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Honour the Butterfly

Posted by Sharon Oldfield on

A Symbol of Hope

A symbol of hope

A butterfly lights beside us like a sunbeam

And for a brief moment its glory

and beauty belong to our world

But then it flies again

And though we wish it could have stayed...

We feel lucky to have seen it.


 A few months ago a lifelong friend, who works at the Manchester University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, asked me if I could help out with a very special initiative of theirs. My friend was looking for someone who could write a crochet pattern for Butterflies, that could then be made, collected and finally passed on to the hospital. The Butterflies are used in special comfort bags. Here's a little bit more about the initiative in the trusts' own words....

"‘Comfort Bags’ are provided to relatives who are stopping in hospital with their loved ones who are at the end of their life. These bags contain many items such as donated toiletries, a book of poems and a handmade card that can offer comfort at this very difficult time. Butterflies are added to the bags as a keepsake as they have long been a symbol associated with the end of life. Sometimes relatives place the butterflies into the hand of the person that has died, to accompany them when they leave the ward. These are then returned by the funeral directors for the families to keep. Feedback for this initiative has been really positive with families reporting that this has provided them with added support and we hope that you will be able to help."

Keen to help, I designed Honour the Butterfly. She/He's based on a simple pattern, but nevertheless still beautiful. (The pattern can be found further down this post).

Should you wish to crochet a butterfly (or a few!) you can post them to the address given at the bottom of this blog post and I will forward them on to the Manchester University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. Alternatively, I'll be at Yarndale in September and will have a box where you could drop your Butterfly(ies) off.

I hope you can help me with this initiative as the hospital is in need of many, many Butterflies. Please also tell as many people as possible, so that together we can create a Kaleidoscope of Butterflies for the hospital and use our wonderful craft to pass on comfort to others. 

Finally, if you are a knitter and would like to contribute too, the Trust also accept knitted butterflies, a quick internet search will give you a range of knitting patterns for butterflies, they must simply fit in the palm of the hand.

Happy Hooking and Thank You in anticipation,

Sharon x


Honour Butterfly Pattern

Stitch & Pattern Notes:

The butterfly is made in the round.

Double treble – yarn over twice, insert hook, yarn over and pull loop through, you now have 4 loops on the hook, *yarn over and pull through 2 loops*, repeat ** until you have one loop left on the hook.

Back bump – the back bumps can be found at the back of the chain when you turn the chain over. They run in a ridge formation down the back of the chain. You need to slip stitch into these back bumps when you are making the points on the larger wings.


Materials & Equipment  

  • 5g DROPS Paris* in a variety of shades
  • 4mm crochet hook
  • Darning needle & small scissors
  • * or any dk or aran weight yarn

    Stitch Diagram



    The Pattern   

    Round 1:

    Ch2, 8dc into the first ch, ss into the top of the first dc. [8sts]

    Round 2:

    Crochet the following stitch combinations into each of the 8 dc stitches:

    1. Ss into the first dc stitch,
    2. ch3, 3dtr, ch3, ss, ch3,
    3. 2dtr
    4. 3dtr, ch2, ss into the back bumps of the 2 chains, ch4, ss.
    5. Ss
    6. Ss, ch6, ss into the back bumps of the first 2 chains, 3dtr
    7. 2dtr, ch3, ss, ch3,
    8. 3dtr, ch3, ss

    Fasten off by pulling loop through to the back. Darn in ends.


    Finishing Touches

    Use a different colour thread to sew on the details of the butterfly’s body, using the two ends of the yarn to create the antennae. Knot the end of the antennae to prevent fraying. Butterfly complete!


    Where can I print a copy of the Honour Butterfly pattern?

    Download the PDF version of the Honour Butterfly Crochet Pattern here.


    Where do I send my Butterflies?

    Cotton Pod

    6, Salmesbury Hall Close



    BL0 9FG      



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    • Thank you Kayla. What a lovely idea :-)

      Sharon on
    • Pattern was easy to follow, especially for someone who’s never done a motif before. Turned out beautifully! I’m using one to detail a scarf. Thank you for sharing!

      Kayla on

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