Hooked on Needles

Sunday, August 30, 2015

More Summertime Crocheting ~ A Colorful Baby/Doll Blanket

Summer has effectively ended here with the beginning of the new school year for my children this past week. Three days down, 177 to go! My semester begins this coming Wednesday, but before I disappear again into the black hole of semester three of nursing school, I wanted to share another little crochet project I was able to stitch up this summer. It's a little afghan that is small enough to be used for a doll, such as an American Girl doll, but big enough to be the perfect size for a car seat blanket or stroller blanket for a real live baby! And so colorful too! Here are a few pictures...

More information is available about this fun little doll or baby blanket over in my Etsy shop where it is up for grabs while it lasts. Please don't shoot the messenger, but Christmas is less than four months away and I'm pretty sure any little baby or any little girl with a doll would love to find this wrapped up under the tree!

Other little things have been taking shape down in my sewing room in anticipation of Christmas, but I cannot reveal them yet as they will be used as little gifties and I don't want to spoil the surprise! I know you understand! I will say that the colorful 7-inch zipper assortment I purchased from ZipperIsland's Etsy shop really came in handy for this project! They didn't pay me to say that, but when I get good service, I like to tell others about it!

So until probably after Christmas, farewell from Hooked On Needles! Unless I get a wild hair and decide to disconnect from school for a day and treat myself to some time in my sewing room!

Happy Stitching!

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Monday, August 24, 2015

More Summertime Sewing ~ Tote Bags!

One more day before we return to the school schedule here, and I am just now really getting into my sewing groove! I've been thoroughly enjoying my time in the sewing room this summer making whatever comes to mind as I go through my fabric stash. Today I completed another tote bag that is perfect for the upcoming fall season. If you love fall, and all it brings with it, you'll love this bag!

The fabric I used was designed by Sandy Gervais and it is called Tranquility. If you've been a long-time reader of Hooked On Needles, you might remember this same fabric line from a quilt I made back in 2011 for my sister.

The base of the bag on the outside and on the inside is leftover bull denim from seat sacks I made for the classrooms at the school where my children attend. It is really great fabric to work with and so sturdy! The fabric on the top of the inside lining is leftover yardage from the coordinating solid I used for my sister's quilt. I also made a strap for a swivel hook out of that same fabric to keep keys or other things within easy reach.

This bag is interfaced with Peltex which is very stiff and allows the bag to stay upright and hold its shape all by itself. I also boxed the bottom of the bag so that it is very deep at the base. I like generously sized bag bottoms! This Tranquility Tote Bag is in my Etsy shop available for purchase while it lasts.

This is a tote bag I finished a few days ago and listed for sale in my shop. I was all ready to write a post on it all by itself, but it was purchased before I had a chance to write about it! So anyway, this one was made using canvas fabric from the Pure fabric line designed by Sweetwater and lined with the quilting cotton of the same line. I love the blue and brown color combination, and there is just something about fabric with words that I find quite appealing.

This is just about the end of my summer creations since I start back to school in a little over a week for my third semester of nursing school. I have another crocheted project to share and then I might have to sign off for a while. But all my video and picture tutorials are available and anything else here at Hooked On Needles that you find helpful will remain up and running for you to use and share with friends.

Enjoy what remains of your summer! I sure plan to!

Happy Stitching!

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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Summertime Crochet ~ No complaints here!

Crocheting afghans is not usually something I do in the summertime since it usually requires heavy yarny stuff sitting on my lap in the hot, humid weather. But this summer, we have actually enjoyed very mild weather with warm days and cool evenings. But now that our local pool has closed for the season and we are preparing to get back into our school year routine, the hot and humid weather has arrived with a vengeance. Typical New England weather!

Anyway, I was able to get some crocheting done while the weather allowed. One little doll blanket, one baby blanket for a first-time mom at my work, and one child and one adult Mary Poppins scarf (which are not pictured, but similar can be seen HERE. They will be in my Etsy shop in time for Halloween!) So take a look at all this yarny goodness...

Doesn't Kit just look so cozy and ready for winter?

This little doll blanket was crocheted using the diagonal box stitch, and is the perfect size for Kit's little bed.

The soft creamsicle color will be a good reminder of the nice summer weather when it was made! This little blanket would be a nice addition for any little girl's doll accessory collection, and can be seen over at my Etsy shop while it lasts.

This is the baby blanket I crocheted for Crystal's baby boy, who, I found out yesterday, was actually born last week! It's a good thing I finished it when I did! We had a little baby shower for Crystal a few weeks ago and one of the games we played was trying to guess what length of yarn matched the distance around her very pregnant middle. I didn't win the game, but I did get to take home the skein of yarn to make something nice for the baby!

This blanket was also crocheted using the diagonal box stitch for the body of the blanket. The border was a simple two round pattern of single crochet/chain 3 for the first round, and then 3 double crochets in each chain 3 space for the second round. I did that with each color, and ended with one round of (single crochet/chain 3/single crochet, skip a stitch, single crochet, skip a stitch) for the last round.

I think the little nipper will be quite cozy with this blanket for many years to come!

Is summertime a crochet season for you? Or do you save it for cooler weather?

Happy Stitching!

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Thursday, August 13, 2015

Upcycled Denim/Repurposed Jeans ~ Summertime creativity

This summer is cruising by at such a lovely pace for me, giving me ample time to spend in my sewing room with some wonderful fabrics and soft, sturdy denim. Some of my upcycled denim projects have appeared here at Hooked On Needles in the past and can be seen HERE, HERE, HERE and my personal favorite HERE. Continue reading to see what I've turned some old jeans into this summer...

