Yarn Treasures

amigurumi

Alice in Wonderland Bridal Shower

Alice in Wonderland Shower

While I absolutely adore amigurumi, I love all things crafty. Back in May I had the pleasure of hosting my sister’s bridal shower and I decided to get crafty with it.  For as long as I can remember my sister has loved Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and as soon as we started talking about a shower she asked if it could be Alice themed.  I thought long and hard about how I was going to make the event whimsical without being childish. After lots of internet browsing for inspiration I was able to put together a an event everyone had a great time at. I thought I’d share how it all went and hopefully inspire you for parties of your own.

What’s an Alice themed shower without a tea party? It seemed like the natural choice so we decided on hosting it at a popular local tea house. I knew they had a great outdoor space with beautiful water features as well. Once the location was secured I took to invitations.

There were tons of choices to choose from.  Here are some of my favorites:

By Cupiddesigns on Etsy
By P27Creative Etsy Shop

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the end I decided to go digital and went with a fun, bold and colorful design from paperless post.

Alice in Wonderland Invitation

The bride and I decided not to go the costume route but instead asked guests to wear Alice inspired attire.   Forseeing that some guests may not have time to get inspired outfits I decided to have a backup plan, create head pieces for photo ops. I ended up with 3 different ones to choose from.

The first was bunny ears inspired by the white rabbit and the March hare. I decide to try and create something inspired by a Japanese trend of usamimi headbands.  They are appropriate for everyday wear since they are subtle but still very reminiscent of bunny ears.  Traditionally they are made of fun fabric and I found two awesome patterns, one on the minted strawberry blog and also a different take on the twirling betty blog

EASY USAMIMI (RABBIT EAR) HEADBAND on Minted Strawberry Blog
bunny ear headbands on Twirlingbetty blog

Not having a sewing machine I decided why not put my crochet talents to good use the do the same with yarn? I decided to try and create the look with yarn ears. I was able to buy a few plastic headbands at my local dollar shop and transformed them using a variety of techniques covering them with fabric, felt and spray paint. They turned out great and the guests really enjoyed them. I’ll be doing another post down the line with the pattern and will link to it soon.

bunny ears headband

Bunny ears

The second was a play on the flowers scene from the book. I used the same plastic headbands and sprayed them with matte gold paint. Being on a budget I was able to grab some faux flowers from the dollar store as well. I trimmed them to size and glued each blossom onto the headband.

flower headband

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The last was a top crocheted top hat. I’ll be working on patterning out this project for a future post as well.

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For the table centerpiece, I recreated the flowers scene with a a little Alice figurine, some silk flowers and a large candy jar. For the rest of the table I was able to find hardcover copies of Alice in Wonderland and through the looking glass. The tea cups and tea pots provided by restaurant fit right in with the theme.

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To round out the decorations I was able to find some metal keys at Michael’s and some tea ware at my local Goodwill for $2 each. I created a dormouse to go with the sugar bowl.

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A beautiful cake and some themed cupcakes tied everything together nicely. This cake was created by Los Angeles baker Eleana Perez of Elemakescakes.

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What party would be complete without games and prizes? I created a jumbo version of my white rabbit as a prize for our shower games.

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As the guests started showing up I was ecstatic to see all the inspired outfits. We specifically asked that people avoid costumes but encouraged fashion inspired by all the characters. We had our own Mad Hatter, Tweedles dee and dum, and of course our bride found a white apron to go with her chic navy dress.

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I hope this has provided some great inspiration for you to throw your own Alice themed celebration. I’ll be following up this post with some patterns soon!

All photos courtesy of Raechel Denise Photography.

Crocheted Fawn Scarf

Hi Everyone,

Sorry it’s been so long since the last post.  Work has been keeping me busy but I’m definitely working on some new projects for 2015. I saw the most adorable knit scarf at Anthropologie recently but I can’t knit so I decided to try and create my own crocheted version with a Yarn Treasures spin. Here’s a sneak peek at my first attempt a crocheted fawn scarf. I’ll be blogging more about this soon and hope to get a few into the store early next year. I know the store front has been a bit barren. I have a ton of new ideas and inspirations, now just need to find some time to work on them.  Thanks for sticking with me.

xoxo

 

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Free Aviator Fox Pattern

I got such positive feedback for Foxtrot and Echo, my aviator fox and his wife I wanted to create a simple mini version to share with you all. Enjoy this free fox pattern!

