A muff is an old fashioned hand warmer, that fits over your wrists with both hands inside. It can be used with or without gloves, and is also handy for holding small lightweight objects. These instructions are for a combination of crocheted and sewn muff, but you can use just fabric, just crochet, or knitting instead of crochet.
Step 1: Preparation & Supplies
A ball of yarn in the color of your choice, I recommend a medium to heavy weight yarn, wool or wool blend but acrylic, cotton, or bamboo works too!
About a half yard of fabric, I like velvet best, but wool or fake fur or really anything works. Best results if the fabric is about the same weight as the crocheted part.
Thread to match
Crochet hook of appropriate size to the yarn
Sewing needle and or machine (can be done into rely by hand, the machine is just quicker).
Cloth (sewing type) measuring tape
Step 2: Measure and Get Started
Measure your hand to get an idea of how big the muff should be. I like it roomy, so it can carry my bus pass, or some odd bills.
Start crocheting (or knitting) to make a rectangle about three inches wider than your hand is long, including an inch of your wrist, in this case about 12 inches, and twice as long as you want it. I will do a simple fan and post pattern, but any stitches will work, even granny squares.
Step 3: Sidebar: Fan & Post Pattern
The fan and post at term I am is using is a quick and easy stitch that can cover a lot of ground quickly.
Start with a length of chain stitch in a multiple of 4 1 extra chain. (The picture shows 16 1=17) Wrap the thread over the hook once and make a double crochet in the 2nd chain from the hook. Make 4 more double crochets in that same chain ( first fan) make a single crochet in the 2nd chain from the fan. This closes the first fan, and starts the second. Make 5 double crochets (dc) in the 2nd chain from the single crochet. Repeat this pattern across the chain (skip 1 chain, single crochet in next chain, skip 1 chain, 5 double crochet in next chain, skip 1 chain,single crochet in next chain, skip 1 chain, 5 double crochet in next chain) until you reach the end of the chain. Last stitch should be a single crochet. Chain 3and turn the work to the other direction, so you can work back across what you just made. In this row you will make one double crochet in each single crochet, and a 5 double crochet fan in the center stitch of the fans from the previous row. End with a double crochet in the start of the very first stitch. Chain three, turn the work, and repeat row 2 (except that you are now doing double crochets over double crochets instead of single crochets for the posts).
When you have the length you want cut the thread far enough away from your last stitch to make one more stitch. Check your work for errors, then, if it's okay, make on last single crochet, pulling the end of the thread all the way through and pull it tight (this creates a knot) weave the excess thread into the patten so it is hidden.
Step 4: Sizing Lining
Once you have crocheted a rectangle to the size you like, and folded it in half to check that size, place crocheted rectangle over lining fabric to get the correct size, and cut lining to size.
Step 5: Sewing Lining
Fold the lining fabric in half ( to final size for muff) with the side that goes against your hands to the inside.
Hand or machine sew the two sides and the top, leaving openings by the fold on both sides for your hand to enter the muff. These openings will vary according to your hand size, but should be 1/3 to 1/2 the length of the side.
Trim the sewn edges close to the stitching.
Turn the edges of the openings back ( see photo) and baste in place.
Step 6: Attaching Lining to Outer Shell
Put the finished lining on the crocheted rectangle with openings toward the middle, and fold the crochet over. This makes a "sandwich " with the lining in the center and the openings for your hands at the fold.
Use single crochet through both layers of the rectangle to close up the crocheted piece around the lining. Match patterns as closely as possible. You will have to knot the yarn and re join to do the whole piece.
This is your basic muff, with crochet outside and warm lining inside.
To finish, add ribbing to both hand holes, see next step.
Step 7: Finishing and Ribbing
Slip stitch the lining to the outer shell at the hand holes.
Attach the crochet thread to the bottom of one hand hole and single crochet around the hole once. Join to the first single crochet with a slip stitch. Chain 3 chain stitches MORE than the length you want your ribbing to be.
Starting at the third chain from the hook, single crochet back down the chain , putting your hook only through the back loop of the chain. Slip stitch into third sc around the opening, slip stitch in next two sc of the opening, dc back up the row of ribbing, using only the back loops, chain three, and repeat around the opening. End with a row going up the ribbing, then sc down catching both edges of the ribbing seam. Repeat on other hand hole.
If you find the ribbing to be difficult, it can be made as a separate piece and sewn onto the muff after it is made.
Step 8: Sidebar: Knitting and Sewn Only
I don't knit, but if you knit and don't crochet, this basic pattern can be done with a knitted outer shell too.
If you prefer, the outer shell can also be quilted fabric, or plain fabric. Cut a piece of your choice of fabric to size, an equal sized piece of lining fabric, place right sides together, machine stitch nearly all the way around, pull right sides out through the opening, hand sew the opening closed, fold in half, hand stitch sides and top, leaving open hand holes. if you neither knit nor crochet, you can use bought wrist ribs and sew them onto the holes.