This might be the most ridiculous thing I've made. A sweatshirt cape. This all started when I made that cape for Jane (that she hates). I really wanted one in my size. My original plan was just to make something super simple like Jane's. But then it morphed in to something more elaborate. So now I have a fully lined, hooded cape complete with toggles and a zipper. But still all in a sweatshirt knit! Like I said, it's kind of ridiculous but I really like it. There are some major flaws, of course. Mainly because I sort of made things up when I got to the closures. But I'm trying not to be bothered by them. And sweatshirt knit is not exactly the right sort of fabric for outerwear like this. But I think it works.
Pattern Description: New Look 6073. Misses cape in two lengths with different closure variations. Adding toggles are actually in the pattern instructions but the zipper and zipper shield are not. I made them up at the last minute. I've never used a New Look pattern before but this one looked like it had everything I needed and was simple. It seems to be an old pattern and there are quite a few reviews online, which is always helpful.
Pattern Sizing: XS-XL. I made a small which is a size below my measurements on the size chart. I sized down after reading reviews that it runs big. The size small definitely does not feel big on me and I can't imagine that the M would be much bigger. I probably could have made a M and been fine.
Fabric Used: Sweatshirt fleece for the outer fabric and some sort of mystery knit for the lining. The mystery knit is one of those that's fused to some sort of backing. It's all polyester. I found it at Joann's. I originally wasn't going to line this so I could enjoy the fuzzy side of my sweatshirt fleece. But after sewing together the shell I decided it needed more weight. So I went out in search of lining. On a side note, in the photo above you can see I shortened one of my tops from my last post and I think it looks so much better.
Alterations/Deviations: From the reviews (and pattern piece) I could see that the hood was huge. Like crazy costume-y huge. I folded out a four inch horizontal tuck to get rid of some of the enormousness. I kept all the width, though because I didn't want to mess with the neckline seam. I think it made the hood a much more reasonable size. Can you imagine four more inches of height on that hood? Other than that, I didn't make any other changes except for the closures. One pattern reviewer noted that the curve of the shoulder seam is pretty drastic and I agree. But I think it sits on my broad shoulders just right. Oh, and I put a drawstring in the hood like I did on Jane's cape. I thought it would help me cinch in the hood in case it was still too big.
The closures are where I sort of made it up. I wasn't originally going to add toggles. I was just going to do a zipper. But after seeing toggles in the instructions I decided I wanted both. I sewed the zipper in between the shell and lining, which was easy to do. But after sewing in the zipper I decided that I needed a zipper shield. Actually, I'm not sure if I should call it a shield since it's on top of the zipper and not underneath it. Anyway, I wanted a flap over the zipper. I added it on after the fact and that is why my toggles aren't centered. There wasn't any way to center them afterwards. So you'll notice my toggles are closer to one princess seam on one side. Ah well. If I had thought it through, I would have made one front piece wider than the other to compensate. Hopefully it's not too obvious. I ended up stitching on my toggle patches with a straight stitch and leaving the edge raw. I like the way it looks except I didn't trim my interfacing on the patches smaller and now you can see the edges of the interfacing, too. I may go in and trim it down but I think I might see how it washes first. You can still see my red marking pencil in this photo. Hope that washes out, too. I found the cord at the fabric store and had the toggles in my stash. I think my cord should be tiny bit shorter so the toggles close tighter, but it's close enough.
Likes/Dislikes: It's definitely something different. I think I'll wear it on the weekends when I don't need to use my arms much. Ha! You can see me illustrate below how useless the arm slits are. Not a lot of mobility in a cape but they are fun to wear. It's actually pretty warm, too, with the two layers of heavy knit. I didn't want to stitch the hem but I had to. The lining is stitched all the way around and there was no way to get any sort of crisp hem in sweatshirt fabric. So I top stitched around the bottom with a zig zag stitch. It's alright.
Conclusion: I can't see myself making another cape any time soon, but if I did I wouldn't hesitate to use the same pattern. It would be even nicer in a proper coating fabric.