Saturday, January 7, 2012

a knitted Mr Robin

Yesterday the kids were playing in the garden when Rebe called me out. I thought they were going to show me how fast they could grass sledge down the hill (hence I had a my camera). Instead the kids showed me a little dead robin, I suppose one of the cats got it. Poor Benny was so upset. He has a particular relationship with 'Mr Robin'. They have been friends for years and Benny always looks out for him in the garden. So we came in and hugged and talked about Mr Robin and we did a few tribute crafts. I find making things a kind of therapy with the kids. It is a good way to physically process things that happen to them.
Anyway, we started off with little paper robins to hang at the window.

We made them out of baking paper and they fly sweetly when there is a breeze on them. Rebe then asked if we could knit a robin for Benny so he would have one to hold. This is what we came up with (complete with a couple of worms):

And this is how to make one:

Knitted Robin
You need: scrap of brown yarn, scraps of red yarn or red felt, tiny beads and a tiny piece of yellow felt.

Cast On 18 stitches.
Knit one row
Decrease one stitch at the beginning of every row until you have one stitch left on your needles. Bind off

Cast on 5 stitches
Knit 12 rows
Bind off

Now you need to fold the body as follows and stitch up using some brown yarn.

Fold A1 to B1.
Stitch for about 1 inch or half way along the triangle (A2 and B2).
Fold A3 to A4 and stitch about half way along (the two flaps left at the sides are your wings).

Stuff with wool roving and close the hole all the way across.

To make the red breast we made lots of red stitches on the tummy with some red yarn. The kids did this bit. They always like to join in with these making projects, and I always encourage them. You could stitch on an oval of red felt here instead if you liked.

Now take the head piece and fold in half, stitch along the edges and stuff with a little roving.

Now sew the head onto the top of the body above the red breast and between the wings.
Sew on little beads (or perhaps use little scraps of black felt) and little felt beak.
Don't forget to give them a couple of worms to eat.

The kids cheered up some with these robins and spent a good deal of time making them nests out of any little cup like things they could find. I think these would look sweet as a wee mobile or hanging some from branches as part of our nature table!

And guess what, this morning while we were having breakfast a little robin hopped off the wall into the garden to eat some nuts we had scattered. Benny is happy again :-)


  1. such a cute little bird! you are very creative! I love it! thanks for the instructions xx

  2. What a precious little robin! That was so thoughtful of you to do that to help Benny. I agree with you about dealing with grief. Children's emotion needs to be validated, even if it might seem silly to adults. We lost a two day old chick last year, and Deirdre still gets sad about the chick not being able 'to grow up big' like her sisters.

  3. Oh, Benny! Oh I could hug and kiss him! Poor little fella!
    You are right about little ones creating being theraputic, I have found that to be so with my little ones. My children will draw things out that are on their minds, whether something bothering them, or something they are simply curious about.
    THank you for this wonderful pattern for the robin! Robins are a favorite of ours too!

  4. Hi Pip, thanks :-) Nicole, yes I think it is probably more helpful in the long run to let them work these things through.
    Hi Mel, you mentioning that made me remember Rebe when Tasha our cat died, she drew picture after picture. I wish us grown ups could be more open to dealing with our negaitive emotions in the ways kids do. Your welcome for the pattern, I remember about the robins ;-) x

  5. Laura, poor Benny. You showed such respect and presence for both you and your children. Hope you see lots of robins in the garden for a bit.

  6. What a lovely idea. The robin is sweet, such a simple pattern.

  7. aw thanks Elizabeth, hope you enjoy it Marjorie, thanks for stopping by :-)