Changing colors is a skill that you’ll want to have if you want to make any advanced amigurumi projects that involve multiple colors in the same piece. The good news is that changing colors is super easy! As long as you can work the normal single crochet stitch, you can successfully change colors.
First, insert your hook into the stitch before the one that needs to be the new color. Yarn over and pull through with the original color yarn. There will be two loops on the hook. Next, drop the original color and pull up a loop with the new color. Finally, yarn over and pull through.
I’ll break down each of these steps with a photo tutorial below. If videos are more your jam, click the one below!
Table of Contents
1. Insert your hook into the stitch before the color change
The most difficult part of the entire color change is this step! To work this color change, identify the first stitch that needs to be the new color (I’ll call this color B), and insert your hook into the stitch before.
In the image below, I’m currently working in color A, red, and I need to switch to color B (white) in two stitches, to match with the row below.
To begin the color change, we’re going to be focusing on the last stitch that’s still in color A (red). So to begin, insert your hook into the next stitch (as shown in the photo).
2. Pull up a loop and pull through in the original color
As usual when working a single crochet, the next step is to pull up a loop and pull through, still with color A.
As you can see in the photo above, after this step you should have two loops on your hook, both in color A.
3. Drop original color and pull up a loop with new color
This is the part where all the magic happens! As you can see in the photo below, we’re still working into the stitch before color B. This may seem a little strange, but trust me — it really works!
This step is the trickiest part: drop the working end of color A (that is, the excess yarn connected to the skein that you’re holding in your non-dominant hand). You can just drop it and ignore it for now.
Next, pick up color B. You should make sure that the tail end of the yarn is going down your palm (near your little finger), and that the working end of the yarn is coming out of your hand (closer to your thumb). For clarity on this step, see the video tutorial.
Now we have to work the last step of the single crochet.
Once you’ve dropped color A and picked up color B in your non-dominant hand, pull up a loop. Now you should have three loops on your hook. The first two should be in color A, and the last loop should be in color B.
Finally, using the loop in color B that you just pulled up, pull it through the first two loops on your hook.
The result should look like the photo above, with one loop in color B left on your hook. Make sure to tug a little bit on all the yarn tails to make sure that everything is nice and neat.
As you can see, we’ve just completed the single crochet, and although we switched colors halfway through, it looks as if the single crochet you’ve just worked is still in color A, with just the remaining loop on the hook in color B.
4. Work the next single crochet in the new color
The last step is easy! Since the next stitch should be in color B (see previous photo for reference), you just have to work the next stitch in color B, which you just successfully changed to!
After you work the next few single crochets, your work should look like the photo above. Even though you technically “changed color” in the stitch *before* the first color B stitch, the color only actually changes right on that stitch. This is because the last half of the single crochet doesn’t actually affect the color of that stitch, but the next one.
Once you get past the actual color change, feel free to weave in the ends of color A and color B, or you can tug them tight and leave them inside the amigurumi.
If you’re changing color every single round for colorwork or to create a block of color, make sure to not tug the tails too tight, because it could result in the crochet stitches being warped from too much tension.
This is my favorite and easiest way to change color in amigurumi. Once you’ve mastered this technique, you can use it over and over again to change color.
If you’re just getting started, I recommend your first project to be my Mini Whale! This project is aimed at complete beginners — I worked really hard to provide a full video tutorial, blog post, as well as free downloadable PDF! This is the pattern to start with if you’re a complete beginner 🙂
This is a tutorial for complete beginners and goes through how to create the entire project from scratch. The accompanying PDF pattern can be found below and the blog post here.