Childrens Corner

An octopus friend for a seaside trip

The summer holidays are nearly here which means days spent at the beach scavenging for buried treasure and sea creatures such as octopus, whales, dolphins and seahorses. If only we were so lucky to find such majestic animals on Irish beaches.

But you might just spot seals, dolphins and even basking shark in certain parts of Ireland.

Don’t be disappointed if you don’t get to see any of these during your days out at the seaside. You can always make your own octopus friends to take with you on an outing to the beach.

For the octopus you will need: one ball of aquamarine yarn, scissors, googly eyes, buttons and beads.

Take a ball of yarn and wrap it several times around an A5 notebook until it’s thickly coated with the wool.

Take a separate piece of yarn and tie it underneath the wraps on one end of the notebook. Tie this quite tightly.

Slide the yarn off the notebook and move the knot underneath the wraps so the octopus’ head is smooth.

Cut another piece of yarn and three inches down from the top of the head, tie this around the handful of yarn. This is how you create the head.

Next snip the ends of the yarn at the bottom and divide all the strands into eight sections. Secure each section with a clothes peg so that you don’t get the strands muddled up when you start binding each piece together for the legs.

Twist the pieces together or plait them, and then secure by tying more yarn around the ends. Remove the pegs when you are finished, and trim the ends.

Stick some googly eyes or buttons onto the head to complete the octopus.

You can use any size notebook for making the octopus. 

For a whole family of octopus, make two parents by wrapping the wool around an A3 notebook, and make several more using a mixture of A4, A5, and A6 notebooks as a guide for making the octopus children.

Use different shades of blue or go for different colours completely such as pink, orange or purple. 

You can always try a multicoloured octopus by alternating the colours of the wool. 

Take them with you on a day out to the beach, or hang them up as decorations at home.