February 13, 2008

Janice (a free knitting pattern for a plush cat)

This pattern is in memory of our cat, Janice, who was solid black. I made this stuffed cat for my 3-year old son. The face could look better, but I'm not very talented at that part yet :)

The cat is knitted from the top down, seamlessly, and then the ears are worked last.

Here is a printer-friendly version of the pattern!

  • TLC Amore yarn in black (or whatever your color preference)... I would not substitute yarn here, unless you pick something with a lot of texture to it. There are a lot of increases and decreases, and this yarn hides ALL of that, including any flaws.
  • US size 5 dpns (or long circular for magic loop, which is what I used)
  • contrasting yarn for the face
  • stitch markers
  • stitch holders (I just used scrap yarn)
  • tapestry needle
  • polyester fiberfill (batting)

  • not important

Stitch Abbreviations:
  • CO: Cast on
  • K: Knit
  • P: Purl
  • Sts: Stitches
  • KFB: Knit front & back--Knit the stitch like you normally would, only don't slide it off the left needle. Now knit through the back loop and slide off.
  • PM: Place marker.
  • SM: Slip marker.
  • K2tog: Knit the next two stitches together.


CO 6 sts, then knit one row as if you were doing an i-cord. Divide the sts to work in the round, marking beginning of round.

Rnd 1: KFB all sts
Rnd 2 (and all even rnds): Knit.
Rnd 3: (K1, KFB) around. 18 sts total.
Rnd 5: (K2, KFB) around. 24 sts.
Rnd 7: (K3, KFB) around. 30 sts.
Continue increasing 6 sts per round in this manner, until there are 54 sts on the needles.
Knit 4 rounds even.

Begin decrease...
Rnd 1: (K7, K2tog) around.
Rnd 2 (and all even rnds): Knit.
Rnd 3: (K6, K2tog) around.
Rnd 5: (K5, K2tog) around.
Decrease in this manner until you have 24 sts.

Neck & Shoulders...
Rnd 1: Knit.
Rnd 2: (K2, KFB) around (32 sts)
Rnd 3: (K3, KFB) around (40 sts)
Rnd 4: (K4, KFB) around (48 sts)
Rnd 5: K2, PM, K20, PM, K4, PM, K20, PM, K2
Rnd 6: K1, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K2, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K1
Rnd 7: K2, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K4, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K2
Rnd 8: K3, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K6, KFB, SM, K20, SM, KFB, K3

Rnd 9: K5, then move those sts to a st holder. K20, Sl next 10 sts to another holder, K20, place next 5 sts onto the first st holder. You should have 10 sts on each of the two st holders.
Rnd 10: Knit (40 sts)
Rnd 11: (K4, KFB) around (48 sts)
Knit 3 rounds even
Rnd 15: (K5, KFB) around (56 sts)
Knit 3 rounds even
Rnd 19: (K6, KFB) around
Knit 3 rounds even

Begin Decrease...
Rnd 1: (K6, K2tog) around
Knit 3 rows even.
Rnd 5: (K5, K2tog) around
Knit 3 rows even.
Rnd 9: (K4, K2tog) around
Knit 3 rows even.

Form tail...
Rnd 13: K3, K2tog, K3, PM, K4, PM, K1, K2tog, (K3, K2tog) to end.
Rnd 14: K7, SM, KFB, K2, KFB, SM, K to end.
Rnd 15: K7, sl 6 sts between markers onto st holder, K to end. (29 sts)
Rnd 16: Knit.

Form legs...
Rnd 1: K1, PM, K12, PM, K4, PM, K to last 3 sts, PM, K3
Rnd 2: KFB, SM, K12, SM, KFB, K2, KFB, SM, K9, SM, KFB, K2
Rnd 3: K2, SM, K12, SM, K3, KFB, K1, KFB, K9, SM, KFB, K1, KFB, K1
Rnd 4: K2, SM, K12, SM, K3, KFB, K2, KFB, K1, SM, K9, SM, KFB, K2, KFB, K to end.
Rnd 5: K2 and slip those two onto a st holder, SM, K12, Sl 10 sts between markers onto st holder, knit to last marker, slip last 8 sts onto the first st holder.

At this point, stop and fill with the batting (not too full, because you'll distort the shape).

Legs & Tail:
Slide the sts from the holder onto the needles, and pick up 2 sts (or more, to avoid leaving a hole). Work stockinette stitch in the round until desired length. Fill with batting (I left the tail empty), break yarn, and pull through remaining sts. Pull tight and using the tapestry needle, weave in the ends.

Ears (make 2):
CO 12 sts.
Row 1: Knit.
Row 2: Purl to last st, then turn.
Row 3: K1, then pass the unworked st from the right needle OVER the one you just knitted and off the needle (decrease made). Knit across to last 2 sts, K2tog.
Repeat rows 2-3 until there are 2 sts left. K2tog, BO.
Using the tapestry needle, place the ears into position and sew into place.

Like I said, I'm no expert with this part :) Just embroider or duplicate stitch a face on your kitty.

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