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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Balaclavas



I made these before Christmas, but it still seems appropriate to think about balaclavas, since we've had the good fortune to get another snowstorm as we speak.

Scarves have a place in this world, but sending my kids outside without scarves this year has been a time-saving experience. No searching for and tying scarves. No one complaining the scarf is choking them. No one coming to have their snow-encrusted scarf retied. No one losing their scarf in a snowbank.




My boys quickly found the ninja side of balaclava.



The balaclava was fairly simple to sew once I wrapped my mind around which pieces went where, and my assembly-line method made subsequent ones go that much more quickly.

I used leftover fleece scraps. The main hat is one piece (partly cut on fold and partly stitched) connected to a double layer ear portion. The face mask is a separate piece attached inside to the hat's seam allowances. The binding, made from nylon-lycra (swimsuit fabric), was probably the trickiest part to sew, but was easier the stretchier the fabric used.


My stairsteps also got balaclavas.




And the facemask pulled down.

4 of the 5 kids have worn these all the time. I guess you can't win them all.

One kid asked me to sew him another one because he thinks his should be washed since he's breathing into it all the time. Hahaha. I agree.



The pattern is Green Pepper 550 and comes in all sizes from toddler to (large) adult head.

14 comments:

  1. Ha ha! Love the comment about it being washed. Useful sewing win!

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    1. Kids say the most unexpected things, even when they're older - it definitely puts cheer in my day!

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  2. They really do love Mum's sewing. These are very creative so it's great to see they're also staying warm.

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    1. Being a little off the beaten path, these were fun to sew. And warmth is another benefit.

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  3. I need to get this pattern! We have ONE and it gets shared between the 5 of us! I didn't realize there was a pattern out there.

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    1. One is not enough!!! I think you'd enjoy Green Pepper patterns. They're so practical and the illustrated instructions are very well done.

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  4. From what I hear on the UK news you've really needed those hats this year. I remember how difficult it was getting everyone out the door when there are so many bits and pieces to find and put on. A bit like armour really. I think I would be tempted to make one for myself as well just from the speed of getting out aspect. Btw, I love the child who requested another so his could be washed. My son is exactly the same!

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    1. Now, I'm glad I don't have to make armour. That's a whole other department (: I'm amazed our weather news made it over. It has been a crazy winter for the U.S. but, to be honest, it's actually normal for us in Minnesota.

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  5. I love these! We don't have any in the house and now I wonder why not? lol. They would be so warm on these nasty weather days. my DD loves her face covered but hates the "choking" of the scarves. My DS would lose his in a heartbeat. I need to make some of these up for them.
    The ninja thing is cute :D They do look like little stealthy ninjas!
    And I completely agree with your child about the washing :) It would bug me too!

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    1. My kids hate being choked by scarves, too. You can never seem to tie it just right - it's either too tight, or loose enough to fall off.

      I didn't make myself one, but did try the kids' and they are VERY cozy and warm. I did custom fit the face mask to each kids' face, as they didn't seem tight enough as written in the pattern.

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  6. Why didn't they have those available when I was a kid?! Maybe it's not too late?

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    1. I was inspired to look at the history of the Balaclava. Apparently knitted balaclavas were sent to the British troops in the Crimean War.

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  7. Those are such a good idea!!! I get tired of the scarf problems as well and I know my kids would love these. That's definitely a pattern on my shopping list now.

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    1. Thanks, Leslie! I've been pleased with Green Pepper patterns so far.

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