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Welcome makers, hackers, artists, and of course Pokémon Trainers! If you are confused by the title, this project is basically the Yoshi Wolly World Amiibo but for Charizard. My wife decided to make my brother the most adorable little Amigurumi (Basically the art of making crocheted stuffed animals) Charizard for his birthday. As she was making it, I was getting more and more excited and my maker instincts were going crazy, so as she was finishing the cute little guy, I got to work!

This instructable will go over general steps and point you in the direction of the resources we used, and any tips we found along the way. Here are the skills you will need/learn to complete this project:

  • Following Crochet pattern skills
  • Photo Editing Skills
  • Cutting and Gluing Skills!!!

As you can imagine the core of this project is the crochet work, so if you have no idea what the difference between a crochet hook and a fishing hook is, go look up some basic crochet tutorials!

As far as the photo editing goes, you will just need to know how to work with layers, add layer styles, and remove the background from an image.

Overall it is a very doable project, that is great to introduce you to crochet and photo editing. Plus you get a phenomenal little amiibo out of it!!!

Be sure to vote in the "Made with Yarn" contest!

Step 1: Gather Your Army - Tools and Materials

Materials:

  • Charizard Amiibo
  • Amibo packaging (I just used the one from the Charizard Amiibo)
  • Standard printer paper
  • *Gift Card or some other form of easily cut and shaped plastic/hard material
  • Yarn
    • Orange (obviously if you want a shiny Charizard, or a different color just choose that...)
    • Beige (I just didn't really want to use the word cream. Its for the belly)
    • Black (For the two tiny nostrils)
    • White (For the claws)
    • Teal, Dark green-blue, aquamarine (whatever color you think Charizard's wings are)
  • Stuffing/polyester fiber fill
  • White Felt (for the eyes)
  • Acrylic paint: white, black, blue (for the eyes), or sharpie, if you prefer

Tools:

  • Crochet hook size I/5mm (different than what the crochet pattern asks for, it's total preference)
  • Sewing pins
  • Safety pin (to keep track of stitch #)
  • Darning needle (large-eyed sewing needle, plastic and metal both work great)
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Printer
  • Photo editing program (I used pixlr - A free online photo editing program that allows you to work in layers)
  • *Steel wool
  • Box cutter, Hobby knife, something for precision cutting
  • Glue stick
  • Clear tape (packaging or just standard scotch tape)

Step 2: Freedom! - Remove the Amiibo From and Prepare the Packaging

This may seem like an unnecessary step, but if you are reusing the packaging to place the new amigurumi Charizard back in the box, here are a few tips to keeping the cardboard, and plastic looking like a manufactured product. So if you are going to just make the Amiibo and not worry about the display box, skip this step!

Removing the plastic shell:

  1. Starting at one of the top corners, use your precision cutting object to cut around the entire glued edge.
    • When doing this your goal is to not puncture the cardboard or plastic while still removing the smallest amount of the image printed on the cardboard.
    • To accomplish this, do not push down into the cardboard, but rather push your knife into the cavity where the amiibo resides and push it away from the card board slightly, effectively only allowing the blade, not the tip to touch the cardboard and plastic.
    • Work your way around the edge, slowly with patience. There is no secret to this or magic formula, there will be parts that are better and parts that are worse, It will look great in the end, just don't rip the cardboard.
    • When you get to the perforated part at the bottom edge, feel free to rip it off, we will replace it with tape later anyways
    • If you do it perfectly, the cardboard will be smooth with some of the colors missing and the shell will have a half a centimeter stripe on around the part that was glued of the picture.

Cleaning the Shell:

  1. To clean the shell start by removing the Amiibo, support packaging, the anti-NFC piece of metal underneath the Amiibo, and the cardboard Amiibo piece in the bottom of the shell. (Save the cardboard Amiibo piece, but you can discard the support packaging and piece of metal foil.
  2. Soak the shell under warm/hot water for 10 minutes to 2 hours (depending on how easy you want the next step to be.)
  3. Remove the shell and use steel wool (or even a metal kitchen sponge) to remove the paint from the shell. It comes off pretty easy, you just need a little bit of elbow grease.
  4. Dry the shell and you are good to go!

Cleaning the cardboard:

  1. Use your knife to cut around any places that the cardboard ripped and pulled up. Your goal is to make the cardboard as smooth and flat as possible, but don't go crazy, its going to get covered anyways.

Step 3: Destroy Everything! - Open the Amiibo and Prepare the NFC Tag (the Brain of the Amiibo)

For those of you who don't know NFC (Near Field Communication) is what makes your Amiibo more than just a really cool paper weight. Because it does not apply to this tutorial lets just say it works by invisible magic.

