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  • Huggable Amigurumi: Stuffed Animals, Only Better!

    Huggable Amigurumi offers a unique take on Amigurumi.  Instead of miniature crocheted creatures,, Kristi Simpson has created supersized Amigurimi amimals any child will love. We love the huggable crocheted designs so much that we invited today's guest blogger, Kristi Simpson, to talk about the inspiration for her fabulous designs in Huggable Amigurumi. Welcome Kristi!

    Amigurumi patterns flood the internet, but you will not find anything like these sweet Huggables! They are 19” from sitting position and will quickly become one of the family!

    Hi! I’m Kristi Simpson, designer of the patterns in the Leisure Arts’ book: Huggable Amigurumi. I have enjoyed designing and teaching for many years and this book is one of my new favorites! I can’t help it, even in designing, these little buddies made me so excited! I hope in reading about this collection, you will be just as excited and make one (or all 5!) for your next project.

    When thinking about this book I was inspired by the mountain of stuffed animals that my kids have. Seriously, they are going to take over the house….but I was drawn to the larger ones. They all have so much character! I wanted to design a collection that would be fun to have for babies to larger kids that they can use as comfort and play.

    I tried to create a collection that was similar in shape for the body and head but I added details that would set each apart. Some have large ears and hands and feet, others have a bow or collar with mitten hands…. Each are unique but as a collection, it all comes together.

    Now, I have to brag about the wonderful job Leisure Arts did on this book. The photography is phenomenal! It really brought the animals to life and showed the true size—and fun that they are!
    Seriously, isn’t the girl on the cover so sweet!?!?! The cover captured the entire theme, fun and huggable.

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-31-56-pm Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Next, I have to say that the first photo for the inside cover is my favorite. Seriously! You can’t see their faces but you can see the bodies, head detail and tails. They look like they are buddies with their arms on each other’s shoulders! I just can’t get over how cute they are lined up like that!

     

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-50-48-pm Huggable Amigurumi Designs - Back View

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Now, let’s talk yarn. I used Bernat Softee Chunky throughout. It helps the animals be naturally larger and hold shape. I love working with bulky/chunky yarns and Bernat Softee Chunky offers not only a great yarn but a lot of colors to choose from! So now…meet the Huggables!

    Meet Bunny.

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-32-32-pm Bunny from Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

    She was designed with giant floppy ears and a sweet ruffle collar. The head was made from nose to middle back, unlike the others. It is easy and the pattern steps you right through from start to finish! I love the idea of a toddler pulling it along by it’s ears…like a sweet buddy!

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-32-47-pm Giant Stuffed Bunny in Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Say hello to Elephant.

    Elephant in Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson Elephant from Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Being from Alabama, the elephant was an easy-pick. I wanted to make it ‘just right’. So, I worked for hours on the trunk so that it would be in perfect proportion. I didn’t want it to just stick straight out, or hang down---so, I worked and worked and made it easy for YOU! Now, the ears. I love them. Large and floppy! I used the variegated yarn on the ends of the hands, feet and the ears so that you can see the contrast and have the extra special touch. And you can see how BIG these animals are by this photo… look at him with the sweet boy!!!!

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-33-18-pm Giant Stuffed Elephant in Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Squishy Level 10: Lion

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-33-35-pm Lion from Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    My kids vote this their favorite hands-down! They love the ears, nose and the mane. I made it from the top down and I step you through each part of it… don’t worry! The mane is actually from the neck, to the top and back down (not all over) so it’s just a fun feature, not all over. I love this one, and how it came together. I can just see it being squished and loved on for many years.

    Cuteness alert! Giraffe is here!
    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-34-02-pm

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Okay. This is MY favorite. I love it from the top of his horns to the ends of his hooves. Such cuteness! I love the spunk of his spikey hair fringe to the spots all over! I love it! I actually tried different ways to add his spots: circles, rectangles, odd shapes….but stitching them on was the perfect way to do it! I have been asked to re-make this one multiple times…. It has been a hit!

    Hello Handsome…Meet the Monkey

    screen-shot-2018-01-03-at-4-34-45-pm Monkey from Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Dressed up in his bow tie, he’s ready to hit the town with his best buddy. His goofy grin always makes me smile and I just love his hands. Seriously, they are made like mitts to give him the most huggable effect! His perky-side ears give him the mischievous monkey look and he’s sure to impress with his big eyes too!

