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Throwback Thursday

Viruses and tablet covers, originally posted August 27, 2018.

So wow, I’m tired. I have spent two and a half hours today driving on the road.  Why you say? Well, a little background: my child goes to school in one county and I work in another.  It takes 25 minutes for me to get home, then another 25 minutes to get to her school.  I get a call that she’s not feeling well, leave work, 25 minutes later, passing my house, 25 minutes later get to school, 25 minutes later, pass my house, 25 minutes later get back to work (which is her doctor) get her seen. Back on the road 25 minutes later, back at my house.  Whew! I am exhausted, there is nothing more boring then driving somewhere, I wish we had little airplane cars like the Jetson’s, for real. Just so you don’t worry, she has just a virus and I get to stay home the rest of the day! Whoo Hoo!

Any-who, I have completed two projects I’d like to share with you.  They both were crocheted and they are both a cover for an electric device.

Tablet Cover

I found this pattern on littlemonkeyscrochet.com

It’s very cute, good choice of yarn, nice closure mechanism, and I just happen to have a friend who needs a tablet cover, so I decided to make this.iPad & Tablet Cover | Free Crochet Pattern by Little Monkeys Crochet

The pattern was very easy to understand and work up, quite quickly I might add.  I think I’m a slow crocheter so it took me 3-4 hours spread out here and there. I wasn’t bored out of my mind like some patterns make me, because they are so basic, sc only or hdc only, I like a little twist, something I have to think about. This pattern has a neat looking stitch, not sure what it’s called but its a sc and dc in the same stitch, skip a stitch, repeat.  The nice thing about the pattern is that they give me the tools to make it for any size device I want.  I will definitely be using it again in the future to make more tablet or phone covers for sure.  Might I also add, I had this fabulous yarn that I think was an A+ choice. Here’s my finished product:

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Phone Cover

On to the next pattern: Herringbone phone cover I found on Ralvery via this website: haakmaarraak

Cute huh? Well I just had to try- and I have to say the stitch you have to use was a little hard for me to understand, I got the foundation rows completed but once they started talking about a herringbone hdc things got a little harry.  I tried but did not succeed, it looked bad, but I was still determined to make this phone case, so I used dc’s the whole way.  I switched the colors at one point and added a loop and button, just like the tablet cover.  I think it turned out great even though I didn’t do it exactly like the pattern.  Maybe someone else can try to give me their opinion.  Here’s my finished phone cover:

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Best of all… both patterns were free and totally do-able, so check them out.  Well that’s all for now folks.  Thanks for reading.


Excerpt November 8, 2018: I still love the little monkey’s crochet tablet pattern.  The crochet stitch pattern doesn’t bore me, and I can have one finished in 2-4 hours.  I’m just starting to wonder, do people really use these covers and am I wasting my time making them? I also remember this day, running back and forth for hours, uhg I really hate being in a car for a long period of time. Gotta go, bye for now.


Sherry

Game Day Wristlet- A Sad Story

I’ve been on a hiatus.  I just didn’t have any desire to blog.  Not that I’m depressed or anything, I’ve actually been fervently working in my sewing room on cell phone cases and coasters. I’ve been busy listing items on my Etsy shop including re-listing or de-activating products that have expired listings. Having this shop takes up a lot of my time, but it’s still fun.

I’ve been on a cell phone holder hunt lately, combing thru the internet for anything that can cover or hold a cell phone/tablet.  I found this pattern on Craftsy from Raspberry Sunshine called the “GameDay Wristlet”:

Image result for the gameday wristlet tutorial

A cute wristlet for sure, so I downloaded it, and even better it was free! Just like any other pattern’s I do, I had to cut some fabric out, interface it, fold pockets and create a rounded flap.  I decided to use this pink and white stripe fabric with a cat printed fabric (I never use good fabric for first-time tutorial tries).

We’re going good so far.  Then I had to make the pocket that holds the phone.  You fold and press in on the sides, eventually you will have a nice roomy pocket.

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This is the assembly of the second pocket which is flat, long and deep.

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Making my wrist strap and D ring tab:

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I love these clips, they are so helpful and I am getting poked way less by needles than I used to! Here I am assembling everything together.  It will need to be sewn around the outside 1/4″ of an inch, then turned inside out and pressed:

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And that’s when it hit me.  The pattern on the flap is upside down.  Eye roll.  Deep Breathe.  Well that was a big waste of my time, wish I could have seen that coming.  Do not use a one-way pattern on the outside fabric.