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Materials:
3.0 mm Crochet hook
Embroidery needle
1 pair 9 mm safety eyes
1 12 mm safety nose
3 mini gold brads
polyfil stuffing
Worsted weight orange yarn, brown yarn, grey yarn, white yarn
Recommended yarns:
Lionbrand Vanna’s choice in the following colors:
Chocolate (or Taupe), Terracotta and silver heather
Lionbrand pound of love in Antique white

Abbreviations
sc – Single crochet
inc – increase
dec – decrease
slst – slip stitch

Head
With orange yarn
Magic circle with 6 sc
R1: inc (x6) – (12)
R2: sc, inc (x6) – (18)
R3: 2 sc, inc (x6) – (24)
R4: 3 sc, inc (x6) – (30)
R5: 4 sc, inc (x6) – (36)
R6-10: sc 36 -(36)
R11: 4 sc, dec (x6) – (30)
R12: 3 sc, dec (x6) – (24)
Place safety eyes between rows 9 and 10 approx 9-10 stitches apart
Start stuffing head
R13 2 sc, dec (x6) – (18)
R14 1 sc, dec (x6) – (12)
Finish stuffing head
R15 dec (x6) – (6)
Bind off and weave in ends.

Nose

With orange yarn
Magic circle with 4 sc
R1: sc 4
R2: inc (x4) – (8)
R3: sc 3 inc (x2) – (10)
R4: sc 1, inc (5) – (15)
fasten off and leave tail to sew onto face
Insert the safety nose
Lightly stuff before sewing to the head.

Hat

With brown yarn
Magic circle with 7 sc
R1: inc (x7) – (14)
R2: sc, inc (x7) – (21)
R3: 2 sc, inc (x7) – (28)
R4: 3 sc, inc (x7) – (35)
R5-10: sc 35
R11: sc 6, chain 1 turn (6)
R12: Dec 3 (3)
R13: Dec (1)
Bind off and weave
Attach brown yarn on the opposite end of the flap you just created (R11)
Repeat
sc 6, chain 1 turn (6)
dec 3 (3)
dec (1)
Attach white yarn and sc all the way around to trim the hat.
Fasten off and weave in ends.

Goggles
Using white yarn (make 2)
Magic circle with 5 stitches
R1: inc (X5) – (10)
R2: sc,inc (x5) – (15)
Switch to grey yarn
R3-4: sc 15

For the first disk bind off and weave in tail.
For the second disk chain one at the end and slst to any part of the 2nd disk

Finally opposite the slst connection on one of the disks attach the grey yarn and chain 30
connect with the other circle using a slst and sc back along the chain until you are back where you started.
This will make the goggle band. Bind off and weave in ends.

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Ears (make 2)
With orange yarn
Magic circle with 4sc
R1: sc4
R2: in (x4) -(8)
R3: sc 3, inc (x2) -(10)
R4: sc 1, inc (x5) -(15)
R5: Sc 15

Body
With Orange yarn
Magic circle with 6 sc
R1: inc (x6) – (12)
R2: Sc, inc (x6) – (18)
R3: 2 sc, inc (x6) – (24)
R4: 3 sc, inc (x6) – (30)
R5: 4 sc, inc (x6) – (36)
change to brown yarn
R6: sc 36 in back loops only
R7: sc 4,dec (x6) -(30)
R8: sc 30
R9: sc 3, dec (x6) – (24)
R10: sc 24
R11: sc 2, dec (x6) – (18)
R12: sc 1, dec (x6) – (12)
swtich to white yarn
R13: sc 12
Leave tail for sewing

Now go back to row 6 where you crocheted in the back loops there should be a set of front loops
where you can attach your white yarn and crochet around to create the trim for the jacket.

Insert your gold brads for the buttons and stuff the body.

Arms (make 2)
with orange yarn
Magic circle 5 sc
R1-2 sc 5
Change to chocolate yarn
R3: sc 5
R4: sc 5 in back loops only
this will create a line of raised stitches where you can easily attach the trim later
R5-7 sc 5 (both loops)
bind off and leave tail for sewing
go back and attach white yarn to the row of raised stitches and sc around. Bind off and weave in tail.

