I have been making amigurumi for a long time, and my tools have evolved over the years. I’m sure they will continue to shift and change.
So, I wanted to share with you all of the things I have found that I use every day. These are the tools I have found that make all the difference in making great amigurumi.
Some of these things are affiliate links. If you choose to shop through my link, it helps keep the blog up and running and allows me to keep writing you free patterns.
1. Quality Safety Eyes
I get all of my safety eyes from glasseyesonline.com. I’m obsessed. They have amazing quality! The washers are tight and I never worry about them getting loose or falling off. You can also get any size and style in clear, so you can paint matching safety eyes for your next project.
2. Safety Eye Insertion Tool
This thing is AMAZING! It is also from Glass Eyes Online. It has a hollow end that fits over the washer of the safety eye and then you push down on it to press the washer on. It allows you to use even the tightest washers without breaking your fingers (or nails!).
3. Furls Crochet Hooks
These are a personal preference, but they have made a huge difference for my work and the amount of time I can work without pain.
My Furls Odyssey hooks have very literally saved my hands. Deadlines used to stress my hands to the breaking point. My wrists and last two fingers on my right hand would get stiff and ache all night. Since I switched to my Furls Odyssey hooks, I haven’t had any wrist pain!
In addition to the ergonomic handles, they are slightly weighted, so I actually crochet faster with them, with more even stitches.
4. Red Heart Super Saver Yarn
It may sound cliche, but for my amigurumi, I like good old fashioned acrylic worsted weight.
Red Heart Super Saver has no dye lots, so you know that every skein of “Warm Brown” will match, no matter where you buy it or when.
Red Heart Super Saver comes in over 150 colors. One Hundred Fifty! With that many color choices, it is easy to find colors to suit any project ideas for critters and creatures.
5. Polyfil Stuffing
Polyfil brand stuffing is 100% polyester. It stays uniform and even inside the amigurumi, and it doesn’t clump when washed.
Please, pretty please, don’t use recycled stuffing for your amigurumi.
I have heard of a lot of people who use pillows or stuffed animals from thrift store or from their kids’ bedrooms to stuff anigurumi. Old stuffing (especially from pillows) is full of dead skin cells, dust mites, and pet dander. They also hold in old smells and bacteria.
When you buy new stuffing, you know exactly what you are putting in your amigurumi.
6. Tapestry Needles
Metal tapestry needles are a must. I prefer leather “glover’s” needles that come in a package with other leather hand-sewing needles. But any metal needle will do as long as it has a large eye and it is nice and sharp.
Don’t use blunt tip needles.
When you are weaving in ends, you want to work your yarn through the strands of the yarn on the piece. For that, you need a sharp needle.
7. Straight Pins
Any old pin will do, as long as the head is large enough it can’t get through your stitches. I like multi-colored ones so I can match them up when I attach parts. Like this:
Rather than pinning the parts on and hoping they stay put while I stitch, I use pins to mark where I am going to attach the pieces and then use them as a guide to sew.
8. Knee High Stockings
Secret weapon here.
You can fill the toe of a knee high stocking with poly pellets, then tie it and cut off the excess. Then you add them to amigurumi when you need to weight them in the legs or bottom.
You can also fill them with rice and use them to make microwaveable hot packs. (Don’t wash the rice ones, of course.)
And finally, use knee high stockings to wash your amigurumi! Before you put it in the washing machine, put your amigurumi inside a stocking and tie it closed tightly. It will protect the safety eyes from scratches in the washer, and it will keep the stuffing from shifting.
What are you favorite tools? What things do you have for amigurumi that you can’t live without?
Post your favorites in the comments or on the Hookers and Crafters Facebook page.
Kati is the designer behind Hooked by Kati. With thousands of patterns sold around the world, Kati prides herself in creating innovative, easy-to-follow amigurumi patterns. She has designed for several publications, including Crochet!, Crochet World, Simply Crochet, and I Like Crochet. Kati finds her inspiration in science fiction, video games, and numerous visits to the zoo — all passions she shares with her husband and two boys.