Wednesday, July 30

Octopuss--a free cat toy pattern from Zoe!

Here's a new free cat toy pattern to try out. Zoe Stevens-Lavigne is the designer. She contacted me recently about Octopuss which she says was inspired by my cat toy patterns. Isn't it cute? Zoe doesn't have a blog or a webplace to publish the pattern so she asked if I would host it for her. I'm very happy to do so. Have fun knitting this! Let me know if you have any problems or find any errors in the pattern.

Octopuss — A Cat Toy

Knitting in the round on dpns
Picking up stitches
Increases (kf&b)
Decreases (k2tog)

~15 yards worsted weight yarn
4 or 5 DPNs, size 6 (4.0 mm) or 7 (4.5 mm)
3 stitch markers
A yarn needle
Poly fill or yarn clippings

Cast on 7 stitches using Emily Ocker’s circular cast on. If you don’t know how to do this visit this site.

Once you have knit several rows, pull the cast on yarn tail to close the opening. Secure, weave in tail, and cut off end.

Round 1: K2, insert marker, k2, insert marker, k3, insert marker (use a different color for the end of round). (7 sts)
Rounds 2-12: Knit, increase one stitch (kf&b) in the stitch before each stitch marker (increase three stitches each round). (40 sts)
Rounds 13-21: Knit, decrease (k2tog) on the last two stitches before each stitch marker (decrease three stitches each round). (16 sts)

Remove the stitch markers as you go. You will be knitting the tentacles from the 16 sts remaining (2 sts per tenty) in I-Cord. You could also crochet them if you prefer.

[Crochet instructions: Use these in place of Steps 1-6 below. Use 2 sts per tenty. Place both stitches on a crochet hook. Crochet 12 chains. Turn and slip stitch back up the chain. Join to starting 2 sts before starting next 2 sts. Continue around until all stitches are used up.]

Step 1: Re-arrange the sts on your DPNs so you have two stitches on one of the needles.

Step 2: Knit 10 rows of I-cord on these 2 stitches. You can make your octopus tenties longer if you’re so inclined.

Step 3: K2tog at the end of the tenty. You will have one stitch left. With your right needle, pick up 10 loops along the underside of the tentacle onto your needle plus one stitch between the tenty you just completed and the next one. The 11 picked-up stitches are after the last stitch at the end of the tentacle. (You will knit that stitch first).

Step 4: Knit up the leg, binding off as you go. When you are done knitting up the leg, you will have one stitch left on your right working needle from the last stitch you picked up.

Step 5: After knitting your first tentacle, there will be 14 stitches left on your DPNs (plus one on your working needle). Place the next two stitches on a free DPN. Knit 1 onto your working needle. Pass the previous stitch over the stitch you just knit. Knit 1 more stitch so you have 2 on your needle.

Step 6: Repeat steps 1-5 until you have 8 legs and only one stitch left.

Closing the Bottom of the Head:
Pick up approximately 19 stitches around the inside of the octopus head with your DPNs. With the 1 stitch left from working the legs, you will have 20 sts.

Rounds 1-3: k2, k2tog around. (10 sts)

Cut yarn, leaving a 6" tail. Place yarn end through a needle. Run the needle through all the stitches on your needles removing them from your knitting needles.

Stuff the head with poly fill and catnip through the opening. Pull yarn tail tight to close, fasten securely, and cut off yarn end.

If you like, you can embroider a face on the toy.

© Zoe Stevens-Lavigne
June 2008
All rights reserved.

1 comment:

Purls Before Swine said...

Hi! I wanted to let you know that I used this pattern to make a Christmas present for my nephew who is in love with sea creatures and lizards. I started the same as your pattern, using Lion Brand Homespun yarn and size 8 dpns. I kept increasing until it was about 5" diameter, and then knit even until it was about 6" long. The icord tentacles looked terrible, so I used 5 stitches but still used the icord technique. I finished it off pretty much like you did, stuffed it with fiberfill, but not stuffed tight (after all, the octopus has to collapse that head to get in and out of tight spaces!) and sewed on two huge pearl beads for eyes. It turned out so great! I would love to send you a picture, but don't know how to attach one to this comment.