1. Keep tight and use a small hook
Gauge isn't crucial with amigurumi. What does matter is that your work is as tight as you can comfortably make it. If you see holes or stuffing poking through (so not cute), either try working with a tighter tension or go down a hook size so your stitches are nice and close.
2. Use invisible decreases
Even after you've adjusted your hook size and tension, you might still find that you get holes when decreasing. To avoid it, you can use the invisible decrease, which pulls the stitches together without stretching the way a standard decrease does.
3. Remember, stitch markers are your friend
When you making amigurumi, you're often working in a spiral without any way of knowing where a round starts or ends. Enter the stitch marker! Place it at the first stitch of every round to help you double check that your stitch count is correct at the end.
If you don't have a proper stitch marker, use a piece of scrap yarn, flicking it backward and forward over your work before making the first stitch in each round. This technique, which is actually easier than using stitch markers, creates a dotted line up the side of your work. That line tells you where you started or stopped the round and comes in handy if you need to frog more than one round. When you're done, simply pull the scrap yarn out.
4. Make stuffing bombs
Even if you're doing everything right, you may (grrrr) still see some stuffing through the stitching. The solution: stuffing bombs. To make one, find tights or pantyhose as close to the color of the yarn as possible, then cut them into in pieces. Knot each piece at one end, wad with as much stuffing as you need and then knot the other end. Wedge the bomb into your amigurumi while you still have a large enough opening and continue to crochet.
5. Keep stuffing!
Padding the arms and legs of your doll can be tough. So take small bits of stuffing and push them into these places with the back of your crochet hook. If you are using an ergonomic crochet hook with a thick handle, use a cotton swab instead.
Remember, you can never over-stuff an amigurumi. The goal is to make them as squishy as possible.
The cuteness is real!