The Phantom of the Opera with his cape.

A cape or cloak used to be a standard cold weather or formal garment. Much like someone would wear a coat or jacket now, people used to wear capes. But fashions change and now just about the only time a cape is worn is as part of a costume.

A simple cape is fairly easy to make. Take a rectangle of cloth just a bit longer than from shoulders to how far you'd like the cape to be when worn and 1 1/2 to 2 times as wide as it would need to be to go around you. Take a longer strip of cloth and fold a hem over it on the top sew it down. Now hem the sides and bottom, if you like.

Fancier, better made capes or cloaks may have linings or more elegant shape (wider at the bottom than the top) or a hood.

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