Legs (make 2)
With orange yarn
Magic circle 9
R1: sc 2 inc (x3) – (12)
R2-6 sc 12
Fasten off and leave tail for sewing

Tail
With white yarn
Magic circle with 4 sc
R1: 4 sc (4)
R2: inc (x4) – (8)
R3: sc, inc (x4) – (12)
R4: 2 sc, inc (x4) – (16)
R5: sc 16 – (16)
switch to orange yarn
R6-8 sc 16 – (16)
R9: sc 2, dec (x4) – (12)
R10: sc 12 – (12)
R11: sc 2, dec (x4) – (8)
R12: sc 8 – (8)
R13: dec (x4) – (4)
R14: sc 4 (4)
bind off and leave tail for sewing

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Scarf
R1: Chain 35 turn
R2: Sc 35 back along the chain
Fasten off and weave in tail

You now have all your pieces simply assemble! Note that the ears go onto the hat and the hat should be sewn down to the head.

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Thank you so much for supporting us! If you make Foxtrot, we’d love to see! Post on Instagram with #foxtrotYT. Please feel free to let me know if you see any mistakes.

©2014 Yarn Treasures. This pattern is intended for personal use only. You are not allowed to resell, redistribute or share this pattern. Products made from this pattern may not be use sold or used for commercial purposes.

Free Panda Sleep Mask Pattern

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Pandas are all the craze these days. I’ve been seeing them everywhere from piggy banks and stuffed animals to T-shirts and public art displays. I can see the allure with their adorable faces and unique coloring. When a friend posted this sleep mask found on Ebay I was inspired to make my own.

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It ended being pretty simple so I thought I would share the pattern with you all so you could make your own.

Materials:

  • Elastic band
  • Black felt
  • Black yarn ( I used Bernat Satin in ebony)
  • White or cream yarn (I used loops and threads impeccable in aran)
  • Backing fabric of your choice.
  • 3.5 mm crochet hook

Ch=chain
Sc=single crochet
Sl st = slip stitch

Mask (small)
Ch 25
R1: starting 2nd ch from the hook sc back across the chain and around the other side (48)
R2: sc, inc, sc 21, inc, sc, inc,sc 21, inc (52)
R3: sc, inc, sc 22, inc, sc, inc, sc 22, inc (56)
R4: sc 39, 6 sl st, sc 11 (56)
R5: sc 39, 6 sl st, sc 11 (56)
Fasten off and weave end.

The slip stitches should make the piece dip in for your nose. The side with the dips with be the bottom of your mask.

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image: Single crochet around a foundation chain.

Ears (make 2)
Ch 10
R1: Starting 2nd ch from the hook sc back across the chain and around the other side (18)
R2: sc,inc, sc 8, inc, sc, inc, sc 8, inc (22)
R3-5: sc 22
Fasten off leave tail to sew to mask

Attach both ears to the top side of the mask at either end.

Eyes (make 2)
Using the black felt cut out egg shaped eyes and sew or glue them onto the mask with the smaller end facing each other.

You could crochet black circles to use instead but I liked the flat look of the felt and the mixing of textures.

Backing
Cut out your fabric to fit on the back of your mask and sew or glue this to the mask. It will make for a softer feel against your face and help block out light.

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Lastly attach your elastic band to either side of the mask. If you don’t have elastic you could use yarn/ribbon and just tie in the back instead. I’m doing this until I can get to the store to buy some elastic.

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Voila all done.

This makes a pretty small mask but it can easily be altered to make a bigger mask. Simply start with a chain long enough to cover across your face and crochet around increasing at the ends on either side of the chain.

I hope you enjoy this simple pattern. An easy an fun project to make for kids especially. Please let me know if you find any mistakes. I’d love to see your project so feel free to send us pics at info @yarntreasures.com or post them on social media with #YTpandamask

Thanks for visiting!

