Orange Rain Cloak

A rain cloak that reminds me of sunsets and orange sherbet and also for the Historically Sew Monthly  January Challenge… Procrastination

This project started many years ago when I started saying “I need a rain cloak” then grew a few years back when I started attending Pennsic where it can be in the 90’s and raining and I am often caught out with armfuls of shopping when I say “I really need a rain cloak big enough to cover all this and not hot” which led me to a friend who had brilliantly made hoods our of waterproof cotton.  So, I went hunting for waterproofed cotton which took me a while to find and when I did it was orange, a nice orange but orange none the less.  I was afraid to over dye it because I didn’t know how it would effect the waterproofing.  Then, last year I finally had enough of the rain and made a point of cutting it out, which sat around for a year.  Then, I machine sewed the pieces together in time for Pennsic this past year because it was supposed to have torrential rain but ended up having none, probably because I came prepared with something I could wear to keep me dry even if it wasn’t finished.

I foolishly decided to hand finish this, I say foolish because it took forever and required 2 thimbles to sew due to the tight weave of the fabric.  Some of you have seen me wearing this and sewing the hem as I wore it on a rainy day… but it kept getting pushed aside for proper clothing, historical clothing that I could get excited about.  So, this last weekend when I got back on the wagon for the Historical Sew Monthly and saw that the challenge was procrastination I figured the bit of orange peeking out at me from the finishing pile in the sewing room was fair game, it has been many years/months in the making so as we put on several movies and I armed my fingers I finished the last of the long, long, long hem, decided to add some soft boning in the hem of the hood, and then decided to throw out the idea of hand flat felling all the interior seams in favor of binding them by machine with bias tape- which I had in a very close orange color in the stash inherited from my mother in law, along with one large orangey mother of pearl button.  Voila!   The beast is done, is not as historical as I would like but it will keep me and whatever I choose to carry or several friends dry.  I promise another procrastinated project for the February pleats challenge and a proper historical piece for the March protection challenge. 🙂

orange sherbet cloak

The Challenge: Procrastination

January 2016

Fabric: 100% cotton waterproofed trench material

Pattern: Vogue shaped shoulder cloak

Year: 19th century with shaped shoulders

Notions: bias tape bindings, shell button

How historically accurate is it? The shape and purpose are accurate but a modern practical compromise of waterproofed cotton rather than oilcloth

Hours to complete: Total: 20  (Cutting: 1, Sewing: 2, Hand finishing: 8)

First worn: Unfinished Aug-Oct 2015, finished January 2016

Total: $48 fabric, notions from inherited stash


Historical inspiration images…

Civil War full length cloak with fitted shoulders.

Civil War full length cloak with fitted shoulders.

Civil War full length cloak with fitted shoulders and single closure at neck.

Civil War full length cloak with fitted shoulders and single closure at neck.

Civil War long cloak with fitted shoulders and hood.

Civil War long cloak with fitted shoulders and hood.

orange silk cloak 18th c

Orange! 18th Century cloak with hood

Orange! with awesome decorations...

Orange! with awesome decorations…

2 thoughts on “Orange Rain Cloak

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