February 9, 2018 at 4:39 pm #23012
I decided to share a pattern for a women’s cloak I am sewing now. I decided to make my design according to a wool cloak one of my friends wore during our winter solstice celebration, as I liked how elegant and simple it looked. When I had a closer look at it, I realised that the cut was extremely simple, basically just half a circle with an opening for the head and a hood attached to it. Still, of course, easier said than done, so I decided to make a pattern for anybody who would like to sew something like this. The pattern is for a cloak that reaches to the ground, and is for a person of approximately 1.60 – 1.63 m of height.
What you will need is 3.5 m of a fabric with 150 cm width (most wool fabric have this width). If you get smaller width, or you are very tall, you will have to order more fabric in order to add more fabric to the bottom of the cloak, or your cloak can be a bit shorter, if you don’t mind your robe or skirt sticking out of it a bit on the bottom.
Start with cutting off 50 centimetres from your fabric (it will therefore be 150 cm x 50 cm piece). From this fabric, you will cut two 50 x 40 cm pieces for the hood and place them on each-other. The rest of the fabric will then be 300 cm x 150 cm, which you fold in half that will give you a square of 150 x 150 cm. This will be for the cloak body.
Sew each piece (hood and cloak body) first, with double folds and everything, before attaching them to each-other in the area of the neckline. Attaching them to each-other will be the last step that you may have to do by hand, as it will be too thick (especially if you are sewing a wool) for a sewing machine to go through.
Sewing the hood
On the image, you see the two 50 x 40 rectangular pieces of fabric placed on top of each-other. This double rectangle needs to be rounded a bit on the left side (so it fits nice on the back of the head), then sewn together along the left and top single red lines (whenever you sew the fabrics together, sew them only about 1 cm from the border of the fabric, because the pattern is designed that way, otherwise you may use up too much of the length and width of your fabric). The double red lines on the right indicate where a double folds will be (on each single piece) for a nice ending around your face (you DON’T sew this side together, otherwise you will have a “sack” instead of hood. 😉 ). These double folds should be just 1 cm too (which means you spend 2 cm of fabric on them since they are double folds).
The small red squares on the bottom are where you will fold the bottom of the hood before attaching it to the cloak body in the last step.
Sewing the cloak body
On the image, you see a fabric 300 x 150 cm folded on the left side (interrupted line), which gives you 150 x 150 square. There you draw a pattern according to the image. Dark brown lines are where you cut the fabric. Don’t cut where the interrupted line is, as that will be a seamless back after you unfold the cloak. The straight line next to the neckline (lighter brown colour) measuring 25 cm is where you cut first, and then round the cut slightly, according to the dark brown line to form a nice neckline.
Similarly to the hood, the single red lines indicate where you sew fabric pieces together (in this case just around the neckline, which will be attached to the hood in the final phase). The double red lines indicate where the single fabric pieces will be folded twice for a nice ending. Regarding the round bottom, depending on how much fabric you have, you may decide to fold just once if you want to save a bit of the length.
Sewing the hood and cloak together
Now that you had prepared both the cloak hood and the cloak body, you can sew them together (again just about 1 cm-wide seam) at the area of the neckline. The bottom of the hood is purposefully wider than the neckline, so that you can make some nice folds on it as you are attaching it to the neckline. This will make the hood look nicer. You can make two folds on each half of the hood, as indicated on the hood picture, or you can make more smaller folds, whatever feels right for you. The point is that after folding it, the bottom of the hood must fit the neckline of the cloak exactly, so you can sew it together well.
Now that you are done, you can also sew two approx. 25 cm long and maybe 2 cm wide ”ribbons” (or laces? not sure how this is called in English) from the same fabric and sew them onto each side of the neckline, to tie the cloak. Or you can just use a brooch. The laces have an advantage that you can tie them a bit further apart, which will enable you to have your cloak a bit more open, revealing more of the robe under it.
Ok, this is it! 🙂
I hope this tutorial will help people to make their own cloaks from whatever material they prefer.
Below is my cloak so far, in the stage of sewing each part… As I didn’t have enough fabric, it will be a bit shorter, and I also had to make a seam on the back. I am just taking it as a learning experience, and using the wool fabric I had.
