top of page

magnificent sea anemone

Here is the pattern for the Heteractis magnifica, or magnificent sea anemone, I made for the crochet coral reefThey are fascinating creatures and have such a great name. I decided to make one after I came across this image while looking for ideas for things I could make for the reef. With it's weird wiggly tentacles, I thought it would be perfect to crochet. If you would like to make your own, here's how it was made.

Yarn and Hook Size


I used Stylecraft Special DK yarn, in Pistachio and Violet, and a 3.25 mm hook. 



The pattern is written in US terms. The abbreviations are as follows:
CH – chain;
SL ST – slip stitch;
SC - single crochet;

DC - double crochet;
INC - two stitches in the same stitch;
DEC - SC decrease. I use the invisible SC decrease (insert hook into front loop only of next two stitches, draw up a loop through both stitches (two loops on hook), draw a loop through both loops on hook).

Magnificent sea anemone - main image.jpg

The anemone's tentacles are made with Loop stitch - put a finger under the working yarn, insert hook, draw up a loop from the yarn behind your finger. This will make a loop around your finger. Draw a loop through both loops on hook, as you would to finish an SC. Remove finger. This will leave a long loop on the wrong side of your work.



The anemone starts with a magic circle. I've got a quick photo guide to crocheting a magic circle here.

The Loop stitch can be a bit fiddly at first until you get the hang of it. It leaves a whole lot of loops on the wrong side of the work. Once you have finished the piece, snip them in two, so each loop becomes two tentacles. For longer tentacles, make a bigger loop around your finger.

Rows 2-5 say to alternate between SC and Loop stitch, and you will increase in each round as well. So in round two you increase in each stitch, i.e. work an SC then a Loop stitch in each stitch. In round three you increase in every other stitch. So SC, then [Loop stitch and SC], then Loop stitch, then [SC and Loop stitch] and so on. I haven't written this out in full but I hope it makes sense. It does require some concentration to keep track of where you are (I couldn't keep half an eye on the tv while doing this bit!) But the good news is that it doesn't really matter if you lose track. Just make sure to increase by six stitches in each row and get a good number of loop stitches in there, so there are plenty of tentacles.

Row 5 finishes with an invisible join. If you haven't used this before, have a look at my quick guide here.


When you change colour, turn the piece around so that the loops face you. What was the wrong side (with the loops) is now the right side for the rest of the piece.

Rows 7, 9 and 11 all follow a row of slip stitches. You will work these into the last row of SC before the slip stitches, i.e. the same row you worked the slip stitches into. This leaves the slip stitches as visible 'wrinkles' on the outside of the anemone.

The base of the anemone is crocheted separately and sewed on after the main piece is stuffed.


Magnificent sea anemone - front.jpg
Magnificent sea anemone - bottom.jpg

Use Pistachio green, and 3.25 mm hook.

Start with a magic circle.
Row 1:    6 SC into magic circle (6)


For the next 4 rounds alternate SC and loop stitch 
Row 2:    INC around (12)
Row 3:    [stitch, INC] around (18)
Row 4:    [two stitches, INC] around (24)
Row 5:    [three stitches, INC] around (30)

Cut yarn and finish with an invisible join.

Turn over so the loops now face you. Change to Violet purple:

Row 6:    SL ST around (30)

Row 7:    (crochet into row 5) [4SC, INC] around (36)

Row 8:    SL ST around (36)

Row 9:    (crochet into row 7) SC around (36)

Row 10:  SL ST around (36)

Row 11:  (crochet into row 9) [5SC, INC] around (42)

Row 12:  SC around (42)

Row 13:  [6SC, INC] around (48)

Row 14:  SC around (48)

Row 15:  [7SC, INC] around (54)

Row 16:  SC around (54)

Row 17:  [7SC, DEC] around (48)

Row 18:  SC around (48)

Row 19:  [6SC, DEC] around (42)

Row 20:  SC around (42)

Row 21:  [5SC, DEC] around (36)

Row 22:  SC around (36)

Row 23:  [4SC, DEC] around (30)

Row 24:  [3SC, DEC] around (24)

Row 25:  (front loop only) [SC, INC, INC, SC, INC, DC INC, INC, SC] three times

Cut yarn and finish with an invisible join.


Use Violet purple, and a 3.25 hook.

Start with a magic circle.
Row 1:    6 SC into magic circle (6)

Row 2:    INC around (12)
Row 3:    [SC, INC] around (18)
Row 4:    [2SC, INC] around (24)

Cut yarn leaving a long tail, and finish with an invisible join. Use yarn tail to attach to the back loop only of row 24 of the main piece.

Magnificent sea anemone pattern cover.jpg

I'd love to see any magnificent sea anemones you make. Tag me on Instagram @fat_cat_crochet or try the pin on Pinterest.

You are welcome to sell any anemones you make from this pattern but please credit me as the designer, and link back here if selling online. Please do not copy or sell the pattern itself.

Happy making!

Check out my other free patterns here!

bottom of page