ODDknit - Free Knitting Patterns - Beetle
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Beetle (R2)

'Beetle' Beetle

'Beetle' is a traditional party game played with pen and paper. It can also be played with this cuddly bug. The parts are held together by Velcro for easy assembly.

A printable version of this pattern is available.

You will need:

  • double knit yarn in black and one colour
  • toy stuffing
  • Velcro
  • 4 x double ended needles (3mm)
  • tapestry needle
  • scissors

I've used scientific terms for a few of the different beetle parts, so here's a diagram showing which they are.

Diagram showing parts of a beetle.

You don't need to know what the bits are called to play the game as all the parts are numbered, I just think it's interesting to know that beetle wing casings are called elytra, and the middle body bit is called the thorax.

Pattern:

(A list of abbreviations is available.)

Head – Make 1

Cast on 8 sts in black and join into the round.

  1. Round 1: p4, k1, inc, k2, inc, k1 (10)
  2. Round 2: k1, [inc, k2] x 3, k2, inc, k1 (14)
  3. Round 3: p6, k1, inc, k6, inc, k1 (16)
  4. Round 4: k1, inc, k4, inc, k2, inc, k8, inc, k1 (20)
  5. Round 5: p8, k12 (20)
  6. Round 6: k9, inc, k10, inc, k1 (22)
  7. Round 7: p8, k14 (22)
  8. Round 8: k9, inc, k12, inc, k1 (24)
  9. Round 9: p8, k16
  10. Round 10: k –

Repeat rounds 9 and 10 three more times each (eight rounds in total).

  1. Round 17: p8, k16 (24)
  2. Round 18: k9, k2tog, k11, k2tog (22)
  3. Round 19: p8, k14 (22)
  4. Round 20: k9, k2tog, k9, k2tog (20)
  5. Round 21: p8, k12 (20)
  6. Round 22: k1, k2tog, k3, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k7, k2tog (16)
  7. Round 23: p6, k1, k2tog, k5, k2tog (14)
  8. Round 24: [k1, k2tog] x 3, k3, k2tog (10)
  9. Round 25: p4, k1, k2tog, k1, k2tog (8)

Cast off.

Thorax – Make 1

Cast on 12 sts in colour and join into the round.

  1. Round 1: p6, k1, inc, k4, inc, k1 (14)
  2. Round 2: k1, inc, k4, inc, k2, inc, k6, inc, k1 (18)
  3. Round 3: p8, k1, inc, k8, inc, k1 (20)
  4. Round 4: k1, inc, k6, inc, k2, inc, k10, inc, k1 (24)
  5. Round 5: p10, k14 (24)
  6. Round 6: k11, inc, k12, inc, k1 (26)
  7. Round 7: p10, k16 (26)
  8. Round 8: k11, inc, k14, inc, k1 (28)
  9. Round 9: p10, k18 (28)
  10. Round 10: k11, inc, k16, inc, k1 (30)
  11. Round 11: p10, k20
  12. Round 12: k –

Repeat rounds 11 and 12 four more times each (ten rounds in total).

  1. Round 21: p10, k20 (30)
  2. Round 22: k11, k2tog, k15, k2tog (28)
  3. Round 23: p10, k18 (28)
  4. Round 24: k11, k2tog, k13, k2tog (26)
  5. Round 25: p10, k16 (26)
  6. Round 26: k11, k2tog, k11, k2tog (24)
  7. Round 27: p10, k14 (24)
  8. Round 28: k1, k2tog, k5, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k9, k2tog (20)
  9. Round 29: p8, k1, k2tog, k7, k2tog (18)
  10. Round 30: k1, k2tog, k3, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k5, k2tog (14)
  11. Round 31: p6, k1, k2tog, k3, k2tog (12)

Cast off.

Abdomen – Make 1

Cast on 6 sts in colour and join into the round.

  1. Round 1: p3, k3 (6)
  2. Round 2: [k1, inc] x 2, k1, [k1, inc] x 2, k1 (10)
  3. Round 3: p5, k5 (10)
  4. Round 4: k6, inc, k3, inc, k1 (12)
  5. Round 5: p5, k7 (12)
  6. Round 6: k1, inc, k3, inc, k2, inc, k5, inc, k1 (16)
  7. Round 7: p7, k9 (16)
  8. Round 8: k8, inc, k7, inc, k1 (18)
  9. Round 9: p7, k11 (18)
  10. Round 10: k1, inc, k5, inc, k2, inc, k9, inc, k1 (22)
  11. Round 11: p9, k13 (22)
  12. Round 12: k10, inc, k11, inc, k1 (24)
  13. Round 13: p9, k15 (24)
  14. Round 14: k1, inc, k7, inc, k2, inc, k13, inc, k1, p11, k17 (28)
  15. Round 15: p11, k17 (28)
  16. Round 16: k12, inc, k15, inc, k1 (30)
  17. Round 17: p11, k19 (30)
  18. Round 18: k1, inc, k9, inc, k2, inc, k17, inc, k1 (34)
  19. Round 19: p13, k21 (34)
  20. Round 20: k14, inc, k19, inc, k1 (36)
  21. Round 21: p13, k23 (36)
  22. Round 22: k1, inc, k11, inc, k2, inc, k21, inc, k1 (40)
  23. Round 23: p15, k25 (40)
  24. Round 24: k16, inc, k23, inc, k1 (42)
  25. Round 25: p15, k27 (42)
  26. Round 26: k1, inc, k13, inc, k2, inc, k25, inc, k1 (46)
  27. Round 27: p17, k29 (46)
  28. Round 28: k18, inc, k27, inc, k1 (48)
  29. Round 29: p17, k31 (48)
  30. Round 30: k1, inc, k15, inc, k2, inc, k29, inc, k1 (52)
  31. Round 31: p19, k33
  32. Round 32: k –

Repeat rounds 31 and 32 four more times (ten rounds in total).

