Monthly Archives: October 2011

Pellets as stuffing….eh?

Some crochet animals/amigurumi require a part of pellets as stuffing to give them more weight. My first amigurumi that needed pellets was Amineko. I looked on line to see what pellets are and where I could buy them. They are little round balls, mostly plastic and available in sewing and craft shops. After visiting a few hobby/craft shops I still hadn’t found my pellets. In the Netherlands they are hard to get. I’d also read toy bullets, marbles or rocks could be an alternative. Well, toy bullets I couldn’t find either and marbles are too large for many amigurumi I believe. That only left the rocks, which can be an option and they are easy to find in pet shops, but they’re kind of small and pointy.

There was something else I’d found in the hobby shop, called Hama Beads. They actually have an other ‘hobby’ purpose and I wasn’t sure they had enough weight, but they seemed worth the try, because the beads had the right size and come in little or big bags and many colours.

And it worked! Beads are heavy enough and good to shape because they are a bit rubbery. If you squeeze the part whit the beads, it keeps that shape and that is a very useful quality. The variety in colours comes in handy too if you haven’t crocheted very tight.

Here’s an example of the Dutch Hama beads:

"hama beads as pellets

Conclusion: enough weight, easy to shape with, available in many colours. One downside, I think you can only wash them cold, because if you use them for their real purpose, you have to use a flat iron to melt them together, so washing them hot might cause them to melt. I’m not sure about this, but am not going to try. If I’ll ever wash an amigurumi, I would do a could hand wash with baby soap, because that is best for wool anyway. That was an extra tip wasn’t it!

Goodbye and good luck!


*Edit last post*

Unfortunately we had to cancel our trip to Switzerland. I’m a bit fed up with it but at least it had one bright side. Because we stayed home, my boyfriend saw a cat playing with a mouse in our front yard. He ran out, chased of the cat end grabbed the little mouse. The little fellow was completely in shock. We took him inside to see if he looked okay enough to put him back outside and he seemed to be. So we let him free in our, ‘cat-less’ backyard, at a sunny and sheltered spot so he could dry. He was covered with cat drool. Here’s a picture of him. (I love rodents so of course we took a picture of him)

"rosse woelmuis"

In this picture his back looks a bit strange but it was okay. He was very scared and not sitting comfortable. On the outside it’s hard to see if the mouse had internal injuries, but seeing how he moved and acted it looked good. And, after a few hours he was gone! He survived a cat attack, let’s hope he lives to be an old little mouse! He’s a dwergmuis, dwarf mouse in English?

Now, back to crochet for the next post!


A little update

Tomorrow I’m going to Switzerland for a week. To go hiking and enjoying the beautiful Alps! For the evenings I’ve planned to finish the little crochet bear and the pattern, so I can post it as soon as I’m back. I promise!

Here’s just a picture I took a year ago, of my second Amineko (pattern by Nekoyama), the cat that got me addicted to amigurumi.

"amineko crochet cat"

What will come

An update about what’s coming:

"preparations for  Starfox amigurumi"

A Starfox, Fox McCloud amigurumi! I already bought yarn for the project, beautiful Letit Lopi, Icelandic wool, in a great store in Zwolle, Astrid’s wol.  I love the beautiful warm colours the Lopi yarn comes in. After that I’m going to make a crochet Valais black nose sheep.

"Sketch for crochet valais blacknose sheep"

I got the idea last year when we where in Switzerland. They’re so cute and I needed to make a crochet version of one. This yarn also comes from that shop in Zwolle.

I also want to make a red panda amigurumi. But first I’m making these two, of course after I’ve finished the little bear. And for all these projects, I will post the patterns here!

I’ve got a lot to do!


Paperclip as stitch marker!

This post is about my alternative for a stitch marker, a simple thing. It starts with a story about my opinion on being a good artist. The stitch marker is not really a good example for what I’m saying though, but it fits somehow.

A thing I’ve always believed, is that you don’t need expensive materials to create beautiful things. For instant, when making my drawings and paintings, I always use basic materials. Not the cheapest, that IS mostly crappy, but certainly not the most expensive. Some people claim they can only work with the ‘best’, expensive materials, because that gives them the best results. Really? A good artist can make brilliant things with the most basic stuff. Like a beautiful, touching picture with a mobile phone camera, or a vivid painting with basic paint. It’s all in the mind and moment, and real talent brings it out no matter what you use. It can help you of course, but it isn’t necessary!

Ok, I know, a stitch marker is a kind of different example. It’s not really an expensive material and it doesn’t  have much influence on the end result of an amigurumi. But it is fun to think of a simple alternative for it. When making my first amigurumi, I found out I needed a stitch marker? Never heard of it. What else would come in handy I thought, of course, a paperclip! How simple. I bet I’m not the only one using it as stich marker, and there are other alternatives, like a peace of yarn in a different colour, but I thought this was a good post in my tips  & tricks category.

Always with a picture, here it is, the multifunctional paperclip or paper-clip!

"alternative stitch marker"

Maybe some of you haven’t thought of this yet!

Good night.


Yarn experiment….

….while making my little bear pattern.

I’m working on a crochet pattern for a little teddy bear amigurumi. It’s a pattern I’ve worked on before and there are already a few little bears. To finally get the pattern right, a new bear must be made. That creates a nice opportunity to try out some special kinds of yarn. This is the yarn:

Wol voor beertjes

The colours are very autumn, really my favourites! It’s Phildar yarn, bought in a local shop, in Haren, near Groningen in the Netherlands.

I have an image in my mind of how I think and hope the bears will turn out, but have no idea if I’m correct….not kitschy I hope. This evening I’m starting crocheting, so in a few days I’ll know! When the crochet bears are done, there will be pictures and the pattern of course.

See you soon.


Sheep special

A tribute to sheep, providers of the wool I love to use.  When looking through my pictures, I ran into some beautiful pictures of sheep, taken in different countries and in different seasons. When looking at these pictures I got the idea to add the sheep special.

In the pictures you can see different races of sheep. Some pictures are kind of crappy, but the sheep in them are very beautiful. (Click on the pic to enlarge.)