Ok, so I'm going to be honest and admit that my aspirations for a cape coat were a little ambitious from the onset (especially since I'm a self admittedly newer sewer). I mean in my mind this coat had great potential for being reversible -- after all it worked for my tote bag)! Fabulous in and of themselves, my fabric choices didn't quite work together -- I found along the way that my plaid tweed added bulk to the lighter cashmere side of the cape. So, I had to do what any good DIY'er would do and salvage the project. I mean seriously, who could let this beautiful cashmere from Mood Fabrics go to waste? So, as you follow along you'll see I begin my step-by-step process with the tweed side, and eventually separate the two pieces after Step #9, and finish up with just the cashmere. Presto, mission complete! Want to see how I end up, take a look below....you're in for a colorful and fun ride!
SUPPLIES: 1 hook and eye, straight pins, rotary cutter, scissors, tape measure, needle and thread, 2 yards of cashmere, straight edge, pattern (I used this one from Matter of Style), and a sewing machine.
HOW-TO: 1. Print out your pattern here, and lay it out so you can see how it all fits together. 2. The printing margins make the pattern bigger than it has to be, so I folded back the unnecessary parts, taped it together in the desired form, and then cut it all out. 3. Pin your fabric to your fabric and then cut this out....it will look like this once you are done (I added a couple extra inches to the bottom of mine for good measure). 4. Use your straight pins to pin your shoulder dart. 5. Create your shoulder dart with your sewing machine. 6. Not sure if you can see the pink and green respective row of pins that I used to mark the arm holes and the pockets, but go ahead and decide where you want those and pin it. (Note: In hindsight, in the future I'd probably follow the pattern and make vertical armholes and nix the pockets altogether). 7. Use your scissors and rotary cutter to make the incision and cuts for your pockets and armholes. 8. I wanted mine to fit a little closer to the body than the pattern allowed, so I made a dart down the back from the collar to the hem.
HOW-TO CONT'D: 9. Sew the dart you created together and cut off the excess. 10. Use your straight pins to create a finished hem around the neckline, pockets, armholes, bottom, and edges along both sides of the front of the coat. 11. Using a 1/4 inch seam allowance, go ahead and hem everything up on your sewing machine. 12. Now it's time for the pockets.....so measure out a square for the length and depth you want your pockets to be that will line up with the incisions that you made for it. 13. Once you decide how wide you want your pockets, double up your fabric and cut out four squares this size. 14. Now it's time to pin your pockets in place, so first hold down the bottom flap of your pocket, and take your first pocket square and place it right side facing down. Now pin it in place to this bottom flap, and repeat on the opposite side with the top flap (Note: You want the finished fabric to be visible if you were to look inside your pocket). 15. Sew your pockets on, and finish off the edges with your machine. 16. Last step, hand stitch your hook and eye to the upper corners of your two front panels, as a closure. You're all done!
Brandhyze Stanley is the chief voice of the award winning blog, Frugal-nomics.com; a platform designed to share with women how to live and look fabulous on a dime. A DIY girl at heart—Brandhyze has been featured on The View, The Early Show, The Today Show, InStyle Magazine, Essence Magazine, and MTVStyle. A Wilhelmina Model for over a decade, with a Business Degree from Loyola University Chicago, Brandhyze provides DIY content to the popular How-To Site, eHow; and was a Fashion & Style Writer and Video Contributor for Newsday Westchester. Brandhyze is a huge thrifter and a lover of all good deals, follow her on Twitter @MyFrugalnomics and on Facebook at Facebook.com/Frugalnomics.