  1. Round 41: p19, k33 (52)
  2. Round 42: k1, k2tog, k14, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k28, k2tog (48)
  3. Round 43: p17, k31 (48)
  4. Round 44: k18, k2tog, k26, k2tog (46)
  5. Round 45: p17, k29 (46)
  6. Round 46: k1, k2tog, k12, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k24, k2tog (42)
  7. Round 47: p15, k1, k2tog, k22, k2tog (40)
  8. Round 48: k1, k2tog, k10, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k20, k2tog (36)
  9. Round 49: p13, k1, k2tog, k18, k2tog (34)
  10. Round 50: k1, k2tog, k8, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k16, k2tog (30)
  11. Round 51: p11, k1, k2tog, k14, k2tog (28)
  12. Round 52: k1, k2tog, k6, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k12, k2tog (24)
  13. Round 53: p9, k1, k2tog x 2, k6, k2tog x 2 (20)
  14. Round 54: k1, k2tog, k4, k2tog, k1, k2tog x 2, k2, k2tog x 2 (14)

Cast off.

Elytra – Make 2

Cast on 8 sts in colour and join into the round.

  1. Round 1 (and all odd rounds to 44*): k –
  2. Round 2: k1, inc, k6, inc, k1 (10)
  3. Round 4: k1, inc, k8, inc, k1 (12)
  4. Round 6: k1, inc, k10, inc, k1 (14)
  5. Round 8: k1, inc, k12, inc, k1 (16)
  6. Round 10: k1, inc, k14, inc, k1 (18)
  7. Round 12: k1, inc, k16, inc, k1 (20)
  8. Round 14: k1, inc, k18, inc, k1 (22)
  9. Round 16: k1, inc, k20, inc, k1 (24)
  10. Round 18: k1, inc, k22, inc, k1 (26)
  11. Round 20: k1, inc, k24, inc, k1 (28)
  12. Round 22: k1, inc, k26, inc, k1 (30)
  13. Round 24: k1, inc, k28, inc, k1 (32)
  14. Round 26: sl1, k30, sl1 (32)
  15. Round 28: k1, inc, k30, inc, k1 (34)
  16. Rounds 30 to 38 (even only): sl1, k32, sl1 (34)
  17. Round 40: k1, k2tog, k29, k2tog (32)
  18. Round 42: k1, k2tog, k27, k2tog (30)
  19. Round 44*: k1, k2tog, k25, k2tog (28)
  20. Round 45: k1, k2tog, k23, k2tog (26)
  21. Round 46: k1, k2tog, k21, k2tog (24)
  22. Round 47: k1, k2tog, k19, k2tog (22)
  23. Round 48: k1, k2tog, k17, k2tog (20)
  24. Round 49: k1, k2tog, k15, k2tog (18)
  25. Round 50: k1, k2tog, k13, k2tog (16)
  26. Round 51: k1, k2tog x 2, k7, k2tog x 2 (12)

Cast off.

Antenna – Make 2

Cast on 8 stitches in coloured yarn and join into the round.

  1. Round 1: k –
  2. Round 2: p3, k5

Repeat these rounds eleven more times each (twenty-four rounds in total).

Cast off.

Legs – Make 6

Cast on 10 stitches in black yarn and join into the round.

  1. Round 1: k –
  2. Round 2: p4, k6

Repeat these rounds eleven more times each (twenty-four rounds in total).

Cast off.

Making Up:

Fill the head, thorax and abdomen with toy stuffing and sew closed. All the other knitted pieces are unstuffed and just need to be pressed flat. Sew the cast off stitches closed. Hide any remaining loose ends.

For ease of play embroider each piece with a number from 1 to 6 as follows: thorax – 6, abdomen – 5, head – 4, legs – 3, elytra – 2, antenna – 1.

Arrange the head, thorax and abdomen of the beetle as show in the diagram at the top of the page. Sew* a strip of Velcro onto the head and the reverse onto the thorax so that the two can be attached together in this position. Do the same between the thorax and the abdomen. Attach small pieces of Velcro to each leg and antenna. Sew the reverse pieces to the base of the insect such that the two antenna are will be attached to the head, two legs to the thorax and four to the abdomen. Finally sew pieces of Velcro to the elytra and the reverse to the top of the thorax.

*Strong glue can work just as well as sewing. Apply a thin layer of glue to the area of knitting where the Velcro will be attached. Allow to dry. This area will act as a non-porous surface so that a fresh layer of glue will stick the Velcro more firmly to the knitting.

Notes:

How to Play Beetle

You Will Need

  • Knitted Beetle (at least one per player)
  • Dice

Instructions

  • Players take it in turns to roll the die.
  • Beetle parts are won by throwing their corresponding numbers with the die.
  • A 6 must be thrown to begin (winning you a thorax).
  • Subsequent parts can only be won if there is a place to attach them, e.g. a throw of 1 will win you an antenna, but only if you have already thrown a 4 to win a head. If you throw a 1 before your beetle has a head you don't win anything on that turn.
  • The first player to complete their beetle wins.

Needle/Yarn Size

As with most ODDknit patterns the yarn and needle sizes in the "you will need" section are just a guide. Feel free to improvise with whatever needles and yarn you have lying around - that's half the fun!