Written by Sequoia Abbott-Saulteaux
Leon the Llama
Introduction to the World of Amigurumi
Building Leon a Head and Neck
For this (big) guy, I used Yarnspiration’s Llama-No-Drama Patten with Red Hearts with Love in Bubblegum. This was my very first amigurumi project and while it has not been an easy task, I think that the end project will be well worth the effort. This week I focused on building Leon the Llama a head and neck, which took a surprising amount of time and effort.
While the yarn recommends a 5.5mm crochet hook, the pattern called for a smaller 3.75mm hook. This is because the smaller hook will create tighter stitches. The tighter stitches allow the project to hold its shape better and keep the stuffing inside. However, tighter stitches can also be harder to see. While it was harder at first, after a while I did get more used to crocheting tighter and Leon started to take shape.
The most time-consuming part of this portion was definitely the fur rows. Most of Leon’s face was made with just single crochet’s and a bit of yarn embroidery but his fur included three different stitches (a chain of ten slip stitches connected with a single crochet in the front loop only, then a single crochet in the back loop only, then finally a single crochet over both loops). While it did take a lot of effort, I think that the fur really brings him to life and emphasizess his Llama fluffiness. I bought a 50 pack of his 15mm safety eyes from Amazon for $12.99 which snap at the back and will hopefully never move!
Finding Help Online
Leon the Llama got easier to work with the more that I worked on him, but at first, there were a lot of things that I didn’t understand. I remember printing the pattern off Yarnspirations website and feeling more intimidated the longer that I started at the page. After debating how I should tackle this project I decided to jump online and see if there was any advice for a novice amigurumi crocheter like myself.
The first website that I jumped onto was YouTube where I found the Yarnspiration page along with a playlist of step-by-step instructions for this exact pattern! I found the YouTube video was really great for understanding parts of the pattern that I didn’t understand but it was also very fast so I had to frequently pause and found myself referring more to the printed pattern as my understanding increased.
The second website that I went to was Reddit’s r/Crochet which was great for connecting with other crocheters. You can connect with others by making a text post (explaining your problem, or maybe sharing news of yarn sales) or by posting pictures of crochet projects! I happened to find a post from a user that just finished working on this same pattern so I was able to ask for advice in the comment section. The great thing about commenting is that other users can also contribute to the conversation so I had someone else recommend the same YouTube tutorials that I was already watching!