Colorful birds free pattern

While I was yarn shopping at Michael’s I found the most beautiful color changing yarn by Red Heart. It’s part of their boutique line called Unforgettable. It’s a worsted weight yarn and is 100% acrylic though it feels super soft and almost like wool. My photos can’t really quite capture the true color but the yarn is almost iridescent and very bright. There were several colors to choose from and I couldn’t resist so I bought 3 different ones in the colors of Parrot, Dragonfly and Winery. Aren’t those pretty names for the colors? My only tip is that this yarn is very delicate. If you pull too hard the strand will literally fall apart so take care to be gentle while working this yarn.

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I wasn’t sure what I was going to make with the yarn but after some thought decided on some beautiful brightly colored birds. I’ve always been a big animal lover which is why amigurumi really appealed to me. I came up the with the simple pattern below and I’m happy to share it with you all. You can make it with any yarn you like in fact I plan on making a black bird with a colorful beak. I hope you enjoy. Please let me know what you think and if you make one of my birdies I’d love to see them! E-mail them to us at info@yarntreasures.com or post it on social media with #YTbirdies.

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Materials:

  • Yarn of your choice for the body, orange or yellow yarn for the beak
  • 9mm safety eyes
  • Embroidery needle
  • Stuffing
  • Recommended hook size 2.3mm or 2.5mm

Head
Magic circle with 6 sc
R1: Inc X6 (12)
R2: *sc 1, inc* x6 (18)
R3: *sc 2, inc* x6 (24)
R4: *sc 3, inc* x6 (30)
R5: *sc 4, inc* x6 (36)
R6: *sc 36 (36)
R7: *sc 5, inc* x6 (42)
R8-11: sc 42 (42)
R12: *sc 5, dec* x6 (36)
R13: *sc 4, dec* x6 (30)
R14: *sc 3, dec* x6 (24)
Place safety eyes toward the lower half of the head 10 stitches apart.
R15: *sc 2, dec* x6 (18)
R16: *sc 1, dec* x6 (12)
R17: dec x6 (6)
Fasten off and leave a long tail. String the long tail through to the top of the head and make a bow for the little feathers.

Fig 1

Body
Magic circle with 7sc
R1: inc 7 (14)
R2: *sc 1, inc* x7 (21)
R3: *sc 2, inc* x7 (28)
R5: in back loops only sc 28 (28)

Note: This will help birdie sit better on his own but creating almost like a 90 degree angle. Since he will be very top heavy he’s not going to sit on his own very well. If you absolutely need him to balance and sit on his own I recommend filling the body section with some marbles or beans or something to keep it heavy during assembly.

R6-8: revert back to working in both loops
R9: *sc2, dec* x7 (21)
R10: *sc1, dec* x7 (14)
Fasten off and leave long tail for sewing

Beak
I use Red Heart’s Soft line in the color Tangerine. It’s my favorite orange yarn and I use it frequently for my tigers as well. It’s also super soft and the color is bright and iridescent not muted and dark like some of the others.

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You will create a foundation chain and crochet around it

Ch 5
R1: starting 2nd chain from the hook sc 4 continue around the other side sc 4
R2: sc,inc, sc 2 inc, sc, inc, sc 2, inc, sc
R3: sc around (14)
Wings (make 2)
Create a magic circle with 10sc but don’t close it up all the way. This should produce a U shape out of the stitches. Leave a tail for sewing

Tail
Ch 4,
R1: Second from the hook inc 3 (6)
R2: ch 1, turn *3dc, sl st* x3 this should create 3 scallops along the long end of the flap you just created. Weave the remaining tail back torward the beginning. You’ll be sewing the small end of the triangle to the body.

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Assembly:
Attach the beak to the head between the eyes.
Attach the body to the head
Attach the wings on either side half way down the body
Lastly attach the tail and voila. All done!

*Please note this pattern is intended for personal use only and may not be used for commercial purposes or claimed as your own. You may link to this pattern but please don’t copy the pattern and list it on your own page.

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Ariel Doll Hair Tutorial

When I first started doing dolls I found figuring out how to give the dolls hair was the hardest part.  There are tons of techniques out there and I use different techniques depending how I want the hair.  A few people did ask me recently how I did the hair on my Ariel doll. I thought I’d do a short tutorial and hopefully it will help some of you out there. I know I was desperately looking for info when I did my first doll.

