Monday, February 1, 2016

Victorian Muff How To

The Pattern
A few years back I found this pattern for a Victorian Muff -- FOREVER TIMELESS WOMEN AND GIRL'S MUFF #001.  I bought it from Five Rivers Chapmanry from Canada. I can't find it anywhere on the web so if anyone knows who still sells this, let me know.

A friend gave me an old mink stole and I thought it might make a lovely muff but I thought I would do a test run with some faux fur before I tackled the fur stole since I still have to cut and sew it together into the shape of the Muff.

My Fabric Choices for the 1st Muff
I found some interesting light beige faux fur in a swirled--pattern, paired it with some lovely champagne colored heavy weight satin.  I bought some 1-1/2 to almost 2" thick batting and a nice double tassel tie-back from the upholstery section.  And finally,  a nice little piece of lace trim for accent.

The pattern comes in two styles, sized for girls and women. They are based on a family heirloom dating from about 1900 and 1885 but it states that "their style is such that they are appropriate for both earlier and later time periods.  I am not a Muff expert but I always thought they were a wonderful looking fashion accessory.  I did some searching on the web for extant examples but will warn you that using the word "Muff" in an internet search will also get you some very interesting results, LOL.

The Patterns
The pattern pieces themselves are pretty straight forward rectangles.  There is a version you can make  with an inside zipper or a button pocket accessible from the outside.  I opted for the zippered inside pocket.  Next time I make it I'll make a pocket a little wider to accommodate a cell phone.

Putting in the Zipper opening for the pocket.
The thing i really liked about this pattern is that it has the draughtstopper piece which covers the openings and either closes with elastic or a ribbon so that when your hands are inside it blocks any cold air from getting inside the nice warm little pouch.

The first task is to sew the lining fabric together and leave an opening for the zipper.  Pretty typical zipper installation so if you've done one zipper this is no big deal.

Attaching the Pocket
Then you need to sew on the pocket using the large seam allowance called for.

Attach the batting the faux fur

When you cut out the batting it is shorter and not as wide and the faux fur piece.  This totally makes sense as you begin to sew everything together.

Sewing the faux fur to form a tube.
I slip-stitch the batting all the way around so it would not move as I put all the pieces together.  When I sewed the faux fur piece together to form a tube you notice I did not sew through the batting.  Once the seam was sewn I then slip-stiched the batting together.  This makes sure you don't have a big, bulky seam.
Sew the batting together by hand once you have sewn the faux fur into a tube.

Slip the lining over the faux fabric/batting tube.
Now you get to slip the lining over the batting and get ready for next step.

So what you are looking at in the picture to the left--on the inside of the tub is the right-side of the faux fur, then the batting and then the right side up of the lining.  If you are going to use a wrist strap you want to add that now.

Hand stitch the draught stopper, lining and
batting together.

Prepare your Draughstoppers:  Take each draughtstopper and sew the seam, press and then fold one side back 1".  Fold that edge back 1/4" inch and sew around to make a casing for the ribbon or elastic which will close the draughstopper.  Slip it onto each end of the tube.

Sew the raw edges together only putting the needle through the draughtstopper, satin lining and the batting.  You don't want to go through the faux fur so it doesn't show on the outside.

Curl the Faux Fur over the draughtstopper and hand stitch in place.

Pull the faux fur around and over the draught stopper and hand stitch through the draughtstopper, lining and batting to secure.

I decided to add a little lace/pearl trim
to the Draughtstopper

Draughstopper attached, Fur stitched around
the inside of the lining.  Ready
turn inside out to finish.
Just a side note.  I decided to add a little lace and pearl trim around draughtstopper above where the the elastic would go into the casing  I made.  This is completely optional.

The Finished Muff and Wrist Strap
Once you have finished sewing the faux fur to the inside lining on both sides you are now ready to turn the Muff inside out and finish.

The lace and pearl trim add a little bit of elegance.
Once I turned it inside out I cut an 8" piece of 1/4" elastic and threaded it through the casing I had made in the draughstopper.  It's pretty darn cute.  Can't wait to start on the real fur one!

Let me know what you think.  Have you ever made a Muff before?  What other fabrics might be fun to experiment with?


Time Traveling in Costume said...
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Time Traveling in Costume said...

Wonderfully detailed directions and photos. I've often wanted to make one.