You want me to make what???

For the past year or so DH has been asking me to make a pair of bivvy boots for snow camping.  Wha? Probably best described as a sleeping bag for your feet – aka. hut boots.  The ones he wanted were goose down filled and cost about $150.  He tells me the insulation is 1-2″ thick.  Can’t find a comercial pattern that would help much, especially as the insulation is so thick.  I was hoping he’d just buy them, but alas no.   Somehow these have turned into his Christmas present 😦

I managed to find a couple of pictures to look at on the outdoor gear sites.  Some designs are better than others, but I can cherry pick the best features.   I can see a few seamlines to work out the outer but I’ve got no idea what is happening on the inside.  Hmmm…  lots of Googling shoe designs and other tangents 😉

OK, so lets start with the outer shell.  Goretex upper and tough-tech sole/kicker.  Seam sealing to make them waterproof.  Sewing – easy peasy.  Pattern – not so easy – but style lines from an ugg boot.  Enter dress/shoe form – one scruffy steel-capped boot. Trace the sole, add a band for the kicker, and a rectangle for the back.  A little masking tape as a “style line” for the front ankle seem.  Labelling lots of points for notches.  So far so good.

hut_boot_shell_1

Another rectangle for the shin piece, bottom shaped to meet the style line.  Lots of masking tape over the toe section and a few ‘strategic’ strips of paper to work out the remaining piece.  Hey look— a moon boot!

hut_boot_shell_3

Here are pattern pieces.

hut_boot_pattern

Now for the inner.  For the sole, I based it on the inner sole of the steel-capped boots.  For the upper, I measured cross-sectional lengths over his foot and plotted out a pattern.  Taped together a paper mock up for a test fit.  Do some mods, try again.

“So there is a quite a bit to making a pattern”, he said, sounding very surprised.
“Yeah!  It’s even harder when I’m making it up as I go along!”  Trying hard to not let my frustration show, but glad that he realised that the requested was a bit more involved than he thought.

Here is the first mockup. Inside I used some foam on the sole for cushioning and polyester filling for loft.  I tried it on, and it is pretty warm, although the filling is already starting to shirt around.  It will need some baffles in to hold it in place.

hut_boot_outerhut_boot_linerhut_boot_v1

He’ll get to try it on tonight.  I’ve got a couple of mods planned for version 2 but fingers crossed that the fit of the inner & outer is OK.  Wish me luck.

  1. You are far braver than I. I’d be saying that $150 was a bargain for the amount of work involved that, go buy it!

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  2. Wow you are amazing, this is a huge amount of work and the cost would be much more than the $150 if you worked it out.

    Version 1 looks pretty impressive, hope the fit is good so you can move onto Version 2.

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    1. True, it would have been much easier to buy them. The material cost won’t be much as I can make them from offcuts, but if we factor in the time, then most of my sewing won’t stack up. On the plus side, I only needed to make minor changes to V1. Now that I have the pattern, I can tweak it to make a pair for myself too 🙂

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