We have recently added our 2016 Build a Wardrobe silhouettes to Custom DIY. These new projects are not included in our Alabama Studio books, so we are providing instructions for each project on our Journal over the next few weeks. So far, we’ve shared instructions for the Maggie Dress and Alabama Sweater, and this week, we share instructions for the Walking Cape. You may also download a printable PDF with instructions through the link at the bottom of this post. Find all of our digital patterns and stencil artwork on our Resources page.
WALKING CAPE INSTRUCTIONS
1. Add Embroidery
Add embellishment, as desired. Use one of our Alabama Studio Series books for inspiration. If you’re adding beading, avoid beading in 1/4” seam allowance.
2. Construct Collar
To create the Walking Cape collar, pin the two collar pieces right sides together around the three outside edges, leaving the portion of the collar that attaches to the body of the cape open. Thread your needle, love your thread, and knot off. Using a straight stitch, sew the pinned edges together, starting at one corner of the collar and stitching 1/4” from the fabric’s cut edges around the three outside edges of the collar. Be sure to begin and end the seam by wrap-stitching its edges to secure them.
Turn the collar right side out and press. You may choose to topstitch the collar 1/8” from the edge of the three finished sides using a straight stitch and wrap-stitching the beginning and end of the seam.
3. Prepare for Construction
After completing the collar, lay out your top layer with the right side facing up. Center the raw edge of your collar with the center of the inside edge of the cape. Pin the collar in place. Lay your bottom layer on top of the top layer and collar with the right side facing up, sandwiching the collar between the two layers. Pin all layers of the cape together along the center front and inside edge of the cape.
When pinning knit seams for construction, it is important to follow a method we call “pinning the middle”. Start by pinning the beginning of your seam, and follow by pinning the end of your seam. Then place one pin in the middle, between the two initial pins. Continue by pinning in the middle of each set of pins, until your seam is securely pinned and ready to sew.
4. Sew Front Seam
Thread your needle, love your thread, and knot off. Using a straight stitch, sew the pinned pieces together, starting at one corner of the center front and stitching 1/4” from the fabric’s cut edges across to the opposite corner. Be sure to begin and end the seam by wrap-stitching its edges to secure them.
Turn the cape right side out. Topstitch the seam 1/8” from the finished edge of the seam using a straight stitch and wrap-stitching the beginning and end of the seam.
5. Construct Walking Cape Pocket
Your kit should include two 1 1/4” x 8 1/2”-wide strips of fabric cut across the grain to use for binding the pockets. Use your iron to press each binding strip in half lengthwise, with the wrong sides together, being careful not to stretch the fabric while pressing it.
To construct a double-layer pocket, lay two cut pocket pieces on top of each other with right sides facing up. Start at one of the top corners and encase the pocket’s top edge inside your folded binding, basting the binding in place as you work. Trim away any excess binding.
Use the stitch of your choice (see our Alabama Studio Book Series) to sew through all layers and down the middle of the binding. Remove or break basting stitches by pulling gently on one end of the thread. It is fine to leave any basting stitches that may be embedded in the binding. Repeat this process for the second pocket.
6. Place and Attach Pockets
Lay your cape out flat with the outside layer facing up. Add pockets by pinning your pocket to the outside layer and placing it 4” from the center front, approximately 5” from the bottom raw edge, and approximately 6” from the outside raw edge.
Pin pocket in place, and stitch 1/4” from the edge of the pocket, leaving the edges raw. Wrap-stitch the beginning and end of the seam. Repeat this process for the second pocket.
Alternately, you may choose to attach the pockets to the inside of the cape using the same placement instructions listed above.
7. Attach Snap
With the cape laid in front of you face up, place the male half of the snap on the right side of the outer layer of the cape, positioning it 1/4” from the finished center front edge and approximately 7” beneath the collar, or approximately 10” above the bottom raw edge. Attach the snap using a doubled strand of Button Craft thread, stitching around the snap twice.
Open the left side of the cape. Place the female half of the snap on the bottom layer of the left side of the cape, positioning it 1/4” from the finished center front edge and approximately 7” beneath the collar, or approximately 10” above the bottom raw edge. Attach the snap using a doubled strand of Button Craft thread, stitching around the snap twice.
Download a printable PDF of the Walking Cape instructions here.