The NFC tag in your Amiibo is literally a sticker, you can rip it, and it will not work, and you will be sad. Keep this in mind.

Opening the Amiibo:

Work your way around the edge between the gold part of the base and the black part of the base with a pry tool (if you don't really care about the keeping the figure, just use a screwdriver and wedge it in there and apply appropriate force until things snap and release). If you do care about your amiibo, just be careful, more careful with an actual pry tool.

***Note*** You will need to apply quite a bit of force to the figure once you wedge your pry tool into the unit. It will sound like you are breaking it, Don't worry you are just releasing the glue between the gold and black parts.

Removing and placing the tag:

  • Once the gold and black parts are separated you will see a white circular sticker on the black piece. This is the NFC tag, carefully peel it off (Don't use a screwdriver for this please, your fingernail should be enough).
  • Once you get the tag off the amiibo base, be sure to try it out on your Wii U or 3DS, to make sure you didn't break something.
  • Stick the tag to the gift card or hard plastic thing you chose (even cardboard would work).
    • Be sure not to stick the tag to the black magnetic strip on the gift card, it wont break the amiibo, just will result in poorer performance.
  • Cut around the tag to make the gift card into a circular shape around the tag, I ended up leaving a 1mm gap around the tag, but that was to fit in the crochet work, as a base, so you may want to wait to cut this until you see how big your crocheted amiibo ends up being.

Step 4: Prepare the Elements - Making the Head, Arms, Legs, Base, Etc.

To make this little guy, my wife followed the pattern below, which she got from this site - We are not taking credit for the crochet pattern. Michelle Alvarez from Mi Pequeño Mundo Rosa, did an incredible job on their pattern.

If you need help reading the pattern start on the above site or here.

This step does not include putting all the elements together

Crochet terms and abbreviations:

  • sc: single crochet
  • inc: increase
  • dec: decrease
  • hdc: half double crochet
  • sl: slip stitch
  • mr: magic ring

Head (Make 1) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • Round 1: 6 sc in mr (6)
  • R2: inc in every stitch (12)
  • R3: [1 sc, 1 inc] x6 (18)
  • R4: [2 sc, 1 inc] x6 (24)
  • R5: [3 sc, 1 inc] x6 (30)
  • R6: [14 sc, 1 inc] x2 (32)
  • R7-10: sc around (32)
  • R11: [7 sc, 1 inc] x4 (36)
  • R12: sc around (36)
  • R13: [7 sc, 1 dec] x4 (32)
  • R14: [14 sc, 1 dec] x2 (30)
  • R15: [3 sc, 1 dec] x6 (24)
  • Fasten off.

** Each time you fasten off, be sure to leave at least a foot of yarn tail to help sew everything together later)

Body (Make 1) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 6 sc in mr (6)
  • R2: inc in every stitch (12)
  • R3: [1 sc, 1 inc] x6 (18)
  • R4: [2 sc, 1 inc] x6 (24)
  • R5: [11 sc, 1 inc] x2 (26)
  • R6-8: sc around (26)
  • R9: [11 sc, 1 dec] x2 (24)
  • R10: [2 sc, 1 dec] x6 (18)
  • R11: [4 sc, 1 dec] x3 (15)
  • Fasten off.

Arms (Make 2) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 7 sc in mr (7)
  • R2-6: sc around (7)
  • Fasten off.

Legs (Make 2) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 6 sc in mr (6)
  • R2: [1 sc, 1 inc] x3 (9)
  • R3-5: sc around (9)
  • Fasten off.

Belly (Make 1) Use beige yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: Make a MR, [2 hdc, 2 sc, 2 hdc, 2 sc] (8)
  • R2: inc in every stitch (16)
  • Fasten off.

Horns (Make 2) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 4 sc in mr (4)
  • R2: [1 sc, 1 inc] x2 (6)
  • R3: [2 sc, 1 inc] x2 (8)
  • R4-6: sc around (8)
  • Fasten off.

Snout (Make 1) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 6 sc in mr (6)
  • R2: inc in every stitch (12)
  • R3-5: sc around (12)
  • Fasten off.

Tail (Make 1) Use orange yarn and work in rounds.

  • R1: 4 sc in mr (4)
  • R2: [1 sc, 1 inc] x2 (6)
  • R3: [2 sc, 1 inc] x2 (8)
  • R4: sc around (8)
  • R5-7: 4 sc, 4 hdc (8)
  • Fasten off.
  • Cut small pieces of red and yellow yarn and sew to the tail.
  • Unravel each piece of yarn.
  • Take a comb or even better a metal brush and work/brush the red and yellow yarn until the flame looks like Heatmiser from Year without a Santa Claus.

