Hooked on Needles

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Two Crocheted Afghans ~ Wavy & Diagonal Stripes

As mentioned in my recent post, here are a few pictures of the two commissioned afghans that were such a pleasure to make for the children a friend. She knew of my love of crocheting and wanted a handmade afghan for each of her children, so she asked me to make one for her daughter in purples and blues and one for her son in blues and white. She allowed me to choose the design and the shades. After trying a few different stitches, discussed HERE, these are the two afghans I delivered just in time for Christmas.

This is the boy's afghan, done in white and two shades of blue in a simple corner-to-corner stitch. It is the size of the top of a twin bed so this little guy can grow into this afghan and in the blink of an eye, he will be packing it up to bring with him to college!

I worked fourteen rows for the blue stripes and four rows for the white stripes.

Then I worked a simple border of single crochet around the afghan to give it a little more width. Starting with white, I did a rounds of each color ending in the dark blue. The wide stripes of blues contrasting with the smaller stripes of white give this afghan a manly look that will be perfect for this little boy even when he's all grown up.

For the girl's afghan, I really wanted something more delicate and feminine, and it had to look good with three shades of two different colors plus soft white in between. After auditioning a few stitches as shown HERE, I landed on Lucy's ripple stitch from Attic24. If you are a crochet fan but you've never checked out Attic24, you really must! Lucy is always good for some hooky inspiration, lots of awesome color, and fabulous scenic pictures from her beautiful home in England.

This afghan is also the size of the top of a twin bed. No border was needed for this one so once all the ends were neatly tucked away, it was complete.

This was my first use of Lucy's ripple pattern and I really loved working it. Working the first row of each two-row color section into the back loop gives the afghan a real nice dimension and texture, and adds to the ripple effect. It worked up very quickly too since each row is double crochet.

Since finishing these two afghans, I have also finished another even larger afghan using the corner-to-corner stitch. This one will be a wedding gift for a co-worker and I'll post pictures of that one soon. And I've started another project for the same friend who asked for these two afghans pictured in this post. She's keeping me busy! I'll share that one here soon too. What has been keeping your hands busy this winter? I'd love to know!

Happy Stitching!

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Monday, March 12, 2018

Winter Crocheting, Sewing and More

It's been a fun and productive winter here in New England thanks to some much needed days in my sewing room on the days I am not working at my Real Job. I am determined to continue using up fabric from my stash to make practical and desirable things for my Etsy shop, in between commissioned projects like the afghans I mentioned in the previous post and a few other things. I will have to dig up pictures of the two afghans I was starting on in that post to share here because I think some of you readers out there might like to try the same designs.

Today, however, I wanted to share two tote bags that were made using what was left of a jelly roll from another project, some black denim leftover from a large commissioned project of black aprons for a local tool and nail store and some yardage for the linings.

This first bag is made using instructions from a book I purchased a long time ago called Hold It, and as you can probably guess, it is a book about sewing all sorts of things that hold stuff! I have made this particular bag many times over the years, sometimes following the instructions and sometimes changing it up to suit my needs or the desires of a client. You can see pictures of some of the bags I have made using this design by clicking HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE.

The awesome thing about this design is the zippered extension which adds about 5 inches of height to the bag when extended upwards. The bag can be used without the extension pulled up so it is just like a regular open tote bag, or it can be zipped with the extension down inside the bag, or the extension can be pulled up and zipped to keep everything safe inside. It is my go-to bag design for a sturdy and practical bag.

The second bag is a simple open tote with pockets on the inside and no zippered extension. Both bags feature strips of fabric in warm fall colors and designs, quilted on the outside, and full lining with pockets on the inside.

More pictures and measurement information are available in the listings in my Etsy shop. If you're more into the spring look, there is also a very bright and cheerful spring tote bag available too. Click HERE to get to my shop.

It looks like we are going to have another snow day here tomorrow so perhaps between shoveling sessions with my husband and kids, I will try to find pictures of the afghans to share. I'm also working on another one, a huge corner-to-corner afghan for a wedding gift. I'll save that one to share once it is complete. What are you working on this winter?

Happy Stitching!

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