So when I was laying in bed, trying to sleep, and my brain is chattering away, for some reason I started thinking about bad movies. It's like I can watch them in my head. I was also wondering what next I could make. And it hit me. Why, oh why, have I never made a plushie crochet graboid?!?
First issue was finding yarn. These are subterranean creatures and are covered in dirt and sand throughout the movies so finding a good picture for coloring was a bit hard to do. In the end I decided for a more monochromatic tan color scheme than that graphic above.
I had some Lion Brand Homespun on hand in Pearl. Even though I despise that yarn I really liked the subtle browns and tans going on. I tried to find something similar in a regular worsted as opposed to the fuzzy irregular Homespun, but failed. I found a nice taupe color in Vanna's Choice that really complimented it to create that darker head. The head is actually like bone kind of or a big beak as compared to the soft worm body, so I thought they would make a cool look together. The tongue worms I still haven't found a color I like, but I do have a bit of this dusty sort of pink in my stash that might work. And I will need a tiny bit of a red color for the inside of the mouth where the tongue worms come out.
I started working on the body from the tail up to the neck where it joins. Using the pearl homespun I worked up several rows and then started increasing rows. Every few rows I did one that had some of the spikes come out. I would just sort of eyeball where the spikes should go. The body spikes help it move through the loose soil and I wanted them to stand out a bit from the body, so I started carrying a second darker solid tan (pretty sure it is Bernat Satin in Sable) and switching to it to make popcorn stitches. Sort of like the Daleks I made way back in the day.
I got a good way in and wasn't sure I liked the shape it was making, but kept going. At this point I was writing each round down as I made it. So that I could tweak as needed and still be able to turn this into a pattern eventually. The tough part is that homespun felts together really really fast, so if I needed to rip this out and redo it, it was pretty much hopeless.
As I kept increasing the body, I started thinking about how large the overall plush would turn out to be and how to make it proportional in my mind. I kept feeling like I was increasing too slowly overall. This is gonna be a baby sized graboid for sure, but I still wanted it to be a good huggable size. Also, just to note, I was stuffing as I went along, as the spike yarn was crossing across the inside space.
The body spikes I sort of just placed as I felt they were needed while trying to be roughly symmetrical. I also tried to keep at least three or four rows between them so they had their own space. I also gradually started adding more and more until they met at the top of the back. The belly side is free of spikes so it's easy for me to tell where the top and bottom are. It took me about two months to get the body alone done, but mainly because I was only able to work on it about two hours every two to three days during that time.
Once it was big enough around I felt it was ok to just keep that width for several rows to elongate the wormy body, continuing the pattern of spikes. After that I worked a few rows of decreasing, with no more spikes, for the neck area before the beaked head.
|throat piece widening to mouth with tongue worms anchored to base|
|iCord body and tube head for tongue worms|
|throat in with a few tongue worms stuck in|
|bottom jaw pieces|
I really like that the soft squishy body yarn has a different texture from the more bony beak like head, and that the body spines have a little sheen to them. All those different colors and textures really made it look like the different parts in the movie.
I super love how it came out. Pretty cute and super squishy.
Time to complete: about 40 hours
Size: About 18 inches from beak to tail, 10 inches around at widest part of body