This darling little crochet sea turtle will delight all children with his adorable hexagon shape and tiny little flippers. Make him in 2 or 3 colors and he will be your child’s new favorite toy. This crochet baby sea turtle crochet pattern is adapted from a pattern originally found at joann.com and is posted with permission here. This post also includes affiliate links, which means I get a small commission at at now extra cost to you. Thanks for your cooperation! 

crochet sea turtle plushy toy free crochet pattern

This crochet sea turtle patterns has quite the tale to tell. Several years ago  I was contacted by Joann to participate in summer craft challenge. Joann was releasing an online catalog that included fun summery crafts of all kinds. They wanted me to choose one project and make it. I chose the cute crochet sea turtle. The original pattern had some unusual design choices so I wrote up some of my adaptions and linked to the original turtle at Joann.com.

This was my original sample, worked with Bernat Handicrafter Cotton.

cotton crochet turtle free pattern

My second sample using Brava Worsted acrylic yarn and with further simplified instructions:

bright small crochet sea turtle free pattern

Over the years, the original pattern at Joann.com moved URLs a few times, until finally I had a user message me to tell me the current URL was again not leading to the pattern. I searched and searched the site to no avail. I reached out to the Joann creative team and they informed me the pattern was taken down and was not saved anywhere in the archives. They said if I ever got a my hands on a copy, I had permission to share it with you.

But the crochet sea turtle was lost forever.

Last summer, I had a reader reach out to me, telling me she had downloaded the pattern and was willing to share. Saved!

Due to the birth of Cubbie, I didn’t have the time to do anything with it at that moment, so I thought it would sit safely in my inbox. Finally, last month when I decided to sit down and take care of this pattern once and for all, I couldn’t find the pattern, the email or any of it.

Blurg.

I thankfully kept my samples, so I did a bit of reverse engineering to finally complete this crochet sea turtle pattern in it’s totality.

The fins and shell are all original. The head is completely my design and the belly (and tail) was a combination, as I couldn’t quite figure out what I original did based on my sample and had to design as I went, using the original as my starting point.

cute modern crochet sea turtle free crochet pattern

I personally prefer the look of safety eyes, but you can totally make the crochet eyes for yours of course. Either way this little guy is totally adorable!

I am so, so happy to finally have this pattern published and completed. Thank you all for your patience!

cute face crochet sea turtle free crochet pattern

CROCHET SEA TURTLE – FREE CROCHET PATTERN

Please remember: You are free to use this pattern to make and sell, but do not republish or distribute this pattern in any way. DO NOT use my photos in your listings. Please do share my blog links! It’s a quick and FREE way of supporting Whistle and Ivy and more free crochet patterns in the future.
PLEASE read my Disclaimer before working my free patterns! 

What you need: (affiliate links)
– 4mm Hook
– Different yarns will give you different sizes! I originally made this turtle with Bernat Handicrafter Cotton, and it was about 18 long, my subsequent samples were made with Brava Worsted, about 11″ long.
– Extras
Darning Needle
-Polyfil
8mm Safety Eyes

Abbreviations: US Terms
Ch – chain
Sc – single crochet
Sc2tog – Sc decrease
Tc – Treble Crochet
Dc – Double Crochet
Hdc – Half Double Crochet
Sl st – Slip Stitch
St – stitch

Gauge:  not important, just make sure your stitches are tight. If you can see spaces between your stitches or can see  stuffing, go down a hook size or two. 

⭐️ I do not sell this pattern in any of my shops, but it IS available in my ENDLESS BUNDLE!

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Notes: Be sure to always work the first st in the same st as the chain.Alternately, you can also make your crochet sea turtle’s eyes from crochet circles instead of safety eyes. You would simply crochet one circle using white and crochet a second, smaller circle using black. I would suggest glueing it in place, I personally do not like sewing on things that small!

