Squirrel Picnic

Handmade with Love and Stuff

Make It! Challenge #11: Thumb Wrestling World Championship

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World Champion Thumb Wrestlers by Squirrel PicnicWhen I held my call for submissions last year, I received two suggestions that happened to coincide. Sharon and Shane from Melbourne, Australia, challenged me to make a ninja, and Vanja from Osijek, Croatia, challenged me to make a sumo wrestler. After musing on what a ninja vs. sumo match might be like, I decided we must find out, and so the first ever joint Make It! Challenge was born.

Luchador vs Ninja Crochet Thumb WrestlingFor Make It! Challenge #11, I crocheted contestants to compete in a Thumb Wrestling World Championship. In addition to the ninja and sumo wrestler, the contestants include a luchador and Hulk Hogan, the famous WWF personality.

To play, you simply pop one of these contestants onto your thumb, lock hands with your opponent, say “One, two, three, four, I declare a thumb war,” and wrestle thumbs until someone’s thumb is pinned or the crochet thumb wrestler falls off. Whoever is left “standing” with their crochet thumb wrestler intact is the winner.

If you get really good at it, try holding two matches at once.

I hope you enjoy crocheting these and holding a Thumb Wrestling World Championship of your own.

Make It! Challenge #11: Thumb Wrestling World Championship

Thumb Wrestlers by Squirrel PicnicDifficulty rating 2

Note About Changing Colors

For this pattern you’ll need to know a bit about changing colors when working in the round. When the instructions tell you to switch to a new color, go to single crochet in the next stitch as you normally would and pull up a loop in the original color, but yarn over with the new color. Pull the loop through and continue with the new color. Whenever you are only doing a few stitches in the new color, it is a good idea to carry the original color yarn along the back as you go. The best way to do this is to crochet over it with each new stitch in the new color. This will encase the strand and allow you to pick it up easily when it is time to switch back to the original color.

Note About Googly Eyes

This pattern calls for the use of glue-on googly eyes. Because of the choking hazard, if you are making these thumb wrestlers for small children, please consider embroidering the eyes instead.

Note About Yarn

I made these using a light worsted-weight yarn. I list the exact brand and color I have used for reference purposes only.

Gauge for Each

With yarn as listed and a G-6 hook
4 sc = 1 inch
4 rounds = 1 inch

This pattern was made for adult-sized thumbs. If you are making it for a child or an adult with smaller hands, try using lighter weight yarn and/or a smaller hook size.

Abbreviations

ch = chain
ch-sp = chain space
ea = each
FO = fasten off
inc = increase with 2 sc in next st
rep = repeat
rnd = round
sc = single crochet
sk = skip
slst = slip stitch
st(s) = stitch(es)

Ninja Thumb Wrestler by Squirrel PicnicNinja Instructions

Materials

Light worsted-weight yarn in black (Caron Simply Soft in Black)
Light worsted-weight yarn in pink (Caron Simply Soft in Lt. Country Peach)
G-6 (4.00 mm) crochet hook
Tapestry needle
Embroidery needle
Embroidery floss (DMC Gray #415)
2 size 7.0 mm glue-on googly eyes
Super glue

Body

Embroider your ninjaWith black, ch 2 or begin with a magic loop.

Rnd 1: 6 sc into 2nd ch from hook (or into the magic loop and close).

Rnd 2: 2 sc in ea sc around. (12)

Rnd 3: Sc in ea sc around.

Rnds 4-5: 4 sc, switch to pink, 4 sc, switch to black, 4 sc.

Rnds 6-14: Sc in ea sc around.

FO and weave in ends.

With gray DMC floss and an embroidery needle, embroider a throwing star.

Attach googly eyes with super glue. Wait sufficient time for the glue to dry before playing with your wrestlers. We don’t want someone to lose an eye!

Sumo Thumb Wrestler by Squirrel PicnicSumo Instructions

Materials

Light worsted-weight yarn in black (Caron Simply Soft in Black)
Light worsted-weight yarn in pink (Caron Simply Soft in Lt. Country Peach)
Light worsted-weight yarn in blue (Caron Simply Soft in Royal Blue)
G-6 (4.00 mm) crochet hook
D-10 (3.25 mm) crochet hook
Tapestry needle
2 size 7.0 mm glue-on googly eyes
Super glue

Body

SumoWith black, ch 2 or begin with a magic loop.

Rnd 1: 6 sc into 2nd ch from hook (or into the magic loop and close).

Rnd 2: 2 sc in ea sc around. (12)

Rnd 3: Sc in ea sc around. Break yarn.

Rnds 4-10: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around. Do not break yarn.

Rnds 11-12: Switch to blue and sc in ea sc around.

Rnds 1304: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around.

Sumo BunChonmage (Bun)

With black, ch 2 or begin with a magic loop.

Rnd 1: 6 sc into 2nd ch from hook (or into the magic loop and close).

Rnd 2: * Sc, inc, rep from * 2 more times. Join with slst. (9)

FO, leaving a long tail of about 16 inches. Thread tail through the sts and pull tight to close. Sew bun to top of head. Weave in ends.

