Creating a knitting pattern

A few months ago we decided to have a Halloween party and I decided to go all out with my costume. I came across this picture online and decided I had to be the Cheshire cat!

I looked online but couldn’t find a pattern for this type of scarf with hood (scoodie!) with ears, unfortunately the person who makes these doesn’t share a pattern (they really should I would happily have paid for it!) however, it didn’t look that difficult so I decided I must be able to work it out.

Cheshire Cat

I wanted to base my Cheshire cat on the original cartoon so I ordered some super chunky wool in pink, purple and grey and just started experimenting! I started quite enthusiastically though waned somewhat after unraveling everything for the 3rd time. This was also in part though because at that point the Halloween party was cancelled.

So I had a bit of a dilemma, I had a half finished Cheshire cat hood- did I carry on and finish it and wear it as a casual look?? Or unravel and save the wool towards something else?


If it had been only one colour I think I would have unraveled it but as it was stripes I would have had lots of small balls of wool left that would have been very annoying to work with. So I half heatedly finished it- though I didn’t sew the ears on properly, weave in all the ends and even left it with only one tassel! Definitely a Cheshire cat whose seen better days.

So there was no party, but spur of the moment on Halloween I threw it on and painted a quick creepy smile and spooked the trick or treaters!


It definitely taught me a lot about creating patterns, it was a long procedure but so exciting to produce something completely unique. I would like some pointers on creating knitting patterns though if anyone has any advice? Is it just a case of trial and error? Is there a bit more science to it? I started off working out the tension for the wool so I could then estimate how much to cast on to achieve the desired width in cms but this ended up being 3 times too big!

Again the ears I just did by trial and error, first I k2tg at each end of every row- but this made very pointy short ears so then I did a couple of foundation rows before I started decreasing and just decreased on right side rows until the last few rows- they’re still a bit more danger mouse meets minnie mouse than Cheshire cat though for my liking! I had been planning to stuff them to give a bit more body and help them stand up.

So what should I do with it now? save it for next year? Or take off the ears and wear it on those cold winter days? It is really warm…

2013-11-09 17.19.02


2013-10-31 18.38.11

The devil’s in the details:

12mm needles

Rico Essentials Big in fuschia 1 ball

Sirdar Big Softie in Graffiti and Fripp: 2 balls of each

(both from Black Sheep Wools).


11 thoughts on “Creating a knitting pattern

  1. Take the ears off and wear it ! And where’s the photo of u with the big Cheshire Cat grin ? Could you be a Christmas Cat in Cyprus?

  2. I’m so glad I found someone who is inspired to try something they like as well. My Daughter wants to learn to knit because of your hat with the ears. It is so cute great job. Would you be willing to sell a hat or the pattern for the hat with the ears? Please let me know and have an awesome day. Oh ya,. Keep the ears on its great.

    • I’m really pleased your daughter felt inspired to knit. If you click on the first picture it will take you to the original design-I think you can buy them from her. I never got a far as anything as concrete as a pattern I’m afraid-it was lot of improvising as I went along!

  3. Parabéns pela iniciativa! Assim você aprende e melhora a sua noção sobre como trabalhar malhas de tricot! E fará trabalhos maravilhosos ainda!
    Eu já fiz muitos assim sem saber o padrão e acabei aprendendo muito. Mas atualmente estou afastada das agulhas de tricô, e quero retomar isso, pois adoro esse trabalho. Eu também vou fazer esse Gato Chesire para minha filha. E vou pegar o caminho difícil, por que também farei sem o padrão ou receita. Abraço e bons trabalhos para você!

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  5. Did you happen to make note of the pattern you created for this? I came across that same picture and have been searching ever since! I’m still fairly new at knitting and crocheting, so I don’t have much faith in my ability to just create a pattern.

    • Hi Jessy,

      I did have some rough notes but I’m not sure I kept hold of them- I got distracted by bigger and brighter things!

      It was fairly straightforward though- I started off by knitting a rectangle (alternating colours) starting with a 3×3 rib for about 6 rows then switching to stocking stitch with occasional rows garter to make ridges. This made the hood so it was just a case of judging the size as I went to fit over my head. I then had to bring two halves of the longer side together and joined them- this made the back of the hood.

      I then made two long thing scarf like bits, decreasing stitches towards the end until you had a point (1/2 stitches left) these were then sewn one on each short side of the rectangle to hang down the front. I also added tassels on the pointy end.

      It was all very trial and error as I went though!

      Hope that helps a bit,


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