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amigurumi Lt Columbo & Dog

Columbo has always been my favourite TV detective. I love how the show turned the detective genre on its head by showing the murder at the start, so you never had to guess whodunnit as you watched (something I never manage with my other favourite detective, Poirot), and how dishevelled, disarming Columbo always got the better of the arrogant, affluent murderers. I have all the box sets on DVD and still think that watching Columbo makes for a perfect cosy Sunday afternoon at home.

When I heard that Peter Falk had passed away I decided to make an amigurumi Columbo as a tribute to all the years of brilliance he brought to his most famous role. And here it is:

amigurumi Columbo by PlanetJune
Please click through to see the larger version!

I used the Boy pattern from my own book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Amigurumi. If you’ve seen my book, you’ll know that I made my Boy and Girl patterns fairly generic so it’s easy to customize and embellish them (using the techniques I explain throughout the book) to create any character. For ami-Columbo, I shortened the legs and added a belt, shirt collar and tie. I made the arms thinner so that the raincoat would fit over the top, I changed the hair, and I added the cigar. Apart from that, ami-Columbo is worked exactly as the Boy pattern.

“Excuse me, sir?”

amigurumi Lt Columbo by PlanetJune
Reproducing Columbo’s crumpled old raincoat took a long time of trying different hooks and stitch patterns until I found one that would give a flexible fabric without any lacey holes, so it wouldn’t hang too straight and perfect or look too ‘pretty’. I was going to make the raincoat fully removeable, but I decided that, as I wanted him to have jointed, poseable arms, I should work the arms (including raincoat sleeves) separately, and then attach them over the body of the raincoat. This way, the arms of the raincoat can move with his arms, so the fabric doesn’t bunch when I change his arm positions.

“Sorry to bother you, ma’am…”

amigurumi Columbo by PlanetJune
Ami-Columbo’s hair is crocheted from 2 strands of curly eyelash yarn worked together (the black yarn alone was too stark, and the brown too light) with a side parting, and shaping at the back. Even his ever-present cigar is crocheted!

“What did you pay for those shoes?”

amigurumi Columbo by PlanetJune
Of course, Columbo wears his scuffed old brown shoes, and, were you to peek under his trouser cuffs, he’s wearing black socks too.

“Alright, now stay! Don’t go running around. You see? This dog could be a lethal weapon; he’s already partly trained.”

amigurumi Dog from Columbo by PlanetJune
And how could I make Columbo without also crocheting Dog, his pet basset hound and sometime sidekick (talents: eating ice cream and staying in the car). By the way, if you’d like to make your own Dog, look out for my AmiDogs Basset Hound crochet pattern, coming next week…

UPDATE: AmiDogs Basset Hound crochet pattern is now available for purchase!

“Just one more thing…”

I did consider crocheting Columbo’s other great supporting character: his battered old Peugeot car. Then I calculated how large it would need to be, to be in scale with ami-Columbo… Peter Falk was 5’6″ (let’s say 5’8″ including shoes and hair); the Peugeot 403 was 176″ long. Ami-Columbo is 11″ tall, so at that scale, his car would have to be 28.5″ (72cm) long! I definitely don’t have enough time or yarn to make something that size, although it would have made for an amazing crocheted diorama 🙂

I hope you enjoyed my little tribute to Lieutenant Columbo and to Peter Falk – I hope he would have appreciated it! Please leave me a comment if you liked it…

UPDATE: I’m adding this due to the massive amount of requests I’ve received for Columbo commissions or a Columbo pattern. Thank you so much for your interest, but:

  • Please don’t ask me to make you a Columbo – I’m a busy designer and just don’t have the time to take commissions for finished pieces.
  • If you’d like to make your own amigurumi characters, you can use the Boy (or Girl) pattern from my book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Amigurumi, together with the customization and embellishment techniques I explain throughout the book, to create any character. That’s how I made my Ami-Columbo, so there is no pattern to replicate Columbo exactly (although, if you’d like to make one too, there are some notes on my customizations in the post above). Use my techniques and your creativity to customize my basic Boy/Girl patterns into any character you choose!


