Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Perfect (Crocheted) Little Black Bag

I started making this bag on a whim a few months ago after seeing this beauty on Pinterest. I would do other little side projects throughout my new little black bag quest, and I am happy to announce that I have finally finished it. I'm quite pleased with how it turned out, except for the lining bit. This was my first bag ever to try and add a lining to, and I did a pretty terrible job. I'll add the tutorial I used at the bottom, and hopefully you will have more luck than me. I hope to remove this lining eventually and retry. Luckily you can't see the lining from the outside, so as far as anyone else can see, this is a perfectly good lookin' handbag.

Materials: 2 skeins black yarn, 5mm crochet hook, black button, black thread and sewing needle, scissors, 1/2 yd black fabric and sewing machine for lining (optional). 

Abbreviations: chain stitch (ch), slip stitch (ss), single crochet (sc), double crochet (dc), puff stitch (puff), skip a stitch (sk). Pattern is in US terms.

Row 1: ch 96. ss into first ch. ch 2. 

Row 2-5: dc in each stitch around. ss into top of ch 2. ch 2. 

Row 6: *puff stitch in next dc. ch 1. skip 1 dc. puff into next dc.* repeat around. ss into first puff. ch 3. 

Row 7: puff sitch into first ch 1 space. ch 1. *puff into next ch 1 space. ch 1.* repeat around. ss into the second ch of the beginning ch 3. ch 2.  

Row 8: *dc into the top of the next puff stitch. dc into the next ch 1.* Repeat around. ss into the first dc. ch 3.

Row 9: Repeat row 6.

Row 10-14: Repeat row 7. 

Row 15: Repeat row 8, but only ch 2 at the end. 

Row 16: dc in each dc around. ch 3. 

Row 17: Repeat row 6.

Row 18: Repeat row 7.

Row 19: Repeat row 8, but only ch 2 at the end.

Row 20: sc 14. ch 20. sk 20 stitches and sc into next dc. sc 27. ch 20. sk 20, and sc into next dc. sc 13. ss into first sc. ch 1.

Row 21-24: sc around (when you get to the ch stitches for the handles, sc into the ch stitches). ss into first sc. ch 1.

Row 25: ss around.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

To close the bottom of your bag, fold it flat and attach your yarn to the first stitch on either side. Line the bottom stitches on each side of your bag up and slip stitch all the way across. Fasten off and weave in ends.

Turn your bag inside out, so you can see the puff of your puff stitches.

Attach your yarn to the center of one side of the bag to make a loop for your button. ch 10-12 stitches. ss into the same stitch you added your yarn to. Fasten off and weave in ends. 

Use your needle and yarn to attach your button to the center of the opposite side of the bag. Use my pictures for reference. 
I used this tutorial to add a lining to my bag. I just think it makes it more durable, but feel free to leave it unlined. Sorry if this pattern is a little hard to follow. I didn't write things down as I went, so I've had to just use my memory. E-mail me if you have any questions!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Kitchen Calligraphy Art // You Wash, I'll Dry

This is a pretty simple and explanatory DIY, but I wanted to share. I am a complete beginner in calligraphy, but I've been practicing a lot. I wanted to create a simple calligraphy DIY that I could display in our home, even though I'm not that great at it yet. I've been on the lookout for a piece of art to hang above our sink in the kitchen, but haven't had any luck yet, so I decided to use an old frame and some fun calligraphy art for this space for the time being. I've seen the phrase you wash, i'll dry on tea towels and decided to use this phrase in my frame. I love this saying for a few reasons. It reminds me of my great grand parents ( I know, I was quite lucky to be able to know them for the first 9 years of my life!). My mawmaw Nobie would hand wash the dishes after every meal and my pawpaw Ancel would dry them and put them away, even though they had a perfectly good dishwasher that could do the work for them. It's one of my clearest memories of them. I also like this phrase because it applies to so many things in a marriage/household. You have to work together as a family and help each other out. Anyway, I hope you like this simple little DIY. Don't be scared to show off your skills, even if you feel nervous that it's not perfect!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Adventures in Calligraphy (Vol. 1)

Practice, Practice, Practice. Not even a little bit good at this yet, but I'm having oh so much fun. And I don't even mind the ink all over my hands after writing. Actually, it makes me feel like an artist. I've never been great at drawing or painting, but calligraphy feels beautiful enough to be considered art. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Striped Newborn Hat Pattern

A friend of mine asked me to make some baby props for her photography business, and this is by far my favorite piece I made for her. It's just so simple and non-distracting, and I really love the neutral colors of this hat with nice and simple wooden buttons. This pattern was quick to work up, but you do have to change colors often. I think it's definitely worth it because stripes are the best. Actually, wee BABY stripes are the best!

Materials: soft baby yarn in 2 colors ( I used a white and tan color), 5mm hook, scissors, 2 wooden buttons (i bought mine here), brown thread, sewing needle

Abbreviations: Chain Stitch (ch), Slip Stitch (ss), Double Crochet (DC)


Row 1: Using your first color, ch 3. 10 dc into the second ch from hook. ss into last ch. ch 2.
Row 2: 2 dc into each dc around. ss into top of ch 2.
Row 3: Change to second color. ch 2. *2 dc into next dc, 1 dc into next dc* repeat around. ss into top of ch 2.
Row 4: Change to first color. ch 2. *2 dc into next dc, 1 dc into next two dc* repeat around. ss into top of ch 2.
Row 5-9: Change colors. ch 2. dc in each dc around. ss into top of ch 2.

Fasten off and weave in ends. Use your needle and thread to sew the wooden buttons on the front side of the hat, one on top of the other.

Photo credit to Erin Cefalu Photography. Check out her site here!