Looking for a way to spruce up your old winter coat or jacket? Using just a little bit of faux fur fabric you can make this fun addition to just about any coat in your wardrobe. The coolest part is that it is removable, so no permanent alterations are necessary. It’s attached with buttons sewn within the collar, so choose buttons that will be discrete. Little pockets are sewn at the tips of the fur collar, so you can slip your coat collar in securely.
Update: Casey has posted a lovely tutorial for a different type of faux fur collar this week as well, if you’re looking to add one to a sweater instead! And we have one more related tutorial coming up soon, so stay tuned for that too. It’s definitely faux fur season!
For this tutorial, we used a gorgeous vintage camelhair trench style coat. Of course, it was beautiful as is, but now it can be dressed up with a little sass. While this tutorial has a lot of steps, it’s a pretty easy process and most of the work is in just drafting the collar. So once you’ve done that, it would be very simple to make multiple collars to dress up a single coat. Imagine a vintage red boucle coat with removable collars in faux mink, faux cheetah, and faux snow leopard!
Removable Faux Fur Coat Collar
- 1/4 yard faux fur fabric
- 1/4 yard lining fabric
- muslin (or other scrap fabric)
- hand sewing needle
1. Lay your collar down flat on a large sheet of paper. You can use a heavy object to hold it in place if you need to.
2. First, find the roll line on your coat collar. The roll line is essentially where your collar folds over when you wear it.
3. Pin the center back of your coat collar 1″ below the roll line. This is point D on the photo above.
4. Pin another point 1″ below the roll line, where the collar meets the lapel. This is point C on the photo above.
5. On the paper, mark a line for the center back of the collar, at point B. To find this point, measure the length of the collar from point to point, and divide in half.
6. Using a ruler, measure from the point of the collar (A) to (C). Also measure from (B) to (D). Note these measurements.
7. Trace around the outer edge of your collar.
8. Remove the collar from the paper. Now, using your measurements, draw in the center back line so that it is the same as the length you measured (from B to D).
9. Similarly, draw in the other edge of the collar, so that it is the same as the length you measured (from A to C).
10. Draw in the neckline edge by drawing a smooth curve from C to D. Not in the drawing above, we’ve drawn in the roll line for reference. The neckline edge should be 1″ below the roll line.
11. Add 5/8″ seam allowance to all but the center back. Mark the grain as parallel to center back.
12. Using a practice fabric, such as muslin or gingham, cut the pattern piece you just made two times on the fold.
13. Stitch around the collar, leaving 3″ opening at the inside center back seam. Trim seam allowances, turn right side out, and press.
14. Pin the collar along the inside of the coat, 1″ below the roll line. The center of the collar should match with the pin you placed, and the ends should be pinned at point C on each side.
15. Make any needed adjustments so that the new collar completely covers the coat collar. Make a new pattern piece if necessary.
16. Repeat steps 14-15 until collar fits perfectly.
17. Now that the pattern piece for the collar is finished, we are going to draft the little pockets that go at the tips, which hold your removable collar to the coat. Begin by drawing in the seam allowances on your collar pattern piece, if you don’t already have them marked.
18. Mark the point at the inside collar edge (point C). On the outer edge of the collar, mark a point about 3″ from the collar tip (A).
19. Draw a diagonal line connecting these two point.
20. Trace the corner of the collar pattern and the diagonal line. You will have a triangle. Mark the grain as parallel to the diagonal line. This piece will be cut on the fold, and since you already traced the collar with seam allowance, there’s no need to add any seam allowance to the piece.
21. You now have two pattern pieces. Lay the corner piece on top of the collar pattern to make sure the edges line up. Trim away any small bits that overlap.
22. Cut one collar on fold with lining fabric.
23. Cut two collar pockets on the fold with lining fabric. The diagonal line will be placed on the fold of the lining fabric.
24. For the button loops, cut a 12 1/2″ x 1″ piece along the bias. Depending on the size of your buttons, you may need more or less fabric for loops.
25. Fold and sew a tube using a 1/4″ seam allowance.
26. Trim seam allowance and turn to right side. To do this, use a loop turner. Or, I like to attach a small safety pin to one end of the loop, then pass the safety pin through the center of the tube and out the other side, pulling the loop out.
27. Cut the fabric tube into 5 strips 2 1/2″ long. After forming loops, baste loops to lining, aligning the raw edges and spacing them evenly along the neckline. Loops should start at least 1 1/2″ from the corners.
28. Fold each collar pocket piece in half along the diagonal line, with right sides together.
29. Baste the collar pockets to the lining along the two outer edges.
30. Before cutting the fur, make sure that the nap is smooth and the direction correct. Lay the pattern piece on the folded fabric. The fur should point in the direction of the outside edge of the collar (the longer edge). Pin the piece to the fabric, if too thick then only pin to top layer.
31. Cut slowly using sheers. A rotary cutter will only jam up with fur hairs. If the pile of your fur is rather long, try to cut only the backing layer, using the tips of your shears, then flip over and cut the other side. This way, you won’t give the collar a “haircut” towards the edges.
32. Right sides together, pin lining and fur. Using a fine-toothed comb or toothbrush, try to comb the hair away from the seams on each side before you sew.
33. Change your stitch length to 3. Sew slowly, pushing any fur that pops out back under the lining. Leave a 3” opening at the inside collar center back seam.
34. Trim seam allowance to 1/4” up to but not including the opening. Flip to right side. Push out corners and smooth collar.
35. Tease out any fur caught in the seam with a fine comb, toothbrush, or your fingers. Take care not to pull the fur out.
36. Tuck the edges under at the center back opening, pin, and hand sew it closed.
Once sewn, the collar back should look similar to the above picture.
37. Pin the collar to your coat, and mark with pins or chalk where the buttons should be placed. Sew buttons.
Once you button your new collar on, slip the ends of the coat collar into the collar pockets as shown.
Now you have a beautiful new collar!