Saturday, November 7, 2009

Toys! Amigurumi Critters...

Speaking from my own experience, kids love toys and I'm sure that if all of us had more money than we knew what to do with, our kids would get the most benefit! If I have spare money left at the end of my budget, it usually ends up being spent on Grace — either by using it to buy bread for the ducks, a walk to our local cafe for a fluffy or some new hair-ties when we're at the supermarket (as you can tell, there isn't usually much left over!).

I found via the Kuky Ideas blog this awesome book for how to make little Amigurumi animals, so I got this book out from the library, which is the one that she used to make her gorgeous wee critters, and decided to have a go for myself!

Amigurumi is a Japanese way to crochet, they are usually little animals or characters with big heads and a cylinder or round shaped body. They are made 'on the round' and rather than rows, you just keep going and going in spirals. Each extremity is sewn on separately and faces are made from embroidery thread and felt — in other words, they are pretty fiddly but so worth the effort!

I learnt to crochet earlier in the year thanks to my nearly 90 year old Nana (she's so super nice and crafty), she was more than happy to teach me as she is finding it more and more difficult to make things for our very large family (Nana is usually your first point of call for new baby booties, jumpers and all sorts) and it's been something that has been loads of fun for me to do — especially being stuck at home most evenings!

Grace and I had a really great time reading the book together and choosing which ones to make, she now has one of the little rabbits and a Teddy with a pink dress and white bloomers on. I have been instructed to make her a Monkey with a red dress this afternoon. The rabbit took me about 2 hours after dinner last night while watching telly, and the Teddy was about 3. Grace entertained herself with her dolls house and pretend kitchen while I made everything which was rather nice.

Graces new teddy — Karina

Amy, the pink baby bunny

Anyway, the point of this blog post was that we had made toys for next to nothing, but we had spent a lot of really quality time together in the process. Grace loved picking out the colours for her animals, which ones to make and seeing them being created and of course naming them. The cost of the book was free (with it coming from the library) and the wool was hardly anything as most of it had been given to me but you can pick up skeins of wool at places like K-Mart if you don't want to go to a speciality wool shop. The felt is about 95c am A5 sheet and embroidery thread is about 50c each from Geoffs Emporium.

My sister is having a baby in January, my other sisters little one is about 1 and a half and Ray's nephew will be one soon too not to mention close friends with little ones — so plenty of little animals to make for Christmas!

With Christmas right around the corner, hopefully this has inspired you to crack out the hooks and yarn...

Crochet/Knitting links:
The Pearl Bee
Lion Brand Yarn (free patterns and supplies)
Squidoo (links to LOADS of free patterns)
Stitch (fancy making your own Bender robot or doll from Amigurumi??)


Skipapple said...

Oh my god... I absolutely adore them! Very cute Jess :) And I bet Grace totally digs them too!

You keep posting all these things that I want to do — and i just don't have the time to be distracted at the moment! hehe

This one is definitely being banked in my "to-do" vault for a later date! Thanks for the inspiration :)

paperpesto said...

Gorgeous!!! Love the ted the best, bet Gracie was thrilled.

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