My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Almost Too Cute for Words

Today I have another book review for you, this one for Knitted Wild Animals:
15 Adorable, Easy-to-Knit Toys
by Sarah Keen.

Published by Watson-Guptill, it was released earlier this month.

**Warning: This book is almost unbearably cute. Proceed at your own risk.**

The book has a full-color gallery at the front with photos of each of the 15 wild animals in the book. They are: an elephant, giraffe, zebra, lion, giant panda, tiger, crocodile, monkey, snakes, hippo, rhino, warthog, koala, moose, and penguin.

While it is hard to choose, I think the warthog is my favorite.

How could you not love that guy?

There are a couple of group shots of all the critters together:

Adorable photo-styling!

The next section has all the patterns for the animals. Each pattern starts with a fun tid-bit of information about that animal, followed by complete instructions for making it.

Every pattern in the book calls for “any light worsted weight yarn” (a dk weight) and all call for polyester fiberfill for stuffing (but of course you could stuff with something else.

In the back of the book, the techniques section, it advises you that an acrylic yarn is a good choice for washability. All of the patterns are knit on 3.25mm needles at a gauge of 26 stitches and 34 rows to 4″, so it’s a good form gauge, appropriate for toys — you wouldn’t want a loose gauge here so that stuffing would leak out.

My first thought upon seeing these designs was “Cascade 220!” because of the amazing color range, but of course if you want a toy that will be machine washable and dryable, that wouldn’t do. But I think Encore and/or Encore DK would work great. If you go into Ravelry, you can do an advanced search of yarns that have acrylic in them and are DK and/or worsted weight and come up with lots of choices.

I estimate that the animals in this book range from about 8 to 12″ inches in size, so if you wanted to make a larger one, you could conceivably use a bulkier yarn and bigger needles. Just make sure you use the same type of yarn for all parts of the animal (if it used more than one color).

In the Techniques section of the back of the book there are step by step instructions for pretty much everything you need to know to make these animals, including casting on, and forming a knit and purl stitch, increasing and decreasing, working intarsia, binding off and assembling the pieces, and working embroidery and tassels that are needed for some of the critters.

One-stop shopping for everything you need to know.

I had a long talk with myself about how it would be much nicer of me to give this book away instead of greedily keeping it since I do not have children to knit for. My inner child screamed “But I want it!”

Lucky for you all, my inner adult won out, so I’ll give away my review copy to one of you lucky readers. (But my inner child is pouting. I want a warthog!)

Leave a comment to this post and on Tuesday, November 2 at 4:00pm Eastern Time the Random Number Generator will draw a name to receive my review copy.

Lucy sez:

“Why would she ever want one of those stuffed animals when she has me?”


  1. I’m pretty smitten with the tiger on the front cover but I agree with you; that warthog is cute!

  2. Ah, so cute! My son LOVES stuffed animals and I love knitting them for him! I’ll have to add this to my wishlist if I don’t win it. 🙂
    Sarah´s last blog post ..Worst Blogger Ever

  3. Who said you need kids! You should make yourself a warthog.

  4. Shannon H. says:

    Eeee! I love the cute! Pick me!

  5. I don’t have children, but I am in the midst of holiday knitting for my friend’s little boy and girl. I think they would love this (and it would be a good fit with the animal toy I am giving the two of them).
    Seanna Lea´s last blog post ..its that time of year again

  6. Wow. So cute. I think my 4 year old would have fun looking through that book.

  7. Oh man, I have got to knit that tiger!

  8. Ooh, those would be so fun to knit for my foster kiddos! And I still suspect that we work at the same metro stop…
    RebKnitz´s last blog post ..On the subject of work

  9. They’re adorable! I kind of want a Warthog as well. He should be named Pumba 😀
    Rose-Marie´s last blog post ..Finished objects and free patterns!

  10. What a fabulous book! My son would love if I knit him some of those critters.

  11. Make the warthog before you give it away! Or ask the recipient to make one for you.
    MicheleinMaine´s last blog post ..Pink Kleo Project Bag Set

  12. I haven’t jumped into toy making yet but those little guys look so cute. I think it maybe time.
    Rae´s last blog post ..Trust Your Instincts

  13. My 2 year old would LOVE something from that book. I don’t know if I’d share though. Too cute. I’m going to have to break my moratorim on knitting books for this one.

