Making your own charming Tea Cup Mouse is easier than you think. I designed this project to be suitable for even beginner sewers. And you can adjust the project according to skill level.
This is a sweet way to use a lovely tea cup that has no matches. A cup with a chip or crack would be undesirable for drinking tea but these signs of wear would only add character to these little beds.
Sewing workshop: if you live locally (Southern Maryland) you might be interested in my Tea Cup mouse workshops for children (and adults too). Click on the Classes link above.
This is Leo. He was made from a retired linen shirt. His bedside table was made from a slice of a tree branch and an old wooden spool of thread. The rug was made by cutting a rectangle from an old sweater. The tea cup was from a second-hand store.
Leo loves his super soft handkerchief blanket. The handkerchief is vintage and the tea cup was a thrift store find.
This adorable mouse loves to play!
Three ways to give.
1. Make and give the finished mouse for a special gift.
2. Give a kit with pre-cut pieces and all the rest of the supplies, tea cup and all for a child to make for his or her self. Precutting the pieces might be necessary for younger children. Work together with him or her.
3. Give a kit with the pattern and all the rest of the supplies and let them have the fun of making a mouse friend just the way they want it. You might supply a few different pieces of scrap fabric for them to choose from. Give support as needed.
The first thing you will need to do is gather supplies.
You will need:
Salvaged fabric for the head and body of the mouse. No need to go out and buy any fabric; you only need a little from a past project or salvaged from an old pair of pants or shirt…
A washable marker for tracing your stencil on fabric.
Scissors for cutting the fabric.
Scrap pieces of felt for the mouse’s hands, feet and ears.
Embroidery floss of some type to embroider on the whiskers, nose and eyes and an embroidery needle. Or a black permanent marker to draw on the face. Tiny black pompoms could also be used for the nose and eyes.
This is Leo’s friend Lola. She can’t wait until Christmas! Her mouth, whiskers, and nose were drawn on and the eyes are pins that have the tip cut off. The pins make cute eyes but are not appropriate to use as a toy. Ears, hands and feet can be glued on for easier construction but I like to sew on pieces for a more secure attachment. Her scarf was made from a sweater that I felted. Just snip the ends to make the ends fringed. I included a felted wool blanket as well. She snuggles in a second-hand cup.
Some piece of thin rope or leather cord to use as a tail.
Some kind of stuffing. I used dryer lint and a little dry rice.
Needle and thread for hand sewing.
A sewing machine for sewing the main body and head pieces.
Cutting out the pieces.
You will need a Tea Cup Mouse pattern.*
*Because it takes a tremendous amount of time for me to develop projects like this, design and draw a pattern, test ideas, make, take pictures, edit pictures, write the how to, etc… I’m asking for a mere 2 dollars (see side donation button for quick payment with paypal). Send me an e-mail and I’ll send a pdf file with the pattern right out to you.
Use stencil to make your own card board stencil. A cereal box works well. Trace the body and head on your fabric. Cut two at a time if possible.
Sew the head. Sew the two head pieces (right sides together) using a sewing machine. Use the edge of your foot (sewing machine foot) as a guide. Keep the edges of the fabric running along the edge of the foot. You only want a narrow seam.
Sew the body. Again with right sides together, sew around the body leaving a hole for the head. You will want a narrow seam allowance here too (not to exceed 1/4 inch).
Trim the corners (A’s in the picture). Be careful not to cut your stitching. Also, clip the inner curve a few times (at B in picture).
Turn the pieces right side out.
Add the tail. Use a mechanical pencil or other sharp object to make a hole on the backside of the mouse. Tie a knot in the cord. Put the tail through the hole you just made. The knot should be on the inside of the mouse and the tail should extend out the back of the mouse.
Stuff the body. Next add some rice into the body of the mouse until it is about 1/4th full. The rice isn’t necessary but I like the way it gives the mouse weight and help it stand. Loosely fill the rest of the mouse and the head with dryer lint.
Connect head to body. Tuck in the raw edges of the body and stick in the head. Pin in place. Hand sew together sewing around the head.
Sew on the hands, feet, and ears.
Embroider facial features. Use an embroidery needle and some black embroidery floss to make the mouth, nose and eyes. Use a French knot for each eye. Alternatively use a permanent marker to draw on the mouth, nose, eyes and whiskers.
Have a blast making the mouse a quilt, pillow, clothes, scarf, hat, whatever.