It’s only August, but the Taylor Swift-anointed month will combust into a kaleidoscope of shattered summer dreams before we know it—leaving the fury of back-to-school sales the only thing to pick up the pieces of having wasted another summer not vacationing in Europe. But, this fall, there’s only one item I’m counting on to soak up my tears: a cape.
What? Why?! Now? Where? You?!? Yes. Since the beginning of the year, capes have been gliding across runways, posing on red carpets, and presenting at award ceremonies. Beyoncé wore a cape to the Oscars. Big Freedia wore a metallic one to the BET Awards. I wore one for Halloween as Snow White when I was 5, and honestly, things have been downhill ever since.
Capes are the younger, wilder sister of the cloak. They’re the hip, older cousin of the long-trained dress. They transcend time and space and culture. No matter where you are—the DMV, your local Chili’s, a bus to the Jersey Shore—if you’re wearing a cape, you’re on top of the world. With the Earth beneath you and the heavens above, you’re something more powerful than a superhero or a queen/king: You’re someone who gives no fucks and bears absolutely zero responsibility to anyone.
The fanciful back fabric is one of the few, if not the only, item of clothing that appeals to both the rich and the niche-hobby-enthusiast. If you’re a royal or a celeb, you probably have a cape. If you prefer blood to food, the 15th-century to the current century, or pulling a string of colorful scarves out of your sleeve to literally anything else, then you definitely have a cape. (No judgment!) Unfortunately for the rest of us, we don’t yet have a socially acceptable culture of capes. And it’s time for that change.
We’ve let gauchos return. (Again!) We’re making bikinis out of tape. We’ve taken fanny packs off our hips and needlessly draped them across our bodies. We let Yeezy call himself a creative fashion business genius for making a big, black t-shirt. We’ve already proven ourselves ready to take capes mainstream.
I’ve compiled this slideshow with all the proof, inspiration, and anticipation you could ever need to confidently wear a cape this fall. So get in losers. It’s time to wear a fucking cape.