I call these adorable huggables stuffed animals, but more experienced crocheters call them amigurumi. Once I started adapting the sleepyhead doll for sale and gifts, I decided to branch out to create teddy bears, and other animals. The possibiliites are endless . My cuties tend to be more rustic, but I am in awe of the fiber artists who create and execute beautiful and technically perfect pieces. For me to move my skill level up a few notches, I have to research and practice, practice, practice. Last week, I made a sleepy head doll for the grandson of a dear friend. She was quite happy with the doll for the 8 month old until she saw one of my chubby teddies. So there she sat at the desert table, hugging them both. I have known her daughter since she was a preteen, and the sleepy doll was gift to her young son. However, my friend was not about to let the chubby teddy go. She offered to pay for him, but I decided to make the teddy s gift as well. I told her that she could pay me for the next one or commission a gift when needed. I was glad that I had thought to take a photo of the little fellow before I showed him to my dinner guests.
With spring craft fairs coming up, I need to offer pieces that would be tempting for warmer weather. The teddies and other stuffed animals seem to call out to shoppers, "Take me. Give me a home." The chubby teddy was crocheted from the legs up to the neck and completed with the larger head in one piece. Then the arms, ears, and face were added. Many crocheted animals call for thinner yarn, cottons, or lighter worsted. I prefer the heavier weight worsted, but I use a G (4.0 or 4.5) hook so that the stitches remain close and the stuffing does not poke out. When I first tried this teddy, I was able to download and print out a collection from Amigurumi Crochet Patterns: Baby and Animal Friends, collated by Veronica Kay. Unfortunately, while I can locate the pictures on Pinterest, the link is no longer operating. The pictures are helpful in designing my own figure from other sites. A similar body type can also be located on Ravelry using the term Big Head Baby Doll. This pattern is also out of print. The search goes on.
In my search for suitable teddies, I found the following sites which may be helpful. Please note some of the patterns can be read electronically, but the printed version must be purchased.
With the original pattern I tried a ballerina with a flowered cap. My granddaughter immediately adopted her. I also had fun with a purple owl with blue wings.
Once my teddy with the turquoise overalls was gone, I knew I had to replace him. When I worked with a thinner yarn, the resulting bear was smaller. On a second try with thicker wool, I made a larger more cuddly bear. This time he had blue denim overalls. I added his bowtie and stitches on the suspenders. I also made these corrections on the bear with red overalls.
The Cuddle Me Collection offers designs for many animals. This kitten starts from the head down and tends to be thinner.
The dog has 24 stitches across the chest. I like the plumper purple kitten better. This one as 36stitches across the chest and 18 stitches in each leg.
Like many of my readers, I like free on-line patterns. However, sometimes a printed collection strikes my fancy. Crocheted Bears and Other Animals by Emma Brown (Cico Books, London, 2017) offers such a collection of unique designs, clear directions, attractive photos, and all in a story-like setting.For my first project I chose a tall take-charge bear, "Ronnie, the Ranger." He is wonderful company for his shorter plumper brothers and sisters from other sources. I am finishing up a rabbit, "Hodge," in a striped sweater. If I waited until I finished this spring bunny, it would take me forever to finish and post this article. I will probably complete this rabbit tonight. With her, turquoise, pink, and white colors, I think I will add some blossoms for a feminine edge.
I also pickerd up Zoomigurumi 6 from Amigurumipatterns.net. This volume is the most recent of a playful series of amigurumi collections, I couldn't resis "Txerri,' the piglet.Ican't wait to try "Bo," the panda.
With my sleepy head dolls and my 'crocheted critters" I should have plenty of stock for a couple of spring to summer fairs. I just have to keep my husband from giving away my inventory.he just found another baby who just must be gifted with one of my pieces.Amigurumi is fun, creative, and can be artistic as well. Best yet, all those that seethe creatures leave with a smile on their faces even if they don't have a creature in hand.