This bag is made with a mini charm pack and some yardage of Noteworthy by Sweetwater for Moda, and an old pair of jeans of course!

That front pocket is still functional!

There is a zipper pocket and two open pockets on the inside.

A swivel clip hangs on one side to which keys and other items can be attached for easy access.

This one-of-a-kind bag is available over in my Etsy shop while it lasts.

The fabric I paired with soft black denim is Java by Deb Strain for Moda in warm fall tones.

This bag was designed around the still-functional zipper pocket from an old pair of jeans which is now the front pocket on this cute fallish purse.

The lining is sturdy bull denim and there are four open pockets on the inside as well as a D-ring for attaching keys or other items for easy access.

A button and loop closure is a nice feature of this bag.

This one-of-a-kind bag is also available over in my Etsy shop while it lasts.

Happy Stitching!

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Saturday, August 8, 2015

Java Table Runner ~ Colorful Coffee Quilt for Your Table!

Do you love coffee? How about quilting? Or maybe just coffee colors to use for quilting? I would say yes to all three! One of my favorite Moda fabric designers, Deb Strain, designed a line of fabrics called Java using lovely browns, creams, greens, oranges, blues, reds and black. Her prints are all cozy and warm, just how a good cup of coffee makes you feel on a cold fall morning. This table runner uses Java and a couple of other coordinating fabrics I had on hand to warm up your kitchen table. Keep on reading and you'll see what I mean...

Lovely, warm, fall colors in a 39 1/2 x 14 1/4 inch table runner with a delicious coffee theme!

Just look at all those coffee beans!

And coffee cups, pots, flavors...how delicious!

How colorful!

And it's reversible too!

This table runner design is of my own making and used one charm pack of Java and some leftover coffee theme fabric from an apron I had made a while ago and some Kona bone colored fabric. It is reversible as you can see. This little gem will be making an appearance over in my Etsy shop very soon, along with a few other new items I have completed recently, so be sure to stop over and take a peek.

Happy Stitching!

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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Oh My! ~ Another New Tote Bag!

Oh My goodness! I'm on a Tote Bag Making roll right now, and truly loving every minute of it! Today's bag is fresh off the sewing machine and, Oh My, is it colorful! I do enjoy sewing with colorful fabrics, and this collection certainly fits the bill. Oh My, you simply must keep on reading so you can see just what I mean!

This little gem of a tote bag is made with squares from the fabric line Oh My! by Sanae for Moda Fabrics, and the eye-popping colors and designs are inspired by the designer's homeland of Japan.

These colors would be perfect for any season of the year. This bag is not too big and not too small, but just the right size for using as a purse, a project bag, a library bag or even an overnight bag.

The inside of the bag is fully lined with top quality quilting fabric, and has two pockets on each side for a total of four pockets.

The interfacing used in this bag is Peltex which is a very stiff, but flexible and washable, interfacing which allows the bag to hold itself up without being floppy.

This bag measures 4 by 14 inches on its boxed bottom, 18 inches across the top from side seam to side seam, 11 1/2 inches tall, and the handles extend 7 inches from the top edge of the bag to the top of each handle in the middle. It will be available for purchase over in my Etsy shop along with my other tote bags, quilts, original patterns, afghans and other crocheted items.

My summer break from nursing school is really moving along quickly. In another five weeks, I'll be hitting the books again and leaving my sewing machine to gather dust in the basement until next spring. I have a few more tote bags planned, some aprons and a few other sewing projects, besides my crochet projects that keep my hands busy in the evenings. I'm planning ahead this year and making a few crocheted items that have been popular last minute requests just before Halloween the past few years, and I'll be sharing those here soon. I might even include a little tutorial so you can make one yourself!

Happy Stitching!

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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Teddy Bear Paperdoll Tote Bags

Those snowy pictures from way back in March seem like such a distant memory as I sit here in the heat of the summer, and that afghan I was working on then looks as much like a torture device as the rack right about now! Amazing how one's perspective changes with the seasons!

It's about two months past the end of my second semester in nursing school and a lot has happened since taking that last final exam and giving my brain a rest. We took a family road trip to Disney World, my brother and his family came to visit, our children finished their 4th and 6th grade years of school, and just this week I have finally been able to spend some quality time in my sewing room again. So far, this summer has been just what the doctor ordered!

Keep on reading to see the darling teddy bear paperdoll tote bags I made yesterday. There are two of them exactly the same, and these would be so perfect for anyone of any age to use as a library bag, a project bag, an overnight-at-Grandma's bag, a travel bag, a beach bag, or for any other purpose.

Isn't this fabric just the cutest?

The entire outsides of the bags, plus the handles, are made using this darling teddy bear paperdoll fabric.

The insides of both bags are lined with top quality 100% cotton quilting fabric in a bright and happy orange. There is also a removable stiff bottom in each bag to keep the bag bottoms flat.

The sides of these bags are floppy, making them lightweight and perfect for carrying a little or a lot.

Can't you picture a pair of twins heading off to Grandma's house with their matching teddy bear totes? Too cute!

These bags each measure 5 by 14 inches at the boxed base, 19 inches across the top from side seam to side seam, and 14 inches tall. You can check them out over in my Etsy shop if you're interested in purchasing one or both.

I've linked this post and a few others here:

Behind the Seams Sewing

and here:

In a few days, I'll also be showing an afghan that I have completed and a woven fabric basket in gorgeous fall colors. It feels so nice to have my creative juices flowing once again, and I'm trying to make the most of the time I have before semester 3 begins in September!

Are you being creative this summer too? I'd love to know!

Happy Stitching!

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