Loom Knit Mermaid Tail
Mermaid tail blankets seem to one of the latest yarn-craft crazes this year. Since so many of us loom knitters have been desperately wanting to make one, I decided to take on the challenge of creating a loom knit mermaid tail pattern for this wildly coveted mermaid tail blanket! Now your little one can channel their inner mermaid while snuggling up with this cozy cocoon. While it is tedious, anyone who can e-wrap, purl and count to 8 can make this beautiful loom knit mermaid tail blanket! -Chloe Lambert
When writing the Loom Knit Mermaid Tail pattern, I vowed to make it a free pattern so it would be available to everyone. While I have kept true to my word (the free version is available online here), I have decided to make a downloadable PDF version available for convenient offline use. All I am asking for the PDF pattern is a small donation of $2.99. This donation will be going to a three-year-old little boy’s college fund. In July 2015, his mother, who was also my best friend, was murdered the evening of her 23rd birthday, orphaning her son. 100% of the money earned from this pattern will go straight to the college fund that was established after his mother’s passing. Thank you! Love, Chloe
General pattern notes from GoodKnitKisses: This pattern has multiple links to video techniques. Click the hyperlink to go to the video if you need help. If and when Chloe makes a video available, this pages and her Ravelry page will include the link.
Loom Knit Mermaid Tail Blanket/Cocoon
By Chloe Lambert
Toddler – Size written for toddler size loom knit mermaid blanket, could be sized up or down. Material quantity and loom size/ peg count reflect Toddler size.
Scale – 4 sts per 1 inch/ 6 rows per 1 inch E-wrap
Flipper – 28 sts per 4 in x 24 rows per 4 in. (rib stitch)
- 1,740 yards #4 worsted weight yarn; Mary Maxim Prism used in sample.
- Martha Stewart Loom Kit – Parts needed:
- BODY: two curved pieces and four 12-hole pieces configured into an oval; 103 blue pegs & 1 grey peg; total 104 pegs – for larger or smaller sizes you’ll need a multiple of 8 for peg count.
- TAIL: two 36-hole pieces and 68 pegs. Here you’ll need 34 blue and 34 grey pegs).
- *If alternate loom is used – Loom should knit in round 104 pegs at 3/8″ or Small Gauge. 2nd loom knits in flat panel at 68 pegs; use same alt loom and work in flat panel.
- OPTIONAL: 300 yards of yarn for liner; Bernat Pipsqueak used in sample.
- Loom hook
- Plastic needle
- 1 hard plastic stitch marker; removable
- 2 soft flexible stitch markers (preferably different colors)
- Stylus (Optional but highly recommended for this smaller gauge set-up)
- The body of this mermaid tail blanket uses the crocodile stitch. The crocodile stitch is actually a crochet stitch. To learn the basics of how to make the stitch on a loom, I watched Scarlett Royal’s tutorial on YouTube. I made my own changes.
- The yarn I used in for this particular blanket is Mary Maxim Prism. I chose this yarn for the long color changes amongst the scales. The liner is Bernat Pipsqueak.
- Please keep in mind this size was made for a 2-3 year old but this pattern is simple to adjust for custom sized mermaid tails. All you need to do is to configure a larger or smaller loom. Just be sure the total number of pegs on the circular loom is a multiple of 8 peg.
- The Body of the loom knit mermaid tail is made separate from the Flipper or “Mermaid Tail”. Directions are written separate.
Abbreviations & Techniques:
WY – Working yarn (yarn coming from ball of yarn)
Rib Stitch – *EW2, P2*; Meaning to EW 2 pegs then P 2 pegs and repeating to create a ribbed stitch.
Slip – Slip Stitch; Skip the first stitch of the row. In this pattern, it is ONLY used on the flipper odd number rows. See notes for specifics.
Body – Instructions:
Set-up and Notes:
To set up the loom, you will need the two curved pieces and four 12-hole pieces configured into an oval, with a blue peg in each space. You should have a total of 104 pegs.
Please note, the body of this mermaid tail blanket is worked counter clockwise. You will always be moving to the right when casting on and at the start of each scale.
