According to [tag]Wikipedia[/tag], [tag]Amigurumi[/tag] is the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting small animals or anthropomorphic creatures. Amigurumi are typically cute animals (such as bears, rabbits, cats, dogs, etc.), but can include inanimate objects endowed with anthropomorphic features. Amigurumi can be knitted, but the vast majority of amigurumi are crocheted. They are also worked with a smaller size needle in proportion to the weight of the yarn in order to create a very tight-looking fabric without any gaps through which the stuffing might escape. Amigurumi are usually worked in sections and then joined (some amigurumi have no limbs whatsoever and the body and head is worked as one piece). The extremities are often stuffed with plastic pellets to give them a life-like weight, while the rest of the body is stuffed with fiber stuffing.
The pervading aesthetic of amigurumi is cuteness. To this end, typical amigurumi animals have an over-sized spherical head on a cylindrical body with undersized extremities.
Knitted patterns are hard to find, but [tag]PlushYou[/tag] has a page full, both regular knit and felted, and where to buy them. Many are sea creatures and don’t really look overly anthropomorphic.
Holiday season is right around the corner and maybe someone on your list would enjoy one of these cute animals. This is also a good way to use up those left-over bits of yarn from larger projects.
By Laura Nixon