Thursday, April 26, 2007

Spring Green Fat Bottom Bag

Finished this one the other day. This time I was smart enough to put a cell phone pocket in the lining. These purses aren't large but they're roomy enough that I can't get to my cell phone fast enough. I also finished the lining of the Paton's SWS fat bottom bag. Not only is there a pocket for my cell phone but one for my iPod Nano as well. I got the fabric at JoAnn's at 40% off the other day. I think I paid 99 cents for 1/2 yard. I have enough left over for another project and I bought another print that is an eggplant purple with tan that I plan to line a tan bag. I'm not sure that it will be another fat bottom just yet.

Our cacti are blooming. These flowers are so pretty. I wish I had taken a picture when they were new.

This is Sophie's favorite spot. She loves to watch the kids walk home from school every day. She's waiting for them now.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Paton's SWS Fat Bottom Bag

Started this one this morning and finished it early evening. Well, not quite done. It's unlined at the moment because I don't have a coordinating material right now. I'll check JoAnn's tomorrow. Hope their fat quarters are still on sale. They were 99 cents each the other day. Also, this one was much faster because of the way I did the handles. These were black plastic round purse handles from JoAnn's.

Speaking of handles, I went to Home Depot's plumbing section and bought some 1/2" diameter vinyl tubing. I bought two different kinds. One was black and medium firm @ 10 feet for $2.79, while the other was braided vinyl and is quite firm @ 10 feet for $4.99. I figured that I used 3 feet for both handles of the black purse, which would come out to $1.66 per purse for the braided vinyl and 93 cents per purse for the black vinyl. I can't wait to use them! Have already started a spring green colored one. Pictures to come when done.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Black Fat Bottom Bag

Can I just tell you that this is my favorite one so far? I have to thank Elaine for the most wonderful tutorials for making the FBB. She takes you from start to finish with 7 videos on YouTube that are awesome. Only thing is that unless you speak Portuguese, you'll have to grasp the concept with the wonderful visuals. I love the way she uses plastic tubing for the purse handles. I went to Wal-Mart's pet section and bought an aquarium vacuum kit for about $5 and some additional tubing in a smaller size for about $3. I can get 2 sets of handles from this. It's not much cheaper than buying ready made handles but I like the crochet covered handles, and that they don't slide around and are much more comfortable to hold. I will have to try Home Depot to see if I can find this tubing cheaper. I did wind up having to use some tape to close the gap but it's not noticeable at all. I also prefer her method of lining the bag after the handles are done. The tutorial linked to on Crochetville was great for my first couple of bags but I wasn't really satisfied with the result because I couldn't get the lining as close to the edges as I would have liked. Sure, having to sew the lining in by hand is much more tedious but produces a much better product, in my opinion. As you can see from the picture, the inside of the bag is just as pretty as the outside. The lining fits perfectly. I wanted to use a magnetic snap closure but wouldn't you know it, I couldn't find it. I didn't want to wait until tomorrow so I went ahead and used the crochet flap and button on the back. It works and isn't ugly.

I used the free pattern on the LionBrand site for the crocheted roses. I know these don't match the lining but I wanted to try them out. I had a few minutes to wait in the doctor's office this afternoon and they're super fast to make. I do have some matching lime green, orange and purple yarn that I can make flowers with, but just haven't done it yet. I sewed safety pins to the backs of the roses so that they're removable.

Also, I just got the most wonderful package from my sister, Gina. She sent me these great vintage inspired Hawaiian print fabrics. I originally intended to use them for more knitting project bags but now I see FBB lining whenever I look at any fabric! It takes just a smidge less than a fat quarter to line one of these beauties. The most I've spent so far to make one is about $11.00. This black one cost me about $8.00. If I can get the tubing cheaper, it might just take the cost down to $5.00. We'll see. I'm using Red Heart Super Saver acrylic for the body of the bag and an I sized hook. I used almost the whole skein since I covered the handles with crochet. I bought a pack of fat quarters at Joann Crafts for about $1 each piece. The only other expense would be matching thread if it's a color I don't already have. That's why I like black! I wonder if I could machine sew the liner in if I used a zipper foot? Although, it really wasn't that bad to hand sew it in.

I'm now trying to decide which color to do next. I think I'll do a green to match the pineapple print fabric that Gina sent me. Susan, if you're reading this, I think the original pattern was written for cotton yarn and I think a deep green would be beautiful! Since I still have yet to see the actual pattern, I don't know much more about it.

On to check out my yarn stash!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Brown Fat Bottom Bag

Here's the latest finished FBB. Only after I finished it did my husband remind me to put in a magnetic snap closure. Too late! So I just made a buttonhole closure for the backside. I lined it in a cute coffee print and used the remnant for a rosette on the front. I am now in the process of making a black one. I think I'm going to try a new type of handle on this one. Pics to follow when done.

