Do you love knitting? Fancy a new project? Try your hand at knitting one of these cute little wooly elephants, and help raise funds for our new hospice.

Skanda Vale Hospice is run by the monks and nuns of Skanda Vale Monastery – a sanctuary for hundreds of birds and animals. Standing head and shoulders above this menagerie of beasties is our beloved temple elephant Valli.

Elephants are close to many people’s hearts. Valli has greatly enriched the lives of many of our patients and volunteers – meeting her can be a moving and memorable ‘bucket list’ kind of encounter.

 

Valli inspired Cath (our Clinical Nurse Manager) to take up her knitting needles once again, and create a whole herd of baby wooly elephants. They’re selling like hot cakes – Cath can’t keep up with demand, so we really need your help!

Using the pattern below (or any other pattern if you prefer) choose your colour yarn and get knitting. When your elephant is finished please post it to us – or sell it on our behalf. We recommend between £8 and £12 as a guide price. Here’s the address to post it to:

Sister Gemma
Skanda Vale Hospice
Saron
Llandysul
SA44 5DY

If it’s not practical to post us your elephant then you could always sell them locally and donate the proceeds to the hospice.

Please contact Sister Gemma: [email protected] if you have any questions. Have fun!

Good to know

100% of the money raised from your labour of love goes to help equip our brand new 6 bedroom inpatient unit.

Here’s the knitted elephant pattern:

Size:
  • Height approx 25cm
Materials:
  • 100g double knitting yarn.
  • Pair of 3.75mm knitting needles.
  • Nonflammable washable toy stuffing.
  • Black embroidery yarn.
Body & legs
  • *Cast on 16 sts for front leg. St st 16 rows. *Break off yarn, leave sts on a spare needle. Rep from * to *.
  • Next row K16, cast on 8 sts, K16 sts from spare needle. 40 sts. **St st 21 rows.
  • Shape back and neck.
  • Next row Cast off 4 sts, K to last 2 sts, K2 tog.
  • Next row P2 tog, P to end. Rep last 2 rows 5 more times. Cast off rem 4 sts. Work other side to match, reversing shapings for back and neck.
Underbody
  • Make 2. Work as body and legs to **. St st 7 rows. Cast off.
Head
  • Cast on 6 sts for trunk. St st 6 rows, inc one st at each end of every row. 18 sts.
  • Next row K6 and leave these sts on a safety pin for end of trunk, cast off 3 sts, K to end. Work on last 9 sts. St st 15 rows. Break off yarn. Leave these 9 sts on a spare needle.
  • Shape neck. Cast on 14 sts for neck edge. St st 2 rows. Inc one st at each end of next 4 K rows. 22 sts. P 1 row.
  • Next row K22 cast on 3 sts, K across 9 sts of trunk from spare needle. 34 sts. Dec one st at beg of next 8 P rows. 26 sts. K 1 row. Mark each end of last row. Dec one st at each end of next 7 rows. Cast off rem 12 sts. St st 3 rows across 6 sts on a safety pin. Cast off. Work 2nd piece to match, reversing shapings for trunk and front head.
Head gusset
  • Cast on 2 sts. St st 2 rows.
  • Next row Inc in each st. Inc one st at each end of next 3 K rows. 10 sts. St st 12 rows. Dec one st at each end of next 4 P rows. 2 sts. K 1 row. Cast off.
Ears
  • Make 2 Cast on 20 sts. Work in g st, inc one st at each end of next 6 alt rows. K 14 rows. Dec one st at each end of next 3 rows. 26 sts. Cast off.
Soles
  • Make 4 Cast on 6 sts. St st 2 rows. Inc one st at each end of next 2 K rows. St st 5 rows. Dec one st at each end of next 2 K rows. 6 sts. P 1 row. Cast off.
Tail
  • Cast on 6 sts. St st 16 rows. Next row [K2 tog] 3 times. Thread yarn through rem 3 sts, draw up and secure.

To make up

Sew cast-off edges of underbody pieces tog. Sew body legs to underbody legs, leaving cast-on edges open, then sew soles to cast-on edges. Sew rem sides of body tog, leaving neck open, then stuff firmly. Sew head gusset to head between markers. Sew rem head and trunk seams, leaving cast-on edges open for neck. Stuff firmly and sew to body. Make a pleat in centre of cast-off edge of each ear and sew to head. Join tail seam and sew to body. Embroider eyes.

Download the pattern as a printable PDF

Reversing the pattern – a few pointers

Some of our knitters have had trouble working out how to reverse the pattern. Here are some suggestions:

  • Cast on 6 sts follow pattern until you have 18 sts.
  • Next row: K9, cast off 3sts, K6. St st 3 rows across these 6 sts. Cast off.
  • Rejoin wool to 9 sts, st st 15 rows. Break off wool leaving 9 sts on spare needle.

Follow rest of pattern as shaping for neck until you have 22 sts. Break off wool. Slip both pieces of knitting on the same needle, with right side facing with the trunk the first piece to be knitted. Rejoin wool to 9 sts for trunk. Knit across 9 sts of trunk, cast on 3 sts and knit across 22 sts of neck. 34 sts. (you should now have the trunk and neck in reverse). Follow rest of pattern but decrease one st at end of next P row.

But you can also do the following;
  • Cast on 6 sts follow pattern until you have 18 sts.
  • Next row: K9, cast off 3sts, K6. St st 3 rows across these 6 sts. Cast off.
  • Rejoin wool to 9 sts, st st 15 rows. Break off wool and make sure you slip 9 sts onto needle with wrong side of work facing. (You can use the needles you are using if you work out which needle will be the right needle to join the pieces with wrong side facing)
  • Knit neck piece as instructed until you have 22 stitches, cast on 3 sts at end of P row so you have wrong side of work facing. P across 9 sts for trunk.
  • K 1 row, (the trunk being the first part you knit)
  • Next row: P to last 2 sts. P2tog. This now is the first of the P row decreases, but at the end of the row rather than at the beginning. Continue to follow pattern.
Download reversing instructions as a printable Excel Doc

Knit an elephant – some helpful photos

What do you think of our wooly elephants? Please share your thoughts below!