1960s | Capes

simplicity 5669: i finished a wool cape, and today it was 60 degrees out.

By on January 7, 2012

simplicity 5669, a great 60s cape that seems very “in” right now. i could swear i saw this hanging in the window at coach earlier this fall. it’s actually been on my to-do list since before i started my 1930s cape, and i bought the fabric in september during the PR shopping day – snagged 3 yards from kashi.

i catch-stitched most of the interior seams, including them, facings, and arm slits. i had a trusty flannel underlining in there for extra warmth.


Pattern Description:
Simplicity 5669; ©1964; MISSES’ SUIT AND CAPE: The lined jacket is collarless featuring long, set-in sleeves, front button closing and top-stitching detail. Purchased belt at waistline is optional. Skirt, with darts and side zipper, joins at waistband. Cape, styled with collar, front button closing and side front sections with opening for arms, is lined. (from vintage pattern wiki)

Pattern Sizing:
sz 14/34B

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
it’s all about the cape.  i wanted something very 60s without too much adornment or complication.

Fabric Used:
wool tartan plaid from metro textiles
cotton flannel interlining from jo-ann fabrics
flannel-backed “satin” from jo-ann fabrics

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
one only needs so many capes…and i already have two.
capes are so, so in right now, but this style is more distinctively vintage so it felt more fun.  totally recommend a cape to anyone thinking of jumping on the trend, and this one is a gem if you come across it.  will not sew again because i now have 2 different capes, but this is a great pattern.

full post and cute cat shenanigans at puu’s door of time

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1920s | Capes

McCall 4455 by Martial et Armand

By on December 18, 2011

My latest 1920s sewing project—an evening wrap by Martial et Armand—is finished! Here’s the pattern envelope:

Like the other three, this one’s also from 1926. Although it isn’t called an evening wrap on the pattern envelope, the catalogue promotes it as a design for evening. I made the plain version (without shirring) in black velveteen. The standing collar is even more dramatic when made up. Here I am in the finished wrap:

For more details and photos see my blog.

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1920s | Capes

McCall 4459 by Miler Soeurs

By on November 22, 2011

My 1920s designer pattern for this week is McCall 4459, a cape by Miler Soeurs. Here’s the pattern envelope:

McCall 4459 Miler Soeurs 1920s designer cape pattern

This one is also from 1926. The Ladies’ and Misses’ size Small (14-16) seemed just right for Naomi, so I didn’t make any alterations at all. The pattern gave two lengths for the cape; I cut the shorter length, which is the same length as the dress she’d be wearing it with.

I made the cape in a grey Dormeuil wool-silk blend with a silver moiré lining and contrast wool pockets. Two small changes I made were to leave off the (decorative) pocket buttons and to interface the standing collar yoke with hair canvas. Working with such beautiful fabric, I was extra-careful with the finishing details—and it was completely worth it.

Here are a few photos of the finished cape:

You can find more details and photos on my blog.

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1930s | Capes

simplicity 2522: cape in action!

By on November 11, 2011

i had planned to show a few photos of my s2522 cape here and on my blog, but actually only recently got decent ones. so forgive me for sharing them in this separate and delayed post.

i had planned to post finished photos of my insane S2522 cape from my recent trip to paris–only i ended up only wearing it one day! and i didn’t take a photo!

it’s interesting how sometimes, when you are planning a garment, you see it styled very specifically. in this instance i had a clear vision of what the ideal “under garment” for this cape would be–a great blouse, a short skirt about the length of the cape, and a killer pair of boots. and you know what? it looked…ok.

who would have guessed that a great outfit for the cape would be that casual fridays classic, trousers and a button-down shirt?

blouse: elizabeth and james
trousers: madewell “widelegger”
belt: j. crew
scarf: hermes “Nuées Imaginaires”

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By on November 3, 2011

I finally finished the capelet I was working on! Sorry about all the keys in the background. My husband and I own a locksmith shop and I decided to take my photos at work 🙂

I used the pattern by Meg Allan Cole from this book to make the Rockin’ Retro Capelet. The second I saw the pattern I had to buy the book immediately!

I like the pattern, it was easy to sew for someone new to sewing like me, and there were only a few pieces. I used the fabric that I bought from my trip to Mood and I feel like it was the perfect choice! I bought the pink lining fabric locally. The pattern actually didn’t require a lining, but I like the color combination and feel, so I am glad I included it.

If you would like to see more photos please visit my blog.

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1930s | Capes

simplicity 2522: not your grandmother’s cape

By on October 29, 2011

sometimes in the fall you need a little drama to shake you out of your summer doldrums.


that is some DRAMA.

capes have been making a comeback. bigtime. starting slowly in autumn of 2010 and growing rapidly to be in nearly every shop window as we head into fall 2011, i’m seeing them. i have capes on the brain. i’ve seen super cute ones at coach; modcloth have got several; and let’s not forget tasia’s lovely plaid cape or debi’s amazing 1930s specimen from last year.

i need one.


the cape assembly is basic, with just four main pieces. the bit i’ve found to be most fiddly is the semi-complicated facing, which definitely demands more structure than the pattern calls for. i’ve reinforced it with heavy horsehair canvas.

but when you press it, it’s not *actually* supposed to smell like horsehair, right?

i had originally intended the darker face to be the outside, but my flat-felled seems weren’t quite meticulous enough, even though i went totally old-school and pinned and clipped and everything.


for now, it is unlined, because i wanted to finish it quickly and give it a test-run. i’m still iffy on the length, which is in that awkward no-man’s-land between “too long” and “not-long-enough.” i may shorten it. and i think those shoulder gathers really need the support of a shoulder pad. and, since i’ve found a mail-order source for lambswool interlining, i may go all out and interline it for extra warmth.

but i think that, properly accessorized, it brilliantly straddles the line between retro-inspiration and costume.

full post and finished cape at puu’s door of time.

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