Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Beluga Whale Amigurumi

After seeing "Finding Dory", I really, really wanted a beluga whale. As much as I thought Bailey was a bit silly, I liked him a lot! So of course, I had to crochet one.

Clip of Bailey and Destiny from "Finding Dory" (C) Disney

A brief look on the Internets told me that there was NARY A FREE PATTERN IN SIGHT.

Clearly, we need ourselves some beluga whale!

Oh also, here is a fantastic clip of Alan Davies voicing over an image of a beluga whale on QI:

On to the pattern... we haven't got a name for him yet but here it is! (I took the photos with a sepia filter because the white balance on my phone was not behaving and kept turning yellow.)

He has a pleasantly tubby profile, a lovely little dorsal ridge, and a very silly smile.

So fat... so pleasing...

The physical features turned out in a bit of a spiral because of the way crochet works... but it doesn't look too bad so I'm leaving it.

 You will need:
White DK yarn of your choice - I recommend cotton because I like the texture.*
Crochet hook 3.5mm - I used Japanese size 5/0 because it's my favourite double sided hook, the closest size is 3.5mm)
Black or navy embroidery floss (single strand) - sewing thread will do if you double it up.
1 stitch marker
Tapestry needle and sewing needle for finishing
Polyester fibre

Completed size: 15cm

Difficulty: Easy to Intermediate

*The blue coloured whale in the photo (right) was made from cotton and the white one was from some unbranded acrylic because I didn't have white cotton (boo). You can see that they were slightly different sizes when complete and I think it is partly because of the different material. It's okay, they are still pals.

He is worked circularly in one piece because nobody likes joining a hundred fiddly bits. As a result, he has a bit of a twist to his body (below right) which gives him a little bit of attitude.

Abbrieviations (US):
sl st - slip stitch
sc - single crochet
hdc - half double crochet
dc - double crochet
tr - triple crochet
sc2tog - single crochet 2 st together (decrease)
2sc into next st - 2 sc in the next stitch (increase)
sc 2x - number of times you do a single crochet (in this case, 2)
( ) 3x - bracket indicates a repeat section and how many times to repeat
The number at the end of each instruction indicates the number of stitches in each row.

Don't forget to mark the start of each row!

6 sc into magic ring, work circularly.
2sc into each st - 12st
sc all - 12st
(sc, 2sc into next st) 6x - 18 st
sc 12x, [hdc, dc] into the next st, dc 4x, [dc, hdc] into next st - 20 st
(sc 2x, 2sc into next st) 4x, hdc, 6 dc, hdc - 24st
sc all - 24st
sc 18 st, (sc2tog) twice, 2sc - 22st
sc 16st, sc2tog, sc 2x, sc2tog - 20st
sc 16, 2sc into next st, sc 2x, 2sc into next st - 22st
sc, (sc 2x, 2 sc into next st, sc 2x) 3x, sc, (sc 2x, 2 sc into next st, sc 2x) - 26 st
sc all - 26 st
sc all - 26 st
sc, then follow directions for left fin, then continue as follows: Sc 16x. Follow directions for right fin. sc 7x. - 26 st

Left fin:
sc into front loop of next st, turn
(You leave the back loop empty since you will work this on the next row.)
ch 1, 3 sc into next st (as normal), turn
ch 1, 2sc into next st, sc 2x, turn
ch 1, sc 2, sc2tog, turn
ch 1, sc, sc2tog, turn,
ch 1, sc2tog turn,
ch 1, sl st 5x along upper edge of fin.
sl st into the front loop of the sc that you started the fin on (it’s the same front loop you did at the start!). It will be helpful to mark the back loop with a marker or safety pin.

