1970s Roberto Cavalli Handprinted Suede Cape
When I first set eyes on this cape I knew right away it could only be Cavalli. The leather label in the back of the neck is unpainted, so you can barely make out the imprint "Roberto Cavalli" but even if the label was gone, it is obvious it is his work. The cape is made of suede. The suede has both strength and softness so it holds a structured shape around the body. Several pieces were sewn together, creating a subtle rough edge patchwork look along the bottom. The suede has a slightly mottled coloration, a heathered dove gray. It is a simple cape design, with a seam under the arms for an ultra wide"sleeve".
The printed design on this cape strikes me as a cross between a antique painted kimono and Tattoo art. From the two bird figures on the back, the whole rest of the paining flows. The birds are some type of peacock, one dark, one light, with necks entwined. Their color and position reflect the yin and yang. Both figures strong and beautiful, neither one stronger or more dominant. Their wings and feathers spread from their bodies, to envelope the wearer in their grace and majesty.
The detail is astounding. Cavalli was (and still is) an innovator in fabric decorating. He actually invented, and patented this process of printing fine detail on leather. Even today, nobody can match the definition Cavalli attains in his printing.
Very few Cavalli leathers of this period turn up for sale. I am not sure how many of each item was made, but I am sure it was not very many. I have never seen a cape like this before, though I do believe similar birds have been seen again on more modern Cavalli pieces. The condition of this cape is excellent. There are a few natural flaws in the suede, and very slight fading in areas that may have been original to the piece. The cape is very clean, and shows no signs of wear at all.
Size: Small... can fit larger
. Bust wasit and hips are free