This toy uses stitches with different textures to stimulate the development of a baby’s tactile sense, which is very important in the early months. It exploits the self-striping pattern of the yarn as a cue to change stitch patterns.
The project is a sampler of some classic and very basic stitch patterns: stockinet, garter, seed, 1×1 rib, but it also uses more complex techniques – bobbles and loops/fur stitch.
This pattern is not written in the style where each little step and stitch is written out and explained. It leaves room for experiment and imagination. Please read carefully through the whole pattern before starting the project.
This pattern is not meant to serve beginner knitters. However, if you are a beginner that likes challenges and happily plunges into unknown waters, I’d be glad to help.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at silkandwool.eu (at) gmail.com.
- KnitPicks Felici – 199m/50g (218yds/1.76oz); 75% merino and 25% nylon. You can use other self-striping yarn, or make stripes yourself, using several balls of yarn in different colours. I’d recommend sport weight sock yarn that’s machine washable. Machine washable yarn is great so that the toy is easily washed. Nylon makes it more durable. Using sport weight yarn and a small-sized needles will create fabric that will not let any of the stuffing out. You’ll need 15-20 grams / 65-87 yds. I made 1 women’s sock and 1 snake from 1 skein of yarn. My snake has 21 stripes created by the yarn.
- 2mm / US 0 needles, or size that will give you a dense fabric. Use any kind of needles that allows you to knit in round with a very small circumference – dpn’s, 1 circular (for magic loop) or 2 circulars
- Machine washable stuffing. I used stuffing for pillows.
- Darning needle
- Dark scrap yarn to embroider the eyes.
- Some rustling plastic from a plastic bag – optional (to stuff part of the snake for a different feel)
- Stitch marker – optional to mark the beginning of the round.
- A small bell – optional, to make the toy a rattle, put it in with the stuffing.
Approximate finished measurements: circumference – 12 cm / 4.7 in, length – 30 cm / 11.8 in.
STITCHES AND TECHNIQUES USED
- Cast on
- Knitting in round (on dpn’s, two circulars or magic loop – any method suitable for very small diameters)
- Knit and purl
- Increase – knit front and back, make 1
- Decrease – knit two together
- Bobbles – video tutorial here
- Loop or fur stitch – video tutorial here
30 sts =10 cm/ 4 in. Exact gauge is not vital for this project. If your swatch has more stitches per cm/in your snake will be thinner, if less – it will be thicker.
Row gauge – 8 rounds in stockinet or seed stitch gives 1 stripe of colour (2cm/0.8in wide). Not essential either.