Day 8 :: Sketching Your Design

This is Day 8 of the 31 Days of Amigurumi. This 31 day series is full of how-to's for designing and creating your very own amigurumi. Whether you're a beginner at ami's or just need help on a certain technique, there's something here for everyone.

31 Days of Amigurumi is the place to learn all about creating your own Amigurumi.

So it's Day 8 and today we are talking about sketching your amigurumi design. Sketching can be an important part of knowing what you are making. If you are anything like me then sometimes you know what it is you want to make but you just aren't exactly sure how you want it to look in your head. I tend to have an idea but it just isn't coming together the right way.

I like to sketch out a little draft of my idea to help me visualize what I'm trying to make and the basic shapes it's going to take. You don't have to be an artist to create a sketch. It's more of a rough draft or an idea, so as long as you can draw basic shapes like circles, ovals, and rectangles, then you'll be fine. It doesn't have to be detailed, just get your idea on paper.

Get a piece of paper, whether it's blank or lined, whatever. I like to use graph paper, but that's just my one semester of fashion design school coming through. ;)  Use pencil to sketch your basic design. I generally only make dolls nowadays, so my sketch is going to be of dolls only.

So here's a tip! When I sketch I try to sketch to the side of my paper so I can use the blank spaces later to jot down pattern notes as I'm creating. (We'll be talking more about pattern notes tomorrow.)

Here is a quick sketch I recreated for my fashion doll free pattern. It doesn't have to be anything special, the basic shape is all that matters. Here I have traced out the basic shapes of the head and body. We'll be talking more about feet and hands on days 18 and 19, so right now we're going to worry about the body.

The head is just a basic ball shape. The body starts out as an oval shape and then goes straight down like a rectangle. Once you understand how those shapes are created then crocheting them will be easy. We'll be talking about how these shapes are made on day 10 and day 11.

So another thing you might want to think about is how are these shapes going to fit together? Are you going to crochet the head straight into the body and then straight into the legs? Are you going to crochet them all separately and sew them together? If so, how will you sew them together?

For the design pictured I knew that I wanted the legs to be easily moved so the doll could sit. I knew from experience that this could be best achieved if I sewed the legs into the bottom of the body on a flat seam, so that is how she was drawn. I figured that it would be easiest by crocheting the head separately and then sewing it to the body.

Here is my original design and each of the pieces that I crocheted separately. My sketch was my guide for how and what I created.

Here is what you have to remember when using your sketch.

  • What shape are you creating?
  • What size is the shape compared to the other shapes?
  • How will they fit together?
  • How many pieces do I need to crochet?
In some cases you might not need to draw up a sketch, but it can be helpful. This works best for beginners and if you don't understand how it will all work together. This also works great for keeping track of your patterns.

Tomorrow we're going to talk about writing your patterns notes in shorthand. I need the shorthand so that I have enough room on my page for the pattern. I then can save the page and have the picture of what it is and the notes for how it's made for future reference. See you tomorrow!

Happy crocheting,
~Chassity O.

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