Taylor Momsen rocks flannel. Source: Planet Shoes
Winter is in full swing, and while we are shoveling ourselves out from heaps of snow, we must also look towards keeping warm. Here are the best materials to make winter fashions out of if you are looking to keep warm and make your own clothes at the same time.
#1 - Wool. Wool is a "super-fabric" that was used for centuries. Pure wool can keep a wearer cool in the summer and hot in the winter. Today, wools are sold in several weights as well as blended with natural and synthetic fibers. Heavy wools can make coats, scarves, and hats, while thin wools can make pants. If you are using a wool for garments, a lightweight, natural lining is reccommended. Wool that is spun into yarn can be knit into hats, scarves, sweaters, and mittens.
#2 - Flannel. Flannel is far more than lumberjack material. It can be made of wool, cotton, or synthetics and has a warm feel. Today's flannel expands beyond plaid and into a variety of colors and patterns, but the traditional print is still available. Flannel can be used to make shirts, pajamas, and as a lining for pants and jackets.
#3 - Shearling. Shearling is traditionally a sheep pelt that is sueded on one side and has uniform shorn fibers on the other. This material is similar to what is seen in many winter boots. The fuzzy side helps wick away moisture while retaining heat and is best used for coat hoods and boots.
#4 - Polar Fleece. Polar fleece is versatile and a good alternative for those who refuse to use animal by-products. It is synthetic, and paritally composed from recycled plastic bottles. Polar fleece is very soft and wearable, and is good for making sweatpants, blankets, hats, scarves, gloves, and lightweight jackets. Polar fleece comes in a variety of colors and is easy to sew with.
Many of these fabrics can be found in any fabric store, but you might want to call first to see what is in stock. Happy sewing!