The Great Sock Monkey Challenge

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Sock monkey tutorialLovely Kiwi lasses Liv and Rachelle have come up with an awesome idea. To provide every child in hospital who has a critical or long-term illness with a sock monkey. The pair have rallied friends, family and neighbours to create these cute little critters, and now they’re asking for your help too.

In Rachelle’s words: “The Great Sock Monkey Challenge was established by myself and my dear friend Olivia Amoah. Her son Elijah has leukemia and is such a hero. During a hospital visit with them I had finished making a sock monkey and it went home with Elijah. He loves that monkey. When I saw photos of Elijah with his monkey on Facebook, and that his mother, Olivia, had made some for a couple of girls in Starship Hospital, I rang her and suggested we launch together.”

DIY sock monkeys

Click to enlarge

And thus The Great Sock Monkey Challenge was born.

The pair have two objectives:

Firstly, to create handmade companions for sick kids at both Starship and Wellington Hospitals (and eventually all hospitals throughout New Zealand). Secondly, to encourage a community spirit.

“We believe strongly that our small project has the ability to create a meaningful community. We are seeing this happen first hand. The Great Sock Monkey Challenge Facebook page helps us to build bridges daily, and doing workshops and creating craft-ups and hang-outs brings people out of isolation and into the warmth of a group with a loving purpose.”

DIY sock monkey

Click to enlarge

The crafty pair are running free workshops for groups in Wellington, but if you can’t make it to those, don’t despair. Liv and Rachelle recommend this tutorial on the Craft Bits website, in which you can follow step-by-step instructions to make a sock monkey. We also love this tutorial from Craft Passion (the photos in our main image come from there).

We think this is a fabulous cause. If you do too, visit The Great Sock Monkey Challenge Facebook page for more information; or take a peek at Rachelle’s blog here. Alternatively, click here to email Rachelle. And if you do make a sock monkey or two, we’d love to see your photos before you send them off to Olivia and Rachelle.


DIY sock monkey

Click to enlarge

Olivia and Rachelle are long-time crafters, and love making stuff. They have both been raised with creative mothers and grandmothers.

Olivia owns a renowned jewellery store in Wellington called Lazule with her family. She is also a talented jewellery designer. She has three sons and recently married her long-time sweetheart, Charlie. This is the first year she’s been home so long and not in hospital. She’s loving the freedom to be able to potter around her home and with her family, as well as concentrate on the design side of her business.

Rachelle is a full-time mum. She’s blogged forever about this and that, including family life and her creative life. She’s passionate about growing people and is inspired by her environment and her cultural background. She did a stint at Whitireia Community Polytechnic doing Visual Arts (textiles) and has a counselling background. She runs a local craft-up group called The Clever Crafting Project which aims to encourage crafters at all levels and in all arenas. She has three sons and lives with her husband, Richard, and sons in a wee coastal village called Titahi Bay in Porirua.


  1. This is a very meaningful cause for the sick kids. I have shared this challenge news in Craft Passion Facebook Page.

  2. This is a fantastic project and these are fantastic women. Thanks so much for shining some light on this cause. I am excited to be getting a tutorial from Liv and then to paying it forward in my community.

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