Levi the Lion Crochet Pattern (FREE!)

Unleash the power of the jungle with this fierce crochet lion pattern. Levi the Lion is the perfect realistic and majestic lion with a beautiful and detailed mane! He would make a great addition to any stuffed animal collection or gift for animal lovers.

Scroll down for the free pattern, or purchase a print-optimized PDF here

realistic crochet lion

Lions are truly a majestic animal, don’t you think? It must be terrifying to see one in person.

When I started thinking about a crochet lion pattern, I knew I wanted it to be as realistic as possible—to capture at least a little of their awesome, majestic look.

A lot of other lion patterns on the internet are very cartoony. While there’s nothing wrong with that, I wanted to go for a different style.

So, meet Levi the Lion! I think I can say I accomplished my goal—what do you think?

realistic crochet lion

How Do you crochet a stuffed lion?

This lion is crocheted in the amigurumi style. We will start by making all the parts separately—body, head, legs, etc. Then we will fill them with stuffing and sew them all together.

Lastly, we will add on the mane, which will bring everything together!

I’ve tried to make sure the pattern is easy to follow, so I included detailed instructions and photos to guide you through the whole process.

Save this pattern for later by pinning to Pinterest

crochet lion free amigurumi pattern

Join the Amigurumi Challenge

This pattern is apart of the Amigurumi Challenge, a month-long crochet-along in May 2023 where we are making animals together in a supportive community!

Make sure to come join the CAL here (you can join with a free or VIP ticket—the VIP ticket includes PDFs of 12 animal crochet patterns, plus exclusive video tutorials!)

amigurumi plushies ebook mockup

And while you’re at it, check out my other amigurumi crochet patternsFelicity the Frog, Chloe the CatDouglas the Dog, Elsie the ElephantHannah the HippoGiana the GiraffePaige the PandaDolly the DeerKaley the KoalaWalter the Whale, and Piper the Penguin!

crochet lion back view

Levi the Free crochet lion pattern

Without further ado, let’s start making this cute amigurumi lion for your stuffed animal collection!

Explanation: Meet Levi the Lion! Levi is a fun project and he is sure to be well loved by a little boy or girl. You’re sure to capture the awe of the king of the jungle!


  • DK weight yarn: approx. 200 grams yellow, 50 grams brown, & small amount of white. 
  • 3.5mm crochet hook
  • You can also try using worsted weight yarn & a 4 or 4.5mm hook, but the plushie size will vary depending on your tension.
  • 12-mm black safety eyes (or embroider the eyes for children under 3)
  • Fiber filling
  • Yarn needle & stitch marker

Gauge and Tension:

Exact gauge is not critical for this pattern. Keep tension normal—do not work with a loose tension. You can always adjust your hook size if need be. For example, if you crochet loosely and you find the amigurumi is looking holey, go down a hook size.

crochet lion with mane


  1. All body parts are crocheted separately and then sewn together according to the finishing instructions.
  2. All parts are made in continuous rounds. Do not join at the end of each round unless otherwise specified. 
  3. Turning chain does not count as a stitch. 
  4. Place a stitch marker at the end of each round and move it up as you go.
  5. When a number is placed after a stitch it means that you should single crochet in each of the next number of stitches. (i.e. sc 7 means single crochet in each of next 7 sts)
  6. You will need to know how to change colors in amigurumi to make this pattern (in just one small spot). Learn the different color change methods here. You can use whichever method you like best.


Height: 10-11”

Abbreviations/Stitches Used (U.S.) 

Chain – ch

Slip stitch – sl st

Single crochet – sc

Half double crochet – hdc

Repeat – rep

Stitch(es) – st(s)

Single crochet increase – inc

Invisible decrease – inv dec

Invisible half double crochet decrease – inv hdc dec

Round – rnd

crochet lion

Special Stitches:

Invisible single crochet decrease (inv dec): video tutorial here

Insert hook into front loop of first stitch, insert hook into front loop of the next stitch, yarn over, pull through both sts (2 loops on hook), yarn over and pull through all loops on hook to complete stitch. 

Invisible half double crochet decrease (inv hdc dec):

YO, insert hook into front loop of first stitch, insert hook into front loop of the next stitch, yarn over, pull through both sts (2 loops on hook), yarn over and pull through all 3 loops on hook to complete stitch. 

Single Crochet Increase (inc):

Make 2 sc in indicated stitch.

Large Amigurumi Lion Instructions & Tutorial

Purchase & Print this Crochet Pattern Right Here!

Legs – Make 2 in yellow 

Make a magic ring. 

Chart for first 3 rounds:

crochet animal chart

Rnd 1: 8 sc into ring. (8) 

Rnd 2: Inc in each st around. (16) 

Rnd 3: (Inc, sc 1) x8. (24)

Rnds 4-5: Sc in each st around. (24)

Rnd 6: Sc 6, hdc 12, sc 6. (24)

Rnd 7: Sc 6, (inv dec) x6. Sc 6. (18)

Rnds 8-14: Sc in each st around. (18)

Fasten off. Fill with stuffing. Do not sew closed.

Finished legs:

crochet lion legs

Arms – Make 2 in yellow  

Make a magic ring.                                             

Repeat Rnds 1-7 as for legs.

Rnds 8-17: Sc in each st around. (18)

Rnd 18: (Sc 4, inv dec) x3. (15)

Rnds 19-21: Sc in each st around. (15)

Fasten off. Fill with stuffing. Sew the opening closed.