  14. Love, love, love those little stuffy-wuffs….and I know a couple of kids who’d really like to have them, too.

  15. Christiane says:

    I would love to be able to make these for my nephews!

  16. I’ve been eyeing that book. I know once I had it, all other knitting would be put on the back burner because my 3 boys would be begging me to make them something.

  17. I knit my first stuffed animal a year and a half ago for a baby shower and can totally see knitting lots more. And if I win, I’ll knit your inner child a warthog.
    sprite´s last blog post ..dear giants

  18. Chris’s hedgehog does need a friend. Hmmmm.
    Liz R´s last blog post ..Edward M Kennedy 1932-2009

  19. These are way too cute!! I have several children in my family & social circle, that would love these guys. I hope I’m the lucky winner!!

  20. Rebecca Robertson says:

    These would be great for my niece!

  21. Too Cute!

  22. Okay, one daughter is obsessed with Tigers, another with penguins, and I’m pretty partial to Elephants….I NEEEEEED this book!

  23. The blue hippo caught my eye. Perhaps Lucy would be more enthralled if a little catnip was added to the stuffing?

  24. Those are adorable! Thanks for the offer.

  25. I love to knit stuffed animals, and would love to have this book. I knitted a stuffed bear for my self, and he sits on top of the headboard in my spare bedroom. So you don’t have to have small children to knit stuffed animals. you should knit the warthog for yourself.

  26. Melissa C says:

    So cute! I’d love to win your copy 🙂

  27. I love knitted lovies! Thanks for hosting the give-away and PICK ME!

  28. Ha, I bet Lucy does trump the warthog. Thanks for the contest!

  29. Oh my gosh, that IS almost too cute for words! I’ve got two upcoming babies to knit for, and those would be perfect.

  30. tooo cute; thanks for offering it.

  31. Oh man.. I’m allready searching for the yarn to get started on these. If I don’t win I’ll have to order express from amazon to have these ready for x-mas. You’re amazing for offering it.

  32. Oh, I just have to get this book. My inner child and my actual offspring are in agreement here.

  33. Absolutely too cute for words. My grandchildren would love for me to knit them animals from this book. Maybe I will get lucky.

  34. This book is just so wonderful!!!!! As I’ll have a new precious baby to knit toys for next Spring, I would LOVE to win this giveaway!!! THank you for your generosity!
    Catherine´s last blog post ..Petit lapin automnal

  35. This book is too cute! I have a 2 year old daughter and a 1 year old son, so I would love to have this book. Thanks for the chance to win!

  36. That is too cute. I will have to order this if I don’t win it. A knitted moose?!

  37. I vote for the penguin…and I think you should knit a warthog as part of the review process. After all, it wouldn’t hurt to “spot check” the instructions, would it?

  38. that is an absolutely adorable book…I don’t have kids either…but it doesn’t stop me from giving stuffed aminals to my kitty-kids! 🙂

  39. That book is definitely too cute for words! My life won’t be complete until I’ve knit that giraffe.
    Crafty Pancakes´s last blog post ..Guess what

  40. These patterns are way cute and I would enjoy trying some for my four grandids.

  41. I have 2 new grandbabies that would love these animals. Both mom’s did the nursery in jungle themes 🙂

  42. Ohh.. pick me! Pick me!!

  43. I’d love to knit these toys for my little guy.
    Debra´s last blog post ..Talk like a pirate!

  44. A warthog! How freaking cool is that!

  45. If I win it, I’ll make you one. Heck, I might make you one anyway.

  46. Freya in Californeya says:

    Want!! I need a koala, like now.

  47. Windy Brown says:

    I need that book. There are all the Christmas and birthday presents for my nieces for the next three years!

  48. What a fantasticly nice book!
    If I am picked, I will happily pay the shipping costs to Denmark 🙂
    Ann´s last blog post ..Så er det vinter

  49. too cute!!!!

  50. I want them all! They are adorable!

  51. The warthog really is adorable!

  52. Christine says:

    If you like the warthog, you should make the warthog. Too many people think they can’t have fun things anymore once they’re grown. I don’t have any kids either, but I bet I buy that book before the year’s out, because those are just too cute. Besides, I know other people’s kids.

  53. Copy the warthog pattern for personal use and cast on. You knit fast enough that you’ll be done before you have to mail the book off.

