Crochet octopus toys are the perfect plush item to comfort prematurely born babies who have to spend their first days of life in the NICU.
Not too many years ago, premature babies were placed in incubators and went without much human touch. Now we know that babies need the human touch to survive, thrive, and grow, especially in their earliest days of life. Failure to receive that all-important comfort can result in lifelong mental and physical health challenges. NICU rules have changed as a result. However, the babies there continue to need all of the comfort that they can get.
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When Cheryl learned about how crochet octopuses were helping preemies, she wanted to contribute. However, she didn't love any of the crochet octopus patterns out there. That's why she created her own. It has a slightly oval head, which is true to the real creature. She also has some great notes in the article about using safety eyes and checking for specific requirements at the hospital where you donate.
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If you want to avoid the issue of safety eyes altogether, then one option is to forgo the eyes entirely. They aren't necessary to make a cute crochet octopus. Lilla Bjorn Crochet used this pattern and explains why she chose a no-eyes design. The pattern is by Anastasia Popova of Crochet for Babies.
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This free crochet octopus pattern was recommended in a Martha Stewart article about how these plush toys help preemies. The pattern is available in both US and UK crochet terms. This toy uses crochet eyes so you don't have to worry about safety eyes. Note that there aren't specific instructions for personalizing the octopus with accessories, but you can get some great inspiration from the photos.
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This free crochet octopus pattern is unique from the others because the designer provides you with three different ways to finish off the toy. This allows you to create several different styles, which is fun for you as the creator and also makes the gift a little more special for the family.Continue to 5 of 10 below.
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Some crochet octopus patterns are made in two parts. However, this one is a seamless crochet project worked from the top down. Like most of these patterns, it's worked primarily in single crochet stitch, sometimes in the front loop only.
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Crochet octopus toys were first used in hospitals in the UK. In fact, many of the groups that accept donations are there as well. If you're used to working with UK crochet terms, then this pattern will suit you well.
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This is a two-in-one crochet pattern. It includes the crochet octopus pattern. Plus a simple crochet beanie hat pattern. There are instructions for a preemie size and a newborn size hat. This pattern is for sale on Ravelry.
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This adorable crochet octopus pattern has a head that's a little bit reminiscent of the cute ghosts in Pac-Man. Even without the tentacles, it's a great toy. Of course, you want to add the tentacles if you're donating them to heal preemies in the NICU, because that's the part that calms them most.Continue to 9 of 10 below.
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This crochet designer points out that while the crochet octopus is particularly good for NICU preemies, it's also a good toy for other babies as well. It promotes motor development and sensory stimulation, which every baby benefits from.
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