Teeny tiny knitted toys
knitting note paper

Christmas tree bears

Christmas toys


You can download a free pdf to print out here: Download Christmas tree bears from little cotton rabbits

Materials needed: 

2.25mm needles (size 1 US, UK/Canada 13)
a pair of double pointed needles 2.25mm (size 1 US, UK/Canada 13)
oddments of 4ply yarn in red and white
oddments of bear coloured yarn (4ply or DK)
a small circle of felt to reinforce the stitching on the face
a short length of black yarn for embroidering the face
small amount of toy stuffing / carded wool
6 inch length of ribbon
a couple of lengths of strong yarn

(knitting this pattern in thicker weight yarn and larger needle sizes will give a larger decoration)



Cast on 20 stitches with red coloured yarn
Rows 1&2: Knit all stitches
Row 3: K2 red, (K1 white, K1 red) 9 times
Row 4: Purl all stitches in red
Rows 5-10: Continue in stocking stitch with red yarn for a further 6 rows. Cut the red yarn from work leaving a tail of 5 inches or so for seaming later.
Rows 11-18: Change to bear coloured yarn and work 8 rows of stocking stitch

Finish knitting


With a 6 inch long length of strong yarn (one that will not break) thread through the 20 stitches on  the needle slipping them off as you go (don’t yet tie off these ends). Take another 6 inch length of the strong yarn and pick up the loops from the back of the topmost row of red knitting, again leaving this loose for now.

Pickup loops


Now take your small circle of felt and place at the back of the work behind where you plan to embroider the face. Using the black yarn embroider a small nose in centre of face - I use 1 stitch across and 1 small stitch downwards. Now add the eyes (if you wish you can tie a small knot in the thread to make the eye stand out). Knot the black thread at the back of the work and tie ends securely trimming off the excess.

Finish face from backFinish face


Take the length of ribbon, double it over and tie a knot in the end to form a loop. Pull the strong yarn ends at the very top of the work to start to gather in the top of the head. Thread the ribbon through the top gathered edge of the head with the loop on the outside and the knot inside the head. Tightly pull the yarn ends gathering in the top of head and tie off securely. Begin joining the seam down the back of the head using the cast off end of bear coloured yarn.

Insert ribbon


When you reach the bottom of the head take a small piece of stuffing and use to firmly stuff the head. Then take up the second pair of strong yarn ends and pull very tightly to gather in the neck - tie off securely and leave ends inside the body. Continue seaming down the rest of the body to the cast on edge.

Join seam


Stuff the body cavity and join the seam at the bottom of the dress (I pick up the stitch loops inside the body from the back of the second row up. This gives a nice flared out edge to the bottom of the dress).

Ready for arms


Now make the limbs (4 the same). Cast on 4 stitches with the double pointed needles and knit a short i-cord (tutorial here - scroll down to find) of around 6 rows in length. Cut the work from the ball and thread the end through the stitches on the needle and then through the middle of the work - knotting it securely to the cast on tail (there are pictures for making the limbs over on my free pattern for teeny tiny toys)

To make the bear ears cast on 3 stitches, knit 1 row, cast off 3. Tie cast on and cast off ends together tightly and join to the top of the head with a few stitches. Knot ends securely together and thread through the body before trimming excess.

Take the first of the limbs and join to the body with a few stitches. Knot ends securely together and thread through the body before trimming off the excess. Repeat with the remaining limbs.
And there you have a little, itty, bitty bear Christmas decoration, all ready for hanging on the tree!

Christmas toys

If you prefer you can make the dress extra long (around 12 rows) and not bother with the legs.



If you would like a rabbit instead of a bear please see my free pattern for teeny tiny toys for the rabbit ear instructions.

Copyright © Julie Williams 2008.




adorable !! i enjoyed your blog this morning


You are very generous. I love your patterns and buy them and knit playmates for my granddaughter. Now we can hang them on the tree!


These bears are just so darn cute. I made them as finger puppets as I was on a deadline and just could not get the limbs done. The recipients thought they were adorable.

