Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Dust Bunnies

My Neighbour Totoro: Amigurumi Dust Bunnies

Design by Anna Novitzky

Dust bunnies, also known as soot sprites or susuwatari, are characters from the Studio Ghibli films My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away. They’re shy spirits made of soot, who inhabit abandoned buildings and are scared of humans. Now you can make your very own dust bunnies, to colonise the neglected corners of your home or to complete your totoro collection.


Dust bunnies are scruffy creatures, so I’d suggest using yarn that’s fuzzy rather than fluffy. Mohair or mohair-look synthetics are good.
I find that when I crochet with fuzzy wool, the fuzz tends to end up on the wrong side; this is why the project is turned inside out after round 9. If your fuzz ends up on the right side, don’t bother with this step.


A: white DK-weight; I used Elle Pure Gold DK

B: Black sport weight or 4-ply fuzzy; I used Hayfield Exquisite Shimmer

C: Black sport weight or 4-ply plain; I used Wendy Emu Superwash DK

You only need a small amount of each yarn; you could make a tribe of dust bunnies with one ball of each.

Gauge isn’t important for this project, but it must be tighter than is usually used for the yarn size, to prevent the stuffing showing through.

Tools and notions:

3.75mm crochet hook

7mm safety eyes

Stuffing or scrap yarn

Darning needle


Sc = single crochet (US); double crochet (UK)

Ss = slip stitch
Sc2tog = single crochet 2 stitches together (US); double crochet 2 stitches together (UK)
St = stitch

For instructions on how to make a magic ring, see Crochet Me.


Work in continuous rounds

To make the eye discs (yarn A):

8 sc into magic ring

Ss to close

Fasten off and cut yarn

Draw ring closed, leaving a hole big enough to fit the stem of a safety eye.

To make the body (holding yarns B and C together):
Round 1: 6 sc in magic ring (6 st)

2: 2 sc in each sc (12 st)

3: *1 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * around (18 st)
4: *2 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * around (24 st)
5: *3 sc, 2 sc in next sc, repeat from * around (30 st)
6-7: Sc around for 2 rows (30st)

8: *sc2tog, 3 sc, repeat from * around (24 st)

9: *sc2tog, 2 sc, repeat from * around (18 st)

Turn shape inside out, so that the fuzz sticks outwards. Insert safety eyes through the eye discs, then fasten them into the dust bunny around rounds 6-7. Fit the eye washers. Using the darning needle, pull the yarn ends from the eye discs and the cast-on magic ring to the inside of the dust bunny so that they can’t be seen. Stuff the body firmly with stuffing or scrap yarn.

Rnd 10: *sc2tog, 1 sc, repeat from * around (12st)
11: sc2tog around (6st)

If desired, add more stuffing.

Rnd 12: sc2tog around to last st

Fasten off.

You can either weave the yarn end into the dust bunny with the darning needle, or leave it long so that you can hang the dust bunny from things.

The dust bunnies are pictured with some amigurumi totoros, from a pattern by Heavens Hellcat.

A PDF of this pattern is available from Ravelry.

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