Hey everyone! Could you please do me a big favour and click on this link HERE to vote for me in the "Made in Blog" Awards? All you have to do is click the “+1” as no registration is required and you can only vote once! These special awards are promoting Canadian bloggers and the top ten blogs as voted by the readers will move onto the finale where a jury will choose the winners in each category! I would really appreciate your support and I thank you in advance!
P.S. We have been LOVING all the creative entries to help name our bears (click here to see their sneak peek)! It’s going to be hard choosing their names! Stay tuned next week to learn more about them and to make your very own :D
Here is a sneak peek of our newest amigurumi design! Aren’t they cuties? They need names though (either individually or as a set)….do you have any ideas? We’d LOVE to hear your suggestions so please comment below!
The step-by-step blog post and free pattern will be up next week!
I wanted to help spread the word about this awesome design contest that “Amigurumi Patterns.net" is hosting! The challenge is to design an animal in a working outfit, and the contest is open worldwide! Check out the contest page HERE to read about all the details!
All the prizes look awesome from books, safety eyes and yarn….and the first prize winner will receive a set of Clover Amour hooks (which I recently reviewed here)! I highly encourage all of you to participate, and I can’t wait to see all the designs when the voting period begins! These events that bring the amigurumi community together are always so much fun :) Happy designing!
The right tools are important for any craft, and hooks are one of the basic necessities for our beloved crochet! Ever since picking up crocheting again a couple of years ago, I had been using aluminum hooks. I was unaware of the many different types of hooks available as well as the basic anatomy of the crochet hook. Nerdigurumi put together a very handy guide addressing these topics HERE. I first caught a glimpse of the beautiful and colourful Clover hooks when Jo of “A Morning Cup of Jo" posted a picture of them on her facebook page as she had received them as a surprise birthday gift! They looked so fun and comfortable!
As many of you know (and often question, haha), I usually use a very small 2 mm hook when crocheting my amigurumi. I like to have very small, tight stitches and I just grew accustomed to using my skinny aluminum 2 mm hook. At times I did notice that my hand would cramp up as I crochet quite tightly and I had to take breaks since I did not want to develop any injuries. In addition, since becoming a new mom, I learned that “Mommy thumb" (or De Quervain’s Tendonitis) is quite common, especially to people who engage in repetitive hand or wrist movement (such as crocheting and lifting a baby!). When Mother’s Day rolled around, Ryan said he wanted to get me a very special gift….a new set of ergonomic crochet hooks!
At first I wasn’t sure if I should get the Clover set I had previously seen since I had slowly been accumulating hooks over the years…none of them were ergonomic, but was it worth it since I already owned many of the same hook sizes? We decided to take the plunge since I do crochet a lot and they could prevent future injury! I started researching Clover Amour hooks and discovered that there seemed to be two sets, each with varying sizes.
The “Clover Amure" set consists of 8 hooks ranging in size from 2, 2.3, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 and 6 mm (see here). The “Clover Amour" set consists of 10 hooks, ranging in size from 2.25, 2.75, 3.25, 3.5, 3.75, 4, 4.5, 5, 5.5, 6 (see here). With the “Clover Amour” set, you have the option of purchasing it as a basic set or as a gift set with a case (price difference of about $10-15). I decided to go for the “Clover Amour” set since it included more hooks and I liked the range more ….and I had to get the case too since I knew it would be a great way to store my hooks! I compared sellers on eBay and went for the cheapest one at the time.
I excitedly checked the mail everyday, waiting for my crochet hooks to arrive! When my Clover Amour gift set finally came, I ripped open the package to examine my new Mother’s Day gift! I absolutely love the bright green case with pink edging- what a fun and eye-catching colour combination! The back of the case has a zipper compartment that you can use to store stitch markers or needles too.
When you unzip the case, you can see all ten of the beautiful Clover Amour hooks that were made in Japan! It makes me happy seeing all these fun colours whenever I reach in to grab a hook. The colours help me remember which size is which as well (e.g. I always remember the red one is my 3.5 mm hook!).
As soon as I started using one of my new Clover Amour crochet hooks for a project, I could immediately feel the difference. The soft, rubbery handles are very comfortable and easy to grip. It felt so different holding the rubber handle compared to the hard aluminum hooks that I was accustomed to. I noticed the biggest difference when using the smaller hooks since my previous aluminum 2 mm hook was so skinny and difficult to grip. Even though the hook size may be small, the Clover handle is big, making it so much more comfortable.
The smooth aluminum hook glides through the yarn easily and is more “inline” compared to the previous hooks I was used to (read about the difference between “inline" and "not inline" hooks here). I feel I can grip and hold the yarn well without much splitting of the yarn because of its shape!
These hooks look so sleek, and I really like the shape and contour of the elastomer rubber handle. I use the knife hold when crocheting (see knife hold vs. pencil hold here), so the flat wide part in the front is a great thumb rest.
Here are the pros of these Clover Amour hooks: they are very comfortable, easy-to-grip and oh so pretty. The cons are that they are expensive (especially if you buy the whole set) and once you start using these you cannot go back to using your other non-ergonomic crochet hooks because your fingers will notice the difference! My Clovers were in another room recently so I started a project using my old aluminum hook. It felt so foreign and I was wondering why my fingers were hurting, haha! I wish the range of sizes was a little larger too as I don’t know how much use I will get out of the 2.75 or the 3.25 mm hooks. Having larger hooks than a 6 mm would be great too!