I just couldn't resist buying this firefighter print and making a knitting bag out of it. I lined it in a flame print fabric. Bernie thought it was too corny! Of course, when the little one saw the fabric, he asked me to make him a little bag to hold his Star Wars figures. Being the good mommy that I am, I complied. However, he asked that the flame fabric is on the front. I explained that it is reversible but I don't think he cares. You know, this fabric (either one) would make a cool FBB lining! I'll have to add it to my list of future projects, #1,000,000,001.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Fat Bottom Bags

I first saw these last week. It has since become an obsession. I was just cruising someone's blog and saw one. I don't even remember which blog it was on, but I wanted one. I Googled until I came across the CAL at Crochetville and I spent two days looking at all of them. My local library showed that they had the book, Stitch N Bitch Happy Hooker by Debbie Stoller, on the shelf so I rushed right over, only to find that it was gone. The librarian said that it hadn't even been checked out, "just grew legs". I was heartbroken. I placed my name on the waiting list and went back home to drool at the pictures again. I looked at them for so long that I came to the conclusion that I could probably "wing it" and the cream colored bag was the result. I tried to make it a little bit bigger and the blue one was the result of that. I think they look pretty much like the other FBBs out there. They're even lined, thanks to the tutorial that was on C'ville. I still haven't seen the pattern, but want to, just to see how close I got. I must go to Joann's to find more handles tomorrow. I like the blue bag but hate the handles on it. I think it's like the cane in wicker furniture. Not attractive at all. I'm currently working on a chocolate brown version that I'm going to line in a coffee print fabric I bought at Michael's. I started it at knit nite tonight and I'm almost done with the body of the bag already. Stupid me, I ran out of the house without my knitting project. Good thing I had the crochet hook and yarn in my other project bag. I'm going to experiment with a different way of lining tomorrow. I'm not going to line it until the handles are done and see how much more difficult it is. I won't cut the yarn, just in case, so I can rip the handles out and re-do the lining if I have to. Am I asking for trouble? BTW, the most beautiful FBBs I have seen so far have come from some talented crocheters in Portugal and Brazil, like this one. Gorgeous!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Slow ripple progress and a quick FO!

Gentle Waves Round Ripple (top picture) 8-Point Wavy Ripple (middle picture)

See the crochet hook on my smaller afghan? Bernie made that for me. I was complaining that since I've been doing so much crocheting lately, the end of my hook was digging into the meaty flesh below my pinkie finger and it was bothering me. I bought some cushions but the hole was so small and I couldn't get it on my hook. He has since made me four more. I'm not sure but I think this one is maple and two of the other ones are ebony. I told him that I love the ebony ones, A LOT!

**I have been reading posts regarding some round ripple afghans on Crochetville. Some people have mentioned that their ripples do not lie flat. I don't have a problem with my Gentle Waves Ripple lying flat at all. However, the 8-Point Wavy Ripple does "ripple" a little bit at the very center but as the afghan grows, the rest of it lies flat. I'm wondering if using a smaller hook exacerbates the rippling effect in the middle of round ripples. I am using worsted weight yarn (Red Heart) and a size I (5.5 mm) hook and I think the larger hook helps in the drape of the fabric.**

After seeing so many crocheted baseball style caps (also newsboy style) everywhere, I decided, at 2 a.m., that I just had to have one of my very own. I wanted it to be in Chris' baseball team colors, which is navy blue and orange for the Detroit Tigers. I didn't want to go looking in my stash at 2 a.m. so I pulled out a skein of royal blue that I decided didn't belong in any of my ripples and got started. Now that I know how easy and fast it was, I will now make one in some navy yarn I found after the fact. Picture to come.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Knitting bags

Yesterday I had lunch with my friend, Pat, who generously offered to make me some sock knitting bags from the My Leetle Bag pattern. I was expecting just one or two but she made me six! They're all lined in coordinating fabrics and are just too cute. I felt like it was Christmas! She totally inspired me to go home and see if I could do it. I do not sew. At all. The sewing machine scares me. In fact, the one sewing machine that we own actually belongs to my husband. I bought it for him for our first Christmas together since he told me he could sew and I knew he didn't have one.

I cut out my pattern pieces and started sewing on a scrap piece just to get used to the machine. Something was wrong. I was done before I even started. I went pouting into his office and told him something didn't look right. DUH! I didn't have it threaded right. After that I was off and running. My first bag didn't look half as nice as Pat's. But it was my first one and I love it anyway. I went searching for any scraps of fabric lying around the house from my previous lame attempts. I found a colorful Hawaiian print and an equally colorful Japanese Sakura print and this is what I made. The last one (standing up in the picture) was perfect except that I didn't have any more matching ribbon. I'll have to fix that.

Pat and I also discussed other uses for these bags and I thought of one last night. When I pack for a trip, I usually put my shoes into plastic shopping bags. Wouldn't these make great shoe bags?