A Festive Family of Penguins

A family of holiday penguins

A family of holiday penguins

In my quest for more holiday spirit, I decided to make some festive penguin ornaments for my tree. Who doesn’t like penguins, right?

Last year I bought some old wool sweaters at the thrift store and turned them into felt (explanations how to do that are here). I made a few ornaments last year, but what people don’t tell you when you start this is that sweaters are BIG. You’ll be getting a lot of felt out of this deal. To kind of get an idea for how much felt you’ll have, I’ll show you how much I started with and ended with. Even though I used a whole bunch of the sweaters, there’s still a whole bunch more left for next year!

Mostly unused, there's a bit taken off in the back that you can't see

Mostly unused, there’s a bit taken off in the back that you can’t see

After I made four ornaments (one was too unsightly to put up here!)

After I made four ornaments (one was too unsightly to put up here!)

Because I had one dark sweater and one light sweater, it made it easy to make my penguins. If you are felting your own sweaters, you should aim for a light and a dark sweater as well, though if you get a white sweater, basically any other color will work with it.

On to the pattern!

Materials:

– Felt in two contrasting colors, about a 4″ x 9″ block for each

– a small amount of black and green felt

– worsted weight yarn in red (or crimson), green, white, yellow, and black.

– yarn needle

– needle and thread color that’s similar to the lighter color.

Mr. Fancypants Q. Penguin

Mr. Fancypants Q. Penguin

Mr. Fancypants Q. Penguin

Mr. Fancypants Q. Penguin enjoys dressing up and going to holiday parties. He can often be found with a monocle and a bottle of champagne. He is considered very distinguished among his relatives.

First cut a 3-4" tall peaut-shaped base for your penguin

Step 1: cut a 3-4″ tall peanut-shaped base for your penguin

Step 2: draw an outline of a slightly smaller peanut shape on your lighter color (I used a marker for this). After you cut it out, make a slight indentation in the forehead

Step 2: draw an outline of a slightly smaller peanut shape on your lighter color (I used a marker for this). After you cut it out, make a slight indentation in the forehead

Step 3a: To make eyes, use a bit of black yarn and yarn needle. Starting in the back, bring the yarn through and spiral it around where the yarn comes out of the fabric.

Step 3a: To make eyes, use a bit of black yarn and yarn needle. Starting in the back, bring the yarn through and spiral it around where the yarn comes out of the fabric.

Step 3b: Continue looping the yarn around where the yarn comes out of the felt, bringing it behind the original loop. Insert yarn needle in felt through the space on the right.

Step 3b: Continue looping the yarn around where the yarn comes out of the felt, bringing it behind the original loop. Insert yarn needle in felt through the space on the right.

Step 3c: Pull the yarn up tight against the yarn needle, then pull the yarn needle through the felt to the wrong side.

Step 3c: Pull the yarn up tight against the yarn needle, then pull the yarn needle through the felt to the wrong side.

Step 3d: Tighten the yarn all the way, and without fastening off, make the other eye in the same way.

Step 3d: Tighten the yarn all the way, and without fastening off, make the other eye in the same way.

Step 4a: Still without fastening off, make a loop at the penguin's chin.

Step 4a: Still without fastening off, make a loop at the penguin’s chin.

Step 4b: Cut a small bowtie out of black (or dark) felt, and insert it into the loop. Draw the loop tight, and fasten off on the wrong side of the felt. (remember, no one will see what's back there, so more secure is better!)

Step 4b: Cut a small bowtie out of black (or dark) felt, and insert it into the loop. Draw the loop tight, and fasten off on the wrong side of the felt. (remember, no one will see what’s back there, so more secure is better!)

Step 5: Using yellow yarn, make a triangle for a beak.

Step 5: Using yellow yarn, make a triangle for a beak.

Step 6: Cut a miniature top hat out of black (or dark) felt.

Step 6: Cut a miniature top hat out of black (or dark) felt.

Step 7: Whip stitch the hat onto the back of the penguin's head with your regular needle and thread. At this point you should also whip stitch the light colored penguin half onto the dark colored base. (I'm not sure why I didn't think to take a picture of this for any of them...)

Step 7: Whip stitch the hat onto the back of the penguin’s head with your regular needle and thread. At this point you should also whip stitch the light colored penguin half onto the dark colored base. (I’m not sure why I didn’t think to take a picture of this for any of them…)

And you’re done!

Mrs. Holly Penguin

Mrs. Holly Penguin

Mrs. Holly Penguin

Mrs. Holly Penguin loves to bake and spread holiday cheer among all the penguins. She is also fond of decorating, and is always ready with a Happy Holidays! and a cup of eggnog for those who stop by during the holiday season.

Repeat steps 1-3 and 5 (skip step 4!)

Step 6a: Cut a v-shaped small piece of green felt

Step 6a: Cut a v-shaped small piece of green felt

Step 6b: Make three holly berries to attach the green piece of felt to your light-colored penguin piece. (I made the holly berries the same way I made the eyes)

Step 6b: Make three holly berries to attach the green piece of felt to your light-colored penguin piece. (I made the holly berries the same way I made the eyes)

Whip stitch the light colored felt down to the dark-colored base and fasten off.

Winter Penguin

Winter Penguin

Winter Penguin

Usually called Winnie by all his friends, Winter Penguin is always ready for extreme snow sports! Whether it’s skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing or just playing in the snow, Winnie is ready for anything.

Repeat steps 1-3 and 5 (skip step 4!)

Step 6: Cut 2 each of red, green, and white yarn, about 15" long. Knot one end, braid to the other and knot the other end. Cut the ends of the yarn so that they're of equal length.

Step 6: Cut 2 each of red, green, and white yarn, about 15″ long. Knot one end, braid to the other and knot the other end. Cut the ends of the yarn so that they’re of equal length.

Wrap the scarf around the penguin’s neck and whip stitch the light colored front down to the dark colored base, sewing the scarf into the position you want.

I just put the metal tree-hooks through the top of their heads, but if you want to sew a yarn hanger, go for it. Since we don't have a tree yet, here they're shown hanging on my lamp.

I just put the metal tree-hooks through the top of their heads, but if you want to sew a yarn hanger, go for it. Since we don’t have a tree yet, here they’re shown hanging on my lamp.

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~ by oflions on December 13, 2012.

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