Thursday, 10 September 2009

Crocheted rabbit

It was my eldest daughter's birthday yesterday, and I wanted to make something special for her. I decided to have a go at the Japanese art of amigurumi, which involves making small crocheted animals. However, all the patterns I could get on the internet seemed a bit fussy, and I wanted something really simple.

So I picked up the crochet needle and some brown yarn and decided to improvise. I figured out that once you have created the number of stitches you want, you just keep double crocheting into them in a spiral until you get the desired size.

I started them all off with a slip ring and about 4-5 doubles into the ring. I then either increased or decreased to get the shapes I was after. I created the arms, legs, body and head of the rabbit, and used a pattern for leaves to make the ears.

I left long yarn ends, so that I could use them for sewing the pieces together. I stuffed each piece with toy stuffing and a bit of dried lavender (you can see from the photos that I overstuffed some, especially the arm). Then I took the slip ring of each piece, pulled it tight, then through the part until it came out the other side. I knotted this to the other yarn end to secure them in place, which also leaves a nice flat and secure end.

The next step was to add a tail, which I formed from white cotton yarn and in a similar way to the other pieces, leaving a long end to sew it on.

Then the fun bit was decorating it. I made a couple of eyes and a nose - this took a few attempts to get something that looked ok-ish, and in the end I ran out of time before her birthday, so had to settle for this:

The next step was to give it some clothes. I had some iron-on flowers from a previous project, so I decided to use these on the feet instead of shoes (time constraints!), and sewed some buttons on to the tummy.

It just needed something else, so I took some patchwork pieces of Liberty Lawn that were waiting for inspiration, and sewed them onto a piece of ribbon to make an apron-type skirt. I then ironed on a longer piece of velvet ribbon to tie it on. I know how much children love to dress and undress their dolls, and this means I can make more clothes for it at a later date.

Finally, I made a little headband using the same ribbon and an iron-on flower. Ta da!

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