Have you ever found a pattern that makes your heart beat faster than a rabbit? As soon as you see it your mind starts whirring with the possibilities and you are already trying to cancel every social engagement you have over the next few weeks in order to hide yourself away with it and sew.
For my mum and I, it was Luna Lapin. Since discovering the books last year, I’m not ashamed to say we have become unhealthily obsessed. I’d say about 30% of our conversation revolves around bunny couture and we made it the focus of her birthday trip to Dublin last year, where I bought her the book and we spent 8 hours at the Dublin Knitting and Stitching Show trawling the best materials for her discerning Luna. Since then between us we’ve probably made about 20! I love how the possibilities are endless and each bunny turns out unique.
Luna Lapin (and friends) are the designs of Sarah Peel who runs Cool Crafting in Kendal, Lake District. Her first book was all about Luna and her brother Alfie and the whimsical stories that accompany each pattern really paint a picture of a classy bunny. She’s a writer who shops at Liberty and goes to fancy parties and flirts with foxes. She has a double breasted coat. The bunny wears lace underwear. Come on, Luna has a better life than we do (at the moment, anyway).
Lunas are a great way to practise both hand and machine sewing and although the tiny clothes may look intimidating they’re not as hard as they look. I’ve actually found that a lot of the techniques learned in the book have helped me significantly in garment sewing, from a blind hem to buttonholes and pleats! It’s also incredibly mindful to make, in particular the hand sewing which is rhythmic and calming.
My favourite book remains the first one although I know a third one is to be released in August. I’ve tried a lot of the outfits but my favourite is the t-shirt dress and bow with the corduroy coat from the second book. I also really like making the short trousers from the second book as culottes with a little top. The shoes scare me a bit plus I like to embroider a name on the foot if the bunny is for a gift.
For materials for the bunny, the best quality fabrics you can get your hands on really do improve the quality of the make – use a wool felt for the body and 100% cottons for the clothes. I quite like using offcuts from my garment making fabrics to whip together tops and dresses for Luna – you could even make her a mini version!
Cool Crafting sells all these and has stopped taking orders during lockdown but you can still get PDF patterns on her site which are really cute, especially the cap. In the meantime you can get felt and cottons from other suppliers. If the bug catches you as much as it did me, you could even join the designated Facebook group!
Luna is definitely one of my top lockdown crafts, especially around Easter and I’m constantly working on an outfit or two. My boyfriend has also gotten used to being watched my countless pairs of rabbit eyes as he moves around the house too, so that’s a plus.