Added 1/19/2011: I often get asked if this is the Totoro pattern I use now. The answer is no. I usually do not use a pattern, and no two are alike. Some time after knitting these early ones, I discovered needle felting and not use that for the facial features.
A couple party Totoro's showed up yesterday. The green Koigu hat is actually one of Saartje's flowers turned upside down. I was too lazy to knit holes for the ears, but maybe next time.
I finally got around to checking and rewriting the pattern as the old version was messed up.
Needles: set of 4 DP
Size 1-2 for sock yarn, 7-8 for bulky/worsted
Inc=knit in front and back, slip stitch off the needle
Back and head:
CO 9 sts. Join, place marker
1-and all odd rows except row 5, knit
2-k1, Inc in the next 8 stitches. (17 stitches)
4-k2, inc in next stitch, then * K1, inc in next stitch*, repeat between * all around. (25 st.)
6-K9, inc 1, k6, inc 1, k8 (27 st)
8-K1, Inc 1, k7, inc 1 in next 2 st, k6, inc 1 in next 2 st, k7, inc 1 in last st (33 st)
10-K1, Inc 1, k9, inc 1 in next 2 st, k8, inc 1 in next 2 st, k9, inc 1 in last st (39 st)
14-K1, K2tog, knit until two stitches remain, then ssk.
Repeat rows 14 and 15 until 19 stitches remain
Next row-K1, * K2tog, K5, K2tog *, Repeat between * around (15 st)
Next row-K2tog, Knit around (14 st)
Next row- * K2tog, K3, K2tog *, Repeat between * around (10 stitches
Knit last row Cut yarn. Thread tail through stitches, stuff and draw up tight.
Use starting tail to close up hole on base.
Arms: Cast on 8 st. Join. Work in in stock st, work 7 rows. Divide stitches on two needles. Double bind off. This end is sewed to body. Use black yarn to embroider claws if desired.
Ears: Cast on 3 st. Work as I-cord for 2 rows. Continue as I-cord, but inc in middle stitch.. Work as I-cord for 1 rows. Then K1, ssk, K1. Last row, K1, ssk, then cut yarn and thread through st.
Draw up the thread to bottom so it is opposite the starting thread. Use tails to sew down the ears. The size of the ears will have to be adjust depending on how big the Totoro is.
Tail: CO 15 st. Join. Stock st for 4 rows. K2tog both ends. Stock st 4 rows. K2tog both ends. P next row. K2tog both ends. P next row. K2 tog, both end and in the middle. Gather up remaining st., stuff then sew to body.
Alternately pick up the stitches directly on the body and knit in the round.
Eyeball the placement, and pick up 13-15 stitches. When the tail seems long enough, k2 tog, k1 one row, then k2 together all around until about 8 stitches are left, and thread through the tail stuff before pull up and bury tails.
CO 6 (or pick up 6 on of the front garter stitches, center over the front)
Work back and fourth stock st for 3 rows.
K1, M1, K4, M1, K1
Purl one row
K1, M1, K6, M1, K1
Work stock stitch for 7 rows.
K1, ssk, k4,K2tog, K1
Purl one row
Bind off. Sew done to front, stuff lightly if you want.
5 Apply eyes of your choice
*Another way to do the arms, tail and ears is to use DP needles and pick up st. directly on the body and knit in the round. Stuff the tail before drawing it shut. The stitches are easier to place if you stuff the body before picking up the stitches. You may need fewer stitches. Anything to reduce the dread seamingJ