Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Easy Gift Idea: DIY Earmuff Decorations

Winter has been very strange this year. It is suddenly warm (30*C!) and then suddenly cold and rainy (like today =_=;) so I'm not sure how practical earmuffs even are for this year... but hopefully future winters will be back to the normal, chilly weather. I made these earmuffs for gift exchanges! Because I was shopping during one of the cold spells, my ears were very frigid and painful, and these fluffy earmuffs seemed like a really good gift! To make them more special (especially for the Lolita meetup gift exchange) I added some customization.
Three varieties

It is so simple, this should not be a tutorial, but more of an inspirations post!  I will show two types of customization.

Materials:
*Quality earmuffs
*Ribbons and charms (Version 1; you can make fancy ribbons using this tutorial)
*Faux fur (Version 2)
*Needle and thread



Steps:
1) Choose good earmuffs!
It is important to use a thick, fluffy earmuff style that is cute for Lolita style!
OK, the real reason is because you don't want to feel any wires on your ears, especially when they are extra sensitive from the cold.
Very fluffy
Also take into consideration how the band goes. Do you want one that goes over the head like a headband, which can be decorated to look like a KC, or do you want one that goes behind the head?
I chose the variety that goes behind the head so you can wear your headdresses and earmuffs at the same time.  More accessories = better!

Version 1

2) Choose your decorations
Prepare some coordinating decorations. You can really use anything! Charms, ribbons, lace, etc. If you are using charms, also prepare some C-loops for connecting the charms.
Sparkly and cute!
3) Hand-sew decorations
This should be pretty self-explanatory ^^;
Here is how mine turned out:
Lacy Ribbon + Silver Rose Charm
 Experiment with your layouts before you stitch. Make sure to knot your thread securely at the beginning and ending so the decorations don't fall off!
Layered ribbons + Silver Rose Charm
Seal the ends of synthetic ribbons using a lighter to melt just the edges. It shouldn't be so melted you can see any black charring though!

Version 2 Animal Ears

2) Cut Fur
I made each earmuff circle into a cat, so that requires four ears, two per cat. Each ear requires two triangles of fur, so cut eight triangles total.  Of course, you can make bear ears, bunny ears, puppy ears, etc.

Make sure the fur is pointing towards the tip of the ears.

*Tip! Cut faux fur from the BACK using a cutter/knife rather than with scissors. Cut only the fur backing rather than the fur itself.
So many
If your faux fur is longer than your earmuffs fur, carefully trim them all over to match.  This is a bit messy, so do it over a trash can!

3) Stitch the ears together and turn right-side out
Place each pair of triangles together, making sure the fur is pointing the right way, and sew together. Be careful not to catch the fur in your stitches! Try to push it all to the right side (which will be the inside of the pocket you are making.  When you've stitched the top two edges, turn them right side out through the open bottom like so:
Fluffy cat ears!
Do any additional trimming at this stage.

4) Sew to Earmuffs
Use coordinating thread to sew these ears to your earmuffs.  And then you are finished!
Meow~
You can add a face if you'd like, but I like the simplicity of the plain silhouette. 

*Tip! If you have a headband type of earmuff, you can also make only one pair of ears and attach them to the headband so you have animal ears while wearing your earmuffs!

Double the Meow!
I kept the layered ribbons version for myself, and gifted the other two.

How is the winter in your area? I hope everybody is staying warm, and thanks for reading!