Capes have gradually been working their way back into mainstream fashion over the last few years, and Autumn/Winter 2014 has been an especially strong season for them. No longer the territory of superheroes and fairytale villains, they’re popping up all over the high street after making a statement on the runways back in February. Burberry led the way with monogrammed ponchos slung over the shoulders of Cara Delevingne, Suki Waterhouse and an entire finale of nomad-styled models – and trendsetter Olivia Palermo was spotted in one soon after. Luckily for us there are more affordable alternatives out there, so we’ve done the hard work for you and pulled together a quick list of the very best.
There’s a Navajo vibe to this fringed cape from Miss Selfridge. The wraparound print, and the fringed trim, tap into Autumn/Winter’s handicraft trend perfectly but the neckline has been left uncluttered and fuss-free to keep it feeling modern. Rather than arm slits you wear it like a blanket – just look to Burberry’s monogrammed ponchos for inspiration. I’d pair it with delicate, watercolour prints for a traveller vibe, but it will look great with skinny denim too. And it’s already in the sale, so you can nab the look for a little less.
Zara’s checked wool cape looks like it could have been borrowed from a Grimm fairytale. The heritage plaid pattern is on trend, but it’s the furry green lining in the hood that really stands out for us. The sweeping shape means you can easily layer it over heavy sweatshirts – just add ankle boots and thick gloves and it will see you through the coldest winter days while you channel your inner Red Riding Hood.
This double-breasted cape from Topshop has a tiny heritage check pattern, in a classic palette of brown and beige. If you usually prefer a traditional mac but want to try something more on-trend, this is a great option. Use it to dress up denim with its vintage feel and tailored shape – there’s something slightly Sherlock Holmes about it, but in a good way.
Reiss comes in a beautiful, pearly shade of grey with dramatic flared sleeves and contrasting silver trims. The lines are sharply tailored but softly feminine at the same time, making it a great option to wear to work. It’s quite lightweight, so perfect for between-season transitions.
Mango cape is more of a cardigan alternative than an outerwear option. But the waterfall shape looks brilliant against sharper separates: try it with long culottes and a simple, long-sleeved tee in neutral colours. Come summer it will be perfect with shredded denim shorts, but right now you’ll need pointed ankle boots and a proper winter coat to go with it.
Zara version is perfect for throwing on over denim and a lightweight knit at the weekends, for an effortless downtime look that’s still on-trend. The deep pockets and relaxed hood make it practical, but it’s the contrast stripes at the hem that we love. Pair it with wide leg trousers or leather leggings if you want to go a bit more directional; it’s all about playing with proportion and shape.