• Kat Zimmermann

Miss Maisy Rabbit & Lisa Bunny Lovey: Patterns for Easter

Updated: Jul 8, 2021


On the left: A tan sewn stuffed rabbit wearing a white dress with a blue, green, and coral floral print dress with a white lace collar and blue satin belt. On the right: A crochet 12-pointed star blanket made of pastel yellow, blue, purple, and coral stripes with a tan stuffed rabbit in the center.

Easter is just around the corner! With a very early Easter and the arrival of some much appreciated warmer weather, we have a lot to celebrate in 2021, even if our gathering sizes are still restricted.


I wanted to help give folks a way to send some Easter joy this year, even if you can't see your loved ones in person - thus these bunnies were born. Each has a bit of a story which I will add up here in the intro.


Want to skip to the patterns?

Jump to Lisa Bunny

Lisa Bunny is available for download here on Ravelry and here on Etsy


Jump to Miss Maisy Rabbit

Miss Maisy Rabbit is available for download here on Etsy.


 

A tan sewn stuffed rabbit wearing a white dress with a blue, green, and coral floral print dress with a white lace collar and blue satin belt.

First, let's talk about Miss Maisy.

When I was a child, I had a stuffed rabbit that was made for me by my Great Grandmother which I named Miss Bunny (I know, a very creative child). I didn't play with Miss Bunny nearly as much as she deserved, and now I have lost her to either the sands of time or, slightly more likely, a cardboard box somewhere in my parent's attic.


In high school, I drafted a Miss Bunny pattern and made a few toys to donate to charity. I then put the pattern in a paper folder in a drawer....to finally be discovered again recently, to my great delight.


Miss Maisy Rabbit is an homage to my childhood toy, with a slightly updated (read: more symmetrical) pattern and her own, rabbit-sized dress. The version pictured throughout was made with some tan cotton left over from I don't remember what, cotton stuffing, and embroidery floss. Her dress is made from an old pair of pajama pants I bought at Charlotte Russe circa 2009 and a bit of scrap lace leftover from approximately the same time period.


A crochet 12-pointed star blanket made of pastel yellow, blue, purple, and coral stripes with a tan stuffed rabbit in the center.

Lisa Bunny Lovey's story is less nostalgic, but interesting (I hope) nonetheless.


If you follow this blog or have checked out my pages on Ravelry, Instagram, or Etsy, you've seen The Year of the Ox Lovey - my first ever paid crochet pattern and my first ever amigurumi pattern. Lisa Bunny is similar, but has a few key differences.



First is the number of points. Year of the Ox has 8 points - a lucky number in Chinese cultures. Lisa Bunny has 12, one for each of the Apostles (I told you this was an Easter post, right?). Second is the choice of colors. Lisa Bunny and Miss Maisy Rabbit are both a realistic shade of tan common to field rabbits. Lisa Bunny also has some very Eastery pastels. If you like symbolism, both the lavender and coral are Lenten colors used in the Church.


Lisa Bunny Lovey also served to help me better understand the mathematics of n-pointed stars in relation to crochet shapes. In the process of figuring out when to increase around, I did some geometry to arrive at a formula for the perimeter of an n-pointed star based only on radius and number of points. I then used the formula, my gauge, and a spreadsheet to determine for which rows I needed to increase based on the number of stitches added per increase. One very frustrating afternoon later, I have a formula that I *think* will work for any n-pointed star. Additional testing is needed. Eventually, this bit of math and procedure will be part of an e-book. So the real story here is that Lisa Bunny has helped me develop this section of my eventually-will-be-a-book.


Now that we've covered the backstories, let's get to the patterns! This post is organized into four sections:

  1. Lisa Bunny Lovey FAQ

  2. Lisa Bunny Lovey Design Process and Learnings

  3. Miss Maisy Rabbit FAQ

  4. Miss Maisy Rabbit Pattern and Instructions (this also includes notes)

Each section is titled as above, so you can use the quick links above and the search function on your browser (Ctrl or ⌘ + F on a computer, 3 dots --> Find in page on mobile) to jump around as you like. Remember to jump all the way to the bottom to like the post and leave comments and questions!