HEAD:
Magic ring
1. Work 8 sc into ring. (8 sts) Join.
2. Ch 1. Work 2 sc in each st around. Join. (16 sts)
3. Ch 1. *Sc in next 7 sts. Work 2 sc in next st* work twice. Join. (18 sts)
4. Ch 1. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 8 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Join. (20 sts)
5. Ch 1. *Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next st* work 4 times. Join. (24 sts)
6. Ch 1. *Sc in next 5 sts. Work 2 sc in next st* work 4 times. Join. (28 sts)
7. Ch 1. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. *Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st* work 3 times. Sc in last 3 sts. Join. (32 sts)
8. – 10. Ch 1. Sc in each st around. Join. (32 sts)
11. Ch 1. *Sc in next 6 sts. Sc2tog.* work 4 times. Join. (28 sts)
12. Ch 1. Sc in each st. Join. (28 sts)
13. Ch 1. *Sc in next 5 sts. Sc2tog.* work 4 times. Join. (24 sts)
14. Ch 1. Sc in next 2 sts. Sc2tog. *Sc in next 4 sts. Sc2tog* work 3 times. Sc in last 2 sts. Join. (20 sts)
15. Ch 1. *Sc in next 3 sts. Sc2tog.* work 4 times. Join. (16 sts)
16. – 20. Sc in each st around. Join. (16 sts)
Leave a long tail.
Stuff firmly.

Place safety eyes on either side of the head between rows 6 and 7.

FLIPPERS:
(make 4)
Ch 18. Join with sl st to first ch to form a ring, taking care not to twist the the ch.
1. Ch 1. Sc in each ch. Join. (18 sts)
2. – 7. Ch 1. Sc in each st. Join. (18 sts)
8. – 13. Ch 1. Work 2 sc in same st. Sc in next 6 sts. Sc2tog twice. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in last st. Join with sl st. (18 sts)

Tie off and leave a long tail. Turn Leg inside-out. Fold leg flat and sl st along 13 row, sewing the end shut. Turn leg right-side out and stuff with Polyfil.

BELLY: 
(always work first st in the same st as the ch)
Ch 6.
1. Work 3 sc in 2nd ch from hook. Sc in next 3 chs. Work 3 sc in last ch. Working across opposite side of chain: sc in next 3 chs. Join with first sc. (12 sts)

2. Ch 1. Sc in next st. Work 3 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 3 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in last st. Join. (18 sts)

3. Ch 1. Sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st. Work 3 sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Work 3 sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Join. (26 sts)

4. Ch 1. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Work 3 sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 in next 2 sts. Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Work 3 sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next 2 sts. Sc in last st. Join. (38 sts)

5. Ch 1. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 3 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 12 sts.
Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 3 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 9 sts. Join. (46 sts)

6. Ch 1. Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 14 sts.
Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 10 sts. Join. (52 sts)

7. Ch 1. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. *Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next st.* work twice. Sc in next 15 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. *Sc in next 4 sts. Work 2 sc in next st.* work twice. Sc in next 9 sts. Join. (58 sts)

8. Ch 1. Sc in next 7 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. *Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st.* work twice. Sc in next 20 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. *Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st.* work twice. Sc in next 13 sts. Join. (64 sts)

9. Ch 1. Sc in next 8 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next 2 sts. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 22 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next 2 sts. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 14 sts. Join. (72 sts)

10. Ch 1. Sc in each st around. Join. (72 sts)

11. Ch 1. Sc in next 9 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 23 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 5 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 14 sts. Join. (78 sts)

12. Ch 1. Sc in next 10 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 24 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 6 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 14 sts. Join. (84 sts)

13. – 14. Ch 1. Sc in each st around. Join. (84 sts)

SHELL:

HEXAGONS: Work 7
 (always work firs st in same st as chain, and join with the top two loops of first st).

Magic ring

1. Ch 1. Sc 6 into ring. Join. (6 sts)
2. Ch 1. Work 2 sc in each st. Join. (12 sts)
3. Ch 1. *Sc in next st. Work 2 sc in next st* work 6 times. Join. (18 sts)
4. Ch 1. *Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st* work 6 times. Join. (24 sts)

Join 2nd color

5. Ch 1. *Sc in next 3 sts. Work 3 sc in next st. * work 6 times. Join. (36 sts)
Tie off.

Sew the shell together with one hexagon in the middle, and the remaining 6 around the middle hexagon. Using the same color yarn as the last round on your hexagons, sew them together 2 at a time by lining them up, right sides together. Using a separate yarn, sc the hexagons together going through the back loops only on each hexagon (the 2 outside loops when the hexagon are oriented with rights sides together. Work until all are sewn together. Weave in the outside tails in, but you do not need to bother weaving in the ends in the middle, they will be hidden when the turtle is fully constructed.

