I had a late-Victorian Cape that was in need of rescue. It is a "Circle" cape in a Black Benegaline silk with an incredible color-change electric blue silk for the interior lining, and is trimmed with faceted black glass beadwork. The stand-up collar has an amazing triple edged box pleat of a design that I have never seen before. There was some shattering of the fabric on the collar, the shoulder area on both sides, as well as along the hemline.
I started with the collar. I had originally thought to use a piece of black silk. As a seamstress, we like to collect fabrics of all sorts. I had purchased a piece of a vintage black silk kimono, which was suppose to have been early 1900's. I thought it would be cool to use a vintage fabric with a vintage cape. However, even with a stiff interfacing, the silk was just to flimsy. So, I switched gears and went with a medium weight black cotton sateen. The photo to the left shows some of the electric blue silk lining, and the ruined interior edge of the collar.
I had two matching vintage passemateire pieces that I thought would be great on the shoulders to help cover the wear spots. I hand stitched them into place, and they matched perfectly to the existing trim! I also decided to incorporate a fur trim down the front edges and along the hemline. While this trim was not vintage, it blended very well with the overall look of the piece. Lastly, I ironed out the lovely silk velvet bow. I have to say, this velvet is amazing, it almost feels like suede it is so soft! I re-attached the vintage hook and eye, gave it a quick, light press, and it was all done! Enjoy!