Wiring Amirugumi Crochet Doll Limbs Tutorial
I like to treat my amis more like action figures than stuffed animals, sticking to smaller pieces focused on posability and display quality rather than big, cuddly stuffies I can nap with. This is in part because I have limited space and in part because I have craft attention deficit disorder and the longer a project will take to complete, the less like it becomes that it will ever actually be completed. Because I want my pieces to be somewhat capable of standing up, of bending their arms or legs and holding a pose, I need to wire them to reinforce their parts so they have that function. This tutorial demonstrates my technique.
Materials You Need
Romex Residential Electrical Copper Wiring – usually several copper wires in a plastic jacket. This is the stuff they use to run electricity through your house. You can buy it by the length (feet, metres) at a hardware store like Home Depot, Lowe’s or Rona, which is probably ideal and cheap if you don’t need much, or by the coil at department stores that have a hardware store like Wal-Mart. Most Romex has 3 wires inside the plastic jacket so you are basically getting 3 times the length of the amount you are buying. There are slightly varying thicknesses and you are looking for at least the thickness of the lead inside of a wooden pencil but it doesn’t really matter, so long as the wire is fairly stout you will be fine.
Wire Cutters – most needle nose pliers have a cutting part, or you can use wire snips. If you don’t have any on hand, a quick trip to a dollar store can set you up with a cheap set of needle nose pliers to do the trick. You don’t need anything fancy for this, just something to snip and then bend the wire. Don’t use scissors unless you are trying to destroy them.
Fabric Pins – to secure the arm in place prior to sewing. Use a size and length that works well proportionately to the size of the amigurumi so the pins don’t stick out and prick you while you are sewing.
Materials You Want to Avoid
Pipe Cleaners and Floral Wire – many people have asked if pipe cleaners will work, and though yes, initially they may seem to, I don’t recommend it. Pipe cleaners and floral wire are not very stout and tend to turn soft and overly flexible or break when bent and manipulated a few times. Additionally, depending on the tension of the fabric or the stiffness of the limb, a pipe cleaner will likely not be strong enough to hold a 90 degree bend at the elbow. If it is strong enough, it likely won’t stay that way for very long.
The How To Video