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Theo the Penguin · Free Amigurumi Crochet Pattern

Have you ever crocheted a character from a book?  Neither have I...until quite recently! 

I bought the book, Theo's Heart, by the talented author Amy Kwong for my daughter because I knew Lena would love it.  It's a well-written children's story that teaches empathy and compassion, and has adorable illustrations to go with.  My intuition was right -- Lena loves the story and absolutely adores Theo, the penguin stuffed animal.  After just a couple repetitions of the book, my little girl started to squeal and kiss the 2D image of Theo every time she saw him (which is like literally every page).  Honestly, it's hard not to fall in love with this utterly charming character.  

Being a crochet designer, I knew it was my duty to come up with a yarny version of Theo for her to cuddle with.  Thus, I began to freehand the character, and soon enough, the first version of Theo was born!

Well, almost.  I had just finished sewing on his penguin parts, when Lena ran off with him before I could crochet his hallmark heart!  

My little girl adores the heck out of this little guy. She insists on finding and holding Theo when we're reading about his story, and when we're not! 

I connected with Amy, the author of Theo's Heart, over her wonderful book.  We got inspired to collaborate together to share a crochet pattern for Theo with all of you!  

When I worked on crocheting and designing a new Theo pattern, this time following the character's details more closely.  Instead of crocheting a separate, white belly flap to sew onto the doll, I used color-changing techniques to keep it even and seamless.  I also made the wings sturdier, and designed them to be crocheted to the body in a one piece, no-sew manner.  Theo 2.0 also has nicer, more detailed feet that stick out (rather than being crocheted like an applique and sewn flat against the body).  And of course, he comes with his special heart!

I also had fun making a mini Theo.  This guy uses medium weight yarn all the way through, instead of the big Theo that uses a combination of both super bulky "blanket" yarn and worsted medium weight yarn.  Isn't mini Theo so tiny and cute?  Perfect to put on a keychain, I'd say! 

Amigurumi Theo Links:


Here's a quick preview!

Connect with author, Amy Kwong!

Be sure to check out Amy Kwong's Instagram for lots of fun, hands-on, and educational book-inspired activities for little ones. 

Her books are available on Amazon! 
  • Get the English version here
  • Get the bilingual (English/Chinese) version here 

Want the PDF pattern?

The PDF pattern includes BOTH the big and mini Theo patterns!  It is printable, ad-free, and easy to read.  Your purchase will go directly towards supporting Sweet Softies and the original author and illustrator of Theo's Heart. 

Get the PDF pattern from my storeRavelry or

Theo the Penguin

Free Crochet Pattern

Terms of Use & Copyright Notice © 2022 Sweet Softies (www.sweetsofties.com). You have permission to sell finished products made from this pattern, but you must credit Sweet Softies as the owner/creator of this pattern by linking to my website (www.sweetsofties.com). No wholesale. You may not translate, copy, alter, or sell my patterns in part or in whole in any way. My patterns may not be used in video tutorials or teaching online classes. My patterns may be used in teaching in-person classes ONLY with written consent from me. You may link to this pattern but you may not copy any part of the pattern instructions on other websites.


Theo the Penguin is an adorable crochet doll that was designed from the children’s book, “Theo’s Heart”, written by Amy Kwong © 2020 and illustrated by Tracy Liu.  Theo’s arms and body are crocheted together in one piece.  His design features color-changing techniques to create the white front and belly.  Theo is mostly crocheted using super bulky blanket yarn, with medium weight yarn for his heart and feet. This pattern also includes bonus instructions for crocheting the mini Theo penguin, which is the perfect size as a keychain or pocket pal. Crochet this little book buddy to accompany his sweet story! This book and doll set would make the perfect gift for any young learner.


Theo: 16 cm in height 
Mini Theo: 6 cm in height

Level of Difficulty:

★★☆☆☆ Easy / Familiar Beginner. Requires stitches used (below), color changing, sewing parts together, and attaching safety eyes.

Stitches/Terms Used:

  • FO = fasten off 
  • MR = magic ring 
  • ch = chain 
  • sl st = slip stitch 
  • sc = single crochet 
  • hdc = half double crochet 
  • dc = double crochet 
  • tr = triple (treble) crochet 
  • inc = increase 
  • dec = decrease 
  • BLO = back loops only 
  • FLO = front loops only


  • Bernat Blanket Yarn (super bulky weight #6) in grey and white 
  • Medium weight #4 yarn in orange and pink 
  • 6mm hook 
  • 4mm hook 
  • 2.75mm hook 
  • 9mm plastic safety eyes 
  • Stuffing 
  • Yarn needle 
  • Scissors
Note: For the “Mini Theo”, you will only need a 2.75mm hook and medium weight yarn in grey, white, pink, and orange.

