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As technology grows and grows, no one thought knitting and crocheting would take the world by storm in 2014. This new craze is called amigurumi, and is the Japanese art of crocheting and knitting small stuffed animals and anthropomorphic creatures. Amigurumi began to attract its fan base in 2003, yet already in 2006 it was reported to be the most popular item on Etsy; an online craft marketplace. Since then, its popularity has flourished, and they are very popular not only in Finland but all around the world.

The word “amigurumi” is derived from the Japanese words ami, which means knitted or crocheted, and nuigurumi, meaning stuffed doll.

The amigurumi creations are normally crocheted out of yarn using a single crochet stitch, and they can also be knitted as well. The dolls are worked on in sections and are then joined together, except for some who are created as one piece.

Smaller crochet hooks or knitting needs are used, in order to keep the stuffing contained, so it won’t poke through the fabric. Standard polyester or cotton craft stuffing can be used for stuffing, as well as plastic pellets to even out the weight at the bottom of the figure.

With amigurumi you don’t have to stick with one topic for inspiration, you can let your imagination run wild and free when it comes to making them. Such inspiration has seen the likes of Pokemon and Despicable Me characters being created.

With the craze spreading all around the world, will it be on your next shopping list?

Amelia Arkins
Image: Casiop