SHELL OUTER EDGE:
With shell oriented with two hexies on top, join yarn in the right hexagon, in the top peak.

Ch 1. (work first st in the same st as the ch) Sc in next 3 sts. *Hdc in next st. Dc in next 2 sts. Work a 3 dc cluster st over the next st, the space in between the hexies and the next st on the following hexie. Dc in next 2 sts. Hdc in next st.Sc in next 11 sts * work 5 times. Hdc in next st. Dc in next 2 sts. Work a 3 dc cluster st over the next st, the space in between the hexies and the next st on the following hexie. Dc in next 2 sts. Hdc in next st. Sc in next 8 sts.
Join with first st.(103 sts)
Tie off.

TAIL:
Magic Ring
1. Ch 1. Work Sc 5 into ring. Join. (5 sts)
2. – 4. Sc in each st around. Join. (5 sts)
5. Ch 1. Sc in next 2 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. Join. (6 sts)
6. Ch 1. Sc in each st. Join. (6 sts)
7.Ch 1. Work 2 sc in same st. Sc in next 5 sts. Join. (7 sts)
8. Ch 1. Sc in each st. Join. (7 sts)
9. Ch 1. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 3 sts. Work 2 sc in next st. Sc in next 2 sts. (9 sts)
10. – 12. Ch 1. Sc in each st around. Join. (9 sts)
Leave a long tail.

CONSTRUCTION:
BODY: 
Sew the belly to the finished shell: line the belly lengthwise on the bottom of the shell, wrong sides together. 

The tips will be flush, but the outer side edges of the shell will extend past the belly. Pin in place. You will sew it together using a sewing running stitch. Use the same color yarn that you used to sew your hexagons together. Pin in place.

When you get to one end (doesn’t matter which) sandwich the tail in between the belly and the shell, sewing it place as you go.


When you get to the sides of the shell, you can continue along with your sewing it if you don’ t mind seeing the stitches on top. You can also skip it for now, and come back with the same color you used for your hexagon centers and sew up that space, so you can’t see your stitches from the top. 

You can clip the yarn and put a small dab of glue to keep the yarn from pulling out.
Leave a small hole to stuff it in. Once firmly stuff, sew up remaining hole.

FLIPPERS:
Next, sew the flippers in place. Your back flippers should be near the tail, lined up the the outer edge of the bottom two hexagons. Pinch the open end slightly and pin in place on the edge of the belly, just inside of where it meets the shell. Using the tail, sew in place. Repeat for other back flippers.

Front flippers will be slightly farther apart than the the back flippers. Sew them approx. centered where the two hexagons meets in the top corners of the shell. Sew in place using the tails, just as you did with the back flippers.

HEAD:
The head will go at the top, centered between your two front flippers. Take care that the head is straight so the eyes are on either side of the head. Sew it under the shell on the belly, similar to how you sewed the legs. 

 Make sure all ends are weaved in.

cute crochet sea turtle free pattern

It’s amazing the size difference between the cotton and acrylic!
The Boy named the larger, original crochet sea turtle “Finny,” which is pretty darn cute. And even though his neck is stretched out already from being swung around, I am so happy The Boy loves his new friend. This little guy (made with acrylic) fits on the original Finny’s shell. Of course the kids love them all.

modern cute crochet sea turtle free crochet pattern

xoxo,

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118 Comments

  1. Hi Bethany, before I get too far into this pattern, are there directions for the belly?
    I don’t see them here.
    Thanks.

  2. This may be a dumb question, but as long as I could find two different greens, do you think I could use Simply Soft for this?

