Of Rats and Jen (Inactive)

Tales of a Perpetual
Work In Progress

How to Stuff a Felted Mouse

Filed under: Knitting — folkcat at 4:26 pm on Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Edited 11-11-2009 to add: If you’re looking for the mouse pattern, it did get uploaded a while back. Just check the top of the page for the menu item “Free Patterns”. The PDF of the catnip mouse pattern is there, free to download. Enjoy! – Jen

Warning: The following contains graphic scenes of surgical procedures as performed on knitted felted mice. Some images may be inappropriate for the squeamish.

I began work on stuffing the catnip mice today.

It hadn’t occurred to me that, after felting, the hole I left under the tail would only be about 3/4 of an inch across. And here I am, wanting to stuff at least a golf-ball’s worth of polyfill and catnip into these things.

Catnip Mice Awaiting Stuffing
The Surgical Station
Clockwise from Left: un-stuffed mice, polyester batting, chopstick, paper funnel made from index card,
Cosmic Catnip

I began by winding a small bit of polyfill onto a chopstick.

Gathering Polyfill on a Chopstick
Loading the Chopstick

If you’ve ever seen cotton candy being collected onto the skinny paper cones at a carnival, that’s pretty much how it works. The polyfill sometimes has a tougher time grabbing onto the chopstick at first, but once there, just keep twisting the chopstick until you have an appropriate amount of fill. Then push it through the opening in the mouse, and use your fingers to help push it off of the chopstick. Then tamp it as far into the mouse as you can with the stick.

I am filling the mice with alternating patches of fill and catnip, starting and finishing with the fill. The catnip, as you can imagine, is even harder to get through that tiny opening, so I had to call in some mechanical assistance.

Paper Funnel Inserted in Mouse
A Paper Funnel, Delicately Inserted into the Mouse Anatomy

I never expected making felted mice to be so, um…….anatomical.

Even with a funnel with the largest opening I could get into the mouse, the catnip basically sat in the paper until I used a chopstick to force it through.

Catnip in Funnel
Catnip Awaiting Assistance

In the end, you get a nice, plump little mouse that absolutely reeks (in a good way!) of catnip.

Plump, Well-Stuffed Mouse

The pattern has been re-created, but I have yet to massage it into a PDF for uploading. I need more pictures of the mice, for instance, and I hope to include some with the cats in Syracuse that will be receiving these for Christmas this weekend. So keep your eyes open, but don’t hold your breath.

ETA – see above! The knitting pattern for the mice has been uploaded, and can be found under the “Free Patterns” menu item at the top of this page. – J

About That Syracuse Trip

My laptop, Kitten, successfully survived her brain (hard drive) transplant, and is fully functional again. Additionally, we found a killer deal at NewEgg (the same place that sold us the replacement hard drive) on a wireless network card for her. I’ve been checking, and there are plenty of places in Syracuse with either free or cheap WiFi access, so I should be able to post from the road next week. It just might not be every day.

I’ve collected tips about Syracuse yarn shops from some Central New York knit bloggers I read. Sounds like the city isn’t a complete desert for yarn shopping these days, since there are choices other than WalMart, A.C.Moore, and Michaels. I’ll be reporting on my explorations while I’m there.

Coming Tomorrow

I’ll be posting about the gifts I’m giving the Craft Goddesses at our annual holiday celebration tonight. Both knitting and beads were involved, so there will likely be a companion post over at Confessions of a Chantraphile!

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Pingback by Crafting Jen » Free Pattern - Knit Felted Catnip Mice

February 1, 2007 @ 11:12 am

[…] It’s been over a year since I wrote about them, so here’s a photo of a finished one for you: […]

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