in my stash, which approximated wool broadcloth quite nicely, so I endeavored to make a simple round cloak, about hip-length, with unfinished hem and hand slits, like the original. I planned to line the hood in soft pink silk, like the original, and tie on a big fluffy vintage fur collar I bought from Maggie last Summer. In my mind, mine would look something like a shorter, furry, blue version of this:
|The Met, last 3rd of the 18th c.|
Well instead of using my brain, I just started hacking away at the wool. When I should have cut the cloak circular, or almost circular (because of its size), I had some weird half-circle that put the seams in a strange place. My pocket slits weren't in the right place either, so I stitched them back together, and ended up cutting the cloak into a mantle shape, to accommodate the arms.
|The cape cut into a mantle shape - you can see the seams here. I later change the tucking on the neckline.|
Of course, then it all looked too plain, so I endeavored to find some fur for trimming that would match the blonde fox collar. The thrift store delivered, with an outdated jacket lined entirely in ivory faux fur that was actually pretty decent. When I got it home I realize that the fox collar was quite a bit darker than the faux fur I'd picked up, so I spent an evening learning all about how to color faux fur.
|Bottom Right is the original faux fur. Top Middle is the real fur collar - you can see how red it is. Bottom Left is my result from spraying with the alcohol/acrylic solution.|
Some more battling and fiddling and doing things twice - gathering/tucking/pleating the neck, the ties, the loops on the fox collar - and I'm done, over it, and it's actually quite nice. Here's the result:
|It's not very drapey, but it'll be warm. With the big collar on it, I feel kindof like Ned Stark|
|The keep the fur collar in place, and make it removable, I added thread loops on the edges of the underside, and threaded the cape's ties through.|
|The pleats on the hood took some fiddling - I used a cartridge pleat technique to create them - basically a big gathering stitch. Worked a treat.|
|The hood is still not huge. It won't go over a monstrous hairstyle, but it'll do nicely over a daytime coif and a cap.|