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Aside from my little mistake, it was a good pattern.  I understood everything and it made sense to me.  It’s a little large of a bag, you can definitely get any cell phone in it, and pens, a small hairbrush, your cards, papers, it’s a pretty good size at 7 3/4″ long by 4 1/2″ wide. Another tip- my pink and white fabric was like a heavy canvas material, therefore its really bulky in the corners and the presses aren’t that great.  I either need to not interface that fabric or just choose something thinner and lighter.  Have a great day everyone! Happy Crafting!

Sherry

Talking about interfacing

I use it almost everyday, interfacing.  What is it? Let’s dive into this topic today, Inter facing is defined as a woven or non-woven material used between the facing and outer fabric of a garment, as in the collar and lapels of a jacket, to add body and give support and shape to the garment.  I use it a lot when I make wallets or purses, cell phone holders and sunglass cases.  It takes that flimsy fabric and give it stiffness.

Here’s an interesting excerpt from Sew Delicious:

Why use interfacing?
Apparel: to shape, support, and stabilize detail areas
Crafts and Home Decor: to strengthen, stabilize, or aid in design
Embroidery: to prevent stretching and distortion while stitching
Quilting: add weight or warmth to the final project

What types of interfacing are available: 

There are two different types and a bunch of sub categories, here is the details from Clothes Press.net

Non-woven interfacings

  • Iron-on interfacing – this gives a firm but soft base and can be light-, medium- or heavy-weight. Lightweight iron-on interfacing is best used for lightweight cottons, wools and polyester fabrics. Medium-weight is best for light- to medium-weight crisp cottons and cotton blends. Finally, heavy-weight interfacing is used for waistbands and for medium- to heavy-weight cotton fabrics and blends.
  • Knitted iron-on – also called stretch iron-on. This is a stretchy interfacing which is used for cotton and polyester jersey and knits.
  • Sew-in interfacing – again, this is a firm but soft fabric and can be light-, medium- or heavy-weight. Lightweight sew-in is used for lightweight cottons, velvets, polyesters and metallic fabrics. Medium-weight is best used for light- to medium-weight corduroys, velvets and metallic fabrics, and heavy-weight sew-in is used for heavy-weight wool, gabardine and coating fabrics.

Woven interfacings

There are a whole load of different traditional woven interfacings used in tailoring and couture garments. Have a look at McCulloch and Wallis’s comprehensive selection if you are interested in that kind of thing.  Iron-on non-woven interfacings are more generally used in home dressmaking but, for completeness, the more common woven interfacings include:

  • Hair canvas – this is a heavy-weight canvas. It’s used mainly in tailoring of coats and jackets.
  • Iron-on cotton interfacing – commonly used for backing cotton and woollen fabrics. It’s made in a variety of different weights and is generally available in either black or white.
  • Lawn – lightweight cotton fabric used on both lightweight wool and cotton fabrics.
  • Organdie – this is a very lightweight cotton fabric suitable as an interfacing for fine and transparent fabrics.
  • Organza – a very lightweight, transparent stiff, silk fabric that’s sometimes used as an interfacing on very fine, sheer fabrics.

What are common uses for interfacings? 

Common areas that require interfacing include collars, cuffs, and waistbands.  It can be used to help reinforce your fabric, you can put it in areas that are going to be stressed since it will not tear.  Examples include interfacing hardware like snaps, embroidery and bead work. You can also use interfacing to eliminate fabric stretching.

How to use Interfacing from Create For Less:

How to use Fusible Interfacing

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for applying fusible interfacing.
  • Make sure your fashion fabric is wrong side up and it is fusible side down.  Usually you can tell the fusible side by the bumpy texture of the adhesive.
  • Apply firm, even pressure with your iron for the amount of time recommended.
  • Use steam or not, as recommended.
  • Lift the iron and place back down in a new position, slightly overlapping the previous areas. Do not slide the iron across the fabric, as this can cause distortion.
  • Once you’ve pressed from the interfacing side, it’s a good idea to flip the piece over and repeat from the fashion fabric side to ensure a good bond.
  • Be careful to protect your ironing board and fabrics from any excess fusible adhesive.