If the sets seem like too much of an investment, you can also purchase the Clover Amour hooks individually so you can simply buy the one or two sizes that you use the most (see here). Be sure to check different sellers on eBay, Etsy and Amazon to scout out the cheapest prices for the sets or hooks at any given time (we bought our set on eBay)!
I LOVE my Clover Amour set and have been using them for the past couple of months. My hands, fingers and wrist do not get as tense as they used to and it feels so comfortable whenever I’m working on my projects. I think they are worth the investment and I get excited whenever I get to use them! Let me know about your experiences with different crochet hooks, if you also have any Clover Amour hooks or if you’re interested in getting them too! I’d love to hear about it!
***If you end up purchasing the Clover Amour hooks through Amazon, you can check out my affiliate link below: Thanks :)
It’s the first Friday of the month, aka BYATWF (“Bring Your Amigurumi to Work Friday”)! Myla and I had a teddy bear picnic with a special friend :) This brown teddy was one of the first amigurumi that I made using Ana Paula Rimoli’s pattern (I blogged about him HERE) ! Care to join us? The food is delicious ;P
When I first started making amigurumi, I googled “amigurumi blogs" to see what other people were doing with this exquisite craft, to get tips, and to just connect with others who were interested in the same thing that I was interested in. There weren’t that many back then, but I enjoyed whatever I came across! Now that I’ve been blogging for a few years, I’ve been able to connect with and reach many people around the world!
And so, it is now my pleasure to present to you this directory of amigurumi and crochet blogs! When I first asked people to send me their blogs, I honestly was expecting maybe 30-40 comments….little did I realize that there were sooo many bloggers out there, with over 180 people responding! It’s been fun for me to pop by all your blogs and see what you all have been working on!
Take some time to look around, comment, and connect with fellow crocheters! It’s amazing how the internet can bring us all together and make the world a whole lot smaller :) In an effort to organize this very long list, I have divided up the blogs by geographical region and then alphabetically within each region. Maybe you’ll discover some fellow crocheters who live near you! Please let me know if anything needs to be changed or if I have left anyone out. Feel free to add your own blog information (name, where you’re from and url) in the comments below in case you missed my first call for amigurumi and crochet blogs as I will continue to update this list!
AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND
Look who accompanied to the yarn store! Sweetheart Bunny is helping me choose yarn to make a new amigurumi! She’s a great helper :) We are excited to work on our newest project! What are you and your amigurumi up to today?
Every first Friday of the month is “Bring Your Amigurumi To Work Friday" (BYATWF), a fun initiative started by Dennis, a graphic designer and amigurumi artist from the Netherlands (check out his work here)! I participated in the first one on Instagram (@AllAboutAmi) by photographing my little Dragon while playing with Myla since I have the best job in the world as her Mama :)
This Friday is the third “BYATWF”, so choose a special amigurumi, have him/her follow you around for the day, snap a photo and upload it onto your blog, Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook or Twitter and use the hashtag “#BYATWF" so we can all see! It’s fun seeing other people’s creations and what environments they’re in! And don’t worry if you don’t work on Fridays- you can snap your work photo on another day and upload it on Friday OR your amigurumi can tag along with you as you go grocery shopping, to the library, to the gym and so forth! What a great way to bring the amigurumi community together :) Can’t wait to see what all our little crocheted friends around the world will be doing and where they’ll be going this Friday!
I love reading blogs and getting glimpses into the minds and creativity of people from all over the world! However, there are so many blogs out there that it sometimes can be difficult to discover them. And so, I thought it would be a great idea to compile a list of blogs for us all to peruse!
If you have an amigurumi or a crochet blog, please leave a comment below stating your name, where you’re from (city or country) and what your url is! Please leave a comment even if I already know about your blog so that I don’t accidentally forget to include it! I will compile them into a future blog post so that we can connect with other like-minded individuals who share the same hobbies and passions as us! Feel free to also mention what your favourite crochet and amigurumi blogs are so that others can discover them too!
I have some very exciting news to share with you all! I was featured in the June 2013 issue of Malaysia’s “Home & Décor” Magazine! This is the beautiful cover…
Mei of Meimoirs, a fellow amigurumi artist who is extremely talented and creative, first contacted me in March and told me that she was doing a story about the “Global Handmade Movement" for the magazine. I was so honoured that she wanted to feature me! Mei did a wonderful job with the story as she talks about the rising popularity of handmade items, Pinterest, DIY tutorials and Etsy, as well as how social media has really helped spread the popularity of crafting. Handmade items are definitely a breath of fresh air in a world of mass consumerism and big-box stores!
The story features five artists from around the world, including Canada (me), France, Australia and Malaysia! I really enjoyed reading about the other artists and seeing their work :) It is definitely neat to see and hear about what is going on around the crafting world!
Here is my feature in the magazine! Give it a read…perhaps you’ll learn something new about me!
Thank you to Malaysia’s Home & Décor Magazine for the lovely feature, and thank you so very much to Mei for writing up such a great story and including me! Check out Mei’s amigurumi work on her blog HERE!
[All photos in this blog post courtesy of Mei!]