While the excitement is building up for the start of the Great British Sewing Bee, series 3 (I’m a Bee, I’m a Bee), I have to find an outlet for my excitement/ nail biting nervousness. Geez, I get sweaty palms even writing this sentence right now… So let me entertain you with a furry post, a make that I love but didn’t get to keep :(.
January was a good month for my social life, but not very good for churning out me-made projects. I had some really great incentives however because of two friends’ birthdays, to whom I wanted to offer some hand-made presents. Because of the season, I diverged from my classic presents (tote bags) and played with one of my favourite materials: faux fur. I love it, especially the really good quality that is available nowadays. Unfortunately, the good stuff is quite pricey, so scarves it is!
This is a very quick project to make. In fact, it took me less to make the scarf than it took me to clean the sewing room carpet after I’ve finished. Note to self: make sure the next sewing room has wooden floors!!
Anyhow… Back to the scarf! I had a piece of faux mink that I had gotten a few years back in Romania, and out of which I had made hats and scarves for presents before. I had in mind to make a snood or an infinity scarf, but I soon realised there was not enough length for either. So I had to improvise and ended up with a rectangular piece, that wasn’t long enough to tie into a knot but wouldn’t work as a collar piece either. So I had the idea of making another little fur circle to hold the two pieces together.
As the base fabric of the fur was a sort of knit, I used my overlocker, because it is quicker and I wanted to keep the seam allowance as narrow as possible, without the danger of unravelling. I also had to do a bit of hand sewing to finish off some hard to reach parts. A word of warning: don’t do what I did and tried to cut into the seam allowance, it will jam the knife and break the needles. Just sew at normal ovelocker width, with the seam allowance aligned to the edge of the machine.
So, here are the basic steps:
1. Start with a long piece of fur, 30-40 cm wide and maybe 80 cm long. Fold it right side to right side lengthwise and pin the ends together. Then pin the long edge, leaving about a hand width open in the middle.
2. Stitch what you have pinned, making sure to backstitch before and after the the opening.
3. Turn on the right side through the opening that was left open, making sure the corners stay sharp.
4. Slipstitch the opening. Don’t worry if it’s not the most elegant hand stitching, it won’t really show in the fur.
5. For the closing circlet, start with a piece 15 cm long and about 5-7 cm wide (depending how thick the fur is). Fold lengthwise, making a tube, with a small opening in the middle, as above. Turn the tube halfway inside out, through the opening you made, making sure the ends come together right side to right side, like an infinity scarf (this is a bit hard to explain, so perhaps have a look at Youtube for an infinity or moebius scarf tutorial).
If you can, machine sew the ends together. My fur was quite thick, so I had to hand sew. Turn everything right side and slip stitch the opening.
6. Put the scarf around your neck and check what is the optimal position of the circlet, and hand baste it to the seam of the main part, so that the seam line of the circlet is not showing. This way, you make sure it will not get lost and where the scarf goes, the circlet goes too.
You can wear it with the two sides overlapping and kept together by the circlet.
Or with the two edges opposing each other through the circlet, and forming a sort of a bow.
That’s all there is to it! My friend really liked it and hopefully it will keep her nice and toasty, now that we have snow in London too!
Happy sewing (and hoovering)!