It may or not be nearing the end of winter here in California and it may or may not have been the best idea to make a lined wool cape, but how could I say "no" when this beautiful fabric was begging to be sewn into an awesome cape?!? Seriously guys, I don't even care that the weather is going to warm up shortly, this cape is going to get a lot of use. I'm going to be wearing it in the middle of summer, dripping sweat, and it's going to have to be pried off my body. Ok, I'm being dramatic, but I am really really in love with what I made!
Let's talk about the showstopper in these photos: It's a coat weight Novelty Midnight Amoeba Wool, with black and navy blue squiggles on top of a gray background. Personally, I see squiggles or a quilting design, but my sister insists it looks like camo, but in different colors. Regardless of what it is, I think it looks great!
This was my first time sewing with a wool coating and to be honest I was nervous. Would it press well? Would it struggle going through my machine? Would it fray like crazy? Well, to answer my own questions, this novelty wool fabric pressed great, there were no issues going through my machine, and my serger took care of any possibility of future fraying. Basically, it's absolutely perfect for outerwear and a total dream to sew.
I purchased a black bemberg rayon lining from Britex and it pairs so well with the wool. Unfortunately, I didn't think to get any interior photos of the cape, which is a bummer because it looks nice. The lining is smooth and feels luxurious on my skin and is well worth the $14.99 a yard that I paid. This fabric combination just makes me feel so fancy!
The cape pattern is the Seamwork Camden. Honestly, the pattern was not difficult at all to sew and the directions were great, but man, it was time consuming! There is no way that I would be able to cut and sew everything within three hours. No way. There is a good amount of hand stitching that needs to be done which adds extra time into the process, but it is well worth the effort.
The only modifications I made to the pattern were more fashion than function. Meaning, they didn't change the fit, just the appearance. Instead of machine made buttonholes I made bound buttonholes and instead of using plain buttons I made fabric covered buttons. Here, I'll show you how I did it.
These are the supplies I used. Chances are you have most of the tools in your sewing kit. I only had to buy the metal pieces for the buttons which I purchased from Wawak at $1.55 for twelve buttons. Not a bad price, but they only sent the metal parts. There wasn't a template or tool to press the back part of the button into the front. This kit and others like it are also available at the Britex Fabrics brick-and-mortar store in San Francisco.
First I traced the button onto a piece of tracing paper.
Added a 3/8 inch seam allowance.
Cut out the circle template and place it onto some scrap fabric.
I cut out the fabric and added some basting stitches along the outer edge.
I put the front piece of the button into the fabric and pulled the basting stitches to form around the metal.
Using my fingers I carefully pressed the fabric into the metal teeth. Once everything was in place I snapped on the flat back piece and pressed firmly. It definitely took a little muscle, but I got it done. Wawak recommends using a spool of thread, which might be even easier. On another button I tried using a hammer and flat screwdriver to connect the two pieces and didn't have success. The screwdriver actually punctured the metal, so I wouldn't recommend that method!
Thanks for reading and enjoy your day!