More

Halloween Witch Doll

It's a lot of fun to knit this witch because she really starts to come to life as you make her. The slant of her eyes, the twist of her hands, the style of her hair, all contribute to a unique personality that you create!

This pattern can also serve as a basic human doll pattern. Change the outfit, the colors, the yarns, and the world is your oyster! Make an old gentleman, or a bathing beauty, or an astronaut, or a clown or whatever captures your imagination.

But if it's Halloween that you're into, now is the time for a little knitting witchcraft!

Materials

  • 1 skein of Alchemy's Temple, 100% superfine merino - this color is Limeade #16e. (Color A)
  • 1 skein of Blue Sky Alpaca's Silk Alpaca, 50% superfine alpaca, 50% silk - this is Night #150. (Color B)
  • 1 skein of Louet's Kidlin Pixie, 49% linen, 35% kid mohair, 16% nylon - this is Black #1222. (Color C)
  • 1 skein of Joseph Galler's Flore, 75% mohair, 20% wool, 5% nylon - color #002. (Color D)
  • Scraps of sportweight yarn in white, red and orange (or any contrast color you like). 

I used:

Blue Sky Alpaca's Skinny Cotton in Organic Birch #30 (white)

Alchemy's Temple in Poppy (red), and

Alchemy's Temple in Gold and Grace.

 

The Pattern

Gauge

6.5 stitches = 1 inch in stockinette stitch (Although gauge is not crucial for this project, do use yarns that are close to each other in gauge.)

Finished Size

14 inches, from top of hat to foot

The Legs

With Color B, cast 8 stitches onto the double pointed needles. (If you need help using double pointed needles, check out our Tutorial.)

Join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit 1 round.

Next Round: Knit into the front and back (kfb), k2, kfb, kfb, k2, kfb. (12 stitches)

Knit until the piece measures 2 3/4 inches from the cast on. Cut the yarn.

With Color A, continue to knit for another 2 3/4 inches. Cut the yarn, leaving an 8 inch tail.

Turn the leg inside out enough to weave in the ends at the color switch - don't weave in the cast on or cast off tails.

Turn the leg right side out again, and put the stitches on a couple of stitch holders.

Set the first leg aside.

Make another leg in the same way, except leave the finished leg on the double pointed needles and don't cut the yarn at the end.

Now stuff the legs. I used the blunt end of a knitting needle to help me get the stuffing all the way into the toes.

Join the Legs

Still working on the second leg, use a cable cast on to cast on 6 stitches.

With the same needle that you just added 6 stitches to, knit a couple of stitches from the first leg (start with the stitch to the left of the tail.)

With a new needle, knit to the end of the first leg.

Again, use the cable cast on to cast on 6 stitches. (36 stitches total)

Knit the next 6 stitches of the second leg. (The legs are now totally joined!)

Place a marker, which now indicates the beginning of the round. Also, you may find it most comfortable to arrange the 36 stitches evenly on the double pointed needles (12 stitches per needle).

The Body

Knit the 36 stitches until the body measures 3 inches from the cable cast on.

Next Round: K1, put the last 2 stitches on a scrap of yarn (remove the stitch marker)...

Continuing the round: K19, put the last 2 stitches on a scrap of yarn, k15.

Now use the tail from the leg cast off to sew the two sides of the crotch together.

To do this, sew under a knit stitch right under the cable cast on on one side of the crotch...

and then sew under the knit stitch directly across from that one. Sew up the whole crotch opening.

Now you can stuff the body. She's starting to get some personality!

Put the body stitches on a couple of stitch holders.

Now is a good time to sew the ends of the feet closed. Sew around the opening...

Cinch the yarn tight, and weave in the ends.

Set the body aside.

The Arms

Note: Because I don't like creating extra ends to weave in, I knit the arms with the yarn coming from the other end of the ball that is attached to the body.  If this is too confusing or awkward for you, just cut the yarn from the body.

