When I made a Barts Bunny as part of the Great British Sewing Bunny competition held by Cool Crafting, one of my former flatmates said Pleeeease could she have one too, how could I refuse, they are so nice to make…
I started Flossie the bunny whilst we were away last week and finished her over the next few days, of course she needed some lacy undies before any photo shoot…
I then started making her uniform. For the GBSB we had three hours to make an outfit. Confession time, for my Barts Bunny, there was a judicious use of pins behind the scenes to hold everything in place. I clearly couldn’t do that this time, I could hardly send Flossie through the post with pins in her!! So, it did take me a bit longer this time!
I made the dress using the raglan dress pattern but changed it to a front opening, with a white collar and short sleeves. It closes with a little press-stud.
The apron is just two squares of cotton. As Flossie is somewhat pear-shaped two rectangles didn’t sit tidily on her middle, so I added a couple of tucks either side. I made the navy belt from some satin bias binding, it worked very well as I could shape it with the iron so it sits better around her ample middle. A shiny button makes her silver buckle which we were so proud to buy when we qualified. I think our aprons tied with buttons, that was too fiddly so Flossie has a ribbon tied in a bow across her back.
Flossie has already learnt that a Barts nurse always folds her apron across her lap when sitting to prevent creasing!
I was well chuffed to find doll sized fob watches on etsy, they’re just the right size, even if I think they’re designed more as pocket fob watches as they have a little chain hanging down. We always had a pair of nursing scissors in our top pocket (and strings of safety pins!!) so I attached them straight to the apron to give the effect of a top pocket.
The beady eyed amongst you may also have noticed a hospital badge by Flossie’s collar, the hospital badges at Barts (were made by Fattorini no less!!) had a enamel blue surround and a shield in black and white. There’s no way I could reproduce that, however I’m pretty pleased with Flossies badge, I used a little blue sequin with an even smaller ivory one and a shiny dark grey bead in the middle…
We had the lovely black wool capes with a red lining and red straps coming from the shoulders so they hung nicely without being fastened. I decided to use some black felt, a bit more realistic than the quilting cotton I used for my Barts Bunny, but a little stiffer too. Again I’ve tied the red ribbons in a bow for ease. Both the dress and the cape patterns are adapted from patterns in the first Luna Lapin book.
All that was left was the cap,ours were made from a square of starched linen, we made them over a shortbread tine,secured with safety pins and hairgrips. They were meant to have five pleats down each side and neat tails over the middle. I got the knack of making caps so I regularly made them for friends, everyone had their preferences whether they liked a deep brim or not, big tails or short tails…
For Flossie I used a square of cotton, about 8″, and made it round a bead container with a few stitches to hold it in place. This one is attached to Flossie with pins as I couldn’t think of any other way without making it permanent! Ours were held on with white hairgrips, the caps were great for holding long hair out of the way. I remember one of our group, Judy, had her hair cut really short so the hairgrips wouldn’t work…so she stuck her hat on with blutack!!
To be accurate Flossie should also have black tights or stockings and flat lace-up shoes, they were meant to have three pairs of eyelets for laces and no moccasins, which were trendy at the time!
Although the modern nurses uniform is much more practical, (I wear scrubs all day) I loved our uniform, you felt like a proper nurse!
So Flossie will be winging her way to London over the weekend, all ready for duty.
If you fancy making your own Luna Lapin, follow the link at the top to Cool Crafting for both books and kits.