Holiday Crafts Capes Done. Photo by Becky Striepe

Published on December 2nd, 2009 | by Becky Striepe


Handmade Holidays: Simple Superhero Capes

The weather is getting colder, and we have a handmade holiday on our minds! Handmade gifts have heart, are better for the environment, and, if you opt to buy, it supports independent artists!

If you want to have a totally handmade holiday, now is the time to get started. Over the next couple of months, we’ll be posting about recycled gifts and giftwrap you can make yourself and great handmade finds for sale!

My sweet nephews are totally into superheroes these days! The older one loves Superman and the younger is into Blue Batman. Not just any Batman, people. Blue. Obviously, I had no choice but to make them their very own superhero capes for Christmas! Here’s how you can make your own:

You’ll Need:

  • 2 thrifted sheets in contrasting colors
  • measuring tape
  • iron
  • fabric scissors
  • sewing machine

The beauty of working with finished sheets is that you can take advantage of one finished edge and save yourself some time! If your sheet’s edges are all gone or you’re working with something that doesn’t have finished hems, no worries! You’ll just need to hem one more side.

Cut out:

  • one 4″ x 42″ rectangle
  • one 24″ x 22″ rectangle (Make sure one of the short sides takes advantage of the hemmed edge of the sheet.)
  • Whatever you want to applique on there. I did the first letter of each of their names.

Fold the 42″ rectangle in half, so that you’re now looking at a 2″ x 42″ rectangle. Give this a good press, then open up the fold and fold the unfinished edges into the center. Press again.

Now, take one end of your rectangle, fold it in, and trim your fabric so it won’t stick out when you re-fold it in half (take a peek at the picture to the right to see what I mean). Repeat on the other side, then fold the fabric down along that first seam you made, press, and place one pin on each end to secure it. Set this aside.

Grab your 24″ x 22″ piece of fabric and make a 1/2″ seam along each long edge. If the bottom of your sheet didn’t have a hem, you’ll want to create a 1/2″ seam there, too. Fold your seams over twice, so it hides the unfinished edges, then press and pin.

Cut out your letter or superhero symbol, and press that too. Pin it onto the outside of your cape.

First you’ll want to run the body of the cape through the machine to finish the edges. Sew it wrong side up, so that your stitching will be as close to the inside of the seam as possible.

When that’s done, switch to the zig zag stitch and carefully stitch around the edges of your letter or symbol. Be careful not to pull the fabric, or your applique might turn out a little lumpy.

Give the body of the cape a good press, including the applique, to set all of your stitching.

Now, you’ll need the strap you made. Slide the unfinished edge of the cape body into the fold of the strap, pinning it down in the center. Now, tuck in the left side, sliding the fabric down about 2″ – 3″ from where it would naturally lie. Use your fingers to fold the cape fabric over and pin that all into place. Repeat on the right side. It should look like the picture up there on the left when it’s done. See how there are two folds in the fabric?

You’re almost done! Now, you’ll just sew around the edges of the strap to secure everything. Give it one final press, and you’re done!

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About the Author

Hi there! I'm Becky Striepe, a green crafter and vegan foodie living in Atlanta, Georgia with my husband and two cats. My mission is to make eco-friendly crafts and vegan food accessible to anyone who wants to give them a go. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .

5 Responses to Handmade Holidays: Simple Superhero Capes

  1. Julia says:

    This is great! I’m going to make these for my cousins’ sons’ Christmas presents!

  2. Jodie R. says:

    I made a couple of these last summer for my little tot and his cousin. I used thrifted sheets too, but I bet you could do these with pillow cases too :)

  3. How cute! My son would love a cape! I am going to break out the sewing machine this weekend and see how well close to these I can get.

  4. Julie says:

    how funny, this is my first visit to the site, but some friends and I got together and made super hero capes for our kiddos this Christmas too… ours were made of felt and velcro but same basic idea… SUCH FUN!!

  5. Pingback: 10 Last-Minute Christmas Gifts for Kids | Dollar Store Mom Frugal Fun – Crafts for Kids

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