Okay, having a problem wrapping my mind around this one ......I have made wired ears for bears before where I sewed the wire into the seam allowance. It was difficult to turn them, so my question is.........How would I do this for bunny ears? They are long enough to make it impossible to turn them doing the ears the way I had before. Am I using too heavy of a wire? Seems like it needs to be at least heavy enough to hold it's shape.......Plus the bunny I'm working on is made from real fur, so it's more difficult to turn anyway .
i've made wired bunny ears before and they are great! turn the ear first and then insert the stiff wire - sort of already in the shape you want. it might help to mark a fine line of stitching/basting about 1/8inch in from the edge on your ears (inside the stitching line) - then when the wire is in - sew around that line of stitching - to hold the wire in place - on the outside edge of the ear. does that make sense?? i wish i had pictures! then you use the wire to make a loop on the bottom edge of the ear and insert it like an eyeball too! another bonus - they can be swivel ears too!! :dance:
let me know if that's clear!
...and if I may add to what Ellen said, you can even add wire mesh for maximun poses. You need to cut it to the shape of your ear and insert after turning. You also need to leave one enire side open of the ear, longways, then ladder stich close. I'll post a picture of one of my bunnies with wire mesh inside the ears.
I use pipecleaners for mohair and similar but you might want to get a bit heavier guage wire at a florist or craft shop.... or hardware store for real fur.
Cut wire double the length of the ear plus 4 inches. Fold wire in half, insert into ear. I then pin around the ear, pins going same direction as seam, about 1/2 in from the seam, ensuring that the wire is between my pins and the seam. Then I handstitch around the ear between pin and seam, keeping wire as close to the seam as possible. I keep my stitches hidden, this is just to hold the wire against the sides of the ears.
You'll have a good inch of wire sticking out the bottom of the ear on each side. You can attach to the head in so many ways. What I do: using my awl, poke two holes in the head where the ear will go, one at each corner of the ear. Insert wire into the holes then ladder stitch the ear on as you would bear ears. This is assuming head is stuffed. You can also twist the ends together and into a loop then poke one hole with awl and attach like an eye. You'll have to ladder stitch the edges of the ear down as well. If you haven't stuffed the head but are attaching ears first poke wire into head where ear will go then curl ends of wire so they can't be pulled out.
You might also want to do a search here or check the Library (top of page where the face is waving it's arms ) for topics on wired ears or bunny ears as I think, though not sure, that we've talked about sometime in the past.
Oooh, thanks gals! :hug: :hug: I never thought of wire mesh. Also didn't think to insert the wire after the ears are turned--Duh!
Judi-what type are you referring to? Something like hardware cloth that I can get at the hardware store maybe, or something a bit more forgiving that can be found in a craft shop? I also love the idea of swivel ears----could maybe make a base to the ear to handle a small cotter pin joint? Just an idea....might not work. I do like the way you describe in your method Daphne and Ellen--sounds like that will work this time. I didn't want to have to leave a large area open on the side of the ears since I'm using real fur and am afraid my seam wouldn't look so great stitched shut. I will try the mesh in another bun made from mohair though. Sounds neat!!
I did read...on a taxidermy website ..that they use special pliable stuff for ears. I know they use lead...which I wouldn't fancy using...but also some thin sheeting which you just cut to shape and slot inside the ear before you attach it...I'll try to find it again.
I may be quite some time....
And to add just a little to Daphnes instructions......I have jointed the ears on instead of just turning the wire.
That little catch stitch at the top of the ears is important. And the rest is open to interpretation.
I'd love to know what you do.
Judi!!! still , you have a vast supply of techniques in that lovely head of yours. I had never thought of wire mesh.
Brilliant idea!!! thanks for the tip!!!
Tracy I'm so glad you asked this question I've tried the same, sew the wire on and then turn, but it never worked! Either the wire was too stiff to turn (especially with real fur) or it was so flimsy that it was easy to turn, but useless for holding up the ears afterwards. I'm looking forward to seeing your swivel eared bunny! Now that IS a clever idea!!!
:clap: Brilliant ideas gals :clap:
It has been a crazy few weeks and I an just getting the chance to catch up on all the posts.
Another idea I use for loppy ears is beading wire. Is is very thin and has a little bit of bending possibilities. It is great for smaller bears or when you just want to retain the shape for loppy or dropped ears (also great when you add a bit of weight to the ear after you turn it, I add micro steel shot).
You can sew your ears, then before you turn the ear, sew the beading wire in between the seams at the edges of the ears. Takes a bit of time to do this but when you turn the ear the wire is in place and you do not need to sew it or tack it again (once it is turned). I hope this makes sense? The wire is pliable enough to be turned when sewn in to the ear before turning. The result is a really nice shapely ear. I have a little bunny from some time ago that I will try to take pictures of this weekend so you can see.
Love the rest of the ideas everyone has! I'll be trying a few of them.
Wire mesh...you can buy iot at Hobby Lobby, Michaels crafts, or Ben Franklins. It will be in the plaster molding section. I have not seen any as refined and nice in a hardware store. It is AWESOME stuff ladies and is safe, no lead, and is very flexible. You will be pleased with your results.
If you want just wire, I would get heavy gauged wire....the last thing youwant is to have the wire snap after you bunny is done.
You can sew it right into the seam BEFORE turing the ear. Just LEAVE ONE SIDE UN-SEWN. Turn, then ladder stitch the open side. If you do this neatly abd carefully it will be undetectable.
There's alawsy more than one way to (skin a cat) sew a bear.......
I put the wire on a piece of slightly heavy interfacing and zigzag stitch it into the center of the interfacing. When I do this, I leave a secured loop of wire at the top and bottom to it won't punch into the ear fabric. I then sew the front and back of the ears, right sides facing and the interfacing on top of one wrong side. Onlly sew about 2/3 the way around the ear. Then turn and finish closing the seam by hand with a ladder stitch.