Free Knitting Pattern for Canary Craftivists

03 Jun Free Knitting Pattern for Canary Craftivists

Are you a knitter who is concerned about global warming? Join our climate craftivism ‘gentle protest’ called ‘Canary Craftivists’ encouraging the UK Government to be bold hosts of world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (known as COP26) this November in Glasgow. All information on the campaign an be found HERE

As part of this project the super-skilled and lovely craftivist Tahlita Senfield (@NinjaPins on Instagram) has created a free knitting pattern that you can use. You can also create your own pattern or use another you already have for knitting or any other type of craft as long as your yellow canary fits in the palm of your hand, looks friendly and lively then you can decide how you want to make it.

Material needed:

  • Yellow double knit yarn
  • Small amounts of double knit yarn in black and peach
  • Wire (thin gauge such as 0.50mm or slightly thicker)
  • 4mm needles
  • Toy stuffing


You can use any pattern for a yellow canary in whatever craft medium you want such as the above or create your own as long as it fits delicately in the palm of your hand looking friendly, lively and handmade.
sl1slip 1 stitch
m1make 1
k2togknit 2 stitches together
sskSlip, slip, knit slipped stitches together


Canary knitted as one piece from tail to beak


Using yellow yarn, cast on 4 sts

1) Knit.
2) Sl1, purl to end.
3) Sl1, knit to end.
4) Sl1, purl to end.
5) Sl1, knit to end..
6) Sl1, purl to end.
7) Sl1, knit to end.
8) Sl1, purl to end.
9) Sl1, knit to end.
10) Sl1, purl to end.
11) Sl1, knit to end.
12) Sl1, purl to end.
13) Sl1, knit to end.
14) Sl1, purl to end.
15) Sl1, knit to end.
16) Sl1, purl to end.
17) k1, m1, k2, m1, k1 (6 sts).
18) Purl.
19) k1, m1, k4, m1, k1 (8 sts).
20) Purl.
21) k2, m1, k4, m1, k2 (10 sts).
22) Purl.
23) k2, m1, k6, m1, k2 (12 sts).
24) Purl.
25) k2, m1, k2, m1, k4, m1, k2, m1, k2 (16 sts).
26) Purl.
27) k3, m1, k3, m1, k4, m1, k3, m1, k3 (20 sts).
28) Purl.
29) k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, k4, m1, k4 (24 sts).
30) Purl.
31) Knit.
32) Purl.
33) Knit.
34) Purl.
35) k1, ssk, k1, ssk, k12, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k1 (20 sts).
36) Purl.
37) ssk, ssk, k4, ssk, k2tog, k4, k2tog, k2tog (14 sts) .

38) Purl.
39) k6, m1, k2, m1, k6 (16 sts)
40) Purl.
42) Purl.
43) Knit.
44) Purl.
45) k1, ssk, k1, ssk, k4, k2tog, k1, k2tog, k1 (12 sts).
46) Purl.

Change to peach coloured yarn for final row:

47) k2tog across (6 sts).

Cut yarn and thread through remaining 6 sts. Gather up tight and fasten off.

Left Wing:

Cast on 3 sts
1) Knit.
2) Purl.
3) k1, m1, k1, m1, k1 (5 sts).
4) Purl.
5) k1, m1, k4 (6 sts).
6) Purl.
7) Knit.
8) Purl.
9) Knit.
10) Purl.
11) k1, ssk, k3 (5 sts).
12) Purl.
13) Knit.
14) Purl.
15) k1, ssk, k2 (4 sts).
16) Purl.
17) k1, ssk, k1 (3 sts).
18) Purl.
19) ssk, k1 (2 sts).
20) Purl.
21) k2tog.

Right Wing:

Cast on 3 sts
1) Knit.
2) Purl.
3) k1, m1, k1, m1, k1 (5 sts).
4) Purl.
5) k4, m1, k1 (6 sts).
6) Purl.
7) Knit.
8) Purl.
9) Knit.
10) Purl.
11) k3, k2tog, k1 (5 sts).
12) Purl.
13) Knit.
14) Purl.
15) k2, k2tog, k1 (4 sts)
16) Purl.
17) k1, k2tog, k1 (3 sts)
18) Purl.
19) k1, k2tog (2 sts)
20) Purl.
21) k2tog.

To make up:

Sew along chest seam from beak to end of body stuffing as you go. Secure hole with a stitch.
Using black yarn, sew on eyes either side of beak using french knots wrapping the yarn around the sewing needle 4 times to create each knot. Position and sew on wings.

Use wire to create the leg and feet. Cut a piece of wire approx 15cm in length. Form three toes of about 1 cm each. Twist the wire of the toes together. Insert the other end of the wire through the bird where legs need to be positioned. Form second foot as above. Cut the wire if necessary to make the leg length required (approx 2.5cm each side). Using peach yearn, wrap each leg and foot tightly to cover the wire.

Whatever craft medium you decide to use, your mission is to craft your small yellow canary for your Member of Parliament and send to them as an encouraging gift with a handwritten letter encouraging them and the UK Government to act more and faster to tackle the climate crisis. Find the MP Letter template and all other important campaign information here.
Handcraft your yellow canary to fit on the palm of your hand. 14cm tall at the largest. With eyes open, looking friendly and lively.

  • Rachel Lyddon
    Posted at 14:04h, 21 June Reply

    Thanks for this! I noticed the pattern has missed out rows 38 & 39 on the main body. Should I add the extra 2 rows or should the pattern only go up to 44 instead of 46? Many thanks 😊

    • Craftivist Collective
      Posted at 15:50h, 21 June Reply

      thanks for noticing Rachel – I’ll update it now. It should be
      38) Purl.
      39) k6, m1, k2, m1, k6, (16 sts)

      I’ll update it now 🙂 xxxx

  • Rachel Lyddon
    Posted at 18:19h, 21 June Reply

    Great, thanks. That makes a lot more sense now! 😊

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