With Color A, cast on 10 stitches to the double pointed needles.

Join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit 6 rounds.

Next Round: K1, k2 tog, k3, k2tog, k2. (8 stitches)

Knit until piece measures 2 1/2 inches from the cast on edge.

Next Round: Kfb, k6, kfb. (10 stitches)

Knit until piece measures 4 inches from the cast on edge.

Next Round: K1, put the last 2 stitches on a scrap of yarn, knit to the end of the round. Cut the yarn.

Put this arm on a couple of stitch holders. and make another one exactly the same way.

When you've finished the second arm, transfer the double pointed needles back to the body stitches and use the holders from the body to hold the arm stitches.

Sew the cast on edges of the arms (ie the hands) closed the same way you did the crotch.

Stuff the arms.

The Shoulders

Joining Round: With the yarn that is still attached to the body (unless you cut it to knit the arms, in which case join new yarn), knit 8 stitches from an arm (starting with the stitch to the left of the 2 stitches on the scrap yarn)...

...place a marker, knit 16 next stitches of the body, place a marker, knit 8 stitches of the other arm, place a marker,  knit the next 16 stithes of the body, place a different color marker to indicate the beginning of the round. (48 st)

Distribute the stitches evenly on the three needles.

Round 1: K to 2 stitches before end of round, k2tog. (1 stitch decreased)

Round 2: [ssk, k to 2 stitches before the marker, k2tog], repeat 2 more times, ssk, k to end. (7 stitches decreased)

Repeat the last 2 rows until 24 stitches remain.

Now is a good time to sew up the underarms so that you can begin to stuff the top of the body.

First, put the stitches that have been on hold on the scrap yarn onto two stitch holders, 2 stitches on each holder. (Or you can use 2 double pointed needles if you have extras...)

Graft the stitches together using the Kitchener Stitch, and weave in the ends when you're done.

Stuff the shoulders and chest up to this point.

Next round: K2, ssk, k to 2 stitches before the marker, k2tog, k2, ssk, k to 2 stitches before the marker, k2tog. (4 st decreased)

Repeat the last round until 12 stitches remain. (You can remove all but the end of the round marker on the last round.)

Stuff the top of the body.

The Head

Round 1: *K2, kfb, repeat from * to end of round. (16 stitches)

Round 2: *K3, kfb, repeat from * to end of round. (20 stitches)

Round 3: *K4, kfb, repeat from * to end of round. (24 stitches)

Round 4: *K5, kfb, repeat from * to end of round. (28 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: Kfb, k13, kfb, knit to end of round. (30 stitches)

Knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: K1, kfb, k14, kfb, knit to end of round. (32 stitches)

Knit 5 rounds.

Next Round: *K6, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (28 stitches)

Next Round: *K5, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (24 stitches)

Next Round: *K4, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (20 stitches)

Next Round: *K3, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (16 stitches)

You should start stuffing the head around now, and continue to stuff it as the top opening narrows.

Next Round: *K2, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (12 stitches)

Next Round: *K1, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (8 stitches)

Cut a tail about 8 inches long and sew it through the remaining stitches.

The Nose

Sew the tail from the top of the head down to where you want the top of the nose.

Sew under two stitches (catching a little stuffing under the needle to give the nose some structure).

Sew back the other way (under 2 stitches).

Continue to sew back and forth until the nose is as long as you want it to be.

The Hair

Cut lots of 10 inch strands of Color D.

Then, folding a strand in half, use the crochet hook to bring the yarn through a stitch on the head.

Pull the ends of the strand through the resulting loop...

so it looks like this:

Repeat these steps wherever you want there to be hair, except don't put hair around the top of the head (so the hat will fit!).

Style the hair however you want. You can cut it, make pig tails, or, like I did, do both!

Here's what the back looks like:

Eyes

With a scrap of white yarn, use the duplicate stitch to make two eyes.

