All dolled up

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LABOR OF LOVE Handmade superheroes. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Who says crochet is just for girls—and doilies? Certainly not Cathy Cantada-Dizon and her little boy Crow.

Before becoming a mom, makeup artist Cathy Cantada-Dizon would crochet amigurumi, Japanese for crocheted or knitted stuffed toy, to amuse herself.

Her 4-year-old Crow loves all things Star Wars and superheroes, so one day, Cathy decided to crochet an Incredible Hulk doll for Crow. Crow loved it so much that he started asking his momma to make his most favorite superhero, Iron Man, next.

It wasn’t long before Cathy eventually crocheted her way to the (almost) complete cast of “The Avengers.” (Loki is still a work in progress, the most challenging of the bunch, according to Cathy).

How did you get started?

I actually learned how to crochet back in grade school, during our home economics class in CSA. We used to make doilies, coasters, pillowcases, and I secretly enjoyed it. I picked up my crochet hook again a few years ago, when I wanted to make my own scarves.

How did you get started on your amigurumi superheroes?

I wanted to make them for Crow. He’s such a big fan of The Avengers. I have done Hulk, Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Spiderman and recently, Wonder Woman, which a friend requested I do for her.

Who is your son’s favorite amigurumi hero?

CROW loves his Iron Man amigurumi.

He loves Iron Man!  His Iron Man amigurumi is surprisingly still intact, even though he tosses it around and stretches it. I wait for the day that he’ll accidentally rip it apart but it seems to be holding up pretty well.

What other crafts would you like to get into?

I would like to learn how to sew better.  That’s one thing I struggle with when putting my dolls together! I would also like to start sewing using a sewing machine, and learn how to sew clothes for my dolls. I recently took a doll making workshop and that really sparked my interest to make dolls.

What do you like most about your crafts?

It’s very therapeutic.  It actually relieves my stress. But the best part is finishing my projects and seeing how happy it makes my son.

Where do you get your materials?

I love this store in Glorietta 5 called Dreams. I also order online through Handmade by Bheng (www.facebook.com/handmadebybheng) and Yarn Source Manila (yarnsourcemanila.multiply.com).

What tips do you have for first-time amigurumi makers?

Don’t be intimidated by the pattern. It’s actually pretty simple to make these dolls. Once you’ve started to make amigurumi, don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t turn out the way you imagined it. Sometimes the imperfections are what make them unique and making a few mistakes here and there make the dolls even more interesting.

Useful websites?

Crafty is Cool (craftyiscool.bigcartel.com)

Craft Manila (craftmnl.com)

All About Ami (allaboutami.tumblr.com)

I took a dollmaking workshop recently.  And this really inspired me to pursue dollmaking. (crowpod.wordpress.com/2012/11/20/well-hello-dolly/)

How can readers check out your stuff?

I blog at http://crowpod.wordpress.com and you can find my online toy store at Facebook.com/pages/crows-nest.

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