What is a cuter Christmas, Valentines, or Birthday gift than a homemade bunny and a kiss? This rabbit is entirely needle felted with a present that opens up to hold a Hersey kiss or any other small gift.
I wanted to base the rabbit off my own bunnies. They are Dwarf Hotots, a rare breed know for their beautiful eyes! :)
I spent about 3 hours on this project, but had many trials and errors. It stands approx. 6'' tall including the ears!
It is best to have a basic understanding of needle felting, especially how to create spheres. I will not be explaining exactly how to create things such as balls of wool but instead show how to use them to form a rabbit.
Step 1: Supplies
All the supplies you will need can be found at any craft store; I bought all mine at Hobby Lobby.
- White wool (I used the brand Artiste, but any kind works)
- Black wool
- Light pink wool (optional; I used very little for the nose)
- Felting Needle
- Felting Pad
- 4 mm black eyes,
- Red glitter scrapbook paper
- Glue stick
- Craft Glue
- Hot glue gun
- Green craft wire
- Round-Tip pliars
Step 2: Creating the Body
Using the white wool, felt two balls that will be used to make the body. They should each be approximately 1 inch in diameter with one slightly smaller.
Felt the two balls together and then wrap a strip of wool around them, felting it and adding to it until you get the desired shape of the body.
As I made the body, I realized that I made it too small because it was only a little bigger than a Hersey kiss. I had to use more wool to make it larger. I didn't want the rabbit to fall over when it held the gift and kiss. Hopefully, based on my errors, you won't make that same mistake! :D
Step 3: The Head
Felt a sphere an inch wide. It will be the head. Measure it out to make sure it's the right size for the body.
Next, make two small balls about a 1/2 inch wide each. They will form the muzzle/cheeks. Felt them onto the head and add another ball about a 1/4 inch wide under them. This will form the chin.
Step 4: Beginning the Eyes
Now, when I've made eyes in the past, they stick out of the head, giving whatever I created a bug-eyed alien look. Not this time!
While it is very subtle, this step is important! Loosely felt two strips of wool about an inch long. These will create a sort of eye socket that will make the rabbit's eyes more natural and closer to the head. Felt each strip right above where you plan on placing the eyes.
It is very hard to photograph the difference, but it there! The photos in the next step show the eye socket better.
Step 5: The Eyes Part II
This is a very easy step.
With your felting needle, mark where each eye should be. Using a large sewing needle (I used a wire wrapping mandrel) or anything else large and pointed, widen the hole where you want the eyes to be. Make it wide and deep enough for the eye to fit.
Glue the eyes into the sockets.
Step 6: Finishing the Eyes and Nose
The nose is another felted ball about a 1/4 inch wide. Felt it above the cheeks and using your needle, shape it into a triangle. Last, with your needle, deepen the crease between both cheeks to give your rabbit a mouth if it doesn't show up well.
To finish the eyes, I felted black wool around them. Without the black wool, they looked small and lacked expression. By careful placement of the black, you can give your bunny a happy and cheerful look. I found that a tear shaped works best.
Step 7: Connecting the Head and the Arms
Felt the head to the body. Make sure to felt from all angles so it doesn't fall off! If your rabbit lacks a neck, you can add felt to make one, but I didn't run into this problem.
For the arms, the shoulder should be a 1 inch sphere and the arm a 1 1/2 inch cylinder. Felt them together and bend the arms so they are able to hold a gift. To bend them, felt along the inside elbow and it will hold them in place. Make sure to measure them on the body so you know where they should bend.
Step 8: The Legs
Most rabbits look like they have short, stubby legs when they sit up on their hind legs.
To copy that look, make two circles about an inch wide each. They should not be complete spheres and only about a 1/3 of an inch thick or the rabbit will have a very large rump! :)
Attach the circles to the rabbit. Make sure that they are equal height or the rabbit will be lopsided. Also, the rabbit doesn't have to stand up at this point, but the bottom should be level so that when you add the legs, it will stand up.
The legs are 1 inch long and oval shaped. Keep in mind that when you felt them to the rabbit's thighs, they will slightly shrink so if you may want to make them a little larger. When you felt them on, play with where they should go because they will be holding the rabbit upright.
Step 9: Adding the Ears and Tail
It's up to you what size ears you want. Since I was basing the rabbit off my own bunnies, I made the ears medium length and sticking up at an angle. Attach them to the rabbit at the back of the head. (You don't want the rabbit to have ears coming out of it's eyes!)
The tail is only a 1/4 inch big, and it adds additional support in holding the rabbit upright. It is at the base and can keep the rabbit from falling backwards. But do not rely solely on the tail, make sure the feet are the main supports.
Step 10: The Present
I actually forgot to take pictures when I made the present. That is because of my many many trials and errors. So many. :)
Since I didn't take pictures, I'm remaking it, but using regular white paper so the pictures show up better. You can use any paper you want, but some sort of card-stock works best. I used glitter scrap-booking paper. It is difficult to explain the steps in words, and the pictures will do a better job of explaining how to make the present than my ramblings!
The box comes in 2 parts: the bottom and the lid.
For the lid, cut out a square 6 cm x 6 cm. Find the middle of the square and lightly mark it with a pencil. Fold 2 sides horizontally to the middle, open it up, and fold the other 2 sides.
The paper will now have 9 different rectangles and squares. Notice that the four corners are rectangles. Cut the LONG side of each rectangle. DO NOT cut the shorter side or your box will be lopsided. See the photos for a better explanation.
Fold up the sides, glue them together and you're done! With the top half, at least! Now, cut out a square 5 1/2 cm x 5 1/2 cm and follow the exact same steps as before. Using craft glue, attach it to the rabbit's hands.
Do not forget to measure the box! Make sure a Hershey Kiss will fit inside it before gluing it to the rabbit!
Step 11: The Wire Bow and Scarf
Cut a piece of green craft wire about 8 inches long.
Tie the wire into a knot in the center as a starting point.
With the two ends, create two ''bunny ears''' much like how you would usually begin to tie a bow. Instead of finishing the bow, wrap the wire around the two ''ears'' to secure the bow in place. Follow the pictures for a better explanation! Cut the wire off and curl the edges using round tipped pliers. With a dab of hot glue or craft glue, secure it to the top of the present.
The last step! Finally!
For the scarf, felt a narrow strip of red wool into a rectangular shape about the length of a rabbit. Wrap it around it's head and felt it securely onto the neck. Add any details or embellishments and YOU'RE DONE! WOO HOO!
Step 12: Finished!
You're bunny is complete! Don't forget to add a chocolate Hershey kiss inside the box!
If you make the rabbit, please post a picture in the comments below! I'd love to see it! Also, any recommendations or advice would be appreciated!