Use Color B to define the eyes.

The Mouth

Use a scrap of red (or pink or whatever) yarn to make a simple mouth.

The Hat

With Color B, cast 42 stitches onto the double pointed needles.

Join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Round 1: Knit.

Round 2: Purl.

Repeat Rounds 1 and 2.

Next Round: K5, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (36 stitches)

Repeat Round 2.

Repeat Rounds 1 and 2.

Next Round: *K1, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (24 stitches)

Knit 5 rounds.

Knit 2 rounds with a scrap of a contrast color (I used orange).

Switching back to Color B, knit 2 rounds.

Next Round: *K4, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (20 stitches)

Knit 4 rounds.

Next Round: *K3, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (16 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds.

Next Round: *K2, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (12 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds.

Next Round: *K1, k2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (8 stitches)

Knit 3 rounds.

Next Round: *K2tog, repeat from * to end of round. (4 stitches).

Cut the yarn and thread it through the remaining stitches.

Weave in the ends, and stuff the top three quarters of the hat (leave the bottom unstuffed so the hat can sit comfortably on the head.)

Now sew the hat on the head, using a piece of Color B yarn.

Sew under a knit stitch from the head, then under a purl bump from the hat.

Sew across the front of the head...

...around the back of the head...

...and back to where you began.

The Dress

The Skirt

With Color C, cast 62 stitches onto the double pointed needles.

Place a marker, and join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit 1 round.

Purl 1 round.

Repeat the last 2 rounds 1 time.

Knit until the piece measures 1 inch from the cast on edge.

Next Round: K31, place a different color marker, knit to the last 2 stitches, k2tog. (61 stitches)

*Decrease Round: K1, ssk, knit to 2 stitches before the marker, k2tog, k1, ssk, knit to the end of the round. (3 stitches decreased)

Knit for 1 inch, ending the last round with k2tog. (1 stitch decreased)

Repeat from * 3 more times.

Repeat Decrease Round 1 time. (42 stitches and 5 inches from the cast on edge)

Knit 1 round.

Next Round: K2, put last 4 stitches on scrap yarn (removing marker), knit to 2 stitches past the next marker, put last 4 stitches on scrap yarn (removing marker), knit to end of round. (34 stitches)

(Note: In this picture I have the underarm stitches on holders instead of scrap yarn, but I found the holders too cumbersome for so small a project, and eventually switched to scrap yarn.)

Put the skirt stitches on holders and set aside.

The Sleeves

Cast 22 stitches onto the double pointed needles.

Join for working in the round, being careful to not twist the stitches.

Knit 1 round.

Purl 1 round.

Knit until the piece measures 1 inch from the cast on edge, ending the last round with k2tog. (21 stitches)

Next Round: K1, ssk, knit to end of round. (20 stitches)

*Knit 4 rounds, ending the last round with k2tog. (1 stitch decreased)

Next Round: K1, ssk, knit to end of round. (1 stitch decreased)

Repeat from * one time. (16 stitches)

Knit 4 rounds.

Next Round: K2, place last 4 stitches on scrap yarn, knit to end of round. (12 stitches)

(Again, I originally used a stitch holder, but later decided that scrap yarn was easier.)

Transfer the sleeve stitches to stitch holders and put the double pointed needles back on the skirt.

Knit one sleeve onto the skirt, starting with the first stitch to the left of the underarm stitches on the scrap yarn.

Knit to the next on-hold stitches.

Put the dress stitches back on stitch holders so you can use the double pointed needles to make another sleeve.

When you're done with the second sleeve, switch the holders and double pointed needles again so the needles are on the dress and the holders on the sleeve.

Knit the second sleeve onto the dress. Again, start with the first stitch to the left of the sleeve's underarm stitches.

