Minecraft capes – How to get a cape in Java and Bedrock

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You want to know how to get a Minecraft cape and how to equip them on your avatar. You’ve heard rumours, whispers of a mythical piece of cloth that adorns the shoulders of the most elite Minecraft players. The legends speak of myriad Minecraft capes handed out to the lucky few over the years. Word on the block (sigh) is that capes also modify the appearance of Minecraft Elytra, the magical wings found in end ships, as they occupy the same space on a player’s back. Needless to say, Minecraft capes are highly coveted, but they haven’t been easy to get.

An almost endless amount of customisable options make Minecraft one of the best PC games around: from the world itself, to gameplay, graphics, and your skin. Whispers and rumours aside then, what is a Minecraft cape in the sandbox game? A cape is an equippable avatar item that sits separately to your avatar skin, so you can chop and change it at will – even easier that you can change your Minecraft skin. However, the difficult part about Minecraft capes is getting one – there are elusive, exclusive capes, capes to buy on the Minecraft Marketplace, and even some for suggesting ideas to Mojang Studios, so here’s how to get your very own Minecraft cape, and how to equip them when you have a wardrobe full.

How to get a Minecraft cape

Since a Minecraft cape is usually a commemorative item, they can be earned during events, Minecraft Live conventions, or as a reward for carrying out a specific task, such as migrating your Mojang account. We’ve got a more specific breakdown of how to get hold of some Minecraft capes for yourself below, whichever version of the game you play.

The different ways to get a cape in Minecraft are:

  • Migrating your Mojang account
  • Own the game!
  • Play Bedrock edition
  • Exclusive capes
  • Minecraft mods

Migrating your Mojang account

Back in 2020, Mojang announced that it would be migrating all Minecraft Java edition accounts from Mojang to Microsoft. This is a mandatory change, and you should have been prompted to do so by now if you have a legacy Mojang account.

If you have done so already – or once you do – you’ll unlock a shiny new cape. New Minecraft accounts are automatically set up with Microsoft instead of Mojang, and unfortunately won’t have a way to obtain the Migrator cape.

Own the game

In 2022, Minecraft Java Edition and Bedrock (AKA Windows) Edition were merged into the same Launcher, alongside Minecraft Dungeons and any other future game, like Minecraft Legends. To celebrate the merger, players who owned both the Java and Bedrock editions of the game on PC on the same account beforehand were awarded with the Vanilla cape in both versions. Again, sadly, if you don’t already have it, you’ll no longer be able to get it, but if you find it sitting in your collection, now you know why!

Minecraft capes: the menu for equipping the capes in Minecraft Bedrock edition.

Play Bedrock Edition

The pan cape, as seen further up, is given to all players on Bedrock edition, and can be equipped from the ‘Capes’ tab of the Bedrock dressing room. When equipped with an elytra, the ‘pan cape’ looks like a pancake with butter and maple syrup – geddit now?

There may be other capes that will be given to Bedrock players, as the Founder’s Cape is another exclusive cape given to existing players of the game in 2019.

Exclusive capes

Those who ventured to any Minecon event before Minecon Earth 2017 each received Minecraft capes; each year, a different colour and design. Even rarer still are the personal capes gifted to lucky individuals in recognition of their achievements, such as Reddit user u/billyk_, who got a personal turtle cape for suggesting Mojang should add turtles to Minecraft.

Unless you can come up with a suggestion as good as turtles (unlikely) or can time travel back to Minecons past, it looks like you’re out of luck to obtain any of these Minecraft capes in the Java version.

Get a cape in Minecraft with mods

So, capes are still pretty rare in Java Minecraft, and we don’t know when the next exclusive cape will be offered to fans, so what if you desperately want your avatar to have a cape right now, and you’re not interested in the free migration cape? Luckily, with the power of mods, you can get your own cape to bellow behind you as you walk! You can obtain any of the coveted capes in the game – or even better, any cape you can conceive of – using mods like the Advanced Capes Mod.

There is a caveat: other players you meet on multiplayer Minecraft servers won’t be able to see your cape unless they also have the same mods installed. So the only way to get capes that everyone can see is by waiting for official capes to be gifted to you from Mojang as it migrates your account.

Minecraft capes: the launcher options for character editing, including the option to turn on capes., the Migrator cape, and the Vanilla cape, with the Steve character model wearing the Migrator cape

How to equip Minecraft capes

It’s worth noting that, if you play both Java and Bedrock edition of the game, your capes are exclusive to the version, so your Java capes won’t appear in your Bedrock dressing room and vice versa.

Java Edition

If you have an official Minecraft cape in Java Edition, it can be found in the Skins section of the Minecraft Launcher. Head to the Skins tab, select the skin you’d like to add your cape to, then click ‘Duplicate’ or ‘Edit’. From there, choose the cape you’d like to add and save this down as a new skin selection.

It’s best to keep your cape equipped, as you can then turn it off in-game. To unequip your cape, head to options from your game, select ‘Skin Customization’, and toggle cape to ‘Off.’

Bedrock Edition

For the Bedrock version, launch the game. Next, click the tab on the left of the screen with a red cape with the Mojang logo. This will show all of your available capes, so choose one and click equip.

Minecraft capes: A cape design equipped to an elytra, seen as the player flies through the air.

Equip your cape to your elytra

You don’t need to do anything to equip your cape to your elytra. On the contrary, if you have a cape on when you equip an eltyra, your wings will automatically take on the appearance of your cape! Cool!

That’s everything you need to know about getting yourself a cool Minecraft cape – if you’re looking to complete your ensemble, here are the best Minecraft skins we’ve found, or you could kit yourself out with a full suit of Minecraft Netherite armour. Otherwise, get yourself ready for this year’s Minecraft 1.20 update release date, by checking out all the new content you can already test in snapshots.

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