 

Lisa Bunny Lovey FAQ


Q: How much does this pattern cost?

A: This pattern is available for $5 USD (plus sales tax + site fee as applicable) from both my Ravelry and Etsy stores.


Q: What do I get when I purchase the Lisa Bunny Lovey pattern?

A: The pattern pdf is 9 pages long and includes descriptive text about the pattern, tips, and lots of photos to help you get it just the way you want! All photos include alt text for your convenience.


Q: Can I sell items made from this pattern?

A: You may sell items made with this pattern, but must link back to (1) the pattern OR (2) the Craftematics website. You may not sell derivatives or variations on the pattern itself (although you may make and list them for free with a link back to (1) the pattern OR (2) the Craftematics website).


Q: How long does it take to make the lovey?

A: This lovey took me about 12.5 hours to complete, so I would estimate between 11 and 15 hours for most crocheters.


Q: How difficult is this pattern?

A: Skills required: working in the round, working in flat, sc, hdc, dc, increase, decrease, sewing pieces together. On a scale of newbie to expert, I would place this pattern at advanced beginner. If you can work in the round, you can make this pattern. If you've never worked in the round before, this pattern is a good introduction to both types of working in the round - straight rounds and spiral.


A crochet 12-pointed star blanket made of pastel yellow, blue, purple, and coral stripes with a tan stuffed rabbit in the center.

Q: What materials do I need to make this pattern?

A: You will need....

  • Loops and Threads Impeccable Yarn - 1 skein each of the following:

  • -->Barley (tan) - 220m / 240yd

  • -->Butterscotch (light yellow) - 30m / 33yd

  • -->Skylight (light blue) - 56m / 61yd

  • -->Lavender - 93m / 102yd

  • -->Coral - 200m / 219yd

  • Crochet hook - size G (4 mm) or whatever size is needed to meet the gauge

  • 1 pair of 14 mm safety eyes

  • 1 12 mm safety nose (OR use dark brown/black/pink yarn to embroider the nose)

  • Stuffing - polyester, cotton, or any natural and dryer safe fiber are recommended for this project (I used organic cotton from Texas)

  • Tapestry needle

  • Snips

A note on yarn: these are the yarns I chose as the finished lovey is going to a home with a child. Acrylic is a good choice because it can be machine washed and dried. However, you can use any medium weight yarn in the colors of your choice.


Q: How do I care for a lovey?

A: A lovey is a cross between a blanket and an amigurumi. In cases like this, it's best to follow the care steps for the more delicate item (in this example, the amigurumi). For the yarn listed above, I would recommend machine washing in cold water with no softener or bleach. I would also recommend putting the lovey in a laundry bag or tied-off pillow case to protect the stitches from snagging on the washer drum. Laying flat to dry is best to preserve the shape of the plush and to keep the stuffing from clumping up over time. You can put the lovey in front of a box fan or below a ceiling fan to cut drying times. Read about amigurumi care and tips in my post here.



 

Lisa Bunny Lovey Design Process and Learnings

The foundation of this pattern was already worked out in the Year of the Ox Lovey, namely how to work the center of the blanket based on the number of points needed and the repeating round once the center has been established. Initially, I assumed (bad choice) that the rate of increase would be the same for a 12-pointed star as it was for an 8-pointed star. Wrong-o. After growing frustrated with the guess, check, and frog method of pattern writing, I did what I do best: I sat down to do some math.


A geometric drawing made with compass and straightedge. The drawing shows a pentagram inscribed in a pentagon inscribed in a circle. Various lengths and angles are labeled within each shape.

Here's the thing: my last geometry course was in 2013. It's been a minute. I still have my notes, but YouTube was more helpful since I wasn't about to write any proofs about the compass and straight edge construction of an n-gon and n-pointed star. Thank goodness for the internet! After several construction tutorial videos and a LOT of geometry pages clearly designed for high school students, I was able to write a formula for the perimeter of an n-pointed star in relation to the radius of the circle in which it was inscribed and the number of points. Just kidding it was wrong.


