If you had been an artist around the turn of the last century, living in the Madrid neighbourhood Sol, you would have been wearing a cape and a Barret. Remember Pablo Picasso, Luis Buñuel, later Catherine Deneuve, Maria Callas, Hillary Clinton and Michael Jackson, not to forget the kings of Spain. When they wanted a cape, they went to the original Capas Seseña, Madrid.
Since 1901 this family-owned business continues the traditional quaint style of the oldest and most authentic establishments in the capital. First the capes had been made for the aristocracy, then artists and writers, for opera stars and entertainment artist and today for fashion conscious people who chose their wardrobe by artisanal quality and not by the size of logos and marketing stunts.
The cloak has always been a garment with a certain appeal. You have to walk and stand straight when you wear one. The wind, the way you move, all create the shape of the cloak, and wearing a cloak suggests that you don’t have to use your hands and arms to carry something (you have someone to carry for you).
A visit to the Seseña studio is like a journey through time, since not much has changed, especially not the shop windows. Nevertheless, you can expect a very modern concept that keeps the family business running.
Seseña only occupies two artisans to create their collection, a master tailor and one seamstress. The cutter does not really need a pattern template, because cutting a cape is always the same shape, there are no hems, but you still need to get the perfect shape to create the volume and coutureness a good cape creates when done well.
Seseña has many artist collaborations, with collaborating designers, but also with different family run suppliers like button makers, textile designers and of course illustrators and artist who keep on interpreting a modern version of this traditional garment.
These different contributions make Seseña not only a local, traditional fashion business, but also keeps the tradition alive, which is such an important task, especially in times of globalization and fast fashion.
You can have your own cape made, either with a selection of their fabrics, but also with fabric you bring along. It takes between 3-9 weeks to make a cape, but the selection of designer collaborations and traditional capes is quite large, and you can always buy a cape that is already made.