Then knit 17 stitches (to the beginning of the first sleeve). (58 stitches)

The Yoke

Round 1: K12, place a marker, k17, place a marker, k12, place a marker, k14, k2tog, k1, place a different color marker (indicates beginning of round). (57 stitches)

Round 2: K1, ssk, *knit to 3 stitches before next marker, k2tog, k2, ssk, repeat from * 2 more times, knit to end of round. (7 stitches decreased)

Round 3: Knit to last 3 stitches, k2tog, k1. (1 stitch decreased)

Repeat Rounds 2 and 3 two more times. (33 stitches)

Repeat Round 2. (26 stitches)

Knit 8 rounds (removing all but the end-of-round marker).

Bind off very loosely.

Use the Kitchener Stitch to graft the underarm stitches.

Weave in all the dress's ends.

The Belt

First put the dress on the doll. Then, cut three strand of scrap yarn (I used white) about a foot long.

Tie the strands in a knot around the waist of the doll.

Braid each end of the belt, and tie off the end of each braid with another scrap of yarn.

Your witch doll is done!

Click here to add a comment

12 Responses to Halloween Witch Doll


  1. pockafwye says:

    Splendid tutorial! The photos are really helpful.

  2. Ashley says:

    That is so cute!! I’m going to try to knit that for my niece.. thank you for the pictures!!!

  3. Donna says:

    I am trying to separate for the arms. If I knit 1 place the last 2 stitches on scrap knit 19 place the last 2 on scrap how can I have 16 stitches left to knit?

    Help!

  4. purl bee says:

    Hi Donna,
    I don’t see the point you are referring to in the pattern. Can you direct me where in the arms this is? I’m happy to help as soon as I find it! –Joelle

  5. Donna says:

    In the instructions right after the body measures 3 inches

  6. purl bee says:

    Hi Donna,
    Okay, I see where the issue is now. There is a mistake in the pattern which I have now corrected.
    You will start with 36 stitches on the round. Knit one stitch and then slip this stitch, and the stitch BEFORE this stitch onto a scrap of yarn removing the stitch marker, then knit 19 stitches and put the two previous stitches on a scrap of yarn, then you will have 15 stitches (rather than 16), knit to end of round.

    Please let me know if you have any other questions!
    Joelle

  7. mcs says:

    This is wonderful – I must ask is she based on that old 1957 – ish children’s book the Halloween Witch? The one where the too young witch (only a few hundred years old not many many centuries old like her mentors) goes out and turns things upside down in the town? My all time favorite book that I read to my kids every Halloween? It was published by a small company in Boston I think?
    Just wondering – a great little Witch to knit no matter what!
    Thanks -
    Mary

  8. Lucie says:

    hi guys, please help I am stuck! this might sound like rather stupid question but I always have trouble with this, like everybody but me knows how to do it…..I am done knitting her (thanks for the instructions BTW they were very clear) now I am trying to make her face and this is the problem for me, since I already closed her head how do I get the knot on the inside or how do I make it stay in place? is there some trick to it? ( I tried the mouth first and the yarn came out….)
    thanks

  9. Marie says:

    This is the most adorable,innovative knitted witch that I've seen! Love it! I am definitely going to have to make one (probably more–for gift giving). I'm just sad that I found this too late for this years' halloween celebration! Kudos on the great instructions and photos for step by step, makes it very easy to follow. Thanks so much for the inspiration too! Happy Halloween! I'm going to have to adapt this pattern for so many other occasions! Ut oh, off to the yarn store I go!!!!

  10. Brenda says:

    Love the doll but wish it was done on 2 needles instead of 4 as i am not very good at knitting on 4.

  11. Paula Mazzarino says:

    Loved it. Made it. Thank you for the free pattern. I'm going to adapt it for Christmas elves. Would send you a picture if I could.

  12. Tulip says:

    This is great and what clear instructions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


six × 8 =

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

X

JOIN OUR MAILING LIST!

Subscribers receive a FREE premium Purl Soho Pattern of your choice (up to a $15 value!). learn more