When I made my penguin dungarees, in my mind I was using them as a test run of instruction style before diving into a more complex project from ‘The Fox, the Bear and the Bunny’. In my make 9 this year, I planned to make Toby a cute coat and there are three suggested designs in the book, one for each of the title animals. I went with the bunny coat, partially because I don’t know if Toby will let me dress him in a bunny coat next year, but figured that at 18 months be was going to be too young to protest!
The patterns from the book do have to be traced because they are double sided and overlapping in some places, but you would probably want to trace children’s patterns anyway so that you can make them again in the next size up. One thing to look out for though is the tiny arrow on each piece which is the only indication as to the grainline. Its much smaller than the convention on most patterns, so definitely takes some getting used to!
This is quite a complex pattern with a lot of pieces. The book does helpfully give some indication as to how much of a time commitment each of their patterns are in the instructions. It will depend a lot on how much un-interrupted time you get to sew, and how fast you are comfortable sewing, but it was a helpful indicator that this coat would be around 1-2 hours of cutting and preparation, and 8-10 hours of sewing. Contrast that with the dungarees, which recommended 20 minutes for the cutting and 1-2 hours of sewing time.
I picked up most of the fabrics locally, and chose this cream/grey corduroy for the outer and a velboa synthetic fur for the lining and accents. I prewashed and dried a test swatch of the fur because ideally I wanted to be able to chuck the coat in the washing if it got too grubby, and apart from a little shrinkage the fur was absolutely fine with a wash and tumble dry- definitely a useful test!
This was a bit of a mammoth task tracing off and cutting out, especially as the fur shed like crazy when it was cut. Fortunately, I was able to do all the cutting on one day so that I didn’t get in a muddle over the nap of the corduroy, and actually interspersed it with some other sewing so that I didn’t get too bored or stiff working on the floor.
I still need to source some toggles for the front fastening. I’m not sure yet whether I will buy them ready assembled, or do as the book suggests and make my own. It does feel like one big hurdle completed to have the bulk of the sewing preparation done though, and now I’m starting to feel more excited about starting the construction.
Size-wise, I’ve gone for the smallest size again which is 1-2 years. Toby will be 18 months at the start of the winter so I’m hoping it will be a good fit. If it’s a bit long though I’m not too worried. We can always turn back the cuffs for him too if it’s too long in the sleeve. It means he might get a longer wear out of it too.
2 thoughts on “Bunny Coat- an introduction”
What a fabulous book to inspire you! I love this adorable bunny coat. You are braver than me. I’ve attempted a “coat” but only with flannel and a light weight lining! This is the real deal! You really can do this! 🙂