What on earth is an Okapi, you ask? From Wikipedia: The okapi, also known as the forest giraffe or zebra giraffe, is a giraffid artiodactyl mammal native to the Ituri Rainforest, located in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Central Africa. Although the okapi bears striped markings reminiscent of zebras, it is most closely related to the giraffe. The okapi and the giraffe are the only living members of the family Giraffidae.
Now, there are not a ton of Okapi patterns out there, but my partner in the Cryptid Swap really wanted an Okapi (no, it's not a cryptid, but it was considered one for a very long time - they thought taxidermists had cobbled together a make-believe animal from various bits). So I had to make an Okapi.
There are a few very cartoon-okapi patterns, but I wanted something more realistic. Enter... the giraffe pattern. I found this one on Ravelry
, but it was a LOT of seams and I hate seams so I tried to work it in the round. I translated the pattern (the two halves were worked independently, so one had to be flipped) and in theory it should have worked? But it didn't. The legs did, but the lower body was weird (I ended up sewing in some tucks and pleats which were still less noticeable than my seams would be) and I did end up needing a seam down the back.
And don't even mention the color changes! Since I was working in the round, for the rump stripes I didn't want to carry the yarn that much so each time I broke off the brown and attached the white/black, then broke those off and attached more brown. At least with a stuffed animal all that is hidden very nicely in the back!
I shortened the neck (I should have thickened it, too, but... time and all) and completely winged the ears. The head I had to pull out and re-do because I forgot the white cheeks, which was a great deal of fun to do... O.o
This is an in-progess picture:
Overall, though? I'm really proud of him. It was a time crunch, and he was HUGE (I did not realize how big he was going to be when I started, but he stood well over a foot tall... this is a reoccurring theme in my projects, I just don't ever seen to grasp what I'm getting myself into. When there are almost 150 rows in a pattern, it's not small!), and I had to pull out a lot, but it was worth it. More pictures, just because:
He also, convincingly, served to fulfill a prompt for the Fall Nerd Battles!
If you haven't checked out the Nerd Battles, you should! This session is almost over, but the Winter Nerd Battles should be starting soon and you totally want to join Team Textbook for all things nerdy and awesome!