Several corrections, rewrites, and additional incorrect formulas later, I had the actually correct formula for the perimeter. Why perimeter? Because the perimeter can be related to the number of stitches in each round. Knowing my gauge (which, by the way, I also incorrectly measured at least once), I was then able to figure out the number of stitches per round based on radius (also related to gauge) and the number of stitches per increase. I could then compare the number of "ideal" stitches per round to a multiplication table based on the number of stitches that would exist after increases, and use the comparison to figure out where the increases needed to go in order to work a flat star.


If that sounds like a lot - it was. It was a lot. Don't ask me how long I took to figure it out because I don't know and don't really want to know.


Side note: If you teach geometry, this would make a great extra credit problem. If you message me, I am happy to provide you with my solution.


The final part of the blanket pattern was easier and much more fun: choosing the color layout. I knew what colors I wanted to use and chose the order based on the fact that I wanted yellow in the center and coral at the ends. I also wanted the color bands to get wider as I went. Using the Ox as a guide for number of rounds (I suppose I could have done some math here, but no) and some tally marks for counting, I figured out how many rounds per color, wrote it down, and started hooking.

All of the stuffed Lisa bunny pieces, completed but separate. One head with facial features, two arms (stuffed), two ears (unstuffed).

In comparison, Lisa Bunny herself was monumentally easier. Lisa's head is simply a sphere and the arms are hemispheres connected to tubes which taper a bit towards the top. Ears were a tad tricky to get that little bit of a curve on one side, but the usual method of pattern writing (guess, check, frog until it's right) won out here.



Overall, I'm quite pleased with how Lisa Bunny turned out. She is not only adorable, but helpful in that working on her really helped me start doing the foundational math for some of the shapes in my eventually-will-be-a-book.


My biggest learning here was a reminder to myself: it is OK to get it wrong, just keep working towards the goal. For you non-educators or educators who have somehow escaped this buzzword, I highly recommend checking out the phrase "growth mindset."


 

Miss Maisy Rabbit FAQ


Q: How much does this pattern cost?

A: This pattern is currently available for $5 USD (plus sales tax + site fee as applicable) on my Etsy store. There will always be a large image included in this blog post from which you may derive the pieces yourself. The downloadable version, however, includes a printable pdf file.


Q: Can I sell items made from this pattern?

A: You may sell items made with this pattern, but must link back to (1) the pattern OR (2) the Craftematics website. You may not sell derivatives or variations on the pattern itself.


Q: How long does it take to make Maisy Rabbit?

A: This pattern took me about 10 hours (estimated) to complete, including the dress. I would estimate between 8 and 20 hours to complete, depending on how quickly you work and your experience level. Very much doable in a weekend for most sewists!


Q: How difficult is this pattern?

A: Skills required: adding seam allowance, sewing along straight lines and curves, basting, topstitching, clipping curves, pressing along curved seams, turning small tubes right-side-out, gathering and sewing gathered seams, working with any type of closure. The tricky thing about this pattern is the size - Maisy Rabbit measures 15 inches head to toe and her dress pieces can be quite fiddly.


A tan sewn stuffed rabbit wearing a white dress with a blue, green, and coral floral print dress with a white lace collar and blue satin belt. This view is from the back. The belt is tied into a bow and the dress is closed with blue buttons. The rabbit's ears go to the bottom of the lace collar.

Q: What materials do I need to make this pattern?

A: You will need....

  • Pattern pieces (see below)

  • Fabric for Maisy Rabbit - 1/2 yd is plenty

  • Fabric for Maisy's dress - 1/4 yd or a bit less

  • Notions:

  • -->8 inches of lace for the collar

  • -->24 inches of ribbon for the waist

  • -->any type of closure (2 buttons and one hook and eye are pictured)

  • Embroidery floss in black and pink for the face

  • Matching threads

  • Stuffing - polyester, cotton, or any natural and dryer safe fiber are recommended for this project (I used organic cotton from Texas)

  • Sewing machine

  • Hand sewing needles (embroidery and sharp are recommended)

A note on fabric: For the doll shown, I used some tan cotton I had sitting in my stash. I recommend using either cotton or another natural fiber that will be able to survive some washing, drying, and snuggle time. For her dress, I recycled an old pair of pajama pants made of 100% cotton (the waistband was repurposed for Maisy's belt). Again, I recommend choosing a fabric that will be OK in the washer and dryer to make cleaning easier down the road. Remember to wash, dry, and press your fabric before beginning!


