Penguin PJs for Tauranga

I'm sure all of you by now would've heard about the devastating oil spill in Tauranga, coming from the cargo ship Rena. From Auckland, all I can really do is watch in horror as a beautiful coastline and hugely popular summer destination is ruined, and see devastating images of New Zealand's birdlife being destroyed amongst it.

But we can help - even if it's just a little bit. I got a great email at work today about knitting Penguin PJs - little jumpers for the penguins whose feathers have been cleaned, but they are unable to produce their natural oil to keep them warm.
I'm not sure who to credit the pattern to, but Skeinz is happy to collect the knitted pjs and deliver them to the penguins. If it was you who created it, please let me know so we can thank you for your amazing work!

Penguin Jumper in 8ply  - Must be 100% Wool Yarn
1 pair 3.25mm , 1 pair of 3.75mm needles, 1 set of 3.25mm dpn’s or circular.

Cast on 36 stitches using 3.25 needles.K1, P1 to end of row. 
Repeat this row 7 times.  
Change to 3.75mm needles and K2, P2 rib. 
Work 4 rows increasing at each end of every row. (44 sts)

Continue until work measures 15 cms.

Decrease 1 st at each end of every row until 28 sts remain.
Decrease 1 st. in middle of next row (27 sts.)
Leave on needle.
Make second side the same.

Transfer the 54 sts from both pieces to 3 of the set of 4 3.25mm needles.(18 sts on each.) and work a round neck in K1 P1 rib for 10 rows.

Cast off.

Stitch up sides to decreasing to 27sts (opening for flipper). Add elastic to the top and bottom to prevent the penguins getting out of them. 
Top: 15cm of elastic; bottom 17 cm (knots allowed). Flat elastic OK.

Visit the Skeinz website to see their postal address.

This is where I have to admit that knitting a jumper for a penguin will be a big personal challenge for me - and not in terms of knitting. Penguins scare me a bit. Most people are freaked out by spiders or sharks, but no, I'm a bit wary of penguins. It's because of watching Batman Returns when I was six. 
Nightmares for two weeks. 
I can't go to Kelly Tarlton's without getting nervous. 
I can just imagine being chased by loads of crazy emperor penguins, and it's not nice! 
I'm used to the laughs, and I realize it is a very odd and unusual fear, but I will put that aside - so much that I'm even going to unravel my reversible cable scarf that's on the needles to help.


  1. The pattern was created by Marg Healy through the Tasmanian Conservation Trust over ten years ago; they ended up with 15,000 of the things in the end, years after all their penguins had been saved. The Ravelry project is saved here:


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