Finished arms:

crochet lion arms

Body – in yellow

Make a magic ring.                                                                                                                  

Rnd 1: 8 sc into ring. (8) 

Rnd 2: (Inc) 8x. (16) 

Rnd 3: (Inc, sc 1) x8. (24)

Rnd 4: (Inc, sc 2) x8. (32)

Rnds 5-6: Sc in each st around. (32)

Rnd 7: (Inc, sc 3) x8. (40)

Rnds 8-9: Sc in each st around. (40)

Rnd 10: (Inc, 4 sc) x8. (48)

Rnds 11-14: Sc in each st around. (48)

Rnd 15: Sc 24, hdc 24. (48)

Rnd 16: (Inv dec, sc 6) x3. (Inv hdc dec, sc 6) x3. (42)

Rnd 17: Sc 21, hdc 21. (42)

Rnd 18: (Inv dec, sc 5) x3. (Inv hdc dec, hdc 5) x3. (36)

Rnd 19: Sc 18 sc, hdc 18. (36)

Rnd 20: (Inv dec, sc 4) x3. (Inv hdc dec, hdc 4) x3. (30)

Rnd 21: Sc 15. (Inv hdc dec, hdc 3) x3. (27)

Rnd 22: Sc 15. (Inv hdc dec, hdc 2) x3. (24)

Rnds 23-24: Sc in each st around. (24) 

Fasten off. Fill with stuffing. Do not sew closed.

Finished body:

crochet lion body

Tail – in yellow and brown                                                       

With yellow, make a magic ring.                              

Rnd 1: 8 sc into ring. (8)

Rnds 2-16: Sc in each st around. (8)

Fasten off. Fill with stuffing or leave as is—it is up to your preference. Sew the opening closed.

Attach some brown yarn to the end of the tail like fringe and comb it.

Finished tail:

crochet lion tail

Ears – Make 2 in yellow

Make a magic ring.

Rnd 1: 8 sc into ring. (8)

Rnd 2: (Inc) 8x. (16)

Rnds 3-5: Sc in each st around. (16)

Rnd 6: (Sc 2, inv dec) x4. (12)

Fasten off. Do not fill with stuffing.

Finished ears:

crochet lion ears

Head – in yellow and white

With white, make a magic ring.

Rnd 1: Make 8 sc into ring. (8) 

Rnd 2: (Inc) 8x. (16) 

Rnd 3: (Inc, sc 1) x8. (24)

Rnd 4 to 6: Sc in each st around. (24)

Rnds 7-8: With yellow, sc in each st around. (24)

Rnd 9: Sc 6, (inc, sc 5) x3. (27)

Rnd 10: Sc in each st around. (27)

Rnd 11: (Sc 6, inc) x3. Sc 6. (30)

Rnd 12: Sc in each st around. (30)

Rnd 13: Sc 6, (Sc 2, inc) x6. Sc 6. (36)

Rnd 14: Sc 6, (sc 3, inc) x6. Sc 6. (42)

Rnds 15-19: Sc in each st around. (42)

Attach eyes between rnd 12 and 13, with 9 sts in between. Join the eyes inside to make them closer together. (See the picture below)

inside of lion eyes

Rnd 20: (Sc 5, inv dec) x6. (36)

Rnd 21: Sc in each st around. (36)

Rnd 22: (Sc 4, inv dec) x6. (30)

Rnd 23: (Sc 3, inv dec) x6. (24)

Rnd 24: (Sc 2, inv dec) x6. (18)

Fill with stuffing.

Rnd 25: (Sc 1, inv dec) x6. (12)

Rnd 26: (Inv dec) 6x. (6)

Fasten off. Sew the opening closed.

Embroider the details for the nose/snout as shown below.

crochet lion face

Crochet Lion Mane

Before starting the mane, attach ears between rnd 17 and rnd 19.

Attach the mane as follows:

Cut about 8” yarn pieces. Mark the edge of the mane using pins as shown below.

marking crochet lion mane placement

Using 2 pieces of yarn at a time, begin attaching fringe along marked pins. Follow these steps:

  1. Insert hook between two stitches
  2. Pull up a loop (now 4 strands below loop)
  3. Pull all 4 strands through the loop
attaching lion mane tutorial

Do not attach on the neck area as shown below:

lion mane don't attach here

After you finish attaching all the yarn, brush it out to make it look more realistic. (If using embroidery thread, you’ll want to use more strands in each attachment, and you may not need to brush it out, at least not nearly as much).

Before and After combing:

before and after combing

Lastly, attach arms, legs and tail to the body. Sew head and body together.


What are your tips for combing the mane successfully?

Be careful when you’re brushing out the mane! A brush with wire bristles works best, but be gentle. Don’t try to go too fast or you can snag the yarn. Just gently use the brush to separate the tiny strands of yarn.

Can I make a female lion from this pattern?

Yes, absolutely! To make a female lion, follow the pattern exactly, just minus the mane. She will look adorable and you can have a pair if you make both!

How do I make a small crochet lion?

You can make this crochet lion smaller or larger by adjusting your yarn and hook size. Using a sport or fingering weight yarn if you want to have a mini lion—or a worsted or bulky weight to make it larger!

Is this pattern toddler friendly?

Yes, this lion is toddler friendly, except the eyes are not ideal. If you’re making this for a small child, I recommend embroidering them on rather than using safety eyes.


Levi the crochet lion is great for crocheters looking to challenge themselves with new techniques. The pattern includes detailed intructions and tips to guide you along the way. The king of the jungle could soon be in your home if you make this fierce and beautiful lion crochet pattern—enjoy!


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Happy Crocheting!

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