Shortly after posting my brittle star pattern on Ravelry, I received a friendly message from a fellow Raveler who just happened to be an expert on brittle star taxonomy. She complimented me on my effort, but pointed out that most brittle stars have, in fact, only five arms. She suggested that the image from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans on which I had based my pattern actually depicted at least two of the creatures lumped together. (Brittle stars love company, I suppose).

I immediately set out to create a more anatomically accurate brittle star. Here is the result:

What it lacks in arms, compared to its enthusiastic predecessor, it has gained in accuracy. I suspect the proportions are still a bit off, but I’m ready to move on to the next undersea adventure! Here is the pattern for this version:

A More Accurate Brittle Star Pattern

Materials:

  • a small amount (about 25g) DK to worsted-weight yarn
  • 3mm knitting needles
  • Blunt yarn needle for sewing up

Instructions:

Cast on 6 stitches.

Row 1: knit

Row 2: Kfb, knit until 1 st remains on left needle, turn, knit to end

Row 3: Kfb, knit until 2 st remains on left needle, turn, knit to end

Row 4: Kfb, knit until 3 st remains on left needle, turn, knit to end, then cast on 40 stitches using the backwards loop (aka “simple”) cast-on.

Row 5: knit across all stitches

Rew 6: knit 9, (k2tog) 20 times, ending at tip of tentacle (for a non-curling tentacle, simply knit all stitches, for just a little curl, work fewer decreases)

Row 7: bind off 20 stitches, knit until 3 sts remain on left needle, turn, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog

Row 8: knit until 2 sts remain on left needle, turn, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog

Row 9: knit until 1 st remains on left needle, turn, knit to last 2 sts, k2tog (6 sts remain)

Row 10: knit across all stitches

Repeat rows 1 through 10 four more times, until your brittle star has 5 tentacles. Bind off the six remaining stitches.

Finishing:

Seam bind-off edge to cast-on. Run the yarn tail through the garter stitch bumps around the edge of the centre hole and draw closed. Weave in ends.

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