One of my favorite things to make is toys. They are a relatively quick knit, anywhere from 2 hours or a week to complete, easy to carry with me on the run, and of course something to play with when I am done. A couple of years ago I purchased Amigurumi Knits by Hansi Singh. In that time I have made only a few of the patterns. I made at least 4 ants for my son when he was going through his creepy bug stage (in fact is was for the ants that I purchased the book). I used the jellyfish pattern to test yarn that my favorite shop owner was thinking of stocking. Finally, I made 3 of her Nessie, which are absolutely adorable. I like the book, but I have had a lot of trouble with her patterns. Somewhere in between her creating them and the published book things have gone screwy. I know most of my problems came from just being inexperienced enough not to know how to work around some of the problems, but other issues I am not alone. So with that in mind, I decided to tackle another project. This one is for my neighbor who fell in love with it while ogling my knitting book one day. I am pleasantly surprised at how well it is going so far and am actually moving quite a long.
I started off making the 8 arms. I used to not like working short rows, but this book has given me a lot of practice and confidence in that aspect. My favorite part of the book is her explanations on how to do certain techniques. The pictures she uses are clear and her written instructions are very easy to understand.
One of the things that I have had major problems with is inserting the chenille sticks after whipstitching them closed. With the arms there was a hole big enough to insert from the top, although it was still somewhat of hassle due to the sticks getting caught on the way down. I decided to just whipstitch the tentacles close with them already added. It made it a lot easier and I believe I am just going to do it that way from now on.
Another area that I have gotten a lot of practice with is picking up stitches. I am forever having trouble trying to figure out which stitches to pick up in the first place, then making sure I am not going all over the place. I also have a habit of dropping the stitches I have just picked up. I did fairly well this time…only dropping a few stitches.
Still working on it, as I only get a few hours here and there to knit these days. I think I am going to have to knit myself one when I am done. 🙂