Bolthus, realistic ferret aka polecat pattern

I’m so delighted I can finally present to you my new and realistic ferret or polecat pattern. This is Bolthus, a crochet animal on all fours!

realistic ferret crochet pattern

When I started designing crochet animals I wanted to make playful, comic-looking dolls that looked realistic enough to resemble the real animal but are dolls. As I continued designing patterns, the realistic look became more and more important. I started making realistic sitting animals like the wolf and cat, and occasionally I designed an animal on all fours like the guinea pig, realistic hedgehog and badger. I’ve always found it extra challenging to design an animal on all fours, mostly because playfulness is important for my designs and a standing animal might look too stiff and statue-like.

So designing this very realistic ferret amigurumi was a big step. I wanted to keep it as simple and seamless as possible. I started designing the head and quickly realised that it would look very realistic if I made the head and neck in one piece. But that created difficulties: how could it be attached to a body? I’d already decided I was going to crochet the front paws and chest as one piece bottom-up, so now I had a head and neck crocheted top-down that I had to attach to a chest that was crocheted bottom-up. Sewing together two openings like that is very illogical, so I had to figure out a method to crochet the chest and front paws top-down continuing from the neck.

Normally I would crochet the paws first, crochet them together and work ahead for the body. Now I had to do it the other way around. Continuing from the neck, I crocheted the chest, and when it was long enough I split it in half to crochet the paws seamlessly to it. It worked like a charm!

So now I had a finished front piece that needed a back. Designing the back of the body was pretty straightforward, I just needed to figure out the right size and shaping. After a few attempts and a bit of help from my Instagram followers, I had the perfect long ferret body. Now all that needed to be done were the back paws and the tail. The back paws were a bit challenging because they needed a particular shape, but with some practising I managed to get them right. The tail was easy peasy!

The most exciting part came when all the pieces were finished: assembling the crochet ferret. For me this always takes a lot of effort, to get everything in the right place and write it down understandably for you. Sewing the back to the front piece needs to be done very precisely, and I think it is the most challenging part of this pattern. But if you do it with patience he’ll turn out fabulous.

My worries that an animal on all fours would become stiff didn’t turn out to be justified. I absolutely love this crochet ferret and find him very mischievous and playful-looking. I hope you like him as much as I do!

Here are some more pictures of this ferret or polecat amigurumi, and below them you can find all the info you need about the pattern.

Info about & links to buy the pattern

The pattern for this realistic crochet ferret/ polecat is pretty straight forward. The colour changes and assembling require some extra concentration. This animal is made with Istex Lett Lopi, a 100% wool with a lot of fuzziness. It’s 9.5 inch / 24 cm from nose to tail end. The pattern contains a clear and colour-coded description of how to crochet and assemble the doll, with instruction images next to the text and example pictures at the bottom to help you get everything right. In the pattern you can also find out what materials you need, the yarn colour numbers — in short, everything you need to know to make your own ferret. All the additional information you need to know about this pattern you can find in the shop listings. You can purchase it in my shop at Ravelry, Etsy or order it here.

And heads up! This pattern has a one dollar release discount until Thursday, the 12rd of August!


A little dilemma I had

This time I’ll be making a rather whimsical animal. One of my favourite animal species are mustelids. The adorable polecat I’m going to crochet belongs to that family, together with badgers, otters, weasels and many more of these musky smelling creatures. Now polecats live in Europe, Asia and Russia but not in America. However, most of you Americans do know this animal as a pet . . . . the ferret that is. Yes, the polecat is the wild ancestor of the ferret.

Bunsie-clean2But what is with the dilemma?

When I thought about making this animal, I had a doll in mind that was standing on four paws, something new and different. But while working on the sketch and some shaping test, I discovered this was not the nufty tufty creature I had in mind. It looked much too serious and not at all whimsical. I am not the type of person to give up easily, but this just was not my style.

In my notebook there where a bunch of unfinished sketches, just some silly looking polecat faces staring at me without bodies. For the fun of it, I drew a body underneath one of them, standing curiously on the back legs.

And there he was! A silly polecat that gives you a smile on your face when you look at it.