Cloak and neckline detail. I have rounded also the right side of the hood, but it was not a good idea, as now i don’t have that much fabric left there to make some nice folds. So just follow the pattern and don’t cut it like I did! :-OFebruary 10, 2018 at 4:41 am #23038
Thanks so much Lucia for this tutorial! It’s smart thinking to just take an item you like and follow the measurements and pattern. I’ll make use of this for a cloak I’m making for one of the roles for the next ceremony, and also to alter the one I made for myself the winter, which ended up a bit wonky and with the hood too large.
It’s really quite liberating to realise you can make your own clothing – these niche items can be quite pricey online, which I know is the true price of handmade items, but once you’ve got the basics of sewing down, to make something like this is pretty simple.
A little tip I for others on a budget – I found a second-hand 100% wool blanket online that was 1/4 of the cost that wool of that size would have been. It took a while to find something that wasn’t too thick and ‘blankety’, but in the end I was really happy with it. 🙂February 10, 2018 at 6:59 am #23041
Hey Ella – exactly, to take the measurements and pattern from an item that fits you or you like seems to be the way to go if you are not a professional in making the patterns.
Just yesterday, I was wondering how I could sew some nice, linen trousers for my husband, and be sure they would fit him. And an idea came to me to just “desintegrate” some of his old trousers that fit him well, and use that pattern for sewing the new ones. Or maybe I don’t even need to desintegrate them, maybe just turning to the flip side and copying the pattern on a transparent paper would be enough.
I also think that after some time of copying patterns like this, one will learn how the basic shapes work, and will be able to adjust them with more flexibility.February 10, 2018 at 10:26 am #23048
I think you can just look at the different pieces that are sewn together and take measurements, no need to sacrifice a pair of good trousers! I’ve stared to look at items of clothes I like in a new way, thinking … hmm, it’s just a few triangles sewn together … 😉February 10, 2018 at 6:20 pm #23051
Sometimes it may be hard to take a pattern from something that’s sewn together, for example sleeves. So that’s why I was going to use some old clothes that are not suitable anymore (Rajko has LOTS of them…).
But in case a newer piece of clothes has a nice cut, then of course, copying the pattern on transparent paper or taking measurements and recreating them can be an option.February 12, 2018 at 8:10 pm #23099
Hi Lucia, I just wanted to clarify something as I’m following your pattern to make a cloak for the upcoming spring equinox …
I’ve got myself a 3m x 1.5 metre piece of fabric. It looks HUGE and when I wrap it around myself can see that obviously it’s meant to be folded in two, which I know you say, but my question is – why not just work with a 1.5 x 1.5 metre square to start with? Is it just to get a thicker piece of fabric? I’m using linen and actually just want it the thickness of a single layer …
Thanks in advance! 🙂February 13, 2018 at 4:15 am #23122
Nope, you can’t just have 1.5 x 1.5m sqare, because that’s just half of the robe. The robe is basically half the circle, and the image I have drawn above is HALF of it. That’s why the fabric is folded on the left, because when you unfold it, you will get half the circle cloak.
But if you are not getting it, then try and see what happens. 🙂 You can always sew in the other half, but then you will have a seam on your back.February 13, 2018 at 4:16 am #23125
Also forgot to say, it is NOT to have a double layer/thicker fabric. It is because the robe needs to be half the circle, not just a quarter of it (as will be with 150 x 150 cm). Actually, I even saw some full circle robes out there, so that would be even double the amount! 🙂February 19, 2018 at 12:08 pm #23298
After my initial struggle with visualizing the pattern, I wanted to feedback that I found it very simple and quick to make the cloak. The most time-consuming part was the little laces for the neck, as I had to do these by hand.
Excuse the poor quality of the picture, and the black colour, but here’s an image of a linen robe I made for the person playing the representative of darkness for the upcoming spring equinox.February 19, 2018 at 4:23 pm #23308
Looks great Ella and the laces are quite pretty too! I hope you are now happy you didn’t go with just half of the fabric. 😉
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.