    From designing this book to seeing the final product, I have loved each and every step…..and I just know you’re going to love making (AND GIVING) these squishy Huggables! I hope you create your own Huggable that will be cherished for years to come. So, what are you waiting for? Get your hook and yarn and get busy!

    Kristi Simpson

    All Designs in Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson All Designs in Huggable Amigurumi by Kristi Simpson
  • Fashion Quilted Accessories

    Unique quilting ideas: that's what our all-new book Fashion Quilted Accessories is all about!  Today's Guest Blogger, Heidi Emmet, designed the fun patterns you'll find inside of Fashion Quilted Accessories and she's here today to talk about her inspiration for them. Welcome Heidi!

    My new book, Fashion Quilted Accessories, is for anyone who enjoys sewing, quilting, and creating something new and different. Each project is geared toward my motto: “Make it up, make it fun, and get it done! I’d love to tell you what inspired me to create the projects for this book. The cover of the book shows my Simply Super Quilted Vest.

    screen-shot-2017-04-06-at-5-11-32-pm Fashion Quilted Accessories by Heidi Emmett

    With a cityscape panel as the centerpiece, I auditioned other fabrics around it. A textured home decorating fabric that has a quilted ‘look and feel’ became the foundation of the vest. Panel pieces are really popular. Whatever panel you choose, use this vest pattern to create your own-one-of-a-kind Art-to-Wear piece.

    screen-shot-2017-04-06-at-5-12-35-pm Simply Super Quilted Vest

    I have really enjoyed the “big” necklaces that are out there. I own a couple. By the end of the day, my neck is so tired by the weight of all those ‘jewels’! I was sitting at my sewing machine and looking at a scrap of heavily machine quilted fabric. The colors of the fabric and stitching reminded me of faceted jewels. What if…… and yes, the “Colorful Circles Necklace and Earrings” project was born. Fun to make and light as a feather, you won’t want to stop at just one set!

    screen-shot-2017-04-06-at-5-12-14-pm Colorful Circles Necklace

    I knew I wanted to create a really different scarf and make a headband (or hat band) to match. I started walking the aisles of Joann’s. The allover butterflies in the quilting fabric section caught my eye. I carried that bolt over to the home decorating fabric department. I needed a “sheer” fabric that had some texture to hold the scarf knot in place and be easy to sew on. Use Terial Magic and an easy method to stitch down the motifs. What a chic and easy project to create.

    screen-shot-2017-04-06-at-5-42-57-pm Butterfly Scarf and Headband

    Check out this pictures of this 1960’s tote from South America:

    ???????????????????????????????????? A Vintage Bag Serves as Inspiration

    I had to bring it home from the thrift shop. It was so different from anything I had seen. As I looked at it more closely, it reminded me of saddlebags used by the Pony Express riders. I added the unusual idea of using a belt as the handle for this tote. I like being able to make the handle shorter or longer. Use all your favorite quilting fabrics in this one.

    Saddlebag Tote Saddlebag Tote

    I have a little draw-string jewelry holder which I use when I travel. I love how it almost opens flat, so I can find all the jewelry pieces that are stored inside. I took the same circle and drawstring idea and blew it waaay up.

    dsc_0265 My Sling Bag Coming Together

    The large circle I made needed to be a fun design in itself. Pinwheels are so interesting to look at, so that’s what I did. Use four of your favorite colors together in this Pinwheel purse.

    screen-shot-2017-04-06-at-5-12-04-pm Sling Bag

    There are so many beautiful scarf weight fabrics out there. Some are silk, rayon, or polyesters. I was looking at a printed piece that I had and doubled it in my hands and looked again. I loved the way the print showed through so subtly. The design had to be simple and easier to sew (very few seams) because of the slippery nature of the fabric. I had been looking through a design book by the great designer of the early 20th century, Erte’. His designs, while very intricate in nature, inspired me to go in reverse with my thinking. I started sketching what design would add a slimming silhouette while showing off a doubled sheer fabric to its best advantage. This vest will be a sensational piece to add to your wardrobe!

    Sensational Scarf Vest Sensational Scarf Vest

    I think I have succeeded in creating accessories that fit all levels of sewing skills from beginner to advanced. I want you to take your quilting to another level with these eye-catching fashions that show off your passion for beautiful fabrics! Thanks so much for visiting with me today. Please visit my blog to see what fun projects I’m working on now: Designsbyheidi.wordpress.com

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