Attaching with thread vs. yarn tail
For a cleaner look, I opted to cut the yarn tails on the inner ears short and weave them into the back of the work, then attach the inner ears to the ears with matching thread. However, you can also attach them using a yarn needle and the yarn tail. It’s up to you!
Regarding stitch markers
Note: The photos above show a fox, but the technique is the same for all of my patterns.
The pattern indicates to insert 4 different stitch markers in various places besides the one you use to track the beginning/end of each round.
I recommend using strands of yarn in 3 different colors as your stitch markers: Two strands in color 1 (blue) to mark where you will place each eye, Two strands color 2 (pink) to mark where you will start attaching each ear, and one long strand in color 3 (green) to track the beginning/end of each round.
The photos above demonstrate how to mark a stitch while crocheting a round: lay your strand of yarn acting as a marker over your working yarn and the stitch you’ll be working into, then complete the stitch as normal.
You’ll essentially be weaving the long strand in color 3 through your work with each round. On odd rounds you’ll be laying the strand back-to-front, and on even rounds you’ll be laying the strand front-to-back.
The advantage of using this technique is you’ll have the beginning of every single round marked, which makes it much easier to find your place if you make a mistake. That said, It’s perfectly fine to use a regular ol’ safety pin-like marker to keep track of your rounds instead. 🙂
How to indent the eyes
Note: The video above shows a unicorn, but the technique is the same for all of my patterns.
Step 1 – Cut a strand of yarn approximately 18″ long. Tie a large, secure knot in one end and thread the other end through your yarn needle.
Step 2 – Insert your needle through the back opening of the head and sew between the two spots where you’ll be placing your safety eyes (marked with your color 1 stitch markers).
Step 3 – Pull your strand of yarn taut, which will create indents.
Step 4 – Fasten off with a knot and hide your yarn tail inside the head.
How to add hair for the mane and tail
Step 1 – Cut 10″ long strands of yarn. How many depends on your personal preference, but I ended up using well over 100. As you can see in the 4th photo above, I only rooted hair on every other round, but filled in the gaps with one strand of yarn on each side.
I recommend finding a book or DVD case to wrap your yarn around several times, then cut along the top – it makes the process of cutting yarn strands much faster and it’s easier to produce a consistent length.
Optional: Use a ruler and a disappearing ink marker to draw a rectangle on the head as a guide for where to root the mane. You can do the same for the tail by tracing something circular (about 1.5″ in diameter) on the rear.
Step 2 – Fold a strand of yarn in half, insert your hook under a stitch in the head or body. Use your hook to catch your yarn strand and pull through a loop, then pull your tail ends of the strand through the loop.
This video illustrates the technique perfectly, except I insert my hook front-to-back instead of side-to-side.
Step 3 – If giving your creation to a small child, be sure to secure each strand of hair with a knot so it can’t easily be pulled out.