Hot! The “Achoo!” Fur Collar

The Facts:

Pattern: Burda #103 08/2012

Fabric: faux fur / flannel-backed satin

Notions: 1.5m ribbon

Total Price?: Around $5?

First Worn: For a few minutes of photos; we’re having one last heat wave and I’m sticking to cottons.

Wear Again?: yes


Don’t ever sew with faux fur.  Just……don’t.

You should see the state of my sewing machine.  And sewing area.  And living room.  Hell, you should see my whole house!  Tiny little fuzzy hairs creeping into every corner (and up my nose – achoooo!)

I had another project lined up for this challenge, and even wrote up most of the post, but for some reason I just had to make this fur collar from Burda 08/12.  I think “some reason” was this image on my design board:

Sophie Litvak, photo by Milton Greene, Paris, 1952

Everyone seems to be in agreement that the August issue is THE issue of the year – there is usually one issue which more than makes up for the cost of the magazine, because you know that you’ll make 4 or 5 of the designs – so I forked out for the mag at my local Fabricville.  People are correct:  there are a lot of great pieces in this issue, but this collar called out to me, and with only one pattern piece, how hard could it be?

Muppet fur is a must-have for Fall 2012, apparently.


Well, it was mostly my fault for not doing the proper prep work.  I don’t have a pair of clippers, so I tried to cut the fur from the seam allowances with a tiny pair of scissors, but it just looked like a rabid dog had attacked the fabric, so I decided to try sewing according to the Burda instructions.  (insert wry smile here for anyone who’s tried to follow Burda instructions)  They suggested just “pushing the pile to the side while sewing”.  Yeah, that’ll work.  Not so much.  There was a lot of slipping and sliding and fabric oozing out from under my presser foot.

I cut the lining (a nice flannel-backed satin from The Best Estate Sale Ever) slightly smaller than the fur so it would roll under, and it mostly obeyed.  The Burda instructions didn’t suggest this, and it may seem obvious to most of us, but when you rate a project as beginner, I think you need to be a bit more explicit with the directions.  Otherwise you risk turning off learners when their projects don’t seem as nice as the photos.

It was getting hot in that silk jacket, so for the last few photos, I ended up wearing the collar over my tank top (singlet) and I actually like it like this too.

In case you’re wondering, the painting in front of which I’m standing was done by my aunt Joanne.  It’s always been one of my favourites of hers.

Stop Press!  The fur collar is now offered at the Burdastyle site for free here.





Vicki used to sew when she was young and free, but then raising young'uns and bringing home (some of) the bacon took up all her time. Now her closet is full of skinny clothes, maternity clothes and post-partum clothes, none of which fit properly. Maybe that's why she started sewing again in 2010.


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  1. You look marvelous! Oh so glamorous and this will be perfect once the weather turns. I love it paired with the blue and the black!

    • Ahhh, I’ll lift the veil of glamour to reveal the real story behind these photos: fall asleep while putting two crabby kids to bed + one whining nephew who was freaked out to be left by his Mama; house a garbage tip from luggage + sports equipment + one suitcase full of books spread over every available surface; woke up at 11:30pm and realized I’d forgotten to take photos. Can’t make any noise or put lights on in the usual places. Creep into the bathroom and put a stool up on the counter to balance the camera on (don’t have a tripod). Put on sunglasses to hide Mom-tastic grey under-eye bags, slap on some lipstick to look alive and quickly snap 10 pictures before creeping back to bed.
      Ah, the glamourous life I lead…..:P

  2. Hi Vicki, don’t give up on faux fur totally, because all the different colours you can get it in make it so much fun. The trick to stop most of those wispy little bits of fur getting everywhere is how you cut your pieces. Cutting a piece out normally with scissors or a rotary cutter cuts across the wisps, the secret is to use a razor blade very gently from the reverse so you only just cut through the backing fabric not the fur and then gently pull the pieces apart….I hope this makes sense. It doesn’t half help on the not going bonkers bit when your carpet is covered in chopped hairs. Love the collar btw, ever so glamorous.

    • I know exactly what you mean, and you explained it very well. I actually did the cutting from the back with an X-acto knife (box cutter / blade), so limited the amount of fuzz that way. It was the trimming of the seam allowances that created a fuzz storm! I didn’t think you could sew fur without trimming, but somehow I managed ;)

      I actually bought this faux fur ages ago (back in the late ’90s) to make a winter hat to go with my teddy bear coat. (Anybody remember those? Yeah, they were special.) Maybe I’ll use the leftovers to make something for my little miss.

  3. I have to make one of these, thanks for pointing us to the free pattern. It looks awesome in your photos and this would be such a hoot tower to the office.

    • Thanks Krista – I feel confident enough now to buy some lighter faux fur and cut an exaggerated ’50s style collar like I pictured above. THAT would be a hoot!

  4. Looks gorgeous! Well worth the hassle.

  5. As an avid rock collector, I immediately loved that painting. :) I once made my little son a tail out of faux fur and it was a MESS!! But your collar did turn out lovely. Break out the vaccuum and call it a success!

    • Thanks Erin – I remember one of my first sewing projects I did with my mother was to sew a stuffed animal, and I chose a fake fur, but it was very, very short pile. It didn’t make such a mess (or maybe, being a kid, I didn’t notice!)

  6. You classy lady you! How versatile, you can totally dress up a vintage coat- a day to night look. Love it!
    thanks for the free pattern alert. Faux fur is a tad tricky as Tempest says it’s how you cut it that makes all the difference. I guess if you sneeze enough the fuzzy hairs can all disperse elsewhere :P

    • I’m finally getting around to vacuuming today, after spending 5 days tracking fur around the house. (I’d like to blame sewing time, but it was vomiting kids that took priority over housekeeping – boo)

      • Oh no, I hope they are feeling better Vicki, poor kiddies. Mine have had a terrible cough all week and my little man ended up with conjunctivitis. The housekeeping can wait, I agree.

  7. Great job on the collar! I can’t believe all the fuzzys that invaded your house. Kudos for being so brave with unusual fabric.