The “Ferryman” Muff(ler)

This week’s project almost brought me to tears. I waited until Saturday night to start on my project thinking it was going to be a breeze. I made a muff. Two pieces and some filling. My first problem came when I tried to make a rectangle out of the faux fur scrap I pulled out of my stash. It literally took me about half an hour.

I decided to make several layers out of this thick piece of felt like fur and use one for the lining and the others for filling. I cut the filling pieces smaller so that when I sewed it all together there wouldn’t be so many layers to deal with. I basted all the layers together then folded the piece in half and sewed it to make a cylinder. I did the same with the fur then put the two pieces together and sewed along both ends leaving one end open to pull it all out.

I can’t tell you where it all went wrong. The extra layers came apart and were bunched up along one side. The muff was too wide. That’s when I broke down. I just couldn’t figure the thing out. It made no sense to me. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing, what I was looking at. I can make my own jeans and yet cannot make sense of this fur cylinder sitting before me. All I can say is that I was pretty exhausted.

It needs some work. I need to open it up and cut some of the width off then fill it more. Maybe I’ll get to it next year-maybe I won’t. I’m sure I would use it if I fixed it so it’s worth the effort for sure. I have a lot of vintage coats with 3/4 sleeves so it would be good to have a muff. We’ll see…

I’m calling this the “Ferryman” muff because I heard the old classic from Chris de Burgh while at the grocery store this morning. Does anyone remember that song “Don’t Pay the Ferryman”? I started laughing right there in produce. What was that song about? Why was it so popular? My husband had never heard it so played it for him just now. The video looks pretty intense too. Anyway, I haven’t got the energy to think of a better title.




Gina Clark is a girl from Texas living in the Midwest. She has been sewing most of her life but swears every few months that she is giving it up for good.


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  1. I was going to make a fur muff this week too, one that would match the fur collar I made way back for the collar challenge. Then I remembered the misery I had cutting and sewing and picking out the seam allowances and vacuuming up the fibers and sneezing, and I changed my mind. If you look at the hood I made, you can see how the inner layer is rolling out, even though I cut those pieces smaller. I have no idea how that happened, but it keeps me warm and that’s all I care about. I’m sure you need all the warmth you can get, being up north too!

  2. Boo. Sorry it was such a hassle! At least it looks cute in the picture!

    I almost made a muff this week too, but didn’t have any suitable velvet fabric in stash, and like Vicki, I remembered what a nightmare faux fur can be.

    May I ask, is your coat real astrakhan or faux, and is it vintage or modern?

  3. I’m not kidding, but I thought about making a muff also! Something easy peasy because it’s getting so near the holidays when other things take over your life. There must have been some Gina vibes in the cloud, because we felt your dismay and disappointment and made something else instead. ;)

    In your pictures, it looks pretty cute and it does inspire me to make one someday.

  4. Oh Gina! As you say, you can make your own killer jeans, I’m sure you’ll figure out the muff when balance has been restored. It looks great with that beautiful coat– lucky score!

  5. I’ve made a couple of muffs, I used 1″ foam as a base : ) It can be stitched together to make that “tube” although I’d like to try the new ‘foam alternatives’ I’ve seen for upholstery. Easier to manipulate, easier to sew, might work as well. Even though this gave you fits it’s stil quite nice looking in the photos.