The Power of a Pink Octopus

Think Pink

Have you heard of the importance of an octopus in the care of premature babies?

No, me either.

That is until my granddaughter was born at 25 weeks and I started learning lots of new things.

This week for Sunday Stills the prompt is Think Pink and as I now have two granddaughters, there seems to be a lot of pink in my colour wheel – or theirs more to the point. We do try to mix it up a bit so it’s not all pink!


Last year, my now one year old granddaughter was a month old, and I bought her a delightful, but not too pink, outfit at Floriade. I featured this in my post, In the Pink for Sunday Stills last October, so this year it’s only fair that I feature my newest granddaughter Dottie. Next year with my third grandchild due, who knows what I’ll feature??

Octopus love

When looking for suitable gifts to send to our newest baby we came across the octopus. Apparently, there’s a worldwide movement called Octopus for a Preemie. The quote below is taken from the UK website but there are groups all over the world who are involved in the making and sometimes selling of these little creatures. I love that they are used for comfort and wonder how this came to be? Who wakes up one morning and thinks to crochet an octopus for this purpose?

We are a group of people who crochet and knit little octopuses and jellyfish to comfort babies who decided to come into the world a little earlier than expected.

To the premature baby, our carefully made octopus’s tentacles feel like their mother’s umbilical cord. Comforting the baby and reducing the risk of the little one pulling the medical bits and bobs they may need and potentially cause serious problems for them.


Apparently the making of the octopuses helps the person creating them as much as the babies who receive them. The link above (source) includes a pattern for those who may be keen to get involved.

Another great story about the power of a crocheted octopus can be read here: Premature babies gain comfort from crocheted octopuses, volunteers struggle to meet demand

Dottie and the Octopus

Dottie has a history of pulling out her cords and hopefully her pink octopus can help. It seems she has already taken to her little pink octopus, as you can see in this photo. I must admit that I didn’t take this photo, my daughter did, but I’m sure she’s happy for me to share it with you. Isn’t she looking cute?

Dottie and her Octopus
Dottie and her Octopus – photo taken by my daughter Melanie

Dottie is nearly 8 weeks old and now weighs 1.94kg (just over 4lb) which is fabulous when you remember she was born weighing 845grams! She is still being closely monitored and has had a rollercoaster of a time, sometimes it’s a case of two steps forward and one step backwards. She’s got a lot of love behind her and continues to fight, despite the hardships she is enduring. It’s still a long rocky road ahead for all of us.

Have you heard of the power of the octopus or is it as new to you as it was to me? From all my reading on the subject, it seems to be a well known and recognised fact, the octopus helps the premature baby in many ways. It’s nearly enough for me to look into learning how to crochet.

Deb x

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68 Replies to “The Power of a Pink Octopus”

  1. Yes, I had heard about the octoupus. My daughter heard about them and thought I should knit one for her strapping one year old. She sent me a USA pattern she found on the internet; I didn’t have the right yarn or exactly understand the pattern, but I did have rasberry and white fluffy yarn my friend was giving away and ended up with a giant octopus!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I had not heard of the power of the octopus but what a great idea!! Such a precious pic of the baby girl. Congrats on the new baby that’s on the way!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The most precious picture ever, Debbie! Dottie looks healthy and I can see how much she engages with the pink octopus! Pink is a lively, healing color that appeals to our eyes’ light spectrum. I had not heard of the pink octopus and I thank you for sharing this!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Terri, unfortunately it’s a case of one step forward two steps back as she is up and down. It’s not an easy time but she is getting the best care possible with lots of love from around the world. The octopuses don’t have to be pink to be effective but I love that this one is such a bright pink for her eyes to focus on.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I had heard about the benefits of an octopus and it is lovely to see Dottie enjoying looking at hers. You can really see how much she has grown already – I’m sure it is a tremendously emotional journey for all your family but it would seem that she really is a little fighter. Sending hugs to you all x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’re not wrong Deb, it’s so emotional and being on the other side of the world and different time zones is really hard. Only a few more weeks and we’ll be back over there. Thanks so much for your care!


