Thursday, June 9, 2011

Animal Slippers

   I've always wanted some of these! ~ Ursula, age 2


Grandmas make slippers.  Knitting grandmas do at any rate.  So it seemed to me that when  going to visit my grandkids I should bring them home made slippers.  The trouble is that I wasn't sure they would appreciate them ~ until I saw felted bunny slippers in a book called Knit One, Felt Too by Kathleen Taylor.    Ms. Taylor's slippers called for a lovely mohair yarn, which would make fuzzier slippers, but as I didn't have any of that available, I used her idea to design my own slippers using plain ol' worsted weight wool ~ and the kids love them.

Written for size 2 or (4).
Size 10 1/2 needles,
Worsted weight 100% wool: 1 3 oz ball of main color for each pair of slippers.
Small amount of any worsted weight yarn for tails and bunny ears.
Yarn of choice for embroidery.
The gauge isn't crucial because the size is approximate and can be adjusted in the felting process.  Mine is around 3 stitches per inch.

Cast on 36 stitches.
Knit in garter stitch for 7 1/2" (8 1/2").

Decrease for toe:
ROW 1: k4, k2 tog across.
ROWS 2, 4, 6, 8 k across.
ROW 3: k3, k2 tog across. (24 st.)
ROW 5: k2, k2 tog across.
ROW 7: k1, k2 tog across. (12 st.)
ROW 9: k2 tog across.

Cut yarn, leaving 10" tail.  Thread yarn onto sewing needle and draw through the 6 remaining stitches.  Pull tight.  Then sew up slanted toe edge, forming a slipper.  Sew 2" or so over instep.  (I didn't sew far enough and had to sew up a little farther after felting.)

Bear Ears:  Make 4
Cast on 5.
Knit one row.  Purl one row.
Knit front and back of each stitch across. (10 st.)
Purl one row. Knit one row. Purl one row.
Continuing in stockinette st, on each knit side row, knit the first two and last two stitches together until you have 4 stitches.  Then, purl 2 tog across. Cut yarn and run it through the two remaining stitches.
Felt these with the slippers.

To felt:  Place slippers in a pillowcase and tie shut.  (I use a coated rubber hair band to tie the pillowcase shut.) Place in washing machine with a heavy piece of fabric to increase agitation.  Set washer on lowest volume setting, hot wash, cold rinse.  Add a little soap.  It may take more than one washing to get the right size.

Make a 3" pompon and attach to the back of each slipper.  Embroider faces as you see in the pictures, using French knots for eyes, satin stitch for the snout, with a big black x for the bear.
For the bunny whiskers, thread a piece of yarn on a needle, sew it through the front of the slipper and cut leaving both ends free. Knot each end.

Bunny ears:
Make 4
I tried to felt bunny ears also, but they were too narrow and stuck together like a tube.  These are not felted:
Cast on 4.
Knit front and back of first stitch.  Knit 2, Kfb of last stitch. (6st.)
Work 6 rows in stockinette st. On 7th row SSk (Slip 2 stitches and knit together through the back loop.), K2, K2 tog. (4st.)
Purl one row.
SSK, K2tog (2st.)
Purl 2 tog..
Cut yarn and draw through.
The edges will curl forward, so the purl side is the inside of the ear.


  1. So very cute! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Ursula's comment is equally as cute as the slippers! ;-)

  3. I am going to make a few pairs of these. This is such a cool pattern! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Hi, These are lovely but I'm struggling a bit to convert the US sizing to the UK system. At what kind of age would you expect a child to wear a US size 2? Am I right in thinking that these are for an older child and not a pre-schooler? I think I've worked out the sizing but it's just that the comment from the two year old is throwing me. Many thanks!

  5. A size 2 is for a 2-yr old, and size 4 for a 4-yr old. I"m sorry that I did not record the finished sizes, so I could give you the lengths in cm.

  6. Fantastic. I'm wanting them for a two year old so that's just perfect. Thanks for your reply.

  7. Thank you! Just finished a first pair and they are so cute and cozy!

  8. These are fantastic! Animal Slippers can be fun for the whole family. I bought my kids a pair and they are all about them, they literally wear them all the time.