Sometimes I think we all get so used to having a certain step to take that we don’t think about what and why we do what we do.  This was interesting information that certainly helps me better understand what interfacing is and how many kinds there are.  Keep on learning!

Sherry

 

 

Flannel Trash Bag

I was in my husband’s car recently with garbage in my hands looking for a trash bag (because I have one in my car) and realized he had no trash bag.  I would have initially made one for him when he got this car back in April but his stick shifters height had me skeptical that the pattern I use wouldn’t work.  I had already made him some seat belt covers so he approved the fabric which would match.  I have this pattern I use from A Ditchin Time Quilts: Car Trash Bag

Off we go, here is my preparation of the fabric, as you can see I used a red and blue flannel, you only need a few pieces of fabric, front and lining fabric, fabric for your strap and fabric for your binding:

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You only interface one side of the bag so it has some stiffness. Instead of the Peltex that it called for, I just used some fusible fleece.

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To give it that “paper bag” bottom you have to flatten the corners and mark a line 1 1/2″ from the corner.  Try your best to line up the side seam in the center on each corner, so all the corners look the same and are uniform.

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Then you slide your bags together as instructed, made the binding, and here is my binding pinned, getting ready to be sewn.

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And this is after I sewed on the binding, not too terribly bad….I hate binding.

 

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Almost done, we have to put on the strap and the two pieces of 1″ x 2″ velcro to keep it closed (that’s not in the pattern).

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And you’re all done, now you have a reason to keep your car clean. This is my second trash bag I made, I really like this pattern, its super simple and makes a nice looking trash bag. You could mix and match fabrics with this add a ribbon instead of the fabric strap, use contrasting binding, or sew appliques onto the outside.  I hope you try this tutorial and let me know what you think.

Sherry

 

Throwback Thursday!

Money Saving Tips on Crafts! (Originally Posted August 26, 2018)

I woke this morning happy I didn’t have to go to work, ready to get some errands done and go to Joanne’s fabric store. Can I just give them a shout out? I love the sales and coupons and if you time your trip just right, you’ll feel like a superstar saver.

Costs for crafting supplies are expensive and I’ve scoured stores and the internet to find the best prices. I want to share some of my favs with you.

Joanne’s fabric store

If you go in here unprepared be ready for some sticker shock but do what I suggest and you’ll be excited to see the next sale email. Get the app, sign up for emails and texts. You’ll stay on top of the weekly sales plus the surprise ones. You’ll also have access to special coupons that you can’t get thru their website. As a bonus, when you have your cellphone on you at the store, they’ll just scan each coupon right from it, so no printing coupons, save ink, save trees, win win. The emails will also keep you up to date on online only deals, pair that with free in store pick up and score! One thing I love about Joanne’s is the remnant bin.  Everything in the remnant bin is marked according to the original price per yard multiplied by how much of fabric there is, then you get 50% off that total.  I’ve found lots of stuff in the remnant bin, it’s good for those little projects that you don’t need over a yard of material.

Michael’s

I’m not a huge fan of this store because it is expensive. However I find things in Michael’s that I can’t get anywhere else. While I’m there I always pull up their store on my cell phone and use their coupons from their website. No need to print before hand, they too will take your phone and scan it. You can always get 40 percent off one item, but beware of the fine print, you can’t use it on everything.( I’ve found this out the hard way).

Walmart

Most Super Walmart’s have a craft/fabric department.  They have a decent selection of fabrics from different kinds of fabrics like cottons, knits, faux leather, mesh, furry, fleece, etc. to many choices of quilting cottons and home decor fabrics, children’s fabrics and inter facings.  The prices are also very nice, you don’t have to wait for a sale to go to Walmart, most prices are $3.00 a yard and up, not to mention less than that from the clearance section.  The ONLY problem with Walmart is this: there is NEVER anyone around than can assist you with cutting the fabric. I inevitably spend 5-10 minutes walking from department to department to find an employee that can page another employee to the fabric department.  So I basically gave up.  As far as other craft supplies go, what crafts they do have are usually better prices than anyone else, so be sure to check Wal-mart.

Tuesday Morning

I don’t know how popular these stores are but we have one in my area and I love it.  It’s like a Marshall’s or Ross but they have a CRAFT SECTION!!!  Because it’s like one of those stores, you know nothing is consistent or the same every time you go.  It’s exciting because you never know what they’ll have when you go in that day.  They have pre-cuts, yarn, rotary cutting tools, scrap booking, painting, stamping, canvas, etc, etc, etc.  Let me tell you the best part, I love pre-cut fat quarters, Joanne’s sell for $9.99-$14.99 each but at Tuesday morning, I’ve scored them for $3.99 each. So if you have one of these stores, go and check it out, you’ll love the whole store.

