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Ashley got my purse-themed Swap Swap Gals package, so I can share what I made her! 

The biggest item was a book bag size Waves of Color Tote Bag.  I added one-half more chains to the foundation and cut the gusset width by three rows.  And, obviously, there are added rows to the body.  I love this pattern and I would like to make the original size also.

I actually ran out of the cream and you can see the upper portion is whiter with ’emergency’ filler yarn.  For the handle I used an alernating spike stitch, which I hope will help keep the strap from stretching. 

The flower pin is the SkaMama Mum.  The pattern is pretty easy, consisting of chain-loops and sc rounds.  I sewed the flower to a saftey pin so Ashley could remove it if she wanted or use elsewhere. 

The In Bloom pattern from Stitch ‘n Bitch: the Happy Hooker is a perfect beginner purse.  You only need to know chains and half double crochet.  To get the gauge, I had to use a size E hook with worsted weight yarn.  I think I need to invest in some handled hooks for my size C through E crochet hooks.  The slim handle with heavier yarn hurts my hands. 

Anyway, I had the pink and brown yarn left over from my last swap package to Katrina.  In order to get the stripes to mirror each other the dark brown bottom is three rows instead of two. 

 The bow is a random little novelty I had in my craft supplies.  Like the SkaMama Mum, I used a safety pin to attach it to the purse. 

This purse got a zipper and a lining.  I don’t mind linings anymore, but zippers still drive me crazy.  They are not very forgiving! 

I saw this Shell Coin Purse first on This Blonde Knits (& Crochets!).  (Check out Mary’s project page if you’re on Ravelry.)  While the brown yarn doesn’t exactly do the pattern justice, it’s what I had on hand. 

 

I added an embroidered daisy flower on the back corner.  It was a little interesting to trying to find the right distance for each petal on a crocheted background.   

 

Also, I lined the coin purse with some light-weight polka dot fabric.  I ended up really liking this pattern because it’s easy to memorize and the shells make it hard to miss a stitch.  Plus, the coin purse is perfectly funtional without the zipper and lining. 

 

The pattern for the Rectangle Bobble purse can be found in the book One Skein: 30 Quick Projects to Knit or Crochet.  I actually made the purse part a long time ago, but never got around to lining it.  Nothing like a swap deadline to get things done!

 

The lining fabric is a heavy satin with a dusting of glitter.  Hopefully the glitter doesn’t wipe of onto every little thing, but I can’t promise anything. 

 

This little purse is called the Travel Jewelery Pouch.  It’s basically made of two overlapping double crochet octagons and a few chain rounds for the border.

To sew the octagons together I used a size H hook to slip stitch along the chain spaces. 

The seaming creates little pockets.  The whole pattern is built around a clever, but simple, design.  I would make this again, but in the recommended sport-weight.  The Lion Brand Babysoft I had on hand was a bit bulky for the pattern. 

The leaf motif tie ends were made of a round of single crochets, followed by slip stitches, single crochet and a picot.  (I love picots!)

Finally, I sent Ashley some yarn, a knitting book and a size 6 circular knitting needle (not pictured).  The yarn looks a little rough around the edges because I crammed them all into a tiny package, then took the skeins out for the picture. 

I found the book Kids Knitting, at a local donation-run store.  There’s a page that is loose and the sleeve is missing, but the it’s in good condition overall.  The book is geared towards teaching kids to knit, but the ‘learning to knit’ section is pretty thorough.  I figure it will come in handy when her little kids (fingers crossed) want to learn to knit, too. 

I also sent Ashley a set of plastic size 6 circular needles.  My grandma started me on plastic needles because the knitting is easier to keep on the needles.  I personally still like plastic needles for that reason and because they are light.  I suppose that’s why some knitters like wood or bamboo needles, but I’ve never tried them before. 

So that’s everything.  I had so much fun making all these purses, but I think I’ll steer clear of anything that needs a lining for a while!

 

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I’ve actually had this Bobble Clutch crocheted for about six months now, waiting to be lined.  Shocking, I know, but my fear of fabric and thread is hard to overcome.  With the “All About Hearts” swap for Swap Swap Gals I decided to make a few purse items in order to force myself to sew.  It worked out and I got everything finished in time, but I’m still not a sewing convert. 

 

Anyway, I finally got this darn purse lined and zippered.   The zipper is sewn in a little wobbly, but it zips like a champ.  I learned a very important lesson – do not sew the lining too close to the zipper!  I had to sew the fabric twice since the first time the zipper kept catching the hem.

 

I’m not 100% positive, but I’ll guess this purse is made of Red Heart Super Saver in Gemstone.  I like to roll my skeins of yarn into balls and rarely keep the wrapper.  I figure the internet can always help me with future identification.  This is easy when I remember what brand, but I’ve had the yarn picked out for my grandma for a long time.  She loves these jewel tones, especially the turquoise, and I was just waiting for a one-skein pattern to catch my eye. 

The Bobble Clutch was the perfect project I was hoping for.  The pattern is from One Skein: 30 Quick Projects to Knit or Crochet.  (I’m sure you’ve all heard of it.)  Easy pattern to memorize, and the bobbles make any yarn look wonderfully textured. 

Hayley, over at Adventures with Little Miss is working on the Bobble Clutch in a gorgeous olive green color from Vanna White’s yarn line.  It’s looking great so far!

Happy St. Patty’s Day everybody!

*That’s cool* a random fact

New York’s St. Patrick’s Day parade is the longest running civilian parade in the world.

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