  1. Becky said

    Would you be willing to sell this in a kit, or sell the entire instructions? Your Columbo is just too cute!

  2. Chris said

    Can I buy this? If so where?


  3. Kara Carneal Fogle said

    Wow!! These are amazing!! Love the cigar & Dog is adorable! We have a real Basset Hound named “Columbo Dawg” & are obvious Columbo fanatics too!! (Our other Basset is named “Quincy”)
    Would love to buy these if you have any for sale! I actually owned a Peugot car in college but those were my pre-Columbo days so I didn’t appreciate it as much as I would now. I think it would be awesome if you could make the car! Very talented!!

  4. Jenny said

    Congratulations! This amigurumi is amazing! Columbo was my favourite detective and I also have all the DVD box sets! It’s good to see I’m not the only Columbo “geek” out there! haha.
    By the way, could you explain me a bit more how to do the raincoat? I’d really appreciate it! Thank you!!!

  5. Marion said

    That is just wonderful. Columbo was my favorite TV detective, too.

  6. Dan said

    This is just about the cutest thing I have ever seen. It really does look like the Lt. A lovely tribute!! I especially love his hair, the little turn-ups on his trousers and, of course, the cigar. One word. GENIUS.

  7. Ollieanda said

    This is amazing. Are the eyes made of glass 🙂

  8. Columbo said

    You’re truly a fan to make a amigurumi of Lt. Columbo and dog. Columbo is the face of a fictional detective tv character who was once touched and inspired us.

  9. Ana said

    OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE it! I wish I could crochet that good to meke myself Lt. Columbo. As with you, he and Poirot are my favorite detectives!

  10. nordicat said

    This is so great, the best I met on my excursion through the World-wide-web today! As a fan of Columbo even over here in Germany I love this tribute to Peter Falk and his best role. Thanks so much for that!
    I do have to link this posting to my Blog! I guess you won’t mind …

  11. Nancy said

    “Pardon me M’am” – What a brilliant tribute to the man my family called “Detective Crumple” and complete with cigar!! You are quite the artist and I thank you for your work.

    Now, ’bout Mrs. Columbo – (hint) ??

  12. Roberta Conway said

    Really cool. Now all you need to do is a Mrs. Columbo

  13. Gillian McMullen said

    This is fabulous, June – and highly technical!! I love your work so much. I’m just starting on your cactus collections, I’m so excited!

  14. Cora said

    I love him!

  15. Ulla said

    Ohhh…so s

  16. Meg P said

    Wonderful work, as usual, June! I think your art pieces impress me even more than the patterns, though those are impressive, too!

  17. Beth said

    Ahhh…I really hate to bother you, but your Columbo is absolutely wonderful! And I think I recognize every single quote 🙂

    Wonderful crochet tribute to a great actor and a great character.


  18. amy zimmer said

    Beautiful and touching.

    Amy who grew up on Columbo

  19. Heather said

    I love this!! It is fantastic. I am a huge Peter Falk/Columbo fan. And adding Dog was a great touch. I am so glad that I stumbled upon your site.

  20. Jana said

    OMG, June! He is PERFECT! Since I am in AZ and NOT where my CIGTA is, are the arms posable on the girl and boy amis in the book? I would LOVE to make one of these! I wish I had the pattern here with my book. You have my creative juices flowing now! Chris wants a doll for Harper that looks like him and I was going to use this other pattern, but after seeing what you did with this, I want to use THIS pattern! I need to make him with red hair and beard and holding a guitar. 🙂 I have a guitar pattern already. It would be awesome to make it in the next couple of weeks before I leave here, but it will have to wait till I can get back to Saudi and my book. Which, BTW, I STILL want signed! LOL!

