Today, I promise to be less long-winded and discuss two essential elements to amigurumi – embroidery needles and stitch markers.
Tapestry needles tend to run cheap, which is great because I tend to lose them. But there are so many different sizes that it can get really confusing if you aren’t into cross stitch or hand embroidery. Never fear! It turns out, size really doesn’t matter that much.
I work with two different kinds of needles. A smaller one with a large enough eye (that’s where you thread your, well, thread) to get my embroidery floss or yarn through but small enough to do more detailed work, like smiles and such. Smaller needles are especially helpful when actually embroidering on the surface of your amigurumi because the tip of the needle tends to slide more easily through your work.
I also use a larger needle to attach limbs and things. With the larger needles, you’ll notice in the photo that mine have bent tips. I find this especially helpful when attaching limbs or other crocheted bits to my amigurumi because the needle naturally bends around a crochet stitch. They also tend to be a little shorter, which is great, as I find it’s hard to maneuver the longer needles where I want them to go.
A note about plastic needles versus metal needles. Plastic needles are also cheap and large, with great big eyes that make it easier to thread your yarn through. They are great to keep around if you’re working with afghans or clothing. However, I find that since amigurumi requires a tight weave, the plastic needles can have a tendency to break when you’re trying to work them into your crochet. Go for metal every time!
C) Stitch Markers
There are some absolutely gorgeous stitch markers around, most of which can make your wallet run away screaming. There are also some absolutely cheap, economy stitch markers out there that seem like a gift from god. But I’ve always been hesitant to spend money on them when I’d rather save up my earnings for more yarn.
Still, stitch markers are essential in amigurumi because most amigurumi tend to be worked in a continuous spiral instead of joining each round. Hence, it’s really important to keep track of where you started. My solution? Bobby pins! They are extremely cheap and hassle-free, not just because of how tight they are but also how long. I’ve never had one slip out of a stitch on me. Plus, I never have to worry if one gets lost in the couch.
My next Amigurumi on a Budget installment will be Odds and Ends – Cleaning, Scissors & Storage!