Q: How do I care for a hand made stuffed toy?

A: How you care for Maisy will depend on the materials you choose. If Maisy has been made with fabrics that are safe to wash and dry, then I would recommend taking off Maisy's dress and machine washing both in cold water with no softener or bleach. I would also recommend putting Maisy in a laundry bag or tied-off pillow case to protect the embroidery and fabric from snagging on the washer drum. Laying flat to dry is best to preserve the shape of the plush and to keep the stuffing from clumping up over time. You can put the doll in front of a box fan or below a ceiling fan to cut drying times.


If you're nervous about washing Maisy, you can wash by hand in cold water or simply spot clean as needed.


 

Miss Maisy Rabbit Pattern & Instructions


(Step 1) Prepare the Pattern

To make Miss Maisy Rabbit, you will need two sets of pattern pieces - one for Maisy herself and another for her dress. The printable pdf is available for download on Etsy. Simply download, print, and cut out!


If you don't want to purchase the pattern, use the photos below as a reference to draft your own pattern pieces. Each square on the cutting mat is 1 inch by 1 inch.


Pieces for Maisy Rabbit

Pattern pieces for Miss Maisy Rabbit's body.

Pieces for Maisy Rabbit's Dress

Pattern pieces for Miss Maisy Rabbit's dress

Importantly, the pattern pieces do not include seam allowance!


This means that when you cut the pieces out, you will need to add seam allowance - either freehand or measured. If you are new to sewing, I recommend measuring out 1/2 inch all the way around the pattern so that you can use the edges of each piece as a guide when pinning and sewing.


From here, we will first complete Maisy and then work on her dress.

 

(Step 2) Cut out the pieces for Maisy Rabbit

Sewing basting stitches to connect two leg pieces.

Cut out the pieces according to the pattern (2 body pieces, 4 ears, 4 arms, 4 legs). Remember to transfer the markings on the head and body pieces!


If you are using very thin fabric as I was, go ahead and cut out double of everything, then baste each set of two layers together.


You can baste along the pattern lines if you like, however, you can see in the photo to the left that I instead chose to baste about 3/8 in outside the lines. This means that after stitching the pieces together for the final seams, the basting will be completely trimmed off, leaving the seams nice and neat.


A close-up of two leg pieces after being basted together. The pieces have not been neatly cut but the pattern lines are clear.

After basting, you should have 14 pieces total.


Now is a good time to press the pieces - this will help make pinning easier and is the last chance to get out any stubborn wrinkles from your fabric.




 

(Step 3) Pin, stitch, turn, and press the limbs and ears

All limb pieces pinned together. The pins are perpendicular to the pattern lines.

Match up the pieces with right sides together for the two legs, two arms, and two ears - leave the head and body alone for right now!


Sew along the pattern lines for each piece - do not sew across the ends of the pieces, you will need to leave these open to turn the pieces right side out!


In the photo, you can see I used two pins close to one another to remind myself to NOT stitch along that side.


All limb pieces after being stitched together and seams trimmed with pinking shears. One ear piece has been turned right side out and pressed. Sitting with the pieces are a white turning tool and a turning tube with long hook.

Once all the pieces are sewn together, trim the seams and clip the curves (I like to use pinking shears to do both at once).


Then, turn the pieces right sides out and press. These pieces are a bit fiddly, so I used a turning tool (you can find the ones I use here).


Pressing these takes some patience but is well worth it!


 

(Step 4) Sew around the head and body

A head and body piece with the ear pieces pinned to the right sides at the markings from the pattern.

Pin the ears to the right side of one of the head and body pieces, using the marks from the pattern as a placing guide. Reference the ear pattern piece to place the curves of the ears correctly (parabola goes in, 3-point curve goes out).


Pin the other head and body piece to this piece so that the right sides are together and the ears are sandwiched between the

The head and body pieces pinned together with right sides facing. An X marks each arm and leg opening in pencil.

head and body pieces.