    • June said

      🙂 Yes, the arms on my Boy and Girl patterns are poseable, although I had to use thread joints (p96) for Columbo instead of eye joints, because the joint had to go right through the arm, coat sleeve, coat body, and shirt – that’s 4 layers of crocheted fabric; far too thick for an eye joint.

  21. Jane Rennalls said

    Oh wow, this is great. I am also a huge fan of Peter Falk and Columbo and your tribute is just amazing.

  22. Kris Van Allen said

    thank you so much for coming up with this idea! i feel exactly the same way you do about Columbo…perfect way to spend an afternoon with yarn! wonderful ami.

  23. What a fabulous tribute! I love the detailing.

  24. MorganAdel said

    June, he is awesome! I love his coat! You found the perfect stitch for it! Also love his dog. I look forward to the basset pattern!

  25. Nicky said

    That is hilarious! what a talented crocheter you are!

  26. Tove said

    This is great! I love Columbo as well, and love this idea. Great tribute to Peter Falk. Well done!

  27. Vicki said

    What a great tribute to a great actor and one of the greatest television characters of all time!

  28. Karalee (Goff) Gross said

    What an awesome creation. I too loved Columbo! AND, a few years ago, we got a Basset Hound. I especially love how he is pose-able Can’t wait to see the next post! <

  29. Angela said

    I want one! how fabulous x

  30. Craft handmade said

    cute ideas. thanks for sharing

  31. pam said

    Like it? I LOVE your Columbo!

    I always found Peter Faulk very attractive – had a terrible crush on the man for years! And I never missed an episode of Columbo. We are, as a matter of fact, watching them all again on Netflix right now.

    Well done you! A most excellent Columbo!

  32. Fabulous, June. I love Columbo too, and McMillian and Wife and all those old mystery shoes. This is such a wonderful tribute to a great character and an amazing actor.

  33. JJ Pop said

    WOW!!! You are very talented. I can’t wait to see your Bassett Hound Ami.

  34. Ajaire said

    I watched columbo with my mother and loved the character. You got him bang on. The whole post is great with the poses and catch phrases. Excellent!

    By the way the box just before this one says “URI” and I assume it was supposed to say “URL” for typing in our website? If not then I did it wrong! Haha

  35. Lisa said

    I had no idea he had passed away. I’ll always remember him from the movie Vibes with Jeff Goldblum and Cyndi Lauper.

  36. Rachael said

    That is just amazing!!

  37. Angela R said

    You are consistently amazing, June! What a fantastic tribute.

  38. Jenny said

    that’s awesome. i’m glad you included his basset hound.

  39. Charlotte said

    Loved Columbo! This is excellent! You are SOOO creative!

  40. Annette said

    So cool!

  41. Denise said

    Awww….he’s great! Adorable and instantly recognizable. I’ll have to have a go at making one for my mom. She loves Columbo but right now she doesn’t want to hear Peter Falk’s name because it makes her too sad.

  42. liz said

    LOL! I Love it! LOVE IT!

  43. Helen said

    It is spot on, June. You could not have done better.

  44. Kathryn said

    That’s great June – well done!
    I will have to show my husband as he’s a great Columbo fan too!

  45. You are are completely amazing! 🙂 This is WAY TOO CUTE!

  46. Kimi Summers said

    I loved that show and this is just freaking awsome Lady J! You are a true wiz with the hooks!

  47. Amy said

    Absolutely Perfect! I love it!

  48. A wonderful tribute! Super-amazing work as always!?

    To get through the hardest journey we need take only one step at a time, but we must keep on stepping. – – Chinese Proverb

  49. Carina said

    Oh my god, June, this is just amazing! Love the poses, too!

    PS… I want to see the.. Ami-car too! 😉

  50. Lindy said

    Oh June! What a lovely tribute, and I’m sure Peter Falk would have loved it too. You’ve crocheted him perfectly and have even got his expressions and the way he looked when he said the words you’ve quoted. It’s perfect – absolutely brilliant! And I love the basset dog too.
    Love, Lindy xx

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