Sumo Loin ClothMawashi (Loin Cloth)

With blue and 3.00 mm hook, ch 4.

Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook and in ea ch across. Turn. (3)

Rows 2-3: Ch 1, sc in ea sc around. Turn.

FO, leaving long tail. Sew to sumo’s waist. Weave in other end.

Attach googly eyes with super glue. Wait sufficient time for the glue to dry before playing with your wrestlers. We don’t want someone to lose an eye!

Hulk Hogan Thumb Wrestler by Squirrel PicnicHulk Hogan

Materials

Light worsted-weight yarn in red (Caron Simply Soft in Red)
Light worsted-weight yarn in WWF fake tan (Caron Simply Soft in Melon)
Light worsted-weight yarn in yellow (Caron Simply Soft in Lemonade)
G-6 (4.00 mm) crochet hook
Tapestry needle
Embroidery needle
Embroidery floss (DMC Yellow #307)
2 size 7.0 mm glue-on googly eyes
Super glue

Hulk HoganBody

With red, ch 2 or begin with a magic loop. Try to leave a tail of several inches.

Rnd 1: 6 sc into 2nd ch from hook (or into the magic loop and close).

Rnd 2: 2 sc in ea sc around. (12)

Rnd 3: Sc in ea sc around. Break yarn, leaving at least 10 inches. (This will become the tie at the back of his bandanna.)

Rnds 4-10: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around. Do not break yarn.

Rnds 11-12: Switch to yellow and sc in ea sc around.

Rnds 13-14: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around.

FO.

Hulk Hogan BandannaFor bandanna, weave beginning end of red yarn down through stitches in the first 3 rnds to meet up with the other end of red yarn in Rnd 3. Pull both ends to the outside and tie them in a knot. Trim excess yarn.

Weave in all other ends.

Attach googly eyes with super glue. Wait sufficient time for the glue to dry before playing with your wrestler. We don’t want someone to lose an eye!

Luchador Thumb Wrestler by Squirrel PicnicLuchador

Light worsted-weight yarn in teal (Caron Simply Soft in Cool Green)
Light worsted-weight yarn in pink (Caron Simply Soft in Lt. Country Peach)
Light worsted-weight yarn in yellow (Caron Simply Soft in Lemonade)
G-6 (4.00 mm) crochet hook
Tapestry needle
2 size 7.0 mm glue-on googly eyes
Super glue

Body

With teal, ch 2 or begin with a magic loop.

Embroider eyes on your luchadorRnd 1: 6 sc into 2nd ch from hook (or into the magic loop and close).

Rnd 2: 2 sc in ea sc around. (12)

Rnd 3-7: Sc in ea sc around.

Rnds 8-10: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around. Do not break yarn.

Rnds 11-12: Switch to teal and sc in ea sc around.

Rnds 13-14: Switch to pink and sc in ea sc around.

FO.

Embroider your luchador 2With pink and a satin stitch, embroider the openings in the luchador’s mask where the eyes and mouth will be. With yellow and a backstitch, outline these openings.

With yellow and a backstitch, add a line of yellow to the luchador’s trunks.

Attach googly eyes with super glue. Wait sufficient time for the glue to dry before playing with your wrestler. We don’t want someone to lose an eye!

I’d like to thank Daniel and Becky for helping me stage a wrestling match. We hope you enjoyed watching our video, making a set of wrestlers of your own, and hosting your own championship wrestling match!

See a mistake or something I overlooked, please let me know in the comments or at squirrelpicnic{at}gmail{dot}com. Thanks!

Click on the Print and PDF button to get your copy of this pattern

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19 thoughts on “Make It! Challenge #11: Thumb Wrestling World Championship

  1. These are so awesome! Your video made me giggle, can see myself having a wrestling match with my sisters 😀

    • Yay! I hope you do have a thumb wrestling match with your sisters! These guys are so small, I’m thinking about taking them with me (along with croshades) on my next vacation. I can see how they might spark some very fun times with strangers too.

  2. Really a funny idea 🙂

  3. Hulk Hogan is my favourite! I love the way your imagination works,I have always such fun reading your posts! My compliments, dear Jennifer,beecause your work is always so neat, clever, beautiful and funny in the same time!

  4. This is beyond cute. I need to learn to knit/crochet/whatever 😀

  5. What can I say except I love them! Game idea, design, size….everything is just perfect. 🙂
    I still can’t find right words to thank you enough for making them, specially the sumo fighter, and to be so generous to send them to me. Can’t wait to make the post about them tomorrow and brag around for what I got! 😀
    Thank you Jennifer

    • You are very welcome. And thank you for challenging me to make you a sumo wrestler. This has been a very fun project for me. And it means so much to me that you enjoyed it too. I look forward to reading your post about them. 🙂

  6. Thank you Jennifer we love, love, love our thumb wrestlers. Now that the pattern is out I can share our fun! 😀

  7. I can’t wait to see the thumb wrestling Royal Rumble on Pay Per View! 30 hands enter the ring, but only one thumb will emerge victorious! I’ll bet you could make a whole collection of some of the awesome rasslers of the 80’s!

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