Introduction: Badger Fur Gloves

Picture of Badger Fur Gloves

On cold, windy days, fur gloves are nice. But they're expensive! I made this pair of badger fur gloves from a badger pelt I bought on Ebay ($65) and a pair of deer hide work gloves I bought from HomeDepot ($17). I also used kevlar thread (Amazon $3) and "glover's needles" (also Amazon ~$5-10).

Step 1: Make a Pattern

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To make a pattern, trace the glove like you would trace your hand onto a piece of paper. Keep in mind that the wrist of the glove might be elastic and you'll need to stretch it out. Consider making the fingers 1/8 to 3/16 of an inch longer. That will allow the fur section to stretch around your fingers as you make a fist. Otherwise, you'll find that you have two very inflexible pieces of leather on the backs of your fingers and you can't bend them comfortably. I neglected to take pictures of the thumb pattern that I drew, but if you look closely at the leather gloves, you'll see little black dots where I drew what I thought would be a useful area to cover. My initial thought was to cover whatever area of my hand would be exposed to the elements but would not take the brunt of grabbing things. So a portion of my thumb needed covering. I'm still not entirely clear how a thumb pattern is made, but with experimentation you'll get it.

Step 2: Trace the Pattern and Cut the Fur

Picture of Trace the Pattern and Cut the Fur

Notice that I laid out the pattern so that the fur would travel back up my hand and out toward the outside of my hand. I also centered the gloves on the mid-line of the fur so that the pattern and thickness of the hide would be symmetric on each glove. I laid out the thumbs in much the same way using the tail end of the hide. This part of the process requires that you look at the fur and really think about how the it will lay and where you want to take the fur from. I considered using the shorter hair on the face of the badger for my thumb pieces, but ran out of room to position the patterns.

Cut the fur from the back using a razor. You'll minimize the amount of fur on the front that you cut. Don't push the razor into the leather while it's on a hard surface. Rather, making ever deep cuts, not pressing so hard that you punch through to other side and damage the fur.

Step 3: Sewing

Picture of Sewing

Use glover's needles; you'll thank me! They cut their own way. Regular round needles are a pain! You also need a thimble. My fingers are too big for the all metal thimbles, so I used a leather dime thimble (basically a leather cap with a small dimpled metal disk). Use whip stitching (or overcast stitching as its sometimes called). I began along the first finger and on the back side of the leather because I wanted that edge to curl over and hide the seam (I thought it would be the most visible of seams and I wanted to hide it). As it turns out, the fur is so thick that the stitches aren't really visible anywhere except the finger tips where the hair lays back from the seam. Whip stitches mean going through three layers of leather rather than two, but they look better, work better, and don't require that you fumble with a needle inside the glove.

Step 4: Finishing and Timing

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Some hair may stick out between the fingers into the palm when you are done. I trimmed a bit of it off and called the rest an occupational hazard.

The first glove took 6 hours to sew. The second took about 4. My forearms are still aching. But my hands are warm! The pictures included show one glove incomplete so you can get an idea of the bulk of badger hair. It's very thick. Next time I might use sheared beaver or something nearly as functional but half as bulky and comical looking. Its as though I have rabbit hands!

Comments

halberdear (author)2010-03-08

poor badger :| lol

McGyver2 (author)halberdear2010-12-03

Poor badger nothing. Its how the world works. If we had not have gotten the badger another animal would have. Its the circle of life.

3-4-t (author)2009-10-29

About rabbit pelts,.. having raised meat rabbits my Great Uncle came over to show my husband how to butcher.  He was amazed at how hard our grain fed rabbits were to skin.  They did not peel like wild rabbits, I guess he had to use a knife!  The skins were thick and did not have a tendancy to tear.  ??!!

jacobskousen (author)2008-06-11

We're now into summer and looking back, I have a few thoughts about these gloves. The first thought: you don't need a liner if you live within the continental United States! They are very warm. The palm is distinctly cooler than the back, but if that's a problem, just make a soft fist and its quickly warms back up. If you're handling object, these aren't the gloves to use because the soft deer hide wears out easily. Also, and this should be obvious to any adult, do not wipe your nose on these gloves! I know....it's cold and your nose is dripping. But don't do it unless you fancy badger fuzz nostrils. Lastly, I still have not solved the problem of fur being pulled between the fingers and bristling up toward the palm. It doesn't effect functionality and if I wasn't so OCD it wouldn't bother me, but it does happen and aside from shearing the fur short, it doesn't appear easy to resolve. But it's really a none issue. One other thing. These took a lot of time. They only spent a few days outside too. Perhaps next year I'll have more opportunity to use them.

bo10000 (author)2008-01-08

you could just flip them inside out. I can't beleive you spent that much on badger pelts you can buy them for like ten bucks.

jacobskousen (author)bo100002008-01-08

Where??? Do tell. I saw cheaper pelts but the fur was uneven or the leather was damaged. If you know where to get hides that are big enough, please let me know.

bo10000 (author)2008-01-08

btw, there are really cheap rabbit pelts on the net too, badger is better but hey for the price, you can buy four snowshoe hare pelts and sew them together. great instructable. do you think rabbit would work? plese tell!:)

jacobskousen (author)bo100002008-01-08

I thought about rabbit, but decided against it for the same reason I decided against chinchilla and several other furs; they are delicate. Badger has a pretty thick hide and dense course fur. Perhaps there's a furrier out there that can confirm or deny that.

Punkguyta (author)2008-01-08

Did anyone ever mention that you should be a hand model?

GorillazMiko (author)2008-01-08

Great job, they look warm on the outside! I should have one of these hanging out of the gutter or something... haha. Nice job.

wingbatwu (author)2008-01-08

mushroom, mushroom... /aaah it's a snake!

theRIAA (author)2008-01-07

nice, are the leather gloves lined nicely? it adds a lot to the warmth

jacobskousen (author)theRIAA2008-01-08

No, they're not lined. I'm sure it would make a big difference in warmth. When I began the project my thought was that while in cold weather I would be either holding an object or making a gentle fist; either way, my palms wouldn't be exposed to the cold. This winter will be the proving ground for that theory and I'll post a comment on how things are going.

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