Wings (Make 4: 2 with teal and 2 with orange) Work in rows

  • Row 1: Make 17 chains.
  • R2: sc in 2nd chain from hook and in next 7 stitches, skip one, sc in next 7 stitches, chain 1, turn.
  • R3: inc in first stitch, sc in next 12 stitches, turn.
  • R4: skip one stitch, slip stitch, sc in next 3 stitches, skip one, sc in next 5 stitches, turn.
  • R5: skip one stitch, slip stitch, sc in next 2 stitches, skip one, sc in next 2 stitches, turn.
  • R6: sc in next 2 stitches, slip stitch.
  • To make the wings, take one teal piece and one orange and sew the together. With orange yarn, sc all around the wing.

Step 5: It's Alive!!! - Sewing the Figurine Together and Adding the NFC Tag

Like the previous step, if you are unsure what I mean by sew "this piece" to "that piece", go here for a nice tutorial on how to sew amigurumi style.

Preparing the body:

  1. Place the NFC tag, attached to the gift card in the bottom of the body with the NFC tag on the bottom. Before doing so, if you haven't already, cut the gift card down the rest of the way to give your Charizard a nice, hard, flat bottom.
  2. Stuff the body with the fluffy stuff.
  3. Test the NFC tag on your 3DS or Wii U to ensure everything is still working.

Preparing the other elements:

  1. Stuff all the other elements with the fluffy stuff.
  2. To add the nails on the legs and arms, simply sew in the white yarn, to two adjacent indents in the crochet pattern. Then tie it off underneath
  3. To add the nostrils to the snout, do the same but with black yarn and make the stitch a little bigger, that is two or three indents apart.

Assembling the Top Half:

  1. Sew on the two horn to the top back of the head. With the following note:
    • Charizard has a very aerodynamic skull line that leads right into his horns. If you simply put the horns on the top of his head, they will look like ears and you will have a Charzocat... The horns should be made so they are angled when they sit flat. make sure they are angled back on his head - see the above image of the horns.
  2. Sew on the snout about 2/3 of the way down the head to leave room for the eyes.

Assembling the Bottom Half:

  1. The first piece to sew on is the tail. Following the instructions from the above link, or using what ever method you prefer, sew on the tail with the following notes:
    • Along with the body and legs, the tail allows this guy to sit up straight you want to place the tail in a way that makes the body and the tail form a relatively flat foundation - see the above image of the profile view of the figure.
  2. The oval belly goes on next to help center the other limbs
    • About 2/3rds of the belly will be seen from the front, try to create the illusion that the rest of the belly follows the entirety of the tail.
  3. The next piece should be the legs.
    • Like the tail, the legs finish out the foundation so this guy sits up straight, so be sure to place them so the tail, body and legs, all are relatively flat.
  4. Next add the arms to the body, feel free to put them wherever you like.
  5. Finally add the wings in the direct center of Charizard's back.
    • Feel free to pull the tail down a bit to get at the wings. You should not have to worry about pulling the tail out or misshaping it as this guy adjusts pretty easily.

Putting it all together!!!

  1. Finally sew the two halves together!!!
  2. Check the Amiibo on your Wii U or 3DS one last time!

Step 6: Let There Be Light! - Adding the Eyes

Design the Eyes

For this step, there is really no wrong way to do it. What my wife did, was draw a bunch of trial eyes on paper and pinned them to Charizard with white pins to mimic the pupils. I think we went through 20 iterations, including Spongebob and My Little Pony, before settling on the ones we used.

Make the Eyes

  1. Cut the white felt to the overall size of your eyes
  2. Paint on your design (or sharpie it on)
    • As a note, Charizard's eyes, are a brighter blue than his wings if you ask me.

Secure the eyes

For this, we have seen some people go crazy and sew the eyes onto the figure, but we just used hot glue and that worked great!

Step 7: Beautification! - Photo Editing the Background for the Box

Once again, here is the program I used, its free and no download is required, but you can use whatever you want. This step will outline the edits I made and give you a good starting point to add your own creation in, however, feel free to make this part completely your own!

However if you would just like to use the image I created, click the link below or download the image above. There, your freebie internet!

If you are making someone other than Charizard, or would just like to do it all yourself, but can't find the files to start, here are the files I used to make the box art above.

Take a Picture of your Amigurumi:

  • You want a picture with minimal shadows, so what I did was put two pieces of printer paper at 90 degrees to each other turned off all the lights in the house, and used the flash on my camera, you can see the result above in the crocheting step.