  54. Completely adorable! I would love this. I love to knit toys.
    Walden´s last blog post ..How do you learn

  55. I hope I win! I’m glad your inner-adult won this time:)

  56. Celestine says:

    Today is my birthday….Don’t you think it would make a great birthday gift????Pull my name!!!!!PLEASE!!!!

  57. My son would love all of those toys!!!!
    Ivy Mae´s last blog post ..Triple Whammy

  58. I love it – I love making toys for my daughter! If I am picked I might just make a warthog for you.

  59. Absolutely adorable! I can think of some small children who may be getting extra presents this year . . . .

  60. Lois in Boise says:

    Great news about Hats For Sailors.
    I have a new granddaughter, and need this book.
    Plan on buying it if I miss the drawing.

  61. Laurie LJ says:

    These animals are adorable and my daughter would want at least one of each. Too cute!!!!!!!

  62. So cute! I think I’d make the alligator/croc

  63. Keep it. Why do you need children? But I do have 1, 3, & 6 yr. old granddaughters!

  64. My kids would love those so much!

  65. Lucy: “Why would she ever want one of those stuffed animals when she has me?”

    My dog Sunny thinks that, too, but I have a German Shepherd Christmas tree ornament anyway, because he doesn’t want to just hang around and be decorative.

    I always like having some nonstandard animals for the crêche.

  66. Oh my gosh, I NEED a koala!

  67. >>Why would she ever want one of those stuffed animals when she has me?<<

    Touché, Lucy!

  68. Those animals are seriously cute! It would be hard to make just one.

  69. I am teaching a girl to knit tonight. This would be such a perfect gift for her, when she gains a bit of confidence. I hope the random number generator is kind.
    picadrienne´s last blog post ..10 on Tuesday Freezer Edition

  70. Marie-france says:

    I want a tiger so can I have the book please??

  71. Stacy and the rugrats says:

    Hakuna Matata!! Woot!

  72. Give me your copy and I will make you a warthog!!!!

  73. If I were lucky enough to win I’d make you the warthog!

  74. This book is sooo cute. My youngest nieces will love Christmas gifts from this!

  75. Those are darling! I sure wouldn’t mind having that book.

    I agree with Lucy, though. What’s the use of a knitted warthog when you have her?

  76. That is a cute book! I don’t have kiddos but I do have two adorable nephews that need a couple of those stuffed animals. 🙂
    Kimberly´s last blog post ..The Fallen

  77. That warthog is too cute for words, but so is everything else. I could start knitting now for future grandchildren.

  78. That book looks and sounds terrific. (I think it came out in the UK earlier?) Love the warthog. I have four grandsons and a great niece — and charities — all need knitted toys, of course.

  79. Very cute!!!

  80. I agree with Lucy! Looks like a fun book!

  81. Donna in Ely says:

    Would love to win the book. My first grandchild needs a warthog.

  82. im just lori says:

    If I win, I will so totally make you the warthog. He is adorable!

  83. What is cutie! I could make good use of that one.

  84. I have three grand kids that would love any of those animals!

  85. I think you should have made it a requirement that whoever wins has to make you a warthog!
    Suzanne´s last blog post ..Woosh

  86. Oh! Those are too cute! I’d love to win! That’s for sacrificing the book to us blog readers.

  87. I agree with Lucy! She’s more than cute enough.
    However, since I don’t have Lucy, I would love the book. Knitted toys were the thing that lured me into knitting in the first place!

  88. Those are all so cute!

  89. I have a thing for koalas, basically any animal that can hug back! I would love to make that for my niece and nephew. Pick me!!!
    MJ´s last blog post ..Reasons

  90. Almost as cute as Lucy

  91. I have a new grandson, and any of these would make a great Christmas present!

  92. Who knows Lucy, who knows?

  93. Kim in Apex says:

    They are just too cute for words!!!

  94. Nibbles55 says:

    The grandkids would love any of these animals…love them myself…knit a quick one up for Lucy…she will love it with some catnip inside…

  95. The Needle Beetle says:

    This is the cutest book ever. I would love to have a copy of this to make presents for all of my littler friends! =) I love the monkey! This would e a great project to use up all of my scraps of acrylic (bleck) yarn.

  96. I think my son would love a warthog too!

  97. Too cute, my nephew and niece would love some of those animals.

  98. Love it – I would be the coolest Nana there is!
    Barbara-Kay´s last blog post ..Just Saying…

  99. What a lovely book! Thank you very much.

  100. Those are too cute! I’d love to win this book.