If you are a yarn crafter with a cat (or two or three), chances are you want to show your love for your pets with a special holiday gift. Here are the patterns for two cat toys: a wreath and a tiny Christmas tree, both filled with catnip. Although the directions for the tree might seem a bit complicated, you don’t have to worry about keeping an exact count of your stitches.
For both Christmas cat toys, I used Holiday Homespun Yarn by Lion Brand Yarns. I liked the texture of the yarn and the fine metallic thread that runs through the yarn; however, you could also use a smooth, worsted weight yarn. You will need just scraps of yarn for both projects.
Crochet hook F-3.75
Small amount of polyester fiber fill
Optional: jingle bell
Tiny amounts of accent yarns
Crochet Pattern for a Catnip Christmas Wreath
The wreath is approximately 3″; gauge is not important.
Note: Do not join the rounds; instead, work in a spiral
Ch 9 and connect with a sl st to make a loop
Sc in each stitch around and around until you have a 6″ (or so) long tube. You will need to add the fiberfill and catnip as you work. Avoid filling the shape too firmly as you will be bending it into a loop.
Fasten off, leaving a long tail. Stitch the first and last round together.
Take another color yarn to make a bow. Since you don’t want your cat pulling off the bow and accidentally swallowing it, you want to crochet a chain of 15 stitches and then start crocheting into the wreath, around the seam. This will anchor the bow to the wreath. When you’ve worked around the seam, chain 15 more stitches and fasten off. Tie a bow with the two ends.
Christmas Cat Toy Tree
This tiny tree is approximately 3″ across the base and 2-1/2″ tall.
Note: For some rows, you will be directed to work in the front of the loop; followed by a row where you work in the back of the same loop. With the textured yarn, it isn’t always easy to find the back loop. You can just work into the previous row as the gauge isn’t important.
The effect I’m working for is a ruffled row that extends outward followed by a row with fewer stitches that pulls in the shape of the tree. Relax about aiming for exact stitch counts and think that you are sculpting with yarn.
Work 3 sc into the 2nd ch from the hook
Round 1: Make 2 sc into each st
Round 2: Make 1 sc into the next st, and 2 sc into the following st; repeat pattern for this round
Round 3: Make 1 sc into the next 2 st and then 2 sc into the following st; repeat the pattern for the round
Round 4: Make 3 dc into the front loop of each st in the round (Forcing three stitches into each stitch of the previous row gives the row a ruffled look that stands out from the main shape.
Round 5: Make 1 sc into the back loop of row 3. Don’t go crazy if you can’t see each loop clearly; you want to make 12 sc, just not along the ruffle (which has more st). Work the 12 sc into the crocheted fabric.
Round 6: Repeat round 4
Round 7: Repeat round 5
Round 8: Repeat round 4
Round 9: Repeat round 5
Round 10 and on: Start stuffing the tree with catnip and polyester fiberfill as you close up the shape. You can also add a jingle bell into the catnip toy. Sc2tog until you have 3 or 4 stitches and then fasten off, leaving a tail that you will weave in to close the bottom of the tree.
Optional “star” on top of the tree: Take a fine weight glitter yarn and crochet into the top of the tree for three or four stitches. Crochet a few rounds to build up the height of the tree topper. Fasten off and weave in the ends.
Give your kitty handmade Christmas cat toys in fun holiday shapes. The catnip will keep your cat interested in her toys instead of the wrapping and ribbon on everyone else’s gifts.