Missouri Quilt Company

I found this website while I was trying to order different kinds of fabric but I didn’t want very much.  Fabric.com won’t allow you to purchase anything less than 1 yard or it might be 2, Joanne’s a 1 yard minimum, so when I found this website, I noticed that they were comparably priced to fabric.com but would let me order as little as a 1/4 of a yard.  They have a nice large selection and daily deals that are pretty good.  They make my list because I can order whatever size of fabric I want, plus shipping is $5.00 flat, no matter what you order.

Craftsy

Did you know they sell craft supplies? I love Craftsy, I’ve gotten so many great patterns on there for free and as far as prices go, they have pre-cuts that are less than anyone else, not to mention pretty nice patterns too.  In addition, every so often they have sales and the prices get marked down even more.  Join Craftsy, it’s free, and you’ll be glad you did.

So these are the few places that I frequent, I hope I’ve enlightened you in one way or another.  I love hearing tips about where I can get craft supplies cheap, sometimes its a rush to get good deals and save lots of money.  If anyone has any tips to share I’d love to hear them.


Excerpt (October 23, 2018) Gosh, I found a lot of grammar and spelling errors, sorry about that.  I love this blog post, its right up my alley.  I love saving money, let me tell you a couple new sources that I came across.  First, I found someone selling home decorating fabric sample books, I got about 14 for $25.00.  It’s not huge pieces of fabric but I can quilt with them to get them larger or use them for small projects. I also have been really lucky to get these huge grab bags of fabric at Goodwill.  I have found quilted fabric that normally costs $16.99 per yard, nice and uncut for $5.99.  That and more including vintage fabrics, it was a good find.  Bargain Hunter should be my middle name.


Sherry

Failures

I’ve been making a pile in my sewing area….the pile of failures…

I tried, but something just wasn’t right, was it me or the pattern, who knows.  Will I try again, I don’t think so.

Tablet Cover: Supposed to look like: From Pat Bravo.com

Tablet Coverlet  Free Pattern

What I made:

Yeah, no good.  Started out easy, thought I was on the right path. Somehow the top stitch on the opening didn’t work out right and I had a lot of bunched fabric.  Looks okay when shut, but not so good when open.

iPhone Pouch Tutorial: by Amy Friend  supposed to look like:

What I made:

Not too bad..the only thing wrong with this one is the tab is crooked.  I might make another one of these, I need to try it out for size and see if it truly fits.

This one is a No Sew Project: by Sellzcutethings what it should look like:

 

Not so far off from the picture but mine doesn’t look as elegant for sure.

Failures are a part of my daily routine.  I try out so many patterns whether they are crochet or sewing patterns, I am trying probably 6-10 a week, with only a 30% success rate.  I’ll keep trying and I hope you keep in touch with me!

Sherry

 

 

 

Essential Crochet Tools

Crochet- definition: a handicraft in which yarn is made up into a patterned fabric by looping yarn with a hooked needle. I love crocheting, it’s a very peaceful and relaxing hobby.  I am fortunate that I can read patterns, so I have a lot of options of things to make other than blankets. Unlike sewing, crochet doesn’t require as many tools in order to produce an object.  If you don’t know how to crochet, you really should try to learn, people all the time say: “Oh I wish I could do that.” It really is a fun, entertaining. and rewarding hobby. So, to start crocheting, you need to get the following items:

Hooks

The most important tool. A hook is the tool you will use with the yarn to create your project.


LIHAO Mixed Aluminum Handle Crochet Hooks Knitting Knit Needles Weave Yarn Set- 22 pieces

Safety Pins

You use these as markers on your project. They are very helpful to mark where you started or the beginning of a row, etc.


SINGER Asst Safety Pins, Multisize, 90-Count

Pen or Pencil

To help you keep track of what row you’re on. You can make notes on your pattern or on your post it note.


Pilot Frixion Purple Erasable 0.7mm Fine Point Roller Ball Gel Ink Pens – 6 Pack 31572

Post It Notes

Use these on your pattern to mark your place, keep moving it down the page as you progress.  You use them like a place marker for your pattern and they also make a convenient place to write down what row you’re on, etc.


post-it-notes Original Pads in Canary Yellow, Lined, 5 x 8, 50-Sheet, 2/Pack

Scissors

You need it to cut the yarn.


Singer Bundle – Detail Scissors, Thread Snips, 8.5″ Scissors

Tapestry Needle

You’ll be left with tails (long pieces of yarn that either start or end your project) that need to weaved into the finished object in an attempt to hide them.


Outus Large-eye Blunt Needles Steel Yarn Knitting Needles Sewing Needles, 9 Pieces (Silver)

Yarn

Second most important thing. Used with the hook to produce crocheted items.


Yarn | Tosh Merino Light (Tiny House)

Bag/Basket

To hold all your materials and patterns- I have multiple. I’ve used recyclable


Premium Large Knitting Tote Bag – Yarn Storage Bag for Ultimate Organizing of Crochet and Knitting Yarn, Crochet Patterns and Hooks, Crochet Needles and Wool – Great Crafts Storage(Lilac)

Hook Holder/Case

You don’t need this per se, but it’s very useful to wrangle all your hooks into one organized place.


11 Different Sizes (2.0mm-8.0mm) Aluminum Crochet Hooks Needles Craft 10.5″ Multicolour in a Pink Pouch Case

I hope that reading my blog inspires you to start a new hobby or pick up one that you haven’t touched in a while.  I know it can be discouraging to start a hobby and it not work out, that’s how I feel about fishing.  However, that is what I aim to show in my blog, that mistakes happen not only on the part of the crocheter but the person who wrote the pattern who may not have tested it, or maybe you are trying to work on something that is meant for a person with a higher skill level.  Start at the beginning, watch you tube videos, practice, practice, practice, you’ll get it eventually (I still haven’t given up knitting or fishing).

Sherry

Throwback Thursday

Dish Cloth Disaster (Originally posted August 25, 2018)

Shopping day, that’s what Saturday’s are for me.  My daughter and I trek down to Wal-Mart every weekend to get groceries for the week.  Most women love shopping, not me, at the end of our trip we high-five each other and declare victory over another shopping trip.  The only good thing about shopping day is getting new craft supplies.  Today I picked up a couple skeins of Lily’s Peaches and Creme and more chunky yarn to make another scarf.  Since I’ve been home, and after putting away groceries, I’ve been crocheting.  It has not been successful.  This is the frustrating part of crafts, they don’t always come out like that picture you saw.  Either it’s you (which I’m no expert by any means) or the pattern isn’t written well, so you’re unable to reproduce the finished product.

Today I started with a dishcloth pattern from Yarn Blossom Boutique: https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/classic-crochet-dishcloths. The pattern was free and it gives instructions to make 6 different versions of a dishcloth and includes a template to make your own handmade tags or product wrappers. They are really cute:

The first issue I had with this pattern was which stitch do I pick. They have the simple HDC version ( Half-double crochet) but it looked a little too boring for me. So I started with the spider stitch ( that just sounds cool).

My second issue: finished size 13″ x 11″.  Who wants a wash cloth that’s almost the size of a kitchen towel? But I proceeded. This is where my spider stitch end up:

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So as you can see my foundation chain is twisting, but I thought it’ll straighten out (I hope).  Second row:

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Okay, not happy with this, done, taken apart, back to square one. Not giving up yet, there are more options, so I started the moss stitch.  Got a couple of rows done and realized my ending stitches were not lining up straight, done, done, done, unraveling.

So that was my first bad project for the day.  Surely, there will be more.  I’m not saying that the pattern isn’t worth trying and by the pictures it’s obviously do able but I’m not feeling it personally.  I will keep the templates for my handmade products to sell, that was a nice bonus,  thanks Yarn Blossom Boutique.  Might I add she has a lot of cute patterns for free and for sale, it’s worth checking out.


Excerpt October 17, 2018: I can’t seem to find a good crochet dishcloth pattern.  They are either too simple for me (single crochet every row) or they don’t come out nice. I feel like giving up on washcloths but they’re such a good idea.  My new focus is cell phone/mobile devices covers/sleeves/holders. Crochet phone holders seem to keep me occupied without causing boredom.  By the way I’m having a clearance sale at my Etsy store if you’re interested, nice handmade products 50% off! Moonlightingforfun


Sherry

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