Step 1) Drawstring cast on (Don’t pull completely shut, we will be using this for the tail later; click link for video)
Step 2) EW the entire loom for rows 1-8
Step 3) **Directions for scales** (Each scale is 15 rows total, using only 8 pegs. Each completed row (completely around the loom) of crocodile stitch scales will consist of 13 scales altogether).
Pop the first flexible stitch marker onto peg #1 (my starter peg is grey and I am using a purple stitch marker. THIS MARKER WILL STAY HERE UNTIL YOU START THE NEXT ROUND OF CROCODILE STITCH SCALES).
EW 8 pegs to the right. Upon knitting off, slip the hard plastic stitch marker into the last stitch you knit over. These are the “original stitches” that you will be pulling back onto the pegs.
Note: Scales are knit back and forth as a flat panel, do not slip a stitch or use “wrap & turn” methods here. When a lesser number of pegs are written, only knit the peg the WY is coming from then work in the opposite direction as the row before. Stop after knitted number of stitches.
Rows 1-3: EW 8 pegs. (End row 3 with WY on right).
Row 4: EW 7 pegs. (Do not knit peg 1; WY ends on left).
Row 5: EW 6 pegs. (Do not knit pegs 1 & 8; WY end on right).
Row 6: EW 5 pegs. (Do not knit pegs 1 – 2 & 8; WY ends on left).
Row 7: EW 4 pegs. (Do not knit pegs 1 – 2 & 7 – 8; WY ends on right).
Row 8: EW 5 pegs. (Do not knit pegs 1 & 7 – 8; WY ends on left).
Row 9: EW 6 pegs. (Do not knit pegs 1 & 8; WY ends on right).
Row 10: EW 7 pegs. (Do not knit peg 1; WY ends on left).
Rows: 11 -14: EW 8 pegs. (WY ends on right).
Row 15: Pull the original stitches back onto the pegs. These loops should slightly protrude compared to the other stitches. (The hard removable stitch marker is there to help you indicate which row of stitches is correct. You can remove it once you start putting them back on.) There should now be two loops on each peg.
Congrats! You just completed your first scale!
Now, take your second flexible stitch marker (mine is yellow) to starter peg on the next set of 8 pegs. [Leave the first flexible stitch marker (purple) on the very first peg].
Step 4) Repeat rows 1-15 all around the loom until you reach the beginning peg (purple marker).
Step 5) EW around the entire loom for 3 rows.
Step 6) Now, you should be back at the original starting peg (purple marker). Move that marker 4 pegs to the right. EW and work those 4 pegs.
Step 7) Repeat steps 3-6 for 32 sets, or until you reach your desired length. (Your purple marker will rotate around your loom to the right 4 pegs on each Step 6).
Step 8) EW the entire loom for 20 rows (This will be the “brim” at the waist of the blanket).
Step 9) Pull the loops from the last row of crocodile stitches back onto the pegs and knit over.
Step 10) Now, you can either bind off using the basic bind-off method. Or, you can move on to do the liner.
Liner – Instructions (OPTIONAL):
To add a liner, simply continue to EW around the loom, with the yarn chosen for the liner, until it is the same length as the body.
Bind off using the gathered bind off method, and turn inside the body by pushing it inside the cocoon.
Flipper or Mermaid Tail – Instructions:
Before beginning, set up your loom with both 36-hole pieces together. On one side, skip the first 2 holes and place in 34 blue pegs without skipping pegs. Continue placing 34 grey pegs into every hole without skipping pegs; the last 2 holes will be empty. You should have 2 holes empty on both ends of the straight loom (4 total empty); a total of 62 pegs. (For other sizes use a multiple of 4 for ribbing; however, the first stitch is slipped, repeat ribbing until 3 stitches remain and EW3. This makes the first and last columns of knit ribbing match the size of the inside ribs. – km).
