Is it too much to suggest that fashion's search for a retail panacea has led it to the most literal manifestation of a solution: superhero capes? Probably. But how else should one read the runes of the autumn/winter 2018 catwalks when there are capes everywhere you look? Milan and London offered numerous takes on the sleek silhouette, from opera-ready jacquard at Erdem, to body-swamping leather at Alberta Ferretti, with a load of leopard print (thank you, Dolce & Gabbana) in between. (Special mention must go, too, to the cape toppers at Fendi, little choux-like puffers that sat on top of regular camel coats.)
In Paris, the capes are still coming, and they're sweeping and dramatic - this is a seriously luxurious outerwear option. At Dior, Maria Grazia Chiuri mined 1968 for its revolutionary flavor and sent out a sumptuous shearling cape to cover up those mini-skirted protestors. At Jacquemus, the young prankster designer Simon Porte Jacquemus conceived a half-blazer, half-cape hybrid. And as for Saint Laurent: bewitching and sophisticated, the capes were black-out thick - a lustrous addition to any wardrobe that ticks the crucial day-to-night box.
Capes have become one of the coolest cover-ups on the catwalk and on the high street. Finding the best capes is, among us, fashion folk, a necessity and a joy come autumn. Capes are a chic piece that can do wonders to your wardrobe, transforming a casual look into an altogether more high-fashion outfit in seconds.
It’s a great way to wear a coat throughout the winter without ruffling up a newly ironed shirt and because it’s so simple to slip into, you can spring into those crisp mornings easily. It’s also perfect to add that extra finish to your look. And there’s nothing that looks quite as chic, whether you’re wearing jeans, a skirt or trousers.
With designs from all championing the trend, from Temperley and Mulberry, to Chanel and Chloe. So, there’s plenty of styling inspiration out there.
If you’re going down the ultra-cozy, look for chunky knits and classic tartan designs. We also love minimalist Scandi styles in muted tones of grey and white.
For a trendier take, try embroidered boho versions there really is something to suit every style. Plus, we’ve made sure we’ve scoured the shops so that all budgets are catered too. While we love designer pieces, you can find the best capes on the high-street, too.
Capes are the perfect piece for layering in winter with knitwear, plus they’ll work next season too if layered over one of your Christmas party dresses or a Breton top and cropped jeans.
For the office, a chic black cropped version will add instant cool points to a classic white shirt and navy trouser combo. Or for a cooler take on the cape, layer a cropped style over a long length shirt – the look for Autumn is about proportion play. So, what are we waiting then, let's get inspired: