Here's a great way to use old formal dresses or skirts, upcycle them into beautiful cloaks.
Whether you want to make a cloak for dressing up as a prince or princess, king or queen, wizard or witch, hero or villain, or any other character, here's a quick and easy upcycle project for all your cloak needs.
The great thing about upcycling this cloak from a dress or skirt is that the structure is already there, so you don't have to do any cutting out of fabric, there is a lot less sewing involved and the hemming is already done.
The light blue cloak took me about 45 minutes to make, and the dark grey one took about 30 minutes to make.
I love how they turned out and how easy they were to make.
My kids are loving wearing them for dress up!
These work great for adults as well, they just won't go to the ground.
Have fun and enjoy!
Step 1: Gather Supplies
-Dress or Skirt with a full skirt
-Ribbon- about a yard of ribbon
Step 2: Cut the Dress/Skirt
-Measure the person for whom you are making the cloak from the base of their neck to the length they would like the cloak. Add 1-2 inches for the top casing to your measurement to get the length you'll cut your cloak.
-I made the light blue cloak for my daughter, so I measured from the base of her neck to the ground, which measured 36 inches. I added an inch for the top casing, and another 4 inches because she wanted her cloak to drag behind her, so 41 inch length.
-Measuring from the bottom hem of the dress, measure up your measured length and cut straight across the dress.
-Open up the back seam of the dress/skirt. I cut the back seam off. If there is a zipper, take the zipper out. The open back of the dress/skirt is now the front opening of your cloak.
-For the cloak I made from the skirt I used the whole length so all I had to do was open up the back seem, remove the zipper and cut out an underskirt that was attached.
Step 3: Sew the Cloak
-Sew a short zigzag stitch along the top cut edge of the cloak cut from the dress to keep it from fraying.
-The back seam that you opened up is now the front of your cloak. Take one front edge and fold it over twice towards the inside of the cloak a half inch each fold. Sew down the fold 1/4 inch from the edge from the top of the cloak to the bottom hem. Do the same thing to the other edge.
-Fold over the top edge of the cloak cut from the dress 1 to 2 inches toward the inside of the cloak to make a casing for the ribbon. How far you fold over the casing depends on the width of your ribbon, fold it over a little more than the width of your ribbon. Sew along the zigzag edge of the casing leaving the two ends open. This was a little tricky because the top is smaller than where it folds down to. If you try to match the edges you'll have to do some tucks along the casing. I just folded it down and did not have the ends match and it worked great.
-For the cloak I made from a skirt it had a waist band that made the perfect casing so I didn't have to do the casing step.
Step 4: Attaching the Ribbon
-Attach a safety pin to the end of your ribbon and thread it through the casing.
-Try the cloak on the person for whom you are making it and gather the top casing on the ribbon until you like how it looks. Pin the end edge of the casing to the ribbon on both sides to keep it gathered. Sew the casing edge closed to keep the ribbon and gathering in place.
-Cut the ribbon tails to the length that you like and run the ribbon edges along a match flame to sear the edges to keep them from fraying.
-For the dark grey cloak, the skirt came with long ties attached, so I cut the ties off and sewed them together and used it in place of the ribbon, hemming the ends of the tie.
-You could easily use a different type of closer in place of the ribbon. Ribbon is just an easy closure option.
Step 5: You're Done!
Congratulations, you're finished!
Try on your new awesome cloak and have fun!