So far I’m not impressed with the vintage amigurumi patterns. The bear wasn’t great and this squirrel is a bit odd. My mother and grandmother made me these in the early 80s so I know they weren’t all bad.
About the pattern:
It calls for two strands of worsted weight yarn held together and crocheted using an H hook.
This pattern has a lot of parts. Some of these could have been done as one piece with some shaping instead of so much sewing. Making the pieces was pretty easy.
There is an optional item; a plastic walnut. The directions say, “Make holes in plastic with heated ice pick;” because you always have one lying around right? I skipped the nut.
About the materials:
Yarn: I was pretty sure I didn’t have enough of any one color to do this with two strands. I picked the light tan color that did have two partial skeins, Patons Classic Wool, and tried it with the two strands. I could tell that it wouldn’t go well with the stiff yarn. If I’d used a Caron Simply Soft or Knit Picks Brava Worsted it may have worked better with two strands.
Hook: With only one strand I had to use a different hook size. I typically use an E hook/3.5 mm for amigurumi made with worsted weight so I went with that.
How it went:
Overall this didn’t go well. It’s not a complete fail but I wouldn’t pull this pattern out if someone wanted a squirrel.
The things that went well:
I decided that the squirrel should have a white belly instead of being all one color so I worked that into the pattern and I think that part looks pretty good.
The tail used a loop stitch which is pretty cool but the version I used had looser stitches and you can see the stuffing through the tail.
The things that didn’t go well:
Both this pattern and the bear have the head done in two parts and I struggle with the placement of the face part. The photos are pretty dark so it’s hard to see where the face should go and the pattern doesn’t give specific instructions.
The cheeks look like he has tumors on his face.
The legs look strange and I realized I didn’t quite follow the directions for the foot part of the lower legs but I’m not sure that would have made much of a difference.
How it turned out:
I’m going to go with a grade C on this. It looks like a squirrel but a slightly deformed one. Someone, somewhere might love this strange creature.
What I learned:
I’m increasingly skeptical about vintage amigurumi patterns. The crochet world has come a long way from these early attempts and patterns are so much better now. A quick search on Ravelry gave me over fifty options for squirrel patterns and most of them are better than this one.
Next month – it’s the 80’s again, a year where the recently departed, Aretha Franklin had a top 10 hit with Freeway of Love. I’ll have the choices posted next week!
I'm from Minnesota and have been crocheting since 2003. I inherited a box full of Workbasket Magazines from my mother-in-law and became obsessed with the vintage patterns.