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My technique is actually quite simple. The key is to work with an infinite loop of yarn rather than strands. Create a loop of yarn for as long as you want the hair.  I know yarn can be expensive but I tend to make the hair longer so I can trim it later if need be. I learned the mistake of making it too short and not being able to add later on.  After that you’ll want to decide where you want the bangs to sit. I did Ariel off the side. I used pins to secure one end of the loop to where I wanted the section of hair to sit and sewed it down. Next take that same section of hair and twist it. This will make up Ariel’s front bang.

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Once the hair has been twisted, secure the bottom section to lower portion of her head near the neck. I cut another piece of yarn to use as a hair tie and leave a tail to sew into the head. Repeat the whole process with another section of hair parted to the other side. This time I tuck the new section under the old one.

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Once both sections are secured you can start working on the back of the hair. I repeat making the bundled sections and securing them along the hairline you have now created from the bangs. This time I simply didn’t twist the hair. You can also insert layers underneath for thicker hair.

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That’s pretty much all there is to it. Once the hair is the way you want it just give the hair a trim and cut the loops at the bottom if desired. I kept the loops. I felt like it kept the hair together better.  Sorry I didn’t have an unfinished head to show you guys the pinning and sewing. I’ll add more pictures when I do another doll.  I hope this helps. Feel free to let me know if this is helpful.

EDIT:  I started creating a base cap out of the same color as the hair so you can’t see through to the scalp. I’ve found this to be extremely helpful. I also can secure the twists to the end of the wig cap to hold them in place rather than securing to the head or neck.

Flounder Ball Free Pattern

 

One of my favorite Disney movies growing up was The Little Mermaid. She still holds a special place in my heart.  She’s also recently captured the hearts of my two little god daughters.  They asked me to make them some dolls and I knew Ariel would be a great choice. My Ariel turned out to be such a big hit I decided to offer my flounder pattern for free.  If you haven’t seen the doll you can see her in our gallery section. Sorry Ariel has not been patterned out yet. I’m horrible about writing my patterns down but I’m working on it.  Flounder is pretty easy to make so it’s great for beginners.  The body is basically a ball.  If you find any mistakes feel free to reach out.  Enjoy!

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Materials

  • 2.5mm crochet hook (will yield a fishy of about 5cm in diameter)
  • Worsted weight yellow yarn (I use Loop and thread’s Impeccable in butterscotch)
  • Worsted weight green or blue yarn ( I use Red Heart Soft in seafoam)
  • 9mm safety eyes (1 pair)
  • White felt
  • Embroidery needle
  • Stuffing (polyfil)
  • Glue gun (optional)

Body
Magic circle 6sc (6)
R1: Inc 6 (12)
R2:* Sc 1 , inc* x6 (18)
R3: *Sc 2, inc* x6 (24)
R4: * Sc 3, inc* x6 (30)
R5-8: Sc 30 (30)
R9: *Sc 3, dec* x6 (24)

Cut out two circles using the white felt and feed the front of the safety eyes through but cutting slits in the circle.

Insert safety eyes into the body at between rounds
R10: *Sc 2, dec * x6 (18)
R11: *Sc 1, dec * X6(12)
R12: Dec 6 (6)
Fasten off and weave in tail

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Side Fins (make 2)
Magic circle 8sc (8)
Do not close the circle too tightly leaving a U shape
Leave a tail for sewing

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Top Fin

Ch 15
Starting 2nd ch from hook 1 sc
*Chain 3, sl st, sc* x 4
This will create 4 scallops on top
Fasten off and leave tail for sewing.

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Tail

R1: Ch 8
R2: Starting 2nd chain from the hook sc 6
R3: Ch 1 turn sc 4
R4: Ch 1 turn dec
Fasten off leave tail for sewing

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Stripes

Make 3 stripes but creating chains in the counts below. Fasten and leave tail for sewing or if using glue gun, fasten and trim off excess yarn.
1: Ch 10
2: Ch 7
3 Ch 5

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Assembly

I typically assemble in this order

  •  Side fins
  •  Tail
  •  Stripes (longest one toward front and spacing the other two evenly)
  • Top fin

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If you make flounder I’d love to see!  Feel free to email pics to us at info@yarntreasures.com or post on social media with #YTflounder.

If you decide to change up the colors he could easily turn into Nemo as well.