Thanks for a great idea!


These are so cute! I swore I wasn't knitting for anyone for Christmas, but I think I need to now.
Thanks for sharing your adorable pattern!


Those bears are the sweetest! Thanks for sharing!


These are so cute!!


they are soooo cute!!!
Thanks for sharing Pattern!


When I saw your name I couldn't believe it. My sister-in-laws name is Julie Williams too, although she is not a knitter. These are so cute. I am stopping everything else today to make some of these for Christmas presents. I love them. Thanks for sharing.



Those are just the cutest things. But even a tutorial from you wont help ME make them. LOL I sure wish I could though. I love them!!


You're making me want to get back to knitting - these are lovely! I have left you an award on my blog. Wishing you and your's a wonderful Christmas!


I love your blog and all your knitted items. Do you mind if I add you to my blog list on my blog?I love the cupcake.


I would like to work for u just for one summer...doing anything if u teach me how to knit those beautiful rabbits!!!!!

Tania McCartney

Julie - your designs are exquisite and so generous of you to share the patterns. I am going to show my 8 year old daughter - she will flip. I would love to put some pics of your work on my site, talking about your blog, and also invite you to be a featured talented in my Women Who Do What They Love series. Please let me know. Warmest bunny wishes, Tania McCartney

Dianne Boney

A friend urged me to move these projects to the head of my list. I'm so glad I did! I made a treeful of bears--some brown and some white. I used ribbon floss for the hangers for a delicate look. I made some small changes to the face embroidery, doing the embroidery after the head was stuffed. Pinching the stuffing a bit added definition to the eyes and nose. The instructions for the bears (and the stockings) are so thorough--a fact I appreciate after spending so many years writing sewing and smocking instructions for Creative Needle magazine! Thanks for sharing these; I've enjoyed making such well-designed ornaments.


So nice and easy! Thanks for an idea!

owl in the dark

thank you soooo much!
these are DARLING!

Jacinta Latta

Thank you so much for this pattern - I haven't knit the teddy bears yet, but I did use the pattern as a base for making a tiny Yoda (from Star Wars) and he turned out great! His recipient is very pleased with him!



I'm learning to knit just so I can make these for next Christmas. Thank you.

vintage jewelry

Incredible ! It is very cute Christmas tree bears. Thank you for tutorial. I know bit knitting. ON the other hand my mum is trained in it. I will surely try it with help of my mother.


Julie, these are absolutely gorgeous and the perfect way to use up tiny balls of left over sock yarn. I'd love to post a link to this post on my own blog and use the first photo ... would that be OK with you ?

Kristina Keller-Wilczek

Your ideas are so precious! I really appreciate the detail you give, even down to the size of the needles. My church group would get a real kick out of doing these for a service project. Have you written anything more recent on Christmas tree decorating ideas? I I recently wrote about some unique ideas for Christmas wreaths you may find humorous:

Keep up the good work!



I just love theese bears. I hope it's ok if I borrow one photo of theese lovely bears and link to the pattern from my blog (www.siddisliv.com).


merci pour ce modèle que je trouve adorable, je vais en tricoter cette année pour noël et les offrir à mes invités

Artificial Christmas Trees

It's a Japanese craze that's based on anime, the cartoons with big heads and wide eyes.You can make ornaments, pocket pals,just use smaller yarn or thread and a smaller crochet hook!I am looking for a knitted christmas tree skirt pattern?


I made these bears.....they are very easy, although might seem difficult at first! They are very cute! I made one in pink to put on a gift for a new bay!


Very very cute ^^! Thank you so much for the pattern and tutorial ^^!!

christmas is coming

Christmas is nearly coming and this idea of yours is really nice. Simple yet so cute to decor in our white Christmas tree. Thanks! :)


OMgosh! those little bears are adorable, thank you for sharing this fab tutorial


Thanks a lot from France, I did these so cute bears, all people that have seen them are in love with them!

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