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Make a No-Sew Super Hero(ine) Cape


Less than 30 Minutes


In your home


Throughout the year




Superhero play – and any type of dramatic play – can help children build their self-esteem, overcome fears, work on social skills, and act out real life scenarios and emotions so that they can learn how to take charge of their own world. 


In this Art-at-Home activity, you and your child can make a simple, no-sew superhero cape using materials easily found at home or in thrift shops.


  • One cotton t-shirt. (For most preschoolers, use an L or XL child’s t-shirt or an S or M women’s t-shirt. A larger tee is ok, but you may need to trim the bottom so it doesn’t drag on the floor.) 
  • Adult use only: scissors that can cut through fabric and vinyl if using iron-on transfers
  • Thick, permanent markers or fabric markers/pens 

Optional, Decorations

  • Paint and paintbrushes (fabric paint or washable paint)
  • Heavy cardstock or cardboard for stencils. (Adults can cut w/ scissors or exacto knife.)
  • Masking tape
  • Fabric glue, a hot glue gun, or regular school glue 
  • Fabric scraps
  • Iron-on transfers, purchased patches



Gather your supplies and get started!

Making the Cape 

Note: Larger, sharper scissors work best, so adults should do the job of cutting the shirt. Children can help draw lines on the shirt where cuts are needed. Show your child how you cut along the lines.

Step 1 Cut the sleeves off of the t-shirt. 

Step 2 Open up the side seams by cutting from each armpit to the bottom. 

Step 3 Lay the t-shirt flat with both the front and the back spread out. Leave the collar section intact as you completely cut off the front of the t-shirt, leaving the ring of the collar with just the back still attached.

Step 4 Have your child slip the collar over their head to check the cape’s length. If it’s touching their lower calves, consider cutting the length so it hangs no lower than the back of their knees. No superhero wants to accidentally step on their cape when they’re standing up!

Ideas for Decorating 

• Draw on the cape with markers or paint. If you use washable markers or paint, your drawing will stay on only until it is laundered. If you’d like a more permanent design, you can use fabric markers or fabric paint.

• Create a homemade stencil out of heavy cardstock or cardboard. Have your child choose or draw the design, then you cut out the shape using scissors or an exacto knife. Place the stencil onto the cape, tape down the edges, and use a marker or paint to fill in where the shape was cut out. (Examples: first letter of your child’s name, a lightning bolt, a heart, etc.) 

• Add decorative fabric scraps to the cape using fabric glue or hot glue. Regular school glue will work, but is not as durable and will disintegrate when put through the wash. 

• Use iron-on transfer designs as decoration. These can be found online on Etsy and Amazon or in craft stores such as Michael’s. You can make your own iron-on transfer designs by cutting out shapes from transfer paper or by printing images onto transfer paper.


Sound like fun?VIEW INSTRUCTIONS to get started.
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