Right fin:
sc into front loop of next st, turn
ch 1, 3sc into next st, turn
ch 1, sc 2x, 2sc into next st, turn
ch 1, sc2tog, sc 2x, turn
ch 1, sc2tog, sc, turn
ch 1, sc 2tog, turn
ch 1, sl st 5x along upper edge of fin to match the sl st on left fin (if you are feeling adventurous, try to make the sl st row face the same side as the left…which means the reverse side than is ‘natural’ for the direction you’re crocheting in. but if you aren’t up to this you can just sl st as is comfortable for you). If you make the sl st on the reverse, you will need to go BEHIND the fin for the next step, which is to sl st loosely using an elongated sl st into the front loop of the sc you started the fin with. If the fin twists and you don’t want that… your sl st is not long enough. You can include this stitch when you mark the back loop and work them as 1 st in the next row. If that still doesn’t work (it didn’t really work for me, but I was lazy) you can try sewing the fin in place when you’re finishing your whale. If you didn't make the sl st row to match, just sl st into the front loop of the st as you did for left fin.

Next row:
sc all - don’t forget to work into the back loops of those stitches that you worked the fins into. - 26 st

sc all for 4 more rows.
(2sc into next st, sc 5x) 2x, (sc 5x, 2sc into next st) 2x, sc 2x - 30 st
sc all - 30 st
sc 10x, sc2tog, (2sc into next st) 2x, sc2tog, sc 14x - 30 st
Repeat previous row 2x - 30st

From this point, it is advisable to stuff as you go because it’ll get more fiddly as the body gets longer. Don’t stuff the head too much so the mouth still has some definition.

sc2tog, sc 8x, sc2tog, (2sc into next st) 2x, sc2tog, sc 8x, sc2tog, sc 4x. - 28st
sc 9, sc2tog 3x, sc 13x - 25st
sc, sc2tog, sc 5x, sc2tog, sc, sc2tog, sc 5x, sc2tog, sc 5x - 21st
sc all - 21st
(sc2tog, sc 5x) 3x - 18 st
sc all - 18 st
sc, sc2tog, sc 4x, sc2tog, sc 4x, sc2tog, sc 3x - 15 st
sc, sc2tog, sc 3x, sc2tog, sc 3x, sc2tog, sc 2x - 12 st
sc, sc2tog, sc 2x, sc2tog, sc 2x, sc2tog, sc - 9st
sc, sc2tog, sc, sc2tog, sc, sc2tog - 6st

The piece is worked flat from this point.

sc 2x, then flatten the end of the tail so you can see 2 rows of 3 stitches. You will need to work the edges together to close the body later - treat this as 3 stitches.
*ch 5, sc into 2nd ch from hook, hdc, dc, tr*, work next 3 st into both edges of the tail end: dc, “sc”, {sl st}. (Take note of the stitches, you may want to mark them with different coloured markers.)

Repeat directions between * *, followed by a dc into the sl st that was marked by curly brackets { }, and then sl st into the sc marked by “ ”.

Tie off and weave in yarn end. If you have gaps in the tail, you can use the yarn end to sew these up.

Embroider a nice face and blowhole as shown, and you’re done!

Embroidery and finishing tips: If you used sewing thread like I did, chain stitch the mouth and do french knots for the eyes. If you're using embroidery floss, you can probably get away with back stitch for the mouth, but chain stitch is much neater in my opinion. I suggest to do the mouth first and eyes second, it makes it a bit easier to make the face symmetrical and position the eyes.

You can pinch the dorsal ridge to give it a bit more definition. The tail might curl a bit, if you want you can use a larger hook or block it. I was lazy and just tugged it with my fingers.

Enjoy your beluga whale!

"HELLO!!! I'm a Beluga Whale, you know!"


CrazyD said...

The beluga is adorable. Thank you for sharing!!

Charmaine said...

thanks and you're welcome! :)

Crochet Dad said...

I wanted to say thank you for creating and posting this pattern. My 5 y.o loves beluga whales and is trying to learn to crochet. She has seen many other patterns on the internet but obviously can't afford to pay for them. The creators were also less than kind to her in their replies asking if she could have the pattern to learn on. After getting very discouraged about the requirement of paying for any pattern she can make herself, I found your page. Thank you so much! You have made my little girl so happy.

Crochet Dad