Sunday, May 31, 2015

Manhattan Miss Bag

I made the Manhattan Miss Bag, which is the April bag in the Bag-of-the-Month Club. I made the Manhattan Mamma Bag first, which is larger than the Miss. You get both sizes in one pattern. The designer of this bag is Janelle of Emmaline Designs.

A few years ago I used some Shiva Paint Stiks and some textures and rubbed the paint on a piece of fabric with the textures underneath the fabric. Then I quilted the fabric with some variegated thread. I had planned on making a simple zippered bag with this fabric. But it sat for years. Then I wondered if I had enough to make the Manhattan Miss size bag with this quilted fabric. I cut out the pieces I needed, but didn't have enough fabric for the flap, so I decided to create a crazy quilt sewn log cabin style pieced flap and used several decorative machine embroidery stitches too. I didn't want a zipper in the flap like I made in the Mamma size, so I instead added some decorative lace trim around the flap. I also had to do a few things differently, since I had quilted the fabric with a backing fabric, it was in essence already lined, but I needed to bind the raw edges after I sewed the pieces together.

The Manhattan Miss is a nice size bag for someone wanting to carry just a few things or a perfect size bag for a child or teenager.
Manhattan Miss with crazy quilt flap and lace trim.
Painted fabric with paint sticks and textures and quilted with variegated thread. 
Variegated thread and decorative machine stitches on the crazy quilt flap.
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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Bella Bag #1

I made the Bella Bag, designed by ChrisW Designs for my daughter. A friend of mine had given me a woven wool poncho that had fringe on the bottom. It was a nice poncho, but when I put it on it was rather itchy. My daughter had wanted me to make her a Bella Bag in brown corduroy, but I didn't have any corduroy at the time. She definitely wanted a dark brown bag though and then I got the idea to use the brown poncho material to make the bag. So I washed it first to felt it slightly and then cut out the pattern pieces. The wool sewed nicely, but got thick in certain areas, especially the straps around the swivel hooks. So this is an upcycled or re-purposed or even a green bag, I suppose.  I am really pleased with how this bag turned out. Oh and daughter loves it too. (Thanks Tara for the poncho; it made a great bag!)

I had been wanting to make the Bella for quite a while and I am glad I finally bought the pattern. If you love this bag too, you better buy the pattern soon, because Christine of ChrisW Designs said she will be retiring it soon. Really Christine? It's too great of a bag to retire it!

I am currently sewing my Bella #2 for myself and will post that one after it's finished.

The Bella Bag front.
Side view showing one of those great side pockets, which is perfect for daughter's phone.
Zipper pull I made for the zippered pocket on the back of the bag.
Back of the bag with the zippered pocket.
Inside slip pocket with label. I made this Bella Bag for my daughter.
Interior pockets: includes a zippered pocket with a slip pocket behind it and another divided slip pocket across from it. I divided the one pocket to include a pen pocket and I slipped a pen into that pocket and a small notebook into the other as you can see.
The front has a nice large pocket and a flap tab closure.
I added a stacked button on the flap tab.
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Thursday, May 21, 2015

2015 Quilter's Blogger Festival

I almost forgot to not only post a couple of my quilts in the Quilter's Blogger Festival, but also to
blog about it here. Thanks for the email reminder Amy! Click on the button on the sidebar or below in this post. The deadline to enter is Friday and that's tomorrow (at least where I live it is). Then the voting will begin, so please vote for your favorites in each category and viewers choice too. I wanted to enter, not to win a prize, but just to participate and to see all the other amazing quilts out there and find some new blogs to me too. I haven't even begun to visit them yet. I hope you will visit and check out all the great quilts in the festival too.
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Wool Applique & Hand Embroidered Pincushion

The hand embroidered wool flower in a circle that I recently made; I decided to make it into a pincushion. A rather large pincushion, but I love it! I stuffed it with polyester fiber filling and added some crushed walnut shells inside at the bottom too to help weigh it down. It looks pretty and I love using it and it holds a ton of pins too!!!
My pins are quite happy in this new pincushion I made. It holds a lot of pins too! I love my Clover brand glass head pins; they are so sharp and thin that they glide easily into any fabric.
I added some rickrack on the side all the way around the pincushion too. It covered up the seam (not that it needed to be covered) and added another decorative element.
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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Pot Luck Pals: Casserole Carrier

I tested this Casserole Carrier pattern for Annie Unrein of byAnnie Soft and Stable creator, recently. The pattern is called Potluck Pals because not only do get the instructions for this casserole carrier, but also a round pie carrier too. I chose to make the casserole carrier because my pie pan is too large for the pie carrier because my pie pan is Pyrex and has extra wide places to grab the pan and that made it too wide to fit. I rarely eat pie, so that was fine with me, lol!!