*Please note this pattern is intended for personal use only and may not be used for commercial purposes or claimed as your own.

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Hooks for beginners

When I was starting out at crochet I came across a lot of information about peoples’ preferences for different hooks. When it comes down to it, it’s all a matter of preference but I thought I would talk about some of my favorites and my experiences accumulating my own collection.

My initial thought was, I’m going to get the cheapest hook I can find since I didn’t want to invest a lot of money into a craft I was not sure I could handle or wanted to stick with. I still stand by this logic. As a beginner there’s no need to go out and spend tons of money on expensive hooks. Amazon sells hook sets for as low as $1 and the 99 cent store also carries various hooks.

In the end I found a set of old metal Susan Bate hooks my mom had left over from her crochet days and that’s what I started off with.  Hook sizes vary depending on the brand (based on whether they are made in the US, UK, or Japan).  You’ll find below a guideline of size labels based on the metric size of the hook. The smaller hooks frequently used for amigurumi can be challenging to work with for beginners so I recommend starting out with a  5 mm or 6 mm hook.  I personally started with 5mm.  Patterns typically will suggest hook size based on either the metric size (my favorite way), letter sizes or number sizes. When you get more advanced a lot of amigurumi crocheters prefer to use hooks closer to 2 mm. I find the chart below comes in handy.

hook chart

I quickly outgrew my Susan Bates hook wanting to make smaller amigurumi that didn’t look as porous.  You’ll find that that if you spend long periods of time at crochet, the metal hooks will start to hurt your fingers.  I quickly researched a few brands experienced crocheters had reviewed and did my own test.  The two brands that consistently seemed to be adored by the crochet world were Clover and Tulip both made in Japan and made ergonomic hooks.

crochet hooks

The three I tried out were Clover brand soft touch, Clover brand Amour and Tulip Etimo.  Of the three, Clover soft touch is the cheapest costing around $6-$7 US at Michael stores or online. I found the hook to be much more light weight than the metal hooks. The grip was good made of plastic and with a rubber trim. I found it quite acceptable and much more comfortable than the metal hooks. (Which I still think are fine for short periods of crochet).

Next I tried the Clover Amour hooks which many crocheters had been raving about. These were a bit more than the soft touch line and typically runs about $8 US. The handle feels like soft rubber. While more comfortable than my metal hooks I felt the handle was a bit thick for my small hands and the rubber when held too long can start to feel sticky. It’s also a bit heavier than the soft touch line. For me it was okay but not my favorite.

Last I tried the Etimo hooks by Tulip and fell in love.  The grip is a soft plastic. It didn’t feel rubbery but is still very ergonomic for my fingers. For this particular hook I also noticed whatever is coated on the hook itself really makes a difference helping the yarn slip easily around allowing me to actually crochet much quicker.  I currently only own 4 as they can be really expensive. If not on sale they can run up to $13.  I was able to use some coupons at Joann’s and they ended up being closer to $9.  So far it’s been my hook of choice and I haven’t found anything I like better.

 

Welcome!

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Welcome to YarnTreasures.com. I’m so excited to finally be starting this blog and to have the opportunity to share my love of crochet.  I learned to crochet by reading blogs and watching youtube videos so I encourage those who are interested to take a stab at it.  It’s actually less daunting than it seems and can be very therapeutic.

This blog  will focus on amigurumi, the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting small stuffed animals. The word is derived from a combination of the Japanese words ami, meaning crocheted or knitted, and nuigurumi, meaning stuffed doll.

I was initially inspired by a cute crocheted rabbit I found on pinterest and it quickly led to me Googling everything I could on the subject. I had a cousin who had already learned on her own so that was promising.  I think the key for me was all the research.  I read and watched videos for about a week before I even attempted to go out and buy supplies or make anything.

I started making small circular balls and basic shapes. Once I got those down I moved on to simple patterns and now I’m making my own.  It has been the most rewarding experience to see peoples faces light up when I gift them one of my creations.  I hope to be able to give some guidance and encouragement for new beginners and also inspire some of you more advanced crocheters.

Thanks for joining me on this adventure and please feel free to reach out if you have any questions, comments, advice or just want to chat. It’s been amazing to connect with people all over the world through a shared love of crochet.

Peng