You may not want to encounter a jellyfish when you’re swimming in the ocean—but a cute, stuffed version of it is much more appealing. Using the Japanese craft of amigurumi, which is the art of crocheting small, stuffed toys, you can create your own. Whether you’re an avid crocheter or trying the craft for the first time, here’s how to crochet a jellyfish from start to finish.
Tools and Supplies
Before you begin, take a couple of minutes to gather your supplies. If you’re done some crocheting before, you may have some or all of these materials already—but if you’re a beginner, there are just a few essentials you need.
Amigurumi Jellyfish Patterns
Just like you would follow a pattern to create a sweater or hat, you need a pattern to learn how to crochet a jellyfish. Patterns provide row-by-row stitch instruction, so you can be confident that your final product will turn out exactly like the pictures.
There are plenty of free amigurumi jellyfish patterns available online. If you’re already familiar with following crochet patterns, that should be enough to get you started. However, if you need more in-depth instruction, you can also find online classes that guide you through the entire process.
Crochet hooks are available in a wide variety of sizes that influence the type of weave you can produce. With a small hook, you can create a finer and tighter fabric, while a bigger hook will produce a looser, more open weave. For this particular jellyfish, try a size F (or 3.75mm) crochet hook.
Guide to Tools, Basic Stitches, and More
Modern Crochet: Essential Skills for Getting Started
Select two colors of worsted weight yarn. Worsted weight falls in the middle of the yarn weight scale, which ranges from 0 (fine) to 7 (jumbo). You should see the word “worsted” on your skein of yarn; if you don’t, look for a 3 or 4.
You will need a yarn needle to stitch the tentacles onto the jellyfish’s body. Yarn needles are large and blunt and have a big eye to accommodate yarn, rather than sewing thread.
To allow the jellyfish to hold its shape, you will need to stuff it. You can purchase fiberfill stuffing from a local craft store, or get creative and use materials you already have—like cotton balls or fabric scraps. However, for the best results, try a cluster-style fiber stuffing, which keeps its shape even after machine washing.
An optional but fun addition to your creature, safety eyes will bring some life to your jellyfish’s face. They’ll run you just a couple of dollars online or at any craft store.
How to Crochet a Jellyfish
Step 1: Start the Body
Start by creating a magic ring. If you’re not familiar with how to do this, you will crochet your first round of stitches onto an adjustable loop. Once you’ve completed the row, pull the tail of the yarn tightly to close the loop. This will serve as the foundation for the rest of the piece.
For the next row, increase each stitch. In other words, you will add two single crochets in each stitch until you reach the end of the row. With this technique, you will widen the fabric, which will allow you to create the spherical shape of the jellyfish’s body. Continue to follow your pattern until you are ready to switch colors.
Step 2: Switch Colors
For a little extra visual interest, you can add stripes to your amigurumi jellyfish by switching between your two colors of yarn. Continue with your last stitch until you have two loops of your original color on your hook. Then, drop your current color yarn, loop your second color yarn onto your hook, and pull it through the stitch. Now, simply continue working the pattern with the new color. When you finish with that color, use the same method to switch back to your original yarn. Voilà—stripes!
Step 3: Add Details
Once the body of the jellyfish is complete, add the eyes. Attach safety eyes to the front of the piece, spacing them about 10 stitches apart. Secure the eyes with safety washers on the inside of the fabric.
Step 4: Finish and Stuff the Jellyfish Body
At this point, your pattern will begin to indicate a series of decreases until you eventually have a small hole at the bottom of the jellyfish. Take small bunches of fiberfill and stuff it into the jellyfish, molding and forming the body as you go. Stuffing it somewhat firmly will allow it to withstand multiple washes—but don’t stuff it so much that the eyes begin to bulge out.
Once the jellyfish is stuffed appropriately, continue with your decreasing rows and close the bottom. Then, weave the tail of the yarn into the body.
Step 5: Add Tentacles
Finally, create a variety of tentacles—some long and straight, some thick and wavy, and some in a tight spiral. Create as many as you’d like, in any style that you prefer. The straight tentacles are fairly straightforward, but to create a spiral, work in a series of stitches (e.g., five half double crochets) followed by a single stitch.
When your tentacles are complete, attach them to the body of the jellyfish using your yarn needle.
Once you learn how to crochet a mini jellyfish, you can customize your creatures with different colors, facial details, and types of tentacles. Create a whole smack (yes, that’s the term for a group of jellyfish!), or expand your craft into other animals.
Amigurumi Tips and Tricks
Beginner’s Guide to Amigurumi Crochet