A vegetable fabric was a perfect choice for this vegan gal! The carrier has a zippered closure, a zippered pocket on top of the carrier as well as a zippered pocket on the bottom of the carrier too.  Pockets are great for carrying your serving spoon, pot holders or mitts inside.
Inside more vegetable fabric, lol!!! Also a mesh pocket that Annie says is a great place to slide a chopping board in not only to use later, but for stability too. Great idea! You can also slide something else stiff in the mesh pocket too like foam core board if you need or want extra stability.
My stainless steel rectangle pan fits inside perfectly.

The only thing I still need to sew is the fabric piece with Velcro that wraps around both handles to keep them together when carrying this.
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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Wool Applique Flower in a Circle

I wanted to work on something by hand besides knitting, so I decided on doing a wool applique with embroidery. I found some inspiration on Pinterest and then designed my own piece. I am not sure what I will do with this, perhaps a large pincushion or a mug rug? I enjoyed making this and it turned out better than I expected too. The yellow background is a woven wool material, the blue and red flower petals are actually cotton flannel that looks like wool, the red ring around the center and the green circles are wool felt.
Will this turn into a pincushion or a mug rug? Check back and see what I end up doing to finish this piece.
The flower petals of blue and red are cotton flannel that looks like wool.
The green circles and the red ring around the center is felted wool. The yellow background is a woven wool fabric.

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Sunday, May 10, 2015

May Bag of the Month: Seneca Creek Bag

The May bag from the Bag-of-the-Month Club was designed by Betz White and the bag is called Seneca Creek Bag. It's a small bag that you can wear across your body or even as a fanny pack, if you make the strap adjustable and use swivel hooks. For me this bag is not large enough to carry my everyday things like sunglasses case, reading glasses in a case, a wallet, a pen, pad of paper, keys, tissues, etc. However, it's a great bag for those who only like to take a few things with them. As I went out on a walk to find some nice places to photograph my bag, I wore the bag and placed my camera inside. When I saw a tree or 2 that I thought I could use to take the photo, I took out the camera and placed the bag on the tree. You know what? This is the perfect size camera bag! If I had known that before making the bag, I might have used byAnnie's Soft and Stable stabilizer (or other similar stabilizer) for extra padding. I did use a non-fusible fleece and that works well too, as long as I don't drop the bag with the camera inside! But since I made the strap to wear across my body, the camera should stay nice and secure inside the bag.

I made a few minor changes to the bag. Instead of using D-rings and lobster swivel hooks, I decided to make my side tabs a bit longer and insert eyelets instead of the D-rings. I was going to use the swivel hooks too, but they kept swiveling the strap so that the wrong side of the strap was showing. I opted to just tie a double knot after inserting the strap through the eyelets. It worked well.

Another change I made was in sewing on the flap. There was just too much bulk to sew it on according to the instructions, so I did mine a bit differently and added 2 rows of top-stitching. I love the look of the front pocket and flap.

I also made my strap longer and didn't add the adjustable buckle. I measured how long of a strap I would need and added extra to knot the ends to the eyelets. I thought the measurements in the instructions for an adjustable strap was too short to wear across my body. I like the bag to lie at my hip. I am 5' 3" tall and since we are all different sizes and wear our bags differently, you need to make sure that the length of strap in the instructions will fit you. It's easy to measure across yourself with a tape measure to where you want the bag to lie.

Here's my version of the bag~

Front pocket and flap.
Side of the bag.
Inside the bag has a zippered pocket.
Back of the bag.
I made my strap to go across my body, but I didn't add an adjustable buckle. My strap is also longer than the instructions.

P.S. Happy Mother's Day to all of you Mothers out there. Have a wonderful day ladies.

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Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Scrappy Knit Baby Blanket

I wanted to use up some misc. yarn I had, so I decided to knit a baby blanket. The stitch is a mock rib stitch (no purling), and since most of my yarn colors were dark, I knew they wouldn't look so good just knit side-by-side, so I knit 4 rows of white in between each dark knit section. This blanket looks nice on both the front and back sides too. I started off with the wine color as that was nearly a full skein of yarn, and I knit for a while, and then most of the other yarns I just knit until they were all used up and came back to the wine colored yarn and knit that color at the end too. I didn't block the blanket because I didn't want to stretch out the mock rib too much. I really like how thick this blanket feels and I might just make a larger one using other leftover yarn I have too.
This is the front side of the blanket.
This is the back side of the blanket.
The front of the blanket.
The back side of the blanket. You can see the yarn where the colors change has little dash lines on the back side. I like how that looks.
Close-up of the front side of the blanket.
Close-up of the back side of the blanket.
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