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Why did I suddenly, urgently need a crocheted snail? I don't know. But I do know I started out trying to do it the easy way - finding an already-published pattern and making it. This... did not work out so well. Out of the many patterns I saw on the internet, there was only one I thought looked snail-y enough for me. I mean, don't get me wrong, some of the other were cute enough, just not what I was looking for. So I gave it a go. I don't know if it was me (I could very well have been doing something wrong) or what, but the very simple, easy pattern I tried turned out...
...just not right. But I thought I could see what was wrong with it, and how hard could it be to fix?
Okay, so I was going to have to start from scratch. And in doing so, I was going to make a snail shell the way it should be made. The way a snail makes it. As a continuous, coiled tube. The only question was... how to make it coil? There are two schools of thought on this. One is to make taller stitches on one side, the other is to do a series of increases/decreases that make it coil. I could not wrap my head around the latter, so I went with double and triple crochet.
Okay, so it looks like crap. It was a prototype, what do you expect? (I have since pulled him out to re-use the yarn in something more dignified instead of letting him suffer...) But I now had proof of concept, and a shape. Now all I had to do was find a way to re-create that without the great big, gaping holes. So... since a triple crochet is like 3 stitches high, why not go back and forth three times (which would leave me to continue in the direction I was going!) with single crochet stitches?
And the first incarnation of snail as we know it was born. Complete with a ruffled foot (to make him stand up) and feelers. The only thing I decided was that the shell needed a few more rows (but I did not disassemble him, he's still very much intact!). So in my final write-up of the pattern, I added those and the final snail pattern (after many, many, many scribbles, tests, and re-writes) was born.
Ready to make your own snail? The pattern is right here!