- SLIPPED STITCHES! For this Flipper section, you will Slip the first stitch ONLY at the beginning of each row and ONLY when it is at the edge or “end” of the loom/flipper. All decreased rows on the inside of the flipper will be worked as the SCALES above, no slipped stitches or “wrap & turns” happen on the inside area of the flipper.
- Decreases in this pattern are made by stopping short of a full row. You will not move or bind off any stitches to decrease.
- Peg color & Stitch markers: The peg color is simply to show what end of the flipper or tail you are working on. On another loom a set if different color stitch markers can be used. For example on the 34th and 35th pegs use two different color stitch markers. Using a removable stitch marker is also helpful for marking decreasing of stitches by two as well.
Cast on 68 pegs with basic EW.
The main stitch pattern is the Rib Stitch for the flipper. Rib Stitch pattern = EW2, P2. On the beginning and end of rows, some stitches may change slightly but overall pattern will look like the same 2×2 rib stitch.
Rows 1 – 42: Slip 1, Rib Stitch pattern 16 times, EW last 3.
Decrease Section – All Odd rows here only Slip the 1st peg, not on even rows.
Row 43: Slip 1, Rib Stitch pattern for 33 more pegs (final 34th peg doesn’t finish the pattern, it’s okay). Place stitch marker at peg 34 and stop.
Row 44: From this point, work pattern back to the opposite direction toward the end. Work all stitches in reverse Rib Stitch pattern to line up with rows before; on some rows you may have to only knit (EW) or purl one stitch at the beginning of the row. The last stitch is EW.
Row 45: (Move stitch marker over 2 pegs, work only 32 pegs this row and next). Slip 1, Rib Stitch to stitch marker.
Row 46: Even row – work pattern in reverse Rib Stitch to line up with rows before, EW last stitch.
*Row 47: (Move stitch marker over 2 pegs as before) Slip 1, Rib Stitch to stitch marker.
Row 48: Even row – work pattern in reverse Rib Stitch to line up with rows before, EW last stitch.*
Repeat rows *47-48* until 2 pegs remain on one end of the mermaid tail. (Continue to move stitch marker and decrease pegs for the Rib Stitch by two every time you make your way back to the center, or every two rows).
After the final decrease, when only 2 pegs remain, Rib Stitch back to the center.
Now, begin the same process of the opposite side, starting at peg 35. Place stitch marker. Continue pattern Rib Stitch down to the end of the loom to start 2nd end of tail/flipper. Note that peg 35 will continue the incomplete rib stitch pattern from Row 43.
Repeat rows *47-48* until 2 pegs remain on 2nd end of the flipper. (Continue to decrease pegs for the Rib Stitch by two every time you make your way back to the center, or every two rows. Use your stitch marker as before to help).
Last Row: When two stitches remain and at end, Slip 1 and EW 67 pegs. (Do not work rib pattern).
Now that the Flipper is off the loom, Take the top end and stuff it into the open bottom of the mermaid tail Body.
Slowly start to pull the drawstring around the flipper. You can play around with different closures to achieve your desired look. For this blanket, I pulled the drawstring so that it was snugly around the tail. There was about a 1” gap.
Once you achieve the desired look, use the leftover yarn hanging from the drawstring to stitch the hole closed around the flipper.
Congratulations! You just created you very own Loom Knit Mermaid Tail Blanket/Cocoon in the knit Crocodile Stitch!
Editor’s note: Thank you so much to Chloe for sharing her pattern with GKK readers. Be sure to give some love to Chloe! I hope you enjoy your Loom Knit Mermaid Tail Blanket/Cocoon. Please comment or leave a heart below. And PLEASE, click on the link for Ravelry to buy Chloe’s pattern in her Ravelry store to support her Charity! 🙂 -Kristen Mangus
(A special thank you to our editor Carol Blakeley “Lilydot”! We, Kristen Mangus, both worked tech editing this pattern to clarify, check math, etc. If you see a needed correction please let us know and will fix. If you should make another size please email us. We will add corrections to pattern notes and alert Chloe for her Ravelry PDF update. This is Chloe’s first pattern and we look forward to seeing her brilliant new designs. Please see her Ravelry store. Thank you).