Before heading to the sewing machine, take a minute to mark where not to stitch - the openings for the arms and legs need to remain OPEN. I marked my fabric pieces with X to remind myself to stop.




The inside of the head and body pieces after being pinned together. The ears have been folded back on themselves.

One more tip before you stitch: open the layers and fold the ears back onto themselves so they are safely away from the seam lines. Use a pin to secure from the right side of the fabric. This will prevent you from accidentally stitching the end of an ear into the head seam.




When you're ready, stitch along the pattern lines, remembering to leave the arm and leg openings unstitched. Note that there IS a small bit of stitching on either side of the leg opening - that's not a mistake, you do want to stitch there.


After stitching, trim the seams and clip the curves (be careful around those neck curves!), then turn the head and body right side out. Press.

 

(Step 5) Stuff and add the limbs

The head and body have been turned right side out and pressed and the head and neck stuffed. One arm is stuffed and pinned in place on the body.

Stuff the head and neck. The head should be well filled, but not so much that the seams are straining. Be sure to stuff the neck well or it will be floppy later on. You can add the tube from the top of a plastic water bottle (like where the cap screws on) to strengthen the neck if you like.


Stuff the arms, leaving the last 1/2 - 3/4 in unstuffed. Squish the ends together and place the arms inside the arm openings of the body. Pin in place, then check that the arm is all the way into the body on both sides of the pinning.


Stitch in place carefully, going over the seam a few times for strength.


Both arms have been sewn on and the body stuffed. Both legs are stuffed and about to be pinned to the body.

Stuff the body. At this point, we'll add the legs, so shove the stuffing meant for the bottom bit of the body up into the center of the body to give yourself some room to attach the legs.


Stuff the legs and pin to the body as you did with the arms. Make sure the feet are facing outward!


Stitch the legs in place carefully, going over the seam a few times for strength.


TIP: If you're nervous about stuffing coming out of the arms and legs, you can stuff each and then baste along the top to hold it in place while you attach to the body.


 

(Step 6) Give Maisy a face

A close-up on the face which has been drawn on in pencil. Two eyes are drawn as small curves with one eyelash at the outer end of each, a small inverted triangle nose, and a small W mouth.

This is the part where you can get creative!


You can see from the photo that I changed my mind on how to do the eyes at least once. I decided to go with an arch and single eyelash for each eye using a stem stitch with 6 strands of embroidery floss and an embroidery needle.


I then used a satin stitch to do the nose, going around the sides once after filling in the center (because my stitches were a little wonky, oops).


Finally, I did the mouth again using a stem stitch.



A completed Miss Maisy Rabbit doll.

TIP: Since it's not possible to tie a knot on the wrong side of the fabric, start your needle by going into the stuffing about an inch away from where you want to stitch, then coming up along your stitch line. Pull the floss through, stopping as soon as the end goes into the head. Stitch along your lines, then finish the line by going into the head for your last stitch, going through the stuffing, and coming out about an inch away from the final stitch. Snip the thread close to the fabric, then wiggle and rub the end of the floss so it tucks itself back into the head.


Of course, you don't have to use the face I've designed - get creative! Other options for facial features include safety eyes (attach these before stuffing in step 5), button or other sew-on eyes, and painted facial features. You can even use makeup like blush to give Maisy rosy cheeks (this was done on my original Miss Bunny toy).


At this point, Miss Maisy Rabbit is complete! Time to give her a dress.


 

(Step 1) Cut out the dress pieces

All cut out pieces of Miss Maisy Rabbit's dress.

Cut out 1 skirt, 1 bodice front, 2 bodice backs, and 2 sleeve pieces.


Remember that the pattern pieces do not include seam allowance, you will need to add it during this step!


As before, now is a good time to press the pieces so they're good and flat.



 

(Step 2) Shoulder seams and lace at the neckline

The shoulder seams of the bodice have been stitched together. Lace edging is being attached to the wrong side of the fabric to the neckline.

With right sides together, pin then sew the shoulder seams, attaching the bodice backs to the bodice front.


Make sure the bodice backs are facing the correct direction! The long side goes towards the center.


Trim the shoulder seams and press open.



The lace collar has been flipped to the right side of the fabric and clipped in place for topstitching.

