In this tutorial, you will learn how to properly stuff your amigurumi dolls or toys to get the best finished piece that is stuffed evenly!
Just shoving polyfill into your creations seems like it would be easy to do, right? Most patterns leave you with “Be sure to stuff firmly/loosely” but what exactly does that look like? When I first started crocheting, my worked looked VERY lumpy. The stuffing inside was uneven and my dolls that were supposed to look round looked deformed in their own right. Cute, but odd looking. And what if you don’t add enough to make it not as lumpy, it can sometimes look deflated or flat.
Here’s an example of my first piece:
I am not an expert at stuffing and it’s still something I have to redo sometimes for my projects, but after many years of doing amigurumi, I have come up with some advice on how to get even stuffing in all your projects!
So what should you use for your stuffing?
You’re going to find A LOT of options online and in the store. After trying a number of kinds and even ripping apart pillows for their stuffing, they all have their own texture and density but I have found my all time favorite to be “The Original Poly-Fil” and it can be purchased from JOANN! I like to use polyester filling because it fills well and is generally pretty affordable! However, you may find a brand or different kind that you enjoy, so try all different kinds if you wish!
You can find my favorite HERE, which come in a variety of sizes.
The concept seems easy enough – the more stuffing you have in your project means the firmer it will be. Well.. sort of. For people just starting to stuff their pieces, me included, you’re generally pretty excited to get this over with and it’s common to shove big clumps in all at once. (This does work for big projects that don’t require as much shaping initially!) When it comes to this part of any doll making, here is my number one advice: Have patience.
To get the most even stuffing job done, it is best to put a little bit at a time in different layers! It will take a much longer time, and it may feel really tedious but I promise your finished piece will look the best and even!
If stuffing is coming out of your stitches, that may have to do with your tension and tightness of your stitches! For amigurumi, I always use a 4 mm hook with a worsted wight yarn (size 4 yarn)
You will want to begin stuffing when your work starts to close in on itself, or when you are using decreases in the pattern.
You do NOT want to be putting this much of polyfill into your project all at once!
Like stated before, using a little will take much longer but you will have a much better and even project at the end! Perfect time to watch something.
As your piece continues to get smaller, keep stuffing firmly! (or loosely, depending on whats being asked)
Continue like this and you will have the perfectly stuffed toys out there! It will take some practice and time, but just be sure to gave patience with this – the extra time to make your dolls perfect is always worth it.
Want to find a simple project to practice this with? Learn how to create three different sized balls! Click the image below: