Their clothes use a tiny amount of fabric, so look out in op shops for small trims, prints or baby socks that can be cut into leggings. The fun is all in the details!
Finished size: About 15cm tall
Gather your supplies
Felt in various ‘rabbit’ colours; matching threads; matching coloured seed beads; needle; thin card; soft pencil, tailor’s chalk or fade-out marker pen; chenille sticks; fibrefill; tacky craft glue; long thin doll needle; 3mm black beads; black embroidery thread
Step 1 Using a photocopier, enlarge Christmas Rabbits Diagrams to 205%. Trace onto thin card, then cut out to make templates.
Note Seam allowances are not included on Diagrams.
Step 2 Trace templates onto felt using soft pencil, tailor’s chalk or fade-out marker pen. As the Legs and Arms are stitched on the outside, ensure traced line is removable. For each Rabbit, cut 2 Head/ Bodies, 4 Legs, 4 Arms, 2 Ears and 2 Inner Ears (the Inner Ears should be cut from a slightly paler felt). The traced line will be your sewing line (except for Ears and Inner Ears, where it is the cutting line). Cut out pieces, adding 1cm seam allowance, except for Ears and Inner Ears. The generous seam allowance makes it easier to handle the pieces. It is trimmed back to 2-3mm after stitching.
Step 3 With right sides facing, machine or hand stitch around outer edge of Head/Body, following traced line. Leave straight lower edge open. Trim seam back to 3mm, snip the curves, then turn through.
Step 4 With wrong sides facing, stitch Legs and Arms together in pairs, leaving 1 curved edge on Arms and straight upper edge on Legs open. With small, sharp scissors, carefully trim seam allowance back close to the stitching, taking care not to cut the stitching itself. Do not turn through. Bend 1 end of 4 chenille sticks into small loops and insert loop end into each Arm or Leg. For Legs, trim chenille stick to length of Leg and baste upper edges of each Leg together to keep chenille stick in place. For Arms, trim chenille stick and bend other end into another small loop to fit inside Arm. Stitch around opening to enclose chenille stick.
Step 5 Stuff Head/Body firmly with fibrefill, moulding head into a neat shape. With centre front and back seams of Body aligned, insert upper end of Legs between lower edges of Body and stitch opening closed with small, firm stitches.
Step 6 Thread long thin doll needle with double thread and secure it on upper inside of 1 Arm. Take needle out through Arm, through a seed bead, back through Arm, through Body at shoulder level, out through other side of Body at same level, through second Arm, through another seed bead, back through second Arm, back through Body and out through first Arm again. Repeat this threading a second time, then tie off thread securely, under 1 Arm. This will allow the Arms to pivot on thread and the beads to prevent thread from pulling through felt.
Step 7 With straight lower edges aligned, glue an Inner Ear to each Ear; allow to dry. Pinch each Ear in half at lower edge and secure with a stitch or 2, then stitch each Ear to Head with small, firm stitches.
Step 8 Using 2 strands of black embroidery thread, sew two 3mm black beads in place on Head, pulling them slightly to create eye sockets. Using 2 strands of black embroidery thread and picture on page 38 as a guide, work a satin stitch nose, back stitch mouth and straight stitch whiskers and toes on each foot.
Gather your supplies
Thin card; soft pencil, tailor’s chalk or fade-out marker pen; socks; gloves; felt; knitted, ribbed and stretch fabrics; faux fur and leather; small bought pompoms; beads; sequins; rickrack; ribbon; elastic; sewing threads; tacky craft glue; embroidery threads
Note The easiest fabrics to use for these tiny garments are soft, stretchy knits, as they are able to mould to the rabbit’s shape. Look for scraps of cotton ribbing, jersey, stretch velvet, stretch towelling or lace. Odd socks, gloves and op-shop knits are also ideal.
Step 1 Using a photocopier, enlarge Rabbit Clothes Diagrams to 205%. Trace onto thin card, then cut out to make templates. Note Seam allowances are not included on Diagrams.
Step 2 Lay your chosen templates on fabrics and trace using a soft pencil, tailor’s chalk or fade-out marker pen. The traced line will be your sewing line. When cutting, add seam allowance all around, except to fold lines – there is no need to add seam allowance on cuff or hem edges of fabrics that do not need hemming, such as felt. Many stretch fabrics will also be fine without a hem, or you can cover raw edge with ribbon or rickrack.
Step 3 To make Coat, place template on the fold at shoulders and centre front/back, add extra seam allowance at the underarm/side seams only. Cut up centre front line for front opening. Trim neck edge with faux fur, if desired. The Coat template can also be shortened to make a short jacket. For a really simple sleeveless fur vest, just cut a rectangle of fur fabric and cut out two armholes and have the fur inside or out.
Step 4 To make Dress, cut from stretch fabric with the shoulders and centre front/back on the fold. Add seam allowance at underarm/side seams, and to cuffs, hem and neck edge, if needed. The Dress template can also be shortened into a basic, long-sleeved T-shirt.
Step 5 To make Boat-neck T-shirt, from jersey rib cut 2 Tops and 2 Sleeves with rib running lengthwise on all pieces and adding seam allowance all round. Fold over seam allowance on top and bottom edges of Top and secure in place with tiny running stitches. Repeat for cuff edges of Sleeves. This is all best done by hand, as a sewing machine tends to stretch the fabric too much. With right sides facing, stitch Sleeves to Top along each of raglan seams, then stitch underarm/side sleeve, pivoting on needle at underarm, if sewing by machine. Trim excess seam allowance and turn through to right side.
Step 6 To make Pants/ Leggings, the simplest pants or shorts can be made from a glove. Cut 2 adjacent fingers from the glove, including a = section from hand part, then sew up side seams of hand part. Trim off tips of fingers so legs can be inserted. Hem or add a trim to lower edges, or leave them as is. The waist edge should fit snugly, so add a hem and/or add fine elastic, if needed. To start from scratch, cut 2 template pieces from fabric (stretchy or otherwise) adding seam allowance on long sides, and at top and bottom, if needed. With right sides facing, stitch side edges together from top to the dots (as marked) creating a tube at top edge. Fold tube so that seams align at centre front/centre back, then stitch inside leg seam, pivoting on needle at crotch, if sewing by machine. Turn through and hem upper and lower edges, if desired. You could also add narrow ribbon or felt braces.
Step 7 To make Waistcoat, place template on the fold at centre back and add seam allowance to shoulder edges only if cutting from a non-fray fabric, such as felt. Finish outer edge with blanket stitch, if desired. If cutting from a fabric that needs finishing, add seam allowance all round and either turn raw edge inside, or cut an identical lining from a fine fabric, then sew the 2 layers together, turn right side out through shoulders, then sew shoulder seams.
Step 8 Finish by making accessories. To create ear muffs glue tiny pompoms to the ends of a curved section of chenille stick. To make a handbag, fold the lower third of a narrow strip of faux leather or thin vinyl upwards and secure at the sides, leaving remaining upper third as a flap. Attach braid, beads or sequins for a strap. To make a simple scarf, cut a thin ring of sock fabric and stretch it gently until edges curl. Attach tiny pompoms for a funky look. Thread sequins and beads onto thread for fancy necklaces.