I’ve developed two methods you can use to minimise the seam when you work in joined rounds to make stripes for amigurumi (or anything else that’s single crocheted in the round). As these joins don’t travel or require extra stitches, you can just add the join of your choice between rounds in any striped single crochet pattern (whether it was designed to be worked in continuous spirals or joined rounds). You don’t need to modify your stitch count; they just work.
Where’s the seam, you ask? That’s exactly the point!
Let’s jump straight to the video, and then I’ll give you a rundown of the strengths and weaknesses of each method.
Note: The videos may look a little small embedded in the blog: if so, you can fullscreen them or click through to YouTube to watch them full-sized
Pros: doesn’t travel, totally invisible
Cons: slower, must cut yarn between stripes, lots of yarn ends on back
Best choice for: stuffed amigurumi where the back will be hidden inside the piece
Pros: doesn’t travel, no need to cut yarn, no yarn ends on back
Cons: not completely invisible
Best choice for: joined rounds with no colour change between rounds; hats etc where the inside of the piece will show; people in a hurry!
The Invisible Join (as the name suggests) gives a slightly better finish, but the No-Cut Join is faster and less fiddly, so I recommend using a combination of the two for any pattern where you need to single crochet in joined rounds and/or make stripes. I recommend:
I do recommend you watch the above video to see the methods in action, but in case you prefer text or want something to refer to, here are written instructions for each method too.
Invisible Join Method:
START OF ROUND: Make a slip knot on your hook. Sc in first st (the duplicated stitch from the previous round) and in each st around.
END OF ROUND: Cut yarn leaving a 2″ tail. Draw up last loop to pull cut end through to the top. Now we’re going to duplicate the loops at the top of the first stitch, to close the round and hide the join:
- Insert hook from back to front under both loops of the 2nd stitch of the round, yarn over and draw cut yarn end through to the back.
- Insert hook from back to front under the back loop of the last stitch of the round, yarn over and draw cut yarn end through to the back.
- Optional: to keep the duplicate stitch tight, tie both ends together on the back of the work.
No-Cut Join Method:
START OF ROUND: Ch 1. Sc in first st (the same stitch you drew yarn through at end of previous rnd). Sc into each st around.
END OF ROUND: Remove hook from loop. Insert hook from back to front under both bars of first stitch of round. Put loop back onto hook and draw through to the back. Pull loop tightly to draw stitches together, then pull working yarn to draw loop back to usual size.
And, if you’re changing colour, the magic colour change point is at the very beginning of each round – you’ll change colour with the ch 1 at the start of the new round.
You can safely use either technique for any of my patterns that use stripes in joined rounds (e.g. African Violets pot, Ring-tailed Lemur tail); instead of fastening off between colours for the Ami Paint Set brush and paint tube, or instead of the optional joined round modification given in my other striped patterns, Easter Eggs and Christmas Baubles.
You can also substitute one of these joins for a normal join to give you neater stripes in any other amigurumi pattern, or to add stripes to any amigurumi (it’s the stripe equivalent of substituting invdec for a sc2tog: it will work in almost every case). These joins will improve the appearance of striped hats too, or any other pieces single crocheted in the round!
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Please note that I can only answer questions related to PlanetJune patterns and tutorials (see details), and I can only respond to questions or comments written in English. Thank you :) - June