As part of an ambitious project to knit the entire Hungry Caterpillar food set, I needed to knit a cocoon (or chrysalis). Much like the salami, I had a look online and couldn’t find any patterns so decided to make my own. The idea behind this, and because Felix requested it specifically, is that the caterpillar can go into the cocoon, it can then be hung up, taken down, and a butterfly can ‘fly’ out.
So, it’s large enough for both the caterpillar and butterfly to fit in and has a draw string to open and close one end as well as be used to hang up the cocoon.
As always, this pattern can be modified quite easily – add more increases to make it larger, add more of the purl/knit row segments to make it longer, or use a larger needle size. To make smaller, use a smaller needle, remove segments, reduce the number of increases.
Overall, have fun!
-4.5mm double-pointed needles
-Two strands of DK weight yarn held together throughout
-Colour B (a darker red/brown for the salami skin)
-Tapestry/yarn needle for seaming
St(s) = Stitch(es)
CO = Cast on
K = knit
P = purl
YO = Bring yarn forward and loop around the needle to create an extra stitch
Inc = Increase by your preferred method (I prefer to M1)
M1 = Increase by inserting the left needle from front to back into the horizontal strand between the two stitches: Knitting the stitch through the back loop
K2tog = Knit 2 stitches together
P2tog = Purl 2 stitches together
Not important, as long as a thick fabric is achieved
The cocoon is worked in the round from the opening using two strands of DK to give a more mottled/natural look. For my cocoons I used one strand throughout and then for each raised portion, changed the second strand to a different brown to make it look more like the one in the Very Hungry Caterpillar book.
Note, the pattern is worked in 5 purl rows followed by 3 knit rows to get the raised/ridged effect. Be sure to pay attention to the pattern!
CO30 sts, divide across four needles marking the start of the row with stitch marker (30sts)
1 – P 1 row
2 – (YO, P2tog) X 15
3 – P 1 row
4 – (M1, P5) X 6 (36sts)
5 – P 1 row
6 – (M1, K6) X 8 (42sts)
7 – 8 – K 2 rows
9 – 13 – P 5 rows
16 – 18 – K 3 rows
19 – 23 – P 5 rows
24 – 26 – K 3 rows
27 – 31 – P 5 rows
32 – 34 – K 3 rows
35 – 39 – P 5 rows
40 – 42 – K 3 rows
43 – 47 – P 5 rows
48 – 50 – K 3 rows
51 – P 1 row
52 – (P5, P2tog) X 6 (36sts)
53 – P 1 row
54 – (P4, P2tog) X 6 (30sts)
55 – P 1 row
56 – (K3, K2tog) X 6 (24sts)
57 – K 1 row
58 – (K2, K2tog) X 6 (18sts)
59 – P 1 row
60 – (P1, P2tog) X 6 (12sts)
61 – P 1 row
62 – (P2tog) X 6 (6sts)
Cut yarn and thread through remaining stitches to close.
Create a braid long enough to go through the holes created by the YO’s at the opening of the cocoon, then thread through the holes so cocoon can be closed. Alternatively, create a thin i-cord to do the same.
Pattern copyright of foxymitts.co.uk