  5. Never heard of this pink octopus project…it makes perfect sense to me! Dottie is really gaining, isn’t she?! What a long way she has come.
    I’d like to get involved, but I knit, not crochet. I wonder if there is a knit pattern out there somewhere?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes she’s growing Nancy! I’m not sure about the knitting but I can’t see why not. There may be an organisation nearby that could send you patterns for octopuses – they don’t all have to be pink 🙂


  6. Hi, Debbie – I have been catching up this morning on the various ‘pink perspectives’ (via Sunday Stills). I had never heard of the ‘Pink Octopus’ movement before. It’s a very thoughtful and clever idea. Dottie is looking very beautiful with her pink octopus. I’m continuing to send warm love her way!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Donna, thanks for catching up on all things pink and your warm loving thoughts. We all appreciate it. Terri’s Sunday Stills are a wonderful way for us to share our ideas and photos. The octopuses don’t have to be pink but this one obviously was! x


  7. I think about you and baby Dottie a lot, so really pleased to hear her progress. I read about the octopus thingy in one of the chick lit books I’ve read, but for the life of me, I can’t recall which one. It would have been one of my English authors and it was probably a Jenny Coglan, but that’s about as far as I’ve got.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thanks Jo, that’s so sweet of you. She has had her ups and downs in recent weeks and it is all a bit stressful at times, especially being so far away. I know of a blogger who has started making these octopuses and I’m keen to know more.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. this brought tears to my eyes. Isn’t this such a beautiful thing to do. How times have changed. When my eldest was born early there was never allowed to have cuddly toys like this in the humidicrib. Dottie looks like she really loves her pink octopus, it looks like its giving her strength and determination. #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so sweet! It is hard not to cry at times isn’t it? I’m hoping it will give her strength and she continues to fight her battles. It’s also good to know things have changed since your premature baby. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and I didn’t mean to make you cry 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Ive never heard of the pink octopus movement Deb so I’m pleased you shared this info with us. At first I wondered why an octopus but it does make sense now that I’ve read about it. I went to the link you provided. It’s beautiful to see this has become a trend. #MLSTL Will share

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Deb – I’ve seen these octopi/pusses? before and thought they were really cute. They’re very popular baby gifts and I smiled at Dottie smiling at hers – a great gift from a loving granny xx
    Thanks for linking up with us at MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I have heard of the power of the octopus for premmie babies before Deb. Lovely photo of Dottie and her pink octopus. She’s growing and looking great! What a lovely gift for her. I hope that she continues to grow and thrive and soon be home with her family! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Min, it’s been a worrying time and even now we panic if the news isn’t good and the time frame doesn’t help. She is growing and thriving which is reassuring to us all. We will be there within a month and I’ll feel better seeing her again. Glad you’re feeling better too. xx


  12. Dottie looks intrigued with her latest stuffed friend. Might be more appreciated when she’s a bit older as I can see her organising her stuffed animal friends into a zoo when she gets into play mode.

    Deb, thanks for the information regarding the octopus. Many of the women I volunteer alongside at the Hospice Shop knit for children. I will let them know on Monday.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Beautiful Deb! Adorable. Dottie and The Octopus would make a lovely childrens’ story too! I hope Dottie is growing stronger by the day – but the Octopus stays the same 😉 #MLSTL and Pinned

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi Deb – I haven’t heard of the octopus movement. I’m glad to hear and see Dottie doing well. She’s so cute with her pink octopus. I’m continuing to send best wishes her way! #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

  15. The banner with its pink octopus caught my granddaughter’s eye. She said “squid!!” with delight. And in reading through this post, I remembered that someone crocheted Lucia a little octopus recently – a steely blue color, not as fabulous as Dottie’s pink. But I am curious now if the crocheter knew about this project with preemies? You can tell from the photo how much Dottie is mesmerized by her new pal. Sweet baby! Sweet post.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. After reading only the first lines I was already imagining putting a real octopus near a preemie baby and I was like… say what? Now, after I finished reading it all makes complete sense and I love pink octopuses 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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