Our first first day of school of the year was yesterday. My two oldest started yesterday, another will start preschool next monday, and another will start kindergarten next Wednesday leaving me with only one kid at home. Needless to say we have been in back to school mode around here. I wanted to make something to post today in honor of school starting and one thing that I always think says "back to school" is apples. Apples are something that we connect to school, and teachers, as well as this time of year, late summer/early fall. So I thought what better to make to celebrate the first day of school than a crocheted apple. These are apples that you could give to your teacher that won't ever go bad.
Because they are fairly small they work up pretty fast. As far as amigurumi are concerned they are definitely on the easy side. There is a little bit of shaping but that is made with simple increases and decreases. There aren't appendages to make and attach, the leaf and stem are super simple to make.
There is one thing that I used to make them that may be a little different than what you would normally think of using but it worked really well for this project. I wanted to stitch down the center of the apple to pull in the top and the bottom a little bit so I knew I was going to need a long needle. I had recently gotten a box of supplies sent to me from Dritz to try out. One of the things that they sent me was a package of decorators needles. They are really long needles made to be used for things like tufting pillows or cushions but I thought they would be perfect for this project and they were. I used the largest one in the pack that I had and it was great. More than long enough for what I needed and the eye was big enough to easily thread the yarn through. Last year I made a couple of pumpkins in a similar way and I really wanted to make some taller ones but I was worried about not being able to get the needle through from the top to the bottom. Now that I have found a solution I might have to try making some bigger ones this year.
Some of the materials used in this project were provided to me from Fairfield World as well as the needles provided by Dritz as part of my working with Fairfield World as one of their Master Makers.
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How to Make Crocheted Apples
Finished Size about 3" tall + stem, about 12" around at widest part
You will need:
- worsted weight yarn in main color (I used Loops and Threads Impeccable in Cherry for the red apple and Vanna's Choice Yarn, Radiant Lime
- small amount of worsted weight yarn in green for the leaf
- small amount of worsted weight yarn in brown for the stem
- Crochet Hook: Size G
- scrap of fabric at least 8" square
- sewing thread
- sewing needle
- yarn needle
- Dritz Decorator's Needle
- Fairfield Poly-Pellets Weighted Stuffing Beads
- Fairfield Poly-Fil Premium Fiber Fill
This step is optional, if you want to just stuff your apple you can. I added some weighted beads to the bottom before stuffing it. This helps it be more stable by giving a little weight to the bottom. You don't want to just pour the beads into the crocheted piece because they are small and make come out through the holes in the crochet. To help with this problem I made a little pouch to put the beads in and then inserted that into the apple. It is easiest if you have this part ready before you begin the apple. It is going to be hidden inside so it really doesn't matter what it looks like so any scrap of fabric is fin.
To make the weighted insert first, cut a circle about 7-8" in diameter. Next, with your sewing needle and thread, make a running stitch all the way around the outside edge of the circle (leaving about 1/2" around the edge). Pull on your thread a little to begin to pull up the edges to create a little pouch. Pour some of your weighted beads into the pouch, you don't need a ton, maybe 1/4 cup. Once you have the amount you want pull the thread the rest of the way to cinch the opening closed. Stitch through a few times to secure. Set it aside until you are ready to insert it into the bottom of your apple. You may want to set it just a little crooked so that the big top cinched up section is not right on the top, but instead just slightly off to the side. You will be stitching through the center later and that may make it easier.
Apple is worked in the round, do not join after each round, just continue on to the next round
Begin with magic ring
Round 1: 9 sc in mr (9 sc)
Round 2: 2 sc in each stitch (18 sc)
Round 3: [1 sc in first stitch, 2 sc in next stitch] repeat around (27 sc)
Round 4: 1 sc in each stitch (27 sc)
Round 5: [1 sc in first 2 stitches, 2 sc in next stitch] repeat around (36 sc)
Round 6-9: 1 sc in each stitch (36 sc)
Round 10: [sc in first 5 stitches, 2 sc in next stitches] repeat around (42 sc)
Round 11-14: 1 sc in each stitch around (42 sc)
Round 15: [1 sc in first 5 stitches, sc dec across next 2 stitches] repeat around (36 sc)
Round 16: sc in each stitch, now is a good time to put in the weighted insert (36 sc)
Round 17: [sc in first 2 stitches, sc dec across next 2 stitches] repeat around (27 sc)
Round 18: sc in each stitch around, start stuffing and continue to stuff as you finish the rest of the rounds (27 sc)
Round 19: [sc in first stitch, sc dec across next 2 stitches] repeat around (18 sc)
Round 20: sc dec around (9 sc)
Weave yarn through last round of stitches and cinch closed. Stitch a few times to secure, pull yarn into apple to hide end and cut yarn.
Cut a length of brown yarn about 18-24" and thread the long decorators needle. Starting at the top of your apple (where you just finished crocheting) poke the needle through to the bottom. You will want it to come out on the outside of round 1. Take a stitch by inserting the needle on the opposite side of round 1 and up to the top. Now you will want to tie the two pieces of yarn and tighten them a little so that they pull the top and the bottom so that they are slightly indented. Stick the needle back in through the top down to the bottom between the last stitch and stitch so that you make an x on the bottom of the apple. When you are done, pull the two ends together and tie a knot to secure then bury your threads into the apple, trimming if necessary.
with brown yarn
sc in second ch from hook, sc in next ch, slip stitch in next 3 ch to the end
sew onto center of the top of your apple, once it is securely sew on, bury your tails in the apple trimming as needed
with green yarn
slip stitch in first ch, sc in next, hdc in next, dc in next, hdc, sc in next, in last ch slip stitch three times turning so that you can begin working down other side of the ch, sc, hdc, dc, hdc, sc, slip stitch in last stitch
sew onto the top of the apple near the stem.
You may need to sort of squeeze and smoosh the apples a little to get the shape to look right after stuffing and sewing, but other than that your apples are done. These would be great as part of a gift for a teacher or an addition to your child's play food collection.