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How to Remove Safety Craft Eyes

I recommend using safety craft eyes (the ones with little ridges on the post) for my amigurumi because they’re difficult to remove (meaning they’ll withstand the pulling and prodding of small children). The downside, however, is that they’re difficult to remove – especially when you make a mistake in positioning them.

The best defense, obviously, is to be sure you like them before putting them in (check out my tips on positioning eyes for help!), but we all make mistakes. Ashley recently asked how to remove a pair of eyes… so Ashley, this post is for you!

First, you’ll need your toolbox… here, you’ll see my amigurumi owl head (with eyes that I needed to remove because I didn’t like where I positioned his orange eye-circles) and a pair of pliers.

Now, this part can be a little scary… you’re going to have to cut the post, above the washer. Alternatively, you can use a utility knife to cut the washer off of the post (if you’re desperate to save the eye itself), just make sure you don’t let that knife nick your fingers!

Ta da! Now you can remove the eye with ease. Yes, you lost an (amigurumi safety eye) in the process… but you saved your stuffed animal! Hooray!

Here are handy links to all the posts about amigurumi eyes. . .

Return to the main table of contents for Let’s Learn to Crochet Amigurumi.

Move on to the lessons for standing legs.

Happy stitching!


  1. Pam SAYS...

    Want to remove the eyes so my dog won’t. She makes a hole when removing the eyes then animals get a brainectomy leaving stuffing all over. If there is no hole to start stuffing coming out she’s fine. I buy thrift shop animals for her.

  2. i cant use pliers because i dont have any what do i do is there another way

    • Anonymous SAYS...

      Can you try tweezers?

  3. Theresa Balon SAYS...

    I suggest that you use scissors and snip the washer. It is then easy to separate the washer and you have saved the post. Hopefully this helps. Be careful not to snip the yarn. Good luck

    • With the safety eyes I sell, there’s no way to snip the washer with scissors if the washer is fully attached. There’s just no way to get one blade of the scissors between the washer and the eye. You can cut the washer off with a utility knife – but I don’t recommend it unless you absolutely MUST save the shank of the eye. The washers are VERY hard to cut through, and very difficult to hold it while cutting without risking cutting your fingers. Maybe with one of the really big eyes but not with the 9 and 12 mm eyes I use most often.

    • Anonymous SAYS...

      This worked great! Thank you!

  4. Polly A Robertson SAYS...

    Hi I came across your instructions on removing safety eyes from stuffed animals. In your instructions, it says to cut the post ABOVE the washer. The accompanying picture didn’t seem to help me figure out where to cut. Maybe if you could show me what you mean by “washer” I could better understand. Thanks so much for your time in advance

    • The washer is the thing you slide onto the shank to attach the eye.

  5. Angela Jurgensen SAYS...

    Thank you — this worked!!!

  6. Donna Luttrell SAYS...

    I found that needle nose pliers will pry it off. It takes work and patience but you save the entire unit. No danger of cutting yourself with a knife or scissors.