  3. I crocheted a similar turtle 45 years ago for our baby daughter but the shell was one piece so I used variegated yarn. I remade it for GD 8 years ago. I sure wish I’d had your shell. It is fantastic. Mine was sewn around a round margarine tub, with a bell or dried beans inside so it made noise. Both are still alive and well. Still, yours is soooo dang cute.
    God bless…

  4. can not find the rest of the sea turtle pattern the body is missing and joaann’s does not pop it up i need the rest of the pattern

      1. I cannot seem to find the original pattern. Joann says it is not there. Is there another way to access it.

        1. I am so sorry, I have been in contact with them and they couldn’t find a copy in their archives or folders, it as been deleted! I will have to try and backward engineer the finished piece so readers can have access to the full pattern. I am so sorry for this inconvenience!

  5. Your Sea Turtle pattern is adorable! I love it and I’m putting it on my to do list. Thank you for adding your changes to the original pattern.

  6. I love this reworked little turtle – thank you for taking the time to write up a pattern for the changes. I’m going to put it on my “to do” list, for if and when I ever get finished all the projects that come first on that list…

    BTW, and just for your info – tortoises dwell on land, while turtles live in the water some or nearly all of the time.

      1. You’re correct about it being a sea turtle too! Sea turtles have the flippers like that because it helps them swim. I think some non sea turtles may have feet, but all tortoises have feet instead of flippers. I have a sea turtle pull along toy that I got from my granddaddy when I was little, so if I’m ever able to make this I’ll use colors to match my sea turtle. (Apple green, sunny yellow, and light teal.)

  7. Love your turtle. I am struggling with the head. When I fasten off all I have is a tube which is wider on one end. How do I make it look like a head. Do I gather stitches or crochet a mouth on the side end to close the tube? TIA

  8. Do you perhaps have a pattern now that encompasses changes so that no “clicking over” is involved so that no mistake can be made? Thanks!

    1. I do not. That pattern is owned by Joann, and so it would not be legal for me to put it on my site. The entire pattern is at Joann, I simply added some ideas on making it work up simpler. This whole thing needs to be redone, to be honest. It’s on my list!

  9. Your sea turtle is so cute and 4 grandchildren really want one each but I am having trouble with the legs. Perhaps it has been too many years since I did much crocheting. From the 2nd row on it directs me to ch 1 ;(which would be considered a sc 1 on the next row;) and sc 1 or sc2 in the following row (increasing the number or stitches each row). If the ch 1 or the sc 1 and 2 are not to be extra stitches what are they to be considered? By the time I’ve reached row 13, I have 30sc’s even though I have skipped some stitches and I’m on my 6th foot. I hope you realize how important this is to the grandchildren. From what the direction indicate each row should contain 18 sca. Needless to say, I’m lost and any help would be greatly appreciated.

      1. Yes, I am working the 2 decreases but I am no longer counting the chain at the beginning of a row as a stitch to enter a sc into it in the following row. I finally made one that looks good. Thank you for trying to help me.

    1. These are my tips for completing a pattern at Joann.com. The second photo compares mine with theirs. The link is at the top of the post.

  10. I was wondering how i would make it so that there was no mouth. I want to make it so the head is just one color. Should I just do all the parts in one color, or what?

  11. Hi, Bethany! I made 2 of your patterns and they are so cute. The turtle is so adorable. One friend ask me to make it for her child. I am sure it will be very difficult for me to make it as I am not good in crocheting but I will give a try. I am not clear with the directions on joann.com. Can you help me? What is this: GAUGE: 15 sc and 16 rows = 4″ ? The hexagons look difficult. I want to be clear how to start. Thank you in advance!

    1. Hello again! Now I am having trouble connecting the hexagons! I’m just not sure what they mean by connecting them. Could you explain it better? I’m feeling so confused!
      Thanks,
      Karol

      1. So its saying place two hexagons right sides together. From here, you will work in the back loops only, but because you are looking at the wrong side, it will be the loop facing you, and the loop on the other side (so don’t work thru the 2 middle loops). Does that make sense?

        1. I understand that much, but I’m not sure how to connect the two hexagons. Or how I’m suppose to make the shell around them.

          1. Hm. Can you be a bit more specific about your question then? I guess I am not sure how to explain it. You work sc through the two outside loops and that connects them… Are you clicking over to the original pattern? The notations on this page are just my alterations to the original pattern on Joann.com.