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Penelope The Penguin: Free Crochet Penguin Amigurumi Pattern

As I’m writing this, Chicago is in the middle of the Polar Vortex and it’s colder here than in some parts of Antarctica! I feel like a penguin huddled up with my family at home, watching movies and crocheting, and it’s pretty great. It’s way too cold to go outside, but I thought I would take this opportunity to update my penguin amigurumi pattern that I made last year. The original Penelope was super cute but I’ve learned so much about amigurumi since then that I thought it was time for a makeover!

penelope the penguin amigurumi

This is a great pattern if you’re new to making toys.  All you really need for this free penguin amigurumi pattern is to make the body and head which are basic shapes, and then add a few little bits on to complete the look. Because it doesn’t involve a lot of shaping, this penguin works up quickly. I think I made mine in just 2 or 3 hours, so it’s a great snow day project when you’re just sitting at home and want to whip something up! I also love that this penguin has a flat bottom so she can stand on her own.

penelope the penguin amigurumi

Crochet amigurumi and plushies are some of my favorite things to make. In the past, I didn’t make as many as I wanted, worried that people wouldn’t love them as much as I do. This year, though, I decided to spend more time doing what I love and I already have a few amigurumi patterns out! You can check out my recent Christmas Amigurumi here. You might also like my pattern for Shelby the Turtle below!

Shelby the Turtle Crochet Pattern

Check out the entire Christmas Buddies PDF Collection!

The full free pattern is written out below. For those who’d prefer to print the pattern and take it with you for on-the-go and to markup as you go, you can buy the inexpensive printable PDF from my Etsy and Ravelry shops. The PDF is formatted without ads or comments, so it’s easy to read.

penelope the penguin amigurumi

Materials:

Abbreviations:

Pattern Notes:

  • Skill level: Beginner
  • Sizing: 6.5 inches tall
  • Gauge: 6S x 5R per inch

 

Penelope the Penguin Amigurumi Pattern

penelope the penguin amigurumi

To make the face and body of this penguin amigurumi, I switched between black and white yarn, working my stitches over the color I wasn’t using to carry it to the next round. Just hold the unused color behind your work and make sure to trap it as you YO to finish your stitch. Keep the yarn loose, so it doesn’t pull your work inwards! If you need more help on how to change color in crochet, I have a video below to help you out.

Head:

Round 1: With yarn in Black, create a magic loop and work 6 SC into it. Place a stitch marker.

Round 2: Inc in each space by working 2 SC into each (12).

Round 3: *SC, inc* around (18).

Round 4: *SC 2, inc* around (24).

Round 5: *SC 3, inc* around (30).

Round 6: *SC 4, inc* around (36).

Round 7: *SC 5, inc* around (42).

Rounds 8-11: SC around for 4 rounds.

Round 12: SC 1 in black, 3 in white, 8 in black, 3 in white, and the rest in black.

Round 13: SC 5 in white, 6 in black, 5 in white, and the rest in black.

Round 14: SC 6 in white, 4 in black, 6 in white, and the rest in black.

Round 15: SC 1 in black, 6 in white, 2 in black, 6 in white, and the rest in black.

Rounds 16-18: SC 15 in white, and the rest in black. Insert safety eyes about 6 stitches apart between rounds 15 and 16. You can see from mine that I have 2 white stitches, 2 black and 2 white between the eyes. Secure the backings once you’re happy with the placement.

For the decrease round, use white over the white stitches and black over the black stitches. As you decrease, you’ll see the white section get smaller towards the bottom of the face.

Round 19: *SC 5, dec* around (36).

Round 20: *SC 4, dec* around (30).

Round 21: *SC 3, dec* around (24).

Round 22: *SC 2, dec* around (18). Finish adding stuffing.

Round 23: *SC, dec* around (12).

Round 24: Decrease around (6). Then cut the yarn and thread tail through a tapestry needle. Run the needle under the front loops of each stitch and secure yarn. Weave in the end.

Body:

Round 1: With yarn in Black, create a magic loop and work 6 SC into it. Place a stitch marker to mark the beginning of the round.

Round 2: Inc in each space by working 2 SC into each (12).

Round 3: *SC, inc* around (18).

Round 4: *SC 2, inc* around (24).

Round 5: *SC 3, inc* around (30).

Round 6: *SC 4, inc* around (36).

Round 7: *SC 5, inc* around (42).

Round 8: *SC 6, inc* around (48).

Attach the white yarn and work the first half of the round in white (24) and the second half in black (24). Continue working half white and half black as you decrease.

Rounds 9-18: SC for 10 rounds.

Round 19: *SC 6, dec* around (42).

Round 20: *SC 5, dec* around (36).

Round 21: SC around for 2 rounds.

Round 22: *SC 4, dec* around (30).

Rounds 23-24: SC around for 2 rounds.

Round 25: *SC 3, dec* around (24).

Rounds 26-27: SC around for 2 rounds.

