This sweet knitted panda is such fun to make and makes an adorable addition to a nursery or crafted animal collection. Both loom knitting and standard knitting instructions included in the project sheet.
GETTING STARTED Download the PDF for a set of portable project instructions. If you prefer to knit this project without the looms, these instructions are also included in the PDF; the loom knitting version is presented below. Read through all of the instructions before beginning.
#4 medium weight yarn: Caron Simply Soft, 100% acrylic, 4 oz each of two colors: #001 Vanilla (A) and #0012 Passion (B)
Boye® 24-peg round BLUE loom,
Boye® 12-peg Flower Loom,
Boye® 8-peg spool loom
Optional: Safety Eyes and Nose (Attached eyes and nose may pose a choking hazard for children younger than three years old. For infants and young children use yarn to embroider eyes & nose.)
See the Supply List for items you can purchase here.
GAUGE 10 sts x 20 rows = 4" (10 cm)
SPECIAL STITCHES Double Stitch (DS): EW loom (or desired number of pegs) 3 times then knit one loop over two loops. After the initial setup, since you already have two loops on each peg, you only e-wrap the loom once, but continue to knit one loop over two loops. This produces denser and less stretchy knit fabric than regular knit or e-wrap stitches. Drawstring Cast On: Secure yarn tail to anchor peg. Bring working yarn back between the first and last pegs; bring it forward between pegs 1 and 2; bring yarn back between pegs 2 and 3 then forward between pegs 3 and 4. Continue to alternate wrapping the loom in a zigzag pattern until the entire loom is wrapped. Next, wrap the yarn around the front of all pegs as for flat knitting. Do NOT e-wrap! Half the pegs will have two 2 loops and half will have one loop. Knit off the pegs with two loops. All pegs now have one stitch on them and you are ready to begin your pattern. After knitting a few rounds, release the yarn tail and gently pull to close the cast on edge.
NOTES Panda is made in separate pieces on three different looms and sewn together for assembly.
DIRECTIONS BODY Using the 24-peg loom and two strands of Color A held as one, CO using the Drawstring Cast On. Rnds 1-4: FK all rounds. Rnd 5: *EW peg two times. Knit one lp over two lps. Rep from * on all pegs around. Note: Since the bottom lp was a flat knit st, the tension may be very tight on this round so it is easier to wrap and knit each stitch individually. On the following rounds you may wrap the entire loom before knitting off. Rnds 6-25: DS around (i.e., e-wrapping once and knitting one lp over two lps). At the end of Rnd 25 close the CO edge by cinching the drawstring closed. Use a crochet hook to pull the drawstring to the inside and fasten off. Rnd 26: FK one lp over two lps. Rnd 27: FK two lps over one lp. Rnds 28-30: FK. BO using the gathered BO method, but do not close completely. Stuff the body then finish closing the BO edge.
HEAD Follow directions for Body, but only knit 16 DS rounds instead of 20 as for body. Close cast on edge. Stuff lightly, but do not close bind off edge yet.
EYEPATCHES (MAKE 2) Using one strand of color B and the 12-peg flower loom, CO using the Drawstring Cast On. Rnds 1-2: FK all rounds. Flat panel BO all stitches. Cut yarn leaving a long tail.Sew ending stitch to beginning stitch to form a smooth outer edge. Close the CO edge by cinching the drawstring closed and being careful not to twist the piece. Pull the drawstring to wrong side and fasten off.
EARS (MAKE 2) Note: The Drawstring Cast On uses all pegs, but the ears are knitted as a flat panel. Using one strand of color B and the 12-peg flower loom, CO using the drawstring CO method starting with the yarn in front of peg one. After zigzag wrapping loom, bring yarn around peg 12 to front and follow directions for Rows 1-3. Rows 1-3: Slip first peg, FK remaining pegs in row. Bind off using Flat panel BO. Gather drawstring cast on edge to form half circle. Fasten off. Tie beginning and ending yarn tails together. Weave in one tail and leave one tail to sew ears to head.
MUZZLE Using the 12-peg flower loom and two strands of color A, CO all 12 pegs using Drawstring Cast On. Rnds 1-5: FK all rounds. Close the beginning CO edge by cinching drawstring closed. Use crochet hook to pull drawstring to the inside and fasten off. Cut yarn leaving a long yarn tail. Use Gathered Bind Off and remove stitches from loom, stuff muzzle and add safety nose or embroider nose as desired. Cinch BO edge closed and fasten securely; leave long tail for sewing to head.
ARMS AND LEGS (MAKE 4) Using the 8-peg spool loom with two strands of color B held as one, CO using Drawstring Cast On. Rnds 1-15: FK around. Close CO edge by cinching drawstring closed; pull tail to inside and tie off. BO using Gathered BO; stuff with polyfill then cinch closed leaving a long tail for sewing to body.
FINISHING Using the picture as a guide, embroider eyes in center of eye patches if desired then position patches on head and sew in place. For safety eyes, push safety eye into the center of the eye patch. Position the patch on head; push stem through the knit fabric then attach fastener to underside to secure. Repeat for second eye. After securing both eyes, thread a yarn needle and sew patches in place. Position muzzle between eyes and sew in place. Finish stuffing head and close remaining edge. Sew ears to the sides of the head. Sew head to body. Sew arms and legs in place. Weave in all ends.