Compile the necessary files:

Create Pixlr Project and import photos:

  1. To start a new project just follow this link and click on "OPEN IMAGE FROM COMPUTER" and choose the "Charizard Amiibo Box" image. It should load in at the right size.
  2. To load in the flamethrower, your amigurumi, and the name artwork, go to "Layer">"Open Image as Layer" in the Pixlr menu.

Removing the background of your amigurumi:

  • There are 1000 different tutorials on how to remove background images, so I will not get into a debate about what is better, just the method I used.
    1. Use the Magic select tool (it looks like a magic wand up by the other select tools at the top of the toolbar on the left of your screen) to select as much of the white background as you can and press the delete key.
    2. Then go around with the eraser tool (it looks like an eraser) and erase the rest that could not be magically selected.
      • Be sure to zoom in, take your time, and be OK with erasing some of your image. If you notice the flame tail in my image, that is not even close to what the original picture looked like, but I reshaped the tail to what a flame might look like.
      • The goal is to make smooth lines, so use a mouse, and try to drag it in one fluid motion.
      • Right click on the layer in the layer window and add a slight orange glow around it (this will add a little vibrancy and cover a lot of your less than perfect edits.

      Placing all the elements and adding the Name Text:

      1. First arrange your layers so the Amiibo Box image is in the back followed by your picture and the flamethrower and then the name artwork on top. This way the name artwork will have a nice clean line that will cut off your picture appropriately.
      2. Line the name artwork up with its matching part of the background using the move tool (looks like a mouse cursor with a four way arrow next to it, and you must have the layer your are editing highlighted in the layer menu box).
      3. Resize your picture and the flamethrower by going to "Edit">"Free transform...".
      4. Move your picture and the flamethrower where you want them.
      5. Add the text name with the text tool (it looks like a capital A). and move it around with the move tool
        • I used Arial Bold font and the color was white. as white as you can get.

Step 8: Gotcha! Charizard Was Caught! - Putting the Box Together With Your New Amiibo!

Print, cut and paste (literally) your newly designed background:

  1. Print your background image, just on standard printer paper with a standard printer. The size should be 7.499in x 5.069in. I just used word to print and adjust the size, but you could use whatever program you are most comfortable with.
    • You may have to adjust the exposure and/or saturation to get your printer to print the right colors for this (mine printed red and dark red instead of orange and red at first). There is no formula to this, just keep playing around with it until you are satisfied. Word also allows you to do this with photos, but so does Pixlr.
    • I would suggest printing multiple of these (or just using the ones with the wrong coloration) to practice cutting on.
  2. To cut the paper down to size I used a paper cut for the straight edges, a pair of scissors for the outside corners, and a hobby knife for the display hook hole. Use whatever method works best for you!
    • Be sure to check your alignment before gluing the picture.
  3. To paste the image, put glue all over the cardboard, then start by lining up the top two corners and slowly work your way down working out any wrinkles or bubbles.

Find a placement for your amiibo:

  1. Before you put the two halves of the box together it is a good idea to put the amiibo in the plastic case and find an orientation you like so you know what your aiming for when you do it for real.
  2. Remove the amiibo and set it aside.

Attach the bottom part of the plastic as a hinge:

  1. Prepare a piece of the clear tape that is slightly shorter than the bottom, internal, edge of the plastic case.
  2. Place half of the tape on the plastic case and then line it up right to the bottom of the cardboard and stick the other half on the cardboard.
  3. Close the box to ensure it lines up nicely.
    • If you need to redo it, don't pull the tape off the cardboard/picture, just cut the hinge using a knife and put your new piece on top of the old.

Place the Amiibo and glue the box together!

  1. Put your amiibo in the box how you oriented it before.
  2. Use the glue stick to cover the three edges of the plastic case that attach to the cardboard back. (Yes a standard glue stick is enough to get this to hold like it does right out of the factory)
  3. Slowly raise the back and line it all up nice, and your done!!!

Admire your Work! Show all the people!!!

Thanks for reading everyone! If you liked this instructable be sure to vote in the "Made with Yarn" contest! If you didn't like it then don't vote! Or do whatever you want, don't let me tell you what to do! If you have any questions, comments or you did this project with Charizard or another amiibo, post it below!

Wow. Ok I will google it
<p>I'm sure you have already googled it, but Amiibo is a Toys to Life toy line produced by Nintendo. Essentially they are all the different Nintendo characters as little figurines that will interact with certain 3DS and Wii U video games! Check out the GIF in the title image to see it in action.</p>
What the heck is amibo?!??
<p>Google it.</p>
<p>Very cool! I love projects like this that blend craft plus tech. Well done! :)</p>

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Bio: Blubs and Tubs are a dynamic duo that make, craft, tinker, you name it! We were married in August of 2016, and from a DIY ... More »
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