Moss Cloak



Ruth Thompson

(click images to to enlarge)

Other Credits

Abby Thompson - photographer

Outline the story …

Some years ago, I started seeing digital art of characters wearing cloaks made of moss. That didn't seem feasible at the time, but the idea settled in the back of my mind, and I started sketching designs for a (hypothetical, of course) project. The look I wanted changed over time, from a single piece to a three-layer garment with varying shades and details. I went back and forth on the balance of nature and artifice--should I stick to something that looked like it could have grown by itself, or mix in moss-colored laces and trims? The detail of the mushrooms, on the other hand, were a delightful idea that seemed to simply pop into my mind fully-formed.

In the end, I decided to stick with simplicity. I don't necessarily want to look like a dryad in this garment (though it wouldn't be a bad thing), but it should definitely give druid vibes. I'd been considering entering the Foundations Revealed contest this year, and when I found out the theme, it really felt like the stars had aligned, so to speak. In other words, I've wanted to make a moss cloak for a couple of years now, and this contest was the perfect inspiration (excuse) to do it!

Outline the construction…

The cloak pattern was created mostly by draping on myself to see what felt right, though I did sketch out what I wanted it to look like and tried to extrapolate the shapes of the layers from there. I ended up mostly using those shapes as a guideline.

I used three shades of terry cloth to evoke the feeling of different kinds of moss covering a structure. To make the shades more cohesive, I dipped the two upper layers into dark green fabric dye for about thirty seconds each. I used regular yarn and eyelash yarn to add mossy textures, by stitching the regular yarn in knots (that is, half-hitches, not French knots--I think the terry cloth was too loose for French knots because they just pulled through) as well as by twisting three strands of eyelash yarn together to create the look of Spanish moss. I sandwiched the eyelash yarn between the layers, sewed it inside-out, and flipped it to create a clean look.

The mushrooms are needle-felted from wool, purchased from MyLittleKawaii on Etsy because I've never felted wool in my life. Initially, I planned to use a hook-and-eye clasp for the closure, but the one I bought wasn't sturdy enough for the weight of the cloak, so I attached ribbons using the same method as the eyelash yarn. That ended up giving a really nice fairy-tale vibe, without mixing too much artifice into what should be a very natural-looking garment.




  1. Constance MacKenzie Constance MacKenzie on May 10, 2023 at 8:18 am

    I love how you have thought about the texture of nature in the fabrics as well as incorporating the three dimensional embroidery and needle felting elements

  2. Avatar Steffi Wee on May 10, 2023 at 12:41 pm

    I love the little 3D moss details! And what a good idea it is to attach ribbons as closures!

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