Crochet stress ball with filling granules

It’s been a long time since I was last inspired to pick up a crochet hook and yarn. For some reason, I remembered an amigurumi pattern that I have made many times before – a two-color filled heart. I have two great co-workers who are nice to talk to when times are tough (not only, of course) – they are like my life-size stress balls. I got the idea to make them their own little stress balls as a thank-you.

The pattern is still available on the wide web: Zhaya Designs – Two Tone Heart (also available in German). In my opinion, this is a brilliant technique and I have not come across any other patterns with such a smooth color change. Since only a single crochet stitch is needed when crocheting, the most difficult part is the color change:

  • At the end of the color row, you have to make sure that the last stich stays tight.
  • When starting with a new color, you have to adjust the thickness of the heart with the yarn – when bringing the yarn over from the opposite side, you have to leave a part loose so that the heart still remains spacious in the middle.

This time I used a new filling for the first time. So far I have only filled the toys with polyester fiberfill. For the stress balls I tried plastic granules (poly beads) instead to add a crunchy effect.

I crochet quite tightly, but this time I decided to pack the filling securely in nylon socks – so that the hearts can withstand even strong stress. This pattern requires 2 socks. Since the yarns run exactly in the middle of the heart due to the color change, the yarns form a partition in the middle and the filling must be placed in the two sides separately.

I progressed with the pattern as much as possible before adding the stuffing, so it wouldn’t get in the way. When it looked like the opening was still big enough to fit comfortably, I added some granules to the toe of the sock for weight, let the sock sink into the heart shape, and gradually added more filling as I continued crocheting. Fortunately, filling granules are heavier and easier to add than lightweight fiberfill. Before closing up the heart (sounds like cardiac surgery), I simply tied the socks in a knot above the filling and cut off the excess parts.

This pattern is probably one of my first amigurumi finds. It is so simple yet versatile, as it allows for different color combinations. It keeps finding a way to my heart 🙂

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