Winter is coming but first we have to survive Halloween. For my first blog for Fabricville, I’m going to detail how to make a cloak or cape inspired by the Stark family costume in Game of Thrones. Overall, this project can be done in under 3 hours.
Step One: Find your Fabric
Canadian Halloween can be cold, so a warm cape is a good idea for those chilly October nights. To imitate that warm winter look, I used a chocolate faux suede for the body of the cape. Besides faux suede I would recommend other heavy fabrics with a nice drape such as velvet, wool, or a wool blend. I used cream Yak Yak faux fur for the collar. I wanted something a little more rugged than what the characters usually wear but a soft luxury faux fur could also work as a substitute for the pelt collar.
Step 2: Patterning & Assembly
To keep things simple the pattern I came up with for the cape is essentially three equal length pieces of faux suede, stitched together along the selvedge with a rolled hem on the bottom and a serged two-inch wide channel at the top. Two metres of black nylon strapping is fed through the channel, gathering up the suede. The strapping can be tied behind your back after crisscrossing it in front of the torso or tucking it underneath your armpits.
To determine how much fabric you will need, take the following measurements: from your collar past the shoulder to the ground (length) plus add allowances for the channel, the rolled hem, and footwear. I plan on wearing very high heels and I wanted my cape to train on the ground so my calculation looks like this.
60in length + 2in for channel + 1in for rolled hem + 5in for high heels + 2in train = 70IN TOTAL (173CM)
Take that number and multiply it by 3 to determine the amount of fabric required for the cape. [ 173cm X 3 = 519 cm ] Be sure to buy 55 to 60 inch wide fabric because the larger the width of the fabric the larger the width of your cape.
Step 3: Adding the collar
I placed my cape on my dressform and draped a 40cm cut of Yak Yak fur over top. I placed pins where there was excess fabric then flipped the fur and traced it out. The extra fabric around the neck and from the shoulders to the breast had to be removed. I hand stitched a hem along the inside of the collar to hide the raw edges, however, that is not needed on the far edges since the long fur hid it. Then I sewed down the collar by hand at the breast, at the edge of the channels, and again in the centre behind the neck.
TIP: To avoid making a mess with loose fur, use a blade to cut the fabric instead of scissors.
The cape looks very dramatic and the flow and drape of the fabric is beautiful. I’m ready to rule the North! Since the cape is such a statement piece, some simple black clothes underneath will be enough to finish the look. Happy costuming!