Thursday, March 3, 2011

Snow Bound Bunnies!

Rabbit Slippers from Beehive for Bairns, 1980, original pattern c. 1950

It may be March, but the groundhog lied! Spring is still a long way away for most of Canada and the United States. Of course, we can’t really blame Canada’s own Wiarton Willie, as he was forced to make his Groundhog Day prediction indoors, due to a blizzard raging outside. And regardless of whether the Yankee Punxsutawney Phil or the Southern General Beauregard Lee deliberately led us astray, the fact remains that it’s still cold outside, and your baby needs toasty toes!

So, I recommend knitting up a pair of dead groundhogs for her feet. Sure, the pattern book calls these “Rabbit” slippers, but with just a few minor alterations, you can provide warm footsies for your child AND have your revenge on weather prognosticating rodents everywhere.

For the complete pattern (and more snark!):

Rabbit Slippers
A perfect little shower gift, reprinted from Beehive Book # 41.
Perfect if you want to show up at a shower with a gift that cost you a dollar fifty in leftover yarn scraps and thirty whole minutes of your time.

When you give these slipshod slippers to the new mum-to-be, don’t forget to announce, “I love you THIS much!”
MATERIALS: Beehive Baby Yarn (50 g): 1 ball main colour B. Small quantity of contrasting colour A. Two 2 ¼ mm (U.S. 1) knitting needles or whichever needles you require to produce the tension given below. One 3.50 mm (U.S. E or 4) crochet hook for ties. Stuffing.

TENSION: 9 ½ sts and 13 rows = 1 inch (2.5 cm) in stocking st.

MEASUREMENT: Length 3 ½ ins (9 cm).

Fortunately for the perfectionists among us, Beehive Baby Yarn is still available in a variety of sickeningly sweet pastel shades such as Precious Pink and Sleepy Sea. Unfortunately, that also makes knitting up miniature dead groundhogs more difficult, as those varmints don’t usually come in all the colours of a six year old girl’s rainbow unicorn obsession.

I recommend buying a ball of the Rose Bud red and telling everyone the groundhog was done in by an eighteen wheeler.
SOLE: With B cast on 22 sts and knit 1 row.
Continue in garter st (plain knitting every row) increasing 1 st beginning every row to 32 sts on needle. Knit 3 rows even.

Continue in garter st, decreasing 1 st beginning every row to 22 sts on needle. Cast off.

UPPER SECTION: With B, cast on 6 sts and work 2 rows garter st.
3rd row: K1. Inc 1 st in next st. Knit to last 2 sts. Inc 1 st in next st. K1.
4th row: Knit.
Repeat 3rd and 4th rows to 26 sts on needle.
Work 19 rows even in garter st.

Next row: K13. Turn.
Working on these 13 sts, work 35 rows garter st. Cast off.

Join yarn to remaining 13 sts and work 36 rows garter st. Cast off. Sew cast-off edges together.
Also, your bloody slippers will not only keep a baby’s feet warm, they’re even educational!

When baby starts walking, you can tie these slippers onto her feet and tell the tyke, “Don’t wander into the road, sweetie pie. Or you’ll end up smashed flat into the concrete with a tire tread down the middle of your back. Then someone will come along to scrape up your bloody remains and turn you into slippers.”
RABBIT HEAD: With A, cast on 3 sts and knit 1 row.
2nd row: Inc 1 st in each of 1st 2 sts. K1.
3rd row: Knit.
4th row: K1. Inc 1 st in next st. Knit to last 2 sts. Inc 1 st in next st. K1.
Repeat 3rd and 4th rows to 13 sts on needle.
Work 8 rows even in garter st.

Next row: K6. Turn.
Working on these 6 sts work 10 rows garter st.
Continue in garter st, decreasing 1 st each end of needle every row to 2 sts on needle. K2tog. fasten off.

Join yarn to remaining sts. K2tog. K5.
Work exactly as given for other ear.
Make another slipper the same.
Or if you prefer to maintain the magic of childhood, feel free to tell your toddlers that their groundhog slippers were made by pastel-coloured unicorns.

It’s never too early to instill fear of vengeance seeking unicorns.
TO MAKE UP: Placing one point of sole at back seam, sew evenly to upper, easing in fullness around shaped end of sole at front. With B, embroider eyes and nose on head as illustrated. Sew head in position, lightly stuffing nose and leaving the ears free. With 2 strands of B together, make a chain 12 ins (31 cm) long. Make 2 tassels and sew to each end of chain. Sew middle of chain to back of slipper.
Or of vengeance seeking groundhogs.

Click here for the printable pattern.


  1. I am making a pair of dead rat slippers this weekend because of you. I'm going to size them up to fit my feet. This is the best post ever! Thank you.

  2. I stumbled across your blog last night while searching for poodle pictures. I knew I had to follow. Your humor is much like my best friends. I will have to send her your way too.

  3. Jen - how are the dead rat slippers going? Were you successful? Are there pictures?

    Jayna Rae - Thank you! I'm glad you're enjoying my blog. :-)