I drew up some patterns for the Fur Hood, not really knowing what I was doing as far as grading the pattern, but doing the best I could and the pattern worked. I spent a few hours doing this, even color coding my patterns. I have to give a huge shout-out here because I was going to just settle for a hand-drawn pattern until Adrianna (Hey June Patterns and Crafterhours blog) was amazing and said she would digitize them for me! She’s one cool chica.
Because noggins come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, I wanted each size to fit generously so a wide range of heads could wear it ;). I like that if you choose a larger size, the bigger hoods protect their cute faces from the wind and cold better. I asked Bailey (my 6 year old) if she preferred a snug fit after trying on a size Small, or if she preferred size Medium. She prefers to wear the Medium because she likes to cover her face with it when she is cold and even hide her face in it. And I think it’s pretty fun that the sizing can work from a baby clear up to a grown-up. But of course it all comes down to personal preference, which we will go into more detail than you ever wanted to in a second.
If she wants to see better, the hood can easily slide back on the head and allow for better vision—Bailey will switch hers back and forth. When she’s cold she pulls it forward and when she’s doing stuff, she will let it rest further back on her head. And if she doesn’t want it on her head, it’s so great with the snap at the neck…it turns it into hood that still warms the neck.
SO, the question is, Which Size Should You Make? Let’s discuss…
Let’s compare sizes on my kids and talk about how you might like to choose the size to make. My kids have slightly smaller than average head circumference. They all fall in the 30%-40% for their head circumference.
Here are Bailey (age 6) and Ruby (age 1 1/2 but she’s like the 20% for head circumference) wearing the same hood—the size XS.
You can see that it’s nice and loose and roomy on Ruby, and a nice snug fit on Bailey. Either way it’s great!
Here are Devon (age 9) and Bailey (age 6) wearing the same hood—the size Medium.
It’s a bit big on Bailey but the fit is pretty good on Devon.
The largest two sizes will likely fit any teenager or adult. I made Devon (age 9) the XL and though big, he also loves having the extra room. But I would probably make him the Large next time.
And lastly, here is Carson (age 11) wearing his own version he wanted—because he is too cool for cute bear/wolf/dog ears, or something. So a furry ninja was requested. You can just skip the ears and the extra cutting on the fur pattern pieces and just use the lining pattern pieces for teenagers and adults.
My kids are thrilled with them. Ruby typically hates anything on her head—hoods, hats, etc. But these, she comes running to us and barks like a dog, letting us know she would like to wear it NOW! Ruby is wearing the size XXS in the picture below. Tighter fit but I prefer the looser look the size XS gives her.
Moral of the story? If you are afraid the size you are looking at will be too big, then size down. And if you want an even snugger fit, size down two sizes. **I strongly encourage making a muslin with some scrap fabric. No need to make the entire hood. Just cut out the lining pattern and sew it up (seriously, it would take maybe 10 minutes total) and try it on a human and see what you think. Loosely speaking, I think this is what will fit whom, but ultimately it is up to head size and preference:
XXS: 6-12 months loosely, 1 to maybe 2 years more snug
XS: 1-2 loosely, 3-4 more snug
S: 3-4 loosely, 5-6 more snug
M: 5-6 loosely, 7-8 more snug
L: 7-8 loosely, 9-10 more snug
XL: 9-10 loosely, teen on up to adult more snug
I hope that all helps explain the sizing efficiently! Whoosh! That was long-winded!
And really, it’s just so cute no matter how you decide to make the fit. I love these hoods! And the best part is that my kids LOVE LOVE LOVE them and were so excited when I’d complete a hood for them. They haven’t had such a response on things I’ve sewn for them in months ;). Always makes me feel so good to sew for pleased recipients!
Ok, bases covered. Let’s sew! These come together from cutting to finish in less than an hour, in my opinion. I’m down to 45 minutes on mine after sewing up a few.
What you will need:
-the pattern pieces—you can get the free download for the pattern HERE. This picture shows the layout of the pattern pieces:
-1/2 yard of faux fur fabric (it is wide so a 1/2 yard will be plenty. You can get away with a 1/3 yard for the smallest 2 sizes) **I much preferred the faux fur that did not hold is shape. The white fur hat Ruby is wearing is much stiffer than the other fur, so it doesn’t drape and look as cute to me. So choose a nice soft faux fur that is able to drape well and move around for the best look.
-1/2-3/4 yard flannel or other lining fabric, like cotton. You can squeeze the whole pattern out of a 1/2 yard, HOWEVER, you will have to cut the center hood strip NOT on the fold if you do this—see left picture below. Just remember to add 1/2” seam allowance on the pieces you cut if you only had 1/2 yard for the lining.
-two 2” squares of iron on interfacing.
–KAM snaps (aff link), Velcro, button…any of these that you will want to use as a closure under the neck.
-SEAM ALLOWANCES ARE 1/2” FOR THE ENTIRE PROJECT, and that includes the ears. I wanted larger seams because sewing with fur adds bulk and I wanted to make sure that your fabric didn’t shift too much with a smaller seam allowance.
OK! Print off that pretty pattern and cut out the size pattern you want. You’ll notice the hood pattern pieces say mirrored pair. Just make sure you aren’t cutting two pieces identical–you need to either fold your pattern and cut double layers, or on the fur (since two layers is iffy when cutting), cut your pattern on one side, then flip the pattern OR the fabric and cut out the other side. **Reader tip: cut the lining pieces just slighly (maybe 1/8″) smaller then the outer pieces. This way it will nest nicely into the fur hood.
Now here’s where you need a warning: Cutting all that faux fur is MESSY! And you’ll look like a cat exploded in your house, or so says my husband. First I get as much of the mess in the garbage when cutting—I’ll cut one pattern piece and then go right to the garbage and pull at the edges getting all the loose fur that isn’t attached anymore. This helps with the mess greatly. Other tips: sweep and vacuum right after cutting your pattern pieces—there will be a little more mess as you are sewing but nothing like the initial cutting. A lint brush is helpful to get the fur off your cutting mat. Or tape wrapped around your hand with the sticky side out. That works too. Also, sewing with a walking foot is helpful, thought not required. Just make sure that you use a LOT of pins when pinning the pattern pieces together. The fur shifts and actually stretches rather easily. So pin pin pin!
Placing your pattern on TOP of the faux fur helps it to not shift as much.
Lay the ears aside and grab your lining pieces. Take the center hood strip and start pinning, right sides together, starting at the TOP of the hood and working to the back.
SECOND WAY TO SEW EARS: Since my son declined the ears sewn the way above, I pinned them to the top before sewing on the middle strip and carried on, so please note that my ears will look different on the rest of the tutorial.
Take the center hood strip and start pinning to the fur, right sides together.
Sew together (1/2″ seam).
Tuck and fold the opening in by 1/2″ and sew closed.
And this is what it looks like when finished securing the lining.