Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Down at the waterhole...

I had a mild flirtation with Amigurumi a couple of years ago but I haven't revisited it since, despite the fact that I've managed to accumulate about three books with patterns in.

I know two people who are pregnant at the moment and due within a month of each other. I contemplated making blankets for both of them but decided against it because,

a) It would be too much stress getting both done in time, and, 
b) I couldn't be arsed

I decided I would dust off this book and see what was in there and after a lot of umming and aahing settled on a zebra. I wasn't sure if it was going to be more complicated choosing something with colour changes in, but it was actually a pretty good decision as it made it much more simple to count which round I was on when I lost track of where I was.

Things I have learned about Amigurumi:

1. Concentration is wicked important - you can't really just let your hook do what it wants to do, you need to keep one part of your brain counting at all times.

2. Stitch markers are massively helpful - I don't have any but have just stuck a scrap of wool through so I know where I am.

3. Photograph the different stages or when it comes to doing some kind of ta-dah post the first photo you'll be able to show people is this...

...a headless zebra.

Apologies. Clearly I can add Not Being Good at Craft Blogging to the list as well as Not Being a Fashion Blogger.

Words cannot express how excited I was taking this photo - I had just successfully made a non-blanket/scarf related crochet object and it bloody stood up on its own. I've never been prouder.

I did however remember to take a picture of the head before I attached it - although that's probably a case of locking the stable door after the horse has bolted.

See what I did there? I made a horse joke in a post about a crocheted zebra.

I'm here all week folks.

Anyway where were we?

4. Amigurumi is really not that bloody hard.

Seriously, why have I been scared of it for so long? This bad boy was whipped up in really not that short a space of time at all. I got the head and muzzle stuffed and sewn together, the mouth embroidered on, the ears and neck made, everything joined to the body and a mane produced in about 2/3 hours on a Sunday evening. To some people that may seem like an age but in Crafting Years that's really not that much time at all.

5. The weirder it looks the better it is.

This guy's smile is lopsided and his head is kind of at a jaunty angle - this makes him look like an inquisitive little chappy - none of it was done on purpose - it was all down to be general ineptitude.

6. You can fudge it and no-one will know.

I couldn't tell you what way this zebra's extremities were attached to each other - I just started sewing and kept going until it was firmly in place. I probably used several stitches, including some not known to mankind, but you'll never know because you totally can't tell.

 Look at that cheeky little face

7. Amigurumi has the potential to become something you get obsessed about.

For reals. I've already started on my next one - which is fine because this zebra is for one person and the other person needs an animal too - but in my head I'm already trying to think of reasons to make each and every other item in the book.

8. I have discovered my new favourite technique -  the magic circle.

I do apologise, I'm about to do a bit of crochet-speak so some people may not follow...

So you know how you normally start your granny squares by chaining however many, joining to make a ring and then crocheting into that ring? It's all good and well, but no matter how tight you pull it, there's always a little gap there and you can always see where you started. The magic circle is a technique which allows you to completely close off the centre so you can't see where anything begins, and more importantly, there's no weak spot that can be pulled apart.

I did not find it easy to master the magic circle at first, but once I'd found a You Tube video which helped explain it (I found one especially for lefties, hurray internet) I was off and away and it never ceases to amaze me just how magic that magic circle is.

I don't know why but photos of the back of this fella really amused me. I'm not a perv.

You must excuse me. I have important crochet business to attend to.


  1. He is brilliant! What a cutie! His tail and mane are my favourite bits. And GENIUS idea for a baby present that is handmade but not a bloody blanket which will take forever and cost a bomb - duly noted for next time! :)

  2. Awwww he is amazing!!
    Um, well, if you *need* a reason to make something.. ahem.

  3. He is SUPER cute, I want one! Such a lovely present too, just look at his cheeky face :)

    Maria xxx

  4. Absolutely adorable. I'm sure he'll be much loved by the little person, and it's mother.

  5. Your zebra friend is adorable, so much personality. There is something so comical about the jaunty look in its face, full of mischief!


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