Valient Viewers of Braver Homes and Gardens

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pshaw! I Can Do That - Fleece Hood

Ever see something in a catalog or in the stores and think, "Pfft!  I can make that myself!!"  I think that all the time.  For me to copy something, though, one of two criteria need to be met:  I either have to be able to make it cheaper or make it better. 

Today's shameless copy job is the 4-In-1 Fleece Hood originally spotted at Here's the catalog clipping:

There's no way to make these any cheaper.  At an average of $9/yard for fleece, you need about 5/8 of a yard.  When I add in the elastic & lock for the hood, I'd actually spend more than the catalog charges.

But I can definately make one better!  I have mixed feelings about fleece, which I will save for a future rant another post.  One of the downsides is that it is NOT WINDPROOF which does me no good here in wintery Wisconsin.  My plan to make a better hood is to line it with another layer of fleece.  Wanna make one?  Here's how:

SUPPLIES:  * About 5/8 yard of two pieces of fleece (I used yellow for the lining and a paw print for the outside).  *About 30" of cord elastic.  *One cord stop for looped cords. 

In the center circle of the catalog picture, they basically show you the shape of the hood.  I cut two pieces, freehand style, of yellow and two pieces of the paw prints.  I HATE HATE HATE getting drafts down my neck so I made mine long, at 27 inches.  You could make yours shorter if you don't like as much bulk around your neck.

The lower width is 15 inches and the lip for the hood sticks out 1-1/2 inches.

1.  On the long edge (the one without the lip) of the outer pieces, sew from the bottom all the way around the curve.  Do the same on the lining fabric. 

2.  Trim your seams close to the stitching like this:

3.  Put the outer and lining pieces together, right sides together and match up the seam at the top.  Pin it in place and sew the lips together, with no more than a 1/2" seam.  Again, trim the seam close to the stitching.

4.  This is where it gets weird.  Open it up and lay it like how I've got it in this next picture, right sides together.  Now, if we think of this as a "U", the entire underside of the U should be sew together and the outer fabric & lining fabric should be connected like they're kissing. 

5a.  Now, if we think of this as a pair of pants, you want to pin the inner legs and crotch together but....

 5b.  Mark the very inner curve in such a way that you'll remember to leave a half-inch on either side of the point where the outside and lining meet up.  I use two pins close together to remind myself to stop stitching. 

6.  Sew the "legs" of the "pants" together, remembering to leave that half inch free on either side of the lip seam.  Trim the seams as before.  Flip the whole thing right side out.  Here's the little opening that I left.  This is where the casing opens for your elastic. 

And this is what it should look like at this point.  Couldn't flip it right side out?  Perhaps you sewed the bottom shut.  You weren't supposed to do that yet! 

7.  Now make the casing.  To do that, you sew around the hood opening in about a 1" seam allowance.   Finger press the seam as you sew to keep the edges tidy.  You can see in this picture that I've allowed enough on the right edge so my needle overshoots that little hole.  And I'm finger pressing the edge in such a way that the white won't curl to the inside and look yucky. 

8.  You're in the home stretch!  Position your bottom neatly and sew the two bottom hems together.   I trimmed an inch off the lining so that it wouldn't poke out from the bottom (like a slip showing).  One of the upsides to fleece is that it doesn't ravel so, no need for a formal hem.  :)

Here's how my bottom edge looked:

9.  Now we're going to run the elastic through the casing.  The elastic will needs to form a loop and I know that my elastic is not going to stay put in a knot as is.  Corded elastic will also unravel.  So I took a match and burnt each edge to seal the nylon.....

 like so:

10.  Pin one edge of the elastic onto the hood.  Use a second safety pin (closed, of course) to run the other end all the way through the casing. 

 11.  Take the safety pin off (leave the other end pinned onto th hood for now).  Run your cord stop as in the picture below and shift it to the cording's center point. 

12. Now go ahead and knot the edges...and then run a match around the knot which will melt the knot into place and keep it from undoing itself.

13.  Shimmy the cording so that the knot goes up about midway into the casing to hid it.  My finger is pointing to where I've shifted my knot. 
The cord stop should be front and center.   And boom, you're done. 

So, according to the catalog, I can get four looks outta this thing.  Let's double check:

Neck warmer:  Check

SIDENOTE:  I wish to clarify that I went out of my way to iron this shirt just for the photo shoot.  That line across my chest is from water that dripped out of my iron - it is NOT a stain. 

Partial face mask:  Check

Open faced hood:  Check

Full head & face mask:  Check.

I already know that this is BETTER than the catalog.  I got superwarm just taking the pictures.  I almost wish it would snow so I could try it out while I shovel.   

I'm linking this to Heidi's UFO Roll Call party found HERE.

1 comment:

Hibiscus House said...

Love your fleece hood, I could use one of those out here on some days. Thanks for stopping by Hibiscus House. We get to meet so many nice people and you are one of them. I am now following you!