I have been making a lot of crochet amigurumi items lately. They are fun to make and a great stress reliever after a long day at work. I am also getting a lot better at reading the patterns and faster at making them. I'm trying to learn something new with each project that I make. This seal was the biggest and most complex amigurumi I've made thus far.
Why a seal? My husband has been on a work assignment for months with a seal as the logo, and he asked me to make a seal for him. I found several free patterns, and I picked this one.
--3 colors of yarn: 1 for the body and 2 for the ball
--tapestry needle (mine is plastic)
--screw on plastic nose (optional) (available at craft stores for around $0.99 for several noses)
--locking stitch markers (I use colorful paperclips)
I used worsted weight acrylic yarn and a size H hook. The pattern is all single crochet, and I did all of it in back loops only. The seal ended up being quite a bit larger than expected, but it is really cute.
For the ball, you will need to make a couple yarn switches, but it was pretty easy to make. The pattern for the ball uses typical continuous single crochet rounds requiring some increasing, continuation of the same number of stitches, and then some decreases.
The seal itself was quite a bit more complicated. It was also all single crochet in continuous rounds. First, I crocheted each part of the body--main body, head and neck, front flippers, and back flippers.
Next, I stuffed and sewed the parts of the body. I stuffed and closed the main body, and then sewed the back flippers on (no stuffing). Then, I had to add on the nose and whiskers to the head/neck piece. The pattern has the nose and whiskers made out embroidery floss, but I used a plastic nose and embroidery thread for whiskers. Next, I stuffed the head and neck, and I attached it to the main body. Finally, I sewed the front flippers onto the seal. The pattern says to sew three 1 inch lines onto each front flipper (at the point furthest from the body), and then add some stuffing and attach.
Here, is my finished circus seal with ball:
I'm very glad it turned out well. I was a little bit nervous about dealing with all of these pieces, and whether I could sew them together correctly. I was most worried about messing up the face. My husband seems happy with the finished product, and he says his co-workers like it too.
Update on the Amigurumi bird:
It has multiplied! Behold the bird family that has appeared in our home. There are now 3 different sizes: smaller bird, taller bird, and bird with more stuffing.
The birds are getting faster and faster to make. I'm glad that I started with this Stacey Trock pattern. It's a great beginner pattern.