Round 28: *SC 2, dec* around (18). Then BO, leaving a long tail of black for sewing, and stuff the remaining white into the body.

Wings (make  2):

Row 1: With white, chain 5. Turn, and SC 4.

Row 2: Ch 1, turn and SC 4.

Rows 3-6: Ch 1, turn. Increase once, SC to end. (9)

Rows 7-14: Ch 1, turn. Decrease once, SC to end (1). Then BO.

Row 1: With black, chain 6, leaving a long tail to sew it onto the body later. Turn, and SC 5.

Row 2: Ch 1, turn and SC 5.

Rows 3-7: Ch 1, turn. Increase once, SC to end. (10)

Rows 8-17: Ch 1, turn. Decrease once, SC to end (1).

Row 18: Hold the white wing with the black and SC around the entire thing with black yarn to join the two halves together. Then, bind off and weave in the end. Trim the excess yarn.

Nose:

Lastly in our penguin amigurumi pattern, Penelope needs a nose! Or is it a beak…?

Round 1: With the orange yarn, chain 4. Work 2 SC into the second space from the hook, SC 1, then SC 3 into the last space. Now turn the work so you’re working into the back loops, SC 1, then SC 1 into the first space worked. You should have 8 stitches in your oval now.

Rounds 2-3: SC around for 2 rounds. Then BO, leaving a long tail for sewing the nose onto the face.

Assembly

Now it’s time to put our penguin amigurumi together! First, align the head onto the body, centering the last white stitches of the head onto the body. The sides won’t line up exactly but you won’t see that once it’s all sewn together. Use the tail yarn from the body and a tapestry needle to go under each stitch and around the corresponding space on the head. Work all the way around. Then secure the yarn and weave the end inside the head.

Now position a wing onto the side of the body where the two colors meet. Use the tail yarn from the wing and a tapestry needle to sew those 5 stitches onto the side of the body. Secure the yarn and weave in the end. Repeat on the other side with the other wing.

penelope the penguin amigurumi

Finally, use the tail yarn from the nose and sew the nose in place just where the black section between the eyes meets the white. The nose should sit right at the V. Then secure the yarn and weave in the end. Trim off any excess yarn and you are done with your penguin amigurumi!

 

How cute is Penelope!

I love the way this new version turned out, and most of the difference just comes from learning more about amigurumi and have better quality yarn. It’s not more expensive, but rather than using scraps of a scratchy black and white as I did for the original version, this time I used higher quality acrylic yarn with a little bit of a shine to it. I Love this Yarn and Caron’s Simply Soft are two of the nicest yarns I’ve used for amigurumi and they cost the same as RHSS. I also used a smaller hook than I originally did which gave me neater, tighter stitches and a more finished look.

Original Penelope (January 2018)

This one! (February 2019)

If you liked this pattern, you’ll probably also like the lovey version of it too! This baby blanket is a super quick and easy way to make something that combines a friendly little plush with an easy blanket pattern. Grab the free pattern down below and you can create a really sweet gift set for a new baby or anyone that loves penguins!

Related: Penguin Lovey Baby Blanket Pattern

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Michelle

Saturday 13th of November 2021

Such a difference between the two penguins! Amigurumi is an art all on its own and boy howdy do you learn new techniques! Cannot wait to try this penguin!

Rajkumari Nandasana Devi

Friday 25th of December 2020

Thanks for the pattern which is so helpful for me as a beginner.

Sue greenley

Friday 12th of June 2020

Tried this pattern numerous time but I just cant get it to work out from row 12 to 24. Cant seem to get to the 2 black stitches in between the white on row 15 and the decreasing doesnt come in it goes in parallel lines. Where am I going wrong?

Jody

Tuesday 10th of December 2019

Hola. Beautiful little Penelope is giving me a little trouble in row 15. LOL Can you please confirm that it's only TWO sc in black between the two white areas? The previous row was five, and the two black sc will cause the entire white area to follow slide by three stitches. Is this correct?

Jody

Wednesday 11th of December 2019

I figured it out, by fudging a bit. LOL My 15-count is actually 17. But it works. Now I'm on the wings. I've made the attempt twice on the first part, and by row 6 I only have an 8-count. I don't understand how this row 6 can have 9 stitches. Please help.

Shehla Ahmed

Tuesday 10th of December 2019

Hola Jody!

It is only 2 stitches. If it's sliding to one side, you may have miscounted a stitch somewhere earlier in the round. The two black stitches are meant to center between the white sections to make the nose bridge.

Noelle Phelps

Tuesday 6th of November 2018

Can anyone help me with the nose? Everything else on this little guy is complete but I can't seem to figure out the nose!

Shehla Ahmed

Tuesday 6th of November 2018

Hi!

Sorry about the late reply. For the nose, you just make a small chain and work around and around it to make an oval. So chain 6 and work 4 SC. Then in the last space, 2 SC. Now you work into the loop on the other side of the chain and SC along there. Then just work a few more rows!

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