It’s almost time for our annual Saint’s Day pageant at school! This year Gigi chose to be Saint Elizabeth Anne Seton, the foundress of the Catholic School system in the US. She was born in 1774 in New York, an Episcopalian, and converted to Catholicism after a move to Italy for her husband’s health, whereupon he died and left her alone with five children. When she returned to America, she went on to open many Catholic schools and hospitals, as well as becoming the patroness of The Sisters Of Charity.
In all the portraits I’ve found of her, she wears a caped cloak and a sort of mop type cap or bonnet. I would have to create my own pattern since I could find nothing at Joann’s even close to this. There was one caped cloak pattern, but it was for adults. It’s been a long time since I made Gigi a pattern block, and she’s outgrown it. I would have to find a basic coat pattern that I could redesign, since I had two days to get this project done.I love learning about the Saints with my girls. I have only just started learning about the saints the last few years. I’m impressed by the many strong and courageous women like Elizabeth Anne Seton. I like to spend a little more time and research on these costumes,since they hold more meaning. I’m also working on a Wonder Woman costume! I love this shot. She looks like she is walking on the grounds of a convent.To make the coat I found a basic coat pattern in one of my Japanese pattern books bought a few years ago in Tokyo. The buttons come from one of my estate sales finds and the fabrics are all from my costume stash. Stuff I’ve saved from old plays. This cloak fabric is a nice quality poly suiting. I had nine yards of it leftover from when I was working at the theater! The velvet for the cap was gifted to me from an elderly friend who was clearing out her own stash.I found a little yoked coat pattern that would be perfect. I lengthened the bottom part to the floor,Then traced the sleeve and created a leg of mutton sleeve. This part was totally unnecessary, since it didn’t register that the sleeve would be hidden by the cape. Here’s what a leg of mutton sleeve pattern looks like if you’re curious! I also narrowed the sleeve at the bottom.And here is what the cape overlay pattern looks like:To make the cap, I cut out a 22 inch circle from velvet and from cotton to line it. I used a clock as a template then made it bigger with my ruler.
I sewed the pieces together like a pillowcase and pulled it right side out, then drew a casing. The circle for the casing is off center since the hat in the pictures looks like the ruffle is a little longer in front. Once that was done I closed the little gap up and sewed some ribbon to the cap.