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More interesting than the rectangular muffler, not as curvy as the mittens: A bow-tie shaped piece, but otherwise just a wonky narrow muffler for your head.

Measurement and Pattern

  1. Measure around your head at the tops of your ears. Measure right around, and measure from the front of one ear to the other, behind your head. (I'm 23" and 12" respectively.)
  2. Reduce these measurements by about 10% so the fabric's stretch holds it on your head. (About 20.5" and 11" for me.)
  3. Make A-F half as long as around your head. (Adjust this if you want it snugger or looser; I prefer it a little snugger.)
  4. Make B-C as long as your ear-to-ear length (or a little longer, like I did, if you want to make sure the wind can't get in.)
  5. Keep C-D 2" across and 2" down, but allow D-E to take up the remainder of A-F's length.

Sewing

  1. Cut the pattern out with the narrow section on the fold as indicated. For the four internal corners corresponding to D, be careful not to cut past the corner's point (further than the stitch width you plan to use).
  2. Open out, and fold along the dotted line. Pin at the corners and half way along the three long edges B-C, D-E-D, and C-B.
  3. If you're sewing:
    • Sew zig-zag (or triple-stage zig-zag or some other stretch stitch you're particularly fond of) along B-C-D-E-D-C-B, securing the ends.
    • When you near a corner, take your foot from the machine's pedal and 'power' the machine by hand, so you can leave the needle down when you're within a stitchwidth of the corner. Lift the foot, turn the cloth around the needle, lower the foot, and resume.
  4. If you're serging:
    • Stop when the needles reach C (an external corner), with the needles in the cloth, raise the foot, turn the cloth, lower the foot, and continue.
    • When you start feeding D (an internal corner) under the foot, use your finger to hold D under the foot (or push a needle and thread through so you can pull the corner with the thread), but straighten the cloth's edge so D-E aligns with C-D.
    • Instead of using your finger to push D under the foot, you can push a needle and thread through the corner D, and pull on the thread to draw the corner into place. It's safe to stitch over the thread and draw it out once it's past the needles.
    • Straighten the edge again when the next internal corner (D) reaches the foot, and turn the fabric around the needle at the next external corner (C).
    • Secure the ends if you're paranoid.
  5. Turn the piece inside out. Invert one end as much as you can, roll the other end up longitudinally to make it easy to push/pull it through the narrow section.
  6. Flatten the piece, with the seam running along an edge, and pin the open ends. Baste the open ends closed using a relatively broad stitch to hold the fleece flat. I like to leave half an inch open at the ends of the basting to tuck the ends of the serging into.
  7. Place the basted/flattened ends atop each other, pointing in opposite directions, and pin in place (pins perpendicular to the basted edge). Sew the basted ends together with a zig-zag (or three-stage zig-zag), securing the ends of the sewing nicely.

That should be it. Pull it over your head, with the wide bit behind your head, and the narrow bit on your forehead. Your ears should be nicely covered.

Earpops?

Apparently, there's a patented fleece earwarmer out there called EarPops, which sounds like it amounts to two circles of fleece sewn together with some sort of clip attached to a slit in one side. Patented?!

I imagine that will become the height of fashion eventually, but I can't quite bring myself to endorse something that sounds like it would look quite so... um, daft. :)

That said, I'm sure the following alternative is just far too obvious, but I'll write it up anyway:

It should be sufficient to have two fleece ovals sewn around their edge and turned inside-out through a lightly elasticated oval cut out from one of them. Use the weak round kind of elastic, and try sewing it just inside the edge for a bit of padding. Knot the elastic's ends.

If you want to make a warmer, double-layer version of these, first sew the two cut-out ovals together around the cut-out edge, catching the elastic into that seam, then sew the solid ovals to their respective annulae and turn one side into the other.

I don't plan to make these, so I'm speculating about the elastic: it may be sufficient simply to put a seam on the inner oval to reinforce the edge - ears fold, after all.

Don't forget to sew a tassel somewhere onto the outside pieces before you start, to make it even more ridicu... fashionable.


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