Make A Cape, Be a Superhero

SuperFlorenceFlorence often wore a pink velvet cape when she was at Duke receiving treatments for autoimmune encephalitis.  When she wore her cape, she felt strong and she could tackle her next treatment.

Cape Moments

Florence Forth road race is a celebration of overcoming struggles and making things better.  It is the response of one family to the loss of their daughter.  Florence and others with autoimmune encephalitis inspired a community to start a movement to cure a rare disease. Watch the one and a half minute Cape Moments video.

So maybe you want to make a cape for you, your child or a friend in need of super powers.

Make a Cape

Review the cape pattern (link and pictured below) provided by master sewer Toni Mason of Durham’s Sew Crafty. Here are the steps to making a cape:

  1. Make your Pattern.  Using a large sheet of paper, measure and cut the following dimensions for your cape pattern:
  • Kid’s cape- Length from back of neck to bottom of cape = 30 inches. Width across bottom of cape = 18 inches. Width across top of cape = 7.5 inches. The shape is basically a tall trapezoid, with a short width at the top and a larger width across the bottom.
  • Adult cape- measure the length you want from back of neck to where you want cape to hit at the bottom, approx 36 inches. Keep the same bottom and top width measurements as the kid’s cape above.
  1. Prepare the fabric. Once you have cut your paper pattern, choose your fabric.  Fold the fabric in half and lay the pattern on the fabric so the 30″ edge is along the fold in the fabric.  Measure, mark and cut the fabric to your pattern.
  1. Press the seams. With a hot iron, press a 0.5-inch edge on the two sides and bottom for stitching a seam so your fabric does not fray. On the top, fold and press 0.5 inch and then fold and press another 0.5 inch (this will create a pocket for the cape tie – see next step).
  1. Sew the edges.  Sew the sides and bottom of the cape along the pressed edges.  When you get to the top, insert a 15-inch length of ribbon into the folded edge at each corner, so that approximately 2 inches goes into the folded edge and approximately 13 inches sticks out to be used as a tie.  Be sure to size the amount of ribbon for the intended wearer’s neck.  With the ribbons inserted, sew across the top edge being sure to sew the ribbon to the cape fabric.
  1. Finish and wear. Trim thread, don your cape, and register for Florence Forth!

We’d love to see pictures of you making and wearing your new cape.  Send an email with how the pattern worked and a picture or two via email to Leslie McDow with Cape Making in the subject.

Cape pattern2015-teams-hero-small