Fleece fabric is very easy to sew and just small amounts of this amazing fabric can be made into berets, cozy neck warmers, scarfs, hats, stylish headbands, mittens and many other great gift ideas. Additional fleece yardage can made into a popular doubled fleece blanket whose edges are cut and tied or crocheted producing a fringed or ribbed effect on the blanket edges.
Polyester fleece is extremely warm because the pile surface provides space for air pockets between the threads much like clothing that uses down feathers that trap air warmed by the body. Fleece is moisture-resistant and can keep wearers warm even under challenging weather circumstances.
A few fleece projects to consider:
An easy to sew no-slip hanger cover can be made in minutes with 1/4 yard of fleece fabric. Using a tubular plastic hanger make a paper pattern by drawing around the hanger’s outside edges. Mark where the hanger hook will be. Fold fleece in half lengthwise. Cut a small opening in the center of the fold for the hanger hook to poke through. Lay the pattern on top of the fleece fabric and using a rotary cutter or sharp scissors cut the hanger sides and bottom length as desired. Pin then sew the side edges closed. The hanger cover will fit over the hanger with a slight stretch. No need to hem the bottom of the hanger cover as cut fleece does not fray, however any of the built in decorative stitches that come with most sewing machines or a hand embroidered blanket stitch on the bottom cut edge provides a nice finished look. Tie a satin bow at the hanger hook for embellishment.
A yarn-fringed scarf is a quick no-sew project that uses a crochet hook to pull loops of yarn through holes made in the short scarf edges. Use 1/4 yard of fleece fabric. Cut fleece to 10 inches by 60 inches or width and length as desired. Cut several lengths of yarn approximately 18 inches long. A crochet edge rotary blade will make perfectly spaced holes on the short edges of the scarf or use an awl or stiletto and ruler to make evenly spaced holes 1/2 inches in from the scarf short ends. Gather three or four strands of yarn, fold in half, insert a crochet hook in the hole from the underside of the scarf edge, grab the folded edge of the yarn, pull through to form a loop then insert the loose ends of the yarn through the loop and gently tighten. Continue adding yarn fringe through all holes. Trim yarn ends evenly.
An easy to sew tasseled fleece hat is very easy to make. Cut fleece width to be the measured circumference of the head by 14 inches in length for an adult, 10 inches in length for a child's size. Plan the width so the stretchy part of the fleece fabric will go around the circumference of the head. Fold right sides together (slightly stretch an edge of the fleece fabric – it will roll toward the wrong side) or use whatever side is most pleasing as the right side. Pin then stitch to form a tube. While still in the tube shape, fold up a cuff approximately 4 inches. Using a long stitch slowly sew around the cuff edge opposite the now folded edge. Turn right sides out. Make evenly spaced cuts around the tube edge that is opposite the cuff edge about 4 inches long or whatever depth and width of the cut appears pleasing. The cut edges will be gathered into a tassel like a pony tail. Secure with a pony tail holder or another piece of the fleece fabric. The hat can be worn with the folded edge turned up so the hat snugs the head closely or pulled on as is for a more sloutchy look.
Some tips when sewing and using fleece fabric:
When cutting fleece fabric a rotary cutter and mat are recommended. Sharp scissors can be used but can eventually dull when cutting fleece.
Use a ball point sewing machine needle and long stitch length. Lower tension on the presser foot.
A 1/4 seam allowance is recommended when stitching seams to reduce bulk. Trim close to stitching line where necessary.
Pin to secure seam edges when sewing as fleece tends to move about.
Usually cut edges need no additional finishing as edges do not ravel. Decorative stitches can be used on edges as an additional design element.
Do Not iron fleece fabric. Fleece fabric will melt upon contact with a hot iron.
Finger press seams where necessary to flatten bulky seams.
Do not dry clean. Wash in cool water. Line dry or machine dry on low setting.
Many sew and no-sew Fleece Projects can be found on Pinterest.com
Fleece Hats to Keep You Warm in Winter from Martha Stewart
Sew happy, sew inspired.