Counting is Hard (Tangerine Amigurumi)

Learning to Crochet

26 August 2022

“Clara’s got me in the sweat shop, trying to learn to crochet.”

wasted yarn

These were the musings of a deranged boy at 3AM after having wasted a whole pile of yarn.

I’ve been learning to crochet. My mom taught me how to knit and sew when I was a kid but I never got to learn to crochet. Well mom, now I’m grown up, and YouTube exists.

My first experience with crocheting was not good. Clara tried to teach me the basics but I just could not figure it out that day. But it was helpful to have a real person answer my initial questions. And it was helpful to have seen an example in person. And it was helpful to have my hands held.

To make a tangerine amigurumi, you start with a 6 stitch magic circle. As you continue to stitch around the circle, you increase it’s circumference gradually until you have a hemisphere. At which point, you begin to decrease your stitch count until you complete the sphere.

The day after my 3AM night, after a fair number of YouTube videos, I was finally starting to get the hang of it. I made at least 10 magic circles before I settled on one that I thought was good.

Magic Circle

But counting is hard so I pretty much messed up the next layer immediately. The neat thing is, it doesn’t matter if I mess up. I can just keep going and try to fix it in the next layer. Or just keep fucking it up and end up with a lumpy tangerine.

One tip is to put a bobby pin at the starting stitch for that layer. That way, you don’t have to count your stitches as you go around. I don’t have any bobby pins, but I do have some twist ties.

Counting is Hard

I got to the point where I needed stuffing so I had to pause for a day.

In need of stuffing

In the meantime, I made the leaf. The leaf is a combination of chain stitches, singles crochets, and half double crochets.


Stuffing acquired. After my initial 3AM night, I did most of my crocheting on Bart. Crocheting is a good commute time killer. Usually I would read HN or listen to podcasts but then I tend to stare at people since I have nothing to do with my eyes and hands.


With the tangerine stuffed, I finished up the sphere. It’s pretty lumpy.

Now I need a needle to finish up threading the tangerine.

In need of a needle

Yarn needles do exist. They’re really just bigger versions of regular needles. But like the bobby pins, I don’t have any yarn needles. I do have a large sewing needle though. The bible says something about threading a camel through the eye of a needle. I guess Jesus never tried threading yarn through a sewing needle.

Tangerine bound in yarn

And we’re all done! In all it’s lumpy glory. Joann thought it was a pumpkin but I’ll consider that a compliment for my first amigurumi.


If you’re interested in making one, I got the pattern (from Clara who got it) from this YouTube video.

I want to make a hat next. Specifically, I want to make this hat.

Loved hat

Don’t I look so good in that hat? I loved that hat. But unfortunately, that’s not my hat. So I’m gonna make my own hat. I hope it’ll be just as good as that hat.

(P.S. The mice you see in the background of the photos are a Razer Viper Mini and a Logitech M510. The Razer Viper Mini is my FPS mouse. It’s around 60g and I use a claw grip. I think I got up to Plat in Valorant season 2 with that mouse but I haven’t been focused on gaming lately. The Logitech M510 I’ve had forever. I used to use it for work but I’ve recently switched to using the Ploopy Classic. )