Outer Wear
Comments 53

Birthday Cape – Oliver and S Woodland Stroll Cape

I had Birthday Cake – a HUGE one, and now I’ve got a Birthday Cape too.  As those of you who follow my Sunday Sevens will know I received a fabric gift for my recent birthday.  After much head scratching, googling and input from my wonderful imaginary blogging friends I decided to make the Woodland Stroll Cape from Oliver + S.

Suggested fabric include wool coating, wool melton, velveteen, moleskin and corduroy.  Not sure of the exact make up of my fabric but there was definitely some wool content.  I opted not to pre wash.  Unusual for me, but my washing machine broke down a week yesterday so didn’t have much choice!

Here’s my birthday fabric bundle.  Still not sure what the lips are going to be, maybe a pussy bow blouse.  I’ve been wanting one for ages!


Once I’d set my heart on the cape I soon discovered I’d not got enough fabric – according the the fabric guide.  1 1/2 yards is needed, and I had 1 metre.

Here’s how the 2 pattern  pieces look with the grannie in the right direction:

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Ooops!  It’s never gonna fit!

Then I thought about cutting the front pieces on the bias – and that fitted, maybe not quite at 45 degrees:

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And then I had a flash of geniusism!  (is there such a word!!?) How about I cut both pieces on the bias and create a centre back seam:

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Yay!!  It fit!!  I didn’t worry myself with pattern matching – the vertical splurgy lines were so random that there didn’t appear to be any matching to do!  (the above pieces are pre – tracing.  This shows the biggest size – I cut mine out in a large (12-14) the 2nd to largest size – this might be helpful if you’re thinking of making one and wondering how much fabric you’ll need.

For the lining I manage to fit it on the 1m pieces.

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The making up was plain sailing.  Except for sewing the curve of the neckline.  I’m not sure why it was so tricky.  I felt like I could manoeuvre the fabric as it sewed – could this be because I was using my walking foot??

Anyway, several stitching lines later………

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I think really I should have drawn the stitching line directing on to the fabric.  I will next time!!

Stitching the lining to the front was a bit time consuming – be sure to use loads and loads and loads of pins, and unless you have a HUGE table you’ll need to do this on the floor – it takes up quite a bit of space.

I felt like I was making some sort of bat man cape at this point!

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Pins galoure – thought I was going to have to call out and buy some more!!

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More pins please!

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Button holes…… after about 15 practice runs (no I’m not kidding) my machine stitched the real ones beautifully:

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Once it has made one the machines instructions advises to hit start again and make another directly on top of the first.  It makes a stronger button hole.

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And the buttons… just love ’em! they about an inch and are shiny silvery metal.  Bit heavy but ok on the wool.

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And now for the best bit…… for you not me!! Was a nightmare trying to get some pix – workmen in the garden would think I was balmy and H’s mates due to arrive any time = nervous model and nervous photographer!!

Bright sunshine at one side of the garden makes my hair look orange!!

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And in the shade at the other side it all looks a bit dull!

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Gertrude wears it well though!

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Overall I’m really pleased.  I’d never have chosen this fabric myself so thankyou Tina for putting my out of my comfort zone!

Has anyone else had successes from fabric bought as a pressie?

PS apologies if there’s any spelling errors – dashing off to work now and not had time to read through it! Cheerio!

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I sew and play golf. I blog about my sewing as I don't think you'd want to read about my golf. It's bad enough watching it on telly! Contact me via email - Thimbers.blog@gmail.com


    • Thankyou! It does have a classy sort of feel to it when I put it on. I just need some plain long sleeved tops now to wear under it. 😃

  1. Well done with getting that pattern fitted on to the fabric and if ‘geniusism’ isn’t a word, it ought to be.

  2. GENIUS Award for deciding on bias cutting ~ the chevron effect front & back is seriously impressive! (Great to know about that lining & the pins. You cut the lining on the bias also? Bias maybe being some of the cause, do you think?) I learnt to make button holes with an attachment to mum’s Singer (before electronics), and was taught then to do button holes twice, for strength. Gotta tell you your sunny hair colour looks great! Thanks so much for getting this posted so quickly! xx

    • Thanks for the lovely comments Del! It’s funny how things work out when challenged with less fabric that is needed. If I’d have had another 1/2 metre I don’t think I’d have thought to cut it out on the bias. I cut the back piece lining on the fold to avoid a centre seam, and the front pieces squeezed them in on the bias. 😀

  3. mrswhiskerson says

    This is lovely! I’ve looked at this pattern a few times and can’t quite make my mind up, this might have just persuaded me, it looks fab.

  4. Wakeymakes says

    Stunning. Its wouldn’t be quite as nice if not cut on the bias. Amazing how things turn out. Well done K xXx

    • I’m with you there, i can’t imagine it ‘normal’! Must’ve been fate only having a metre and making the most of it! 🙂

  5. Anne Wright says

    You are one clever lady! That cape is fantastic, I love love love it. And so clever getting it to fit the fabric by cutting on the bias – you should run an agony aunt column for sewing problems! 🙂 I hope you get lots of wear out of it this autumn/winter!

    • Hahaha, that would be funny, but I think we all agony aunt for each other! I’ve been out in it today over my jeans, just running about and doing shopping and felt a bit posh!! 🙂

  6. Oh it looks better for being cut on the bias, the pattern stands out more than it might otherwise. What a lovely shape it is too, very modern for a cape. Is this the next Big Thing after the jumpsuit, I wonder?

  7. Bekki Hill says

    You definitely are a genius! Looks fab and great for hiding excess cake eating under 🙂 Well done on getting H up before it got dark.

    • Thanks, yes plenty of room for cake eating!! And H got up to play on his xbox but I did collar him before he got too settled and his pals turned up. 🙂

  8. Claire Sutherland says

    It looks great. I have just cut out my pattern today. Will need to work out how to match my plaid checks before I cut the fabric and figure out how to use my walking foot! You can tell I am new to all this!! You did really well fitting it on a metre of fabroic and the bias cut just adds to the finish x

    • I’m a bit late replying. Did you manage to get it cut out? Colette patterns have some tips on their website for matching plaids. Good luck – hope it turns out, if you get stuck give me a shout x

  9. corrineappleby says

    Your cape is really lovely and all the better for being cut on the bias! Perfect for autumn! I’ve never looked into Oliver and S patterns before – may have to remedy that. Good job!

    • Thanks Corrine. I think I need a waterproof one now to go over my running gear. It’s all wet and slippy out there now! :-0

  10. sewingbeefabric says

    Capes are perfect for hiding cake under… Before or after you’ve eaten it 😉 I love your choice of lining fabric. It really compliments the outer fabric x

  11. I love it. Well done on managing it out of so little fabric. I like the back seam for the way it makes the pattern lie, in a kind of chevron shape – imo, nicer than it would have looked without the back seam.

    • It was definitely a stroke of luck not having enough fabric and having to cut it on the bias as I’m not sure I’d have done it otherwise.

    • I’m over cautious too, I sampled threads and styles, everything, and all at least twice! And then one last one for good measure, just in case!! 🙂

  12. springystitches says

    Love this!! I think that the diagonal striping works well using the bias and it’s a really flattering fit too!

  13. Looks great, cutting on the bias has worked brilliantly. Love the buttons, not seen buttonholes stitched twice before, I’ll have to try that one.

    • Oh yes, give it a go, they feel so much stronger. Just remember not to touch anything and do another one so it’s directly on top of the first.
      PS was over at your place the other night, took a stemi in, thought I might see you but obviously you weren’t there! 🙂

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