Pin the lace around the neckline on the wrong side of the bodice. Stitch along the pattern line. I trimmed my neckline down to 1/4 inch all the way around to make this step easier.


Turn the lace so that it's on the right side of the bodice. Press. Topstitch.





 

(Step 3) Sleeves

One sleeve shown up top has been basted between the pattern lines for gathering. On the bottom, the second sleeve has been pinned to the bodice with right sides together and gathered along the middle to fit.

This is the fiddliest bit of the whole thing - grab your tweezers if you feel like they'll be helpful!


Hem the sleeves using a narrow or rolled hem. You can also do a standard double fold hem here, depending on how much seam allowance you included.


Baste along the top of the sleeves between the markings to create the gather lines.


Pin the sleeves to the bodice at the armscyes with the right sides together, matching the edges of the pattern lines and the sleeve center to the shoulder seam line. Pull on the basting threads to gather the tops of the sleeves so the fabric fits along the bodice lines.


Stitch into place. Trim the seams and clip the curves.


TIP: If this is your first time sewing along gathered seams or you find it to be quite fiddly, baste along the seam line first. This way, if you make a mistake, it will be very easy to rip out (with a seam ripper) and fix.


 

(Step 4) Side Seams

The bodice is inside out and pinned along both side seams.

Turn the bodice so the right sides are together.


Pin the edges of the sleeves and bodice side seams together, matching the sleeve seams.


Sew along the pattern lines. Trim seams if needed.




 

(Step 5) Skirt

The skirt has been gathered between the lines on the pattern and pinned to the bodice, right sides together. The skirt has been gathered to fit the bodice.

Hem the skirt using a narrow, rolled, or double fold hem, depending on how much seam allowance you included.


Baste along the top of the skirt between the gather lines.


Pin the skirt to the bodice with the right sides together, matching the edges and centers. Pull on the basting threads to gather the skirt and pin in place so that the skirt fits along the bodice edge.


Stitch (or baste and stitch, as with the sleeves). Trim the seam and press towards the bodice.


 

(Step 6) Closing the Back

The edge of the dress has been pressed once along the pattern line. One piece of the new hem is being pushed towards the crease line to create a double fold.

**If you will use buttons to close the dress, consider adding a small strip of interfacing inside the folded edge you are about to make.**


Fold the edge of the dress (including the lace trim at the neck) in along the pattern line. Press.


Fold again so that the raw edge of the fabric is along the crease line (creating a double fold). Press.


The back of the dress, completed with closures. There is a hook and eye at the very top of the dress, then two buttons and button holes at the waist line and about halfway down the skirt.

Stitch down close to the folded edge of the fabric.


At this point, it's time to add a closure. I went with two buttons and a hook and eye (because my machine just did not want to put a button hole over the lace). I highly recommend velcro instead - I happened to be out this weekend so it was buttons and button holes for me.


Really, you can use any type of closure you like here.


Add your closure and then you're done! Put on Miss Maisy Rabbit, holding both of her arms in front. The sleeves will seem a bit tight at first, but the arms get smaller closer to the body.


A tan sewn stuffed rabbit wearing a white dress with a blue, green, and coral floral print dress with a white lace collar and blue satin belt. This view is from the back. The belt is tied into a bow and the dress is closed with blue buttons. The rabbit's ears go to the bottom of the lace collar.


Add a 24 in ribbon around the waist, tying a bow in the back.


TIP: If using grosgrain or other polyester ribbon, you can carefully melt the ends with an open flame to prevent the ribbon from fraying.



All done! Time for Miss Maisy Rabbit to go to her new home!





 
On the left: A tan sewn stuffed rabbit wearing a white dress with a blue, green, and coral floral print dress with a white lace collar and blue satin belt. On the right: A crochet 12-pointed star blanket made of pastel yellow, blue, purple, and coral stripes with a tan stuffed rabbit in the center.

Thanks for reading, friends!


I hope you enjoy this week's dual patterns and share photos of your creations here in the comments


Be sure to follow me on Instagram and subscribe to the blog by filling out the form at the bottom of the page.


See you soon and have a happy and blessed Easter!


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