Notes: (Please read before beginning!)

  • Work in the order below, starting with the arms first.
  • A preview of the finished penguins is available here.

WINGS (x2)

Start with a 6mm hook and super bulky (#6) grey yarn.

R1: Starting with a MR, ch 3 and insert 6 dc. Join with a sl st to the first dc. (6)

R2: Ch 3, (dc 2, inc) x 2. (8)

FO with a tail and set aside for attaching to the body later.


Notes: Arms will be attached using crochet methods between R8-R9 of the body.

Start with a 6mm hook and super bulky (#6) grey yarn.

R1: Starting with a MR, insert 8 sc. (8)

R2: Inc around. (16)

R3: (Sc, inc) x 8. (24)

R4: (Sc 2, inc) x 8. (32)

Get white yarn ready for color changes from R5-R15.

R5: In grey, make one sc. Then, switch to white and sc 3. Switch to grey and sc 3. Switch to white and sc 3. Switch to grey and sc around in the remaining stitches. (32)

R6: Switch to white and sc 5. Switch to grey and sc 1. Switch to white and sc 5. Switch to grey and sc around in the remaining sts. (32)

R7: Switch to white and sc 12. Switch to grey and sc around in the remaining sts. (32)

R8: Switch to white and sc 12. Switch to grey and sc around in the next 16 sts. This will leave the last 4 sts open. At this point, grab a wing and fold the opening flat. Attach it with 4 sc by going through both layers of the folded wing and into the body. (32)

Click here for a video tutorial on attaching wings.

R9: Switch to white and sc 12. Switch to grey and attach the second wing with 4 sc. Then, sc around in the remaining sts. (32)

Insert 9mm eyes between R6-R7, 5 sts apart.

Using orange yarn, sew the beak between the eyes.

R10-R11: Repeat R7.

R12: Switch to white and sc 11. Inc in next st. Switch to grey and sc 9, inc, sc 9, inc. (35)

R13: Switch to white and sc 13. Switch to grey and sc around in the remaining sts. (35)

R14: Switch to white and dec, sc 9, dec. Switch to grey and sc 10, dec, sc 10. (32)

R15: Switch to white and dec, sc 9. Switch to grey and (dec, sc 5) x 3. (28)

Continue the rest of the body in grey yarn only. Stuff the body and continue stuffing as you finish the last several rounds.

R16: (Dec, sc 5) x 4. (24)

R17: (Dec, sc) x 8. (16)

R18: Dec around. (8)

FO with a long tail for sewing the hole shut.

FEET (x2)

Start with a 4mm hook and medium weight (#4) orange yarn.

R1: Starting with a MR, insert 6 sc. (6)

R2: Sc around. (6)

R3: Ch 1, then pinch the piece flat. (You’ll be working across the opening, going through both the front and back layers.) Insert a dc into the first pair of sts (front and back of the pinched opening). Ch 1, and sl st into the same st. First toe is complete. Then, ch 1 and insert a dc into the next pair of sts. Ch 1 and sl st into the same st. Second toe is complete. Last, ch 1 and insert a dc into the last pair of sts. Ch 1 and sl st into the same st. Third toe is complete.

Click here for a video tutorial on crocheting the feet.

FO with a long tail for sewing to the body later.


Start with a 2.75mm hook and medium weight (#4) pink yarn.

R1: Starting with a MR, ch 3, tr 3, dc 2, ch, tr, ch, dc 2, tr 3, ch 3, sl st.

Pull the ring tight and FO with a long tail for sewing to the body later.

Congratulations on finishing your Theo!

Thank you for reading, and hope you have a fun time crocheting this project!  If you'd like to help out my blog, feel free to check out my post, "5 Ways to Support my Blog!"

You might like my other designs if you enjoyed this one!  Simply click on the image below for the pattern, or check out all my free patterns here.


I'd love to see your finished work from my designs!  Here are links for sharing photos of your creations: 

As always, you are more than welcome to SHARE this post with any fellow crocheters who'd like to try this pattern!  Thank you for reading, and I wish you all a wonderful day!

Best wishes,