Crocheting!

I learned how to crotchet when my son Isaac was just a year old.  He had a lot of problem with ear infections, and my mom told me that her mother always kept the kids ears covered even after ear infections.  The ears were more sensitive to cold and wind and probably it helped keep additional ear infections from forming.  So I needed to learn how to create a hat that would cover my sons ears. I could have bought one, but I’m rather frugal, and it wasn’t the season for warm hats anyway. So it was definitely worth a try to learn.  So my sister-in-law showed me the basics and youtube videos taught me everything else!  Youtube tutorials are wonderful when I cannot understand the lingo of crocheting instructions.  The hats worked pretty well, so I branched out from there to a scarf.  Infinity scarves are really cute so I decided that would be my next project.

My 3rd attempt!

My 3rd attempt!

There is definitely a learning curve!  I made my first infinity scarf and when I tried on the finished product, it nearly choked me. When the instructions say “check your guage” you really should!  After I unraveled the scarf, I measured it out.  I was 12 inches short!!  That is a lot, no wonder it choked me!  So then attempt number 2, I just made a rather basic error of misreading the instructions, thankfully I discovered the error rather early.  So my 3rd attempt finally created a useable scarf.

On to my next project!  I have always wanted an afghan just like mom has. I have fond memories of that blue chevron-patterened afghan.  Tricia and I used to sit on the couch with our feet on the piano bench, draping the afghan over our legs and the space heater blowing heat under the blanket.  It kept us nice and cozy warm. 🙂  So, I tried a pattern that I found off of pinterest.  Utter failure.  I guess I don’t know the lingo well enough to read a pattern and follow it.  So I decided I would just use the knowledge I already knew and make a blanket.  But it wouldn’t be chevron-patterened or an afghan really.  What makes an afghan, an afghan is the ridges.  So it’s not a smooth blanket. So anyway, I crocheted away, and when I finished, guess what? The top was about 5 feet wide and the bottom about 3 feet.  Bummer.  So, I stuffed it in a closet and tried to forget about it.

Just a month or so ago, I went to a friends house, who has crocheted some beautiful afghans, and she taught me her pattern.  Wow was it simple. So I went home, pulled out that failed-blanket and began unraveling.  The irony of it, is that it has been a really warm winter.  And by the time I finish this blanket, it will probably be July.  Hot, hot, hot.  Last week the high’s were in the upper 90’s.  All week.  Although I never enjoyed the seemingly endless winter in the midwest, I don’t like the perpetual summer we’ve been having here on the west coast.  So, back to my blanket.  I am about halfway done.

Chevron Afghan

Chevron Afghan – see the ridges?

I try to get one stripe done a week, which is a challenge.  It is not difficult to do, but time consuming.  I hope to make it about 6 feet long.  Maybe 7.  I want to be able to lay down and be covered by the blanket.  Not have my toes sticking out at the end.  My kids love the blanket, it is perfect size for them right now!  And hopefully by the the time the weather gets cooler – in about 7 months, I’ll have a nice warm blanket to cuddle under!

~Mindy~

 

 

 

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Quilling fun

Next weekend, I get to have a fun getaway with a couple of friends and scrapbook a little.  A few coworkers and I used to always go to Archivers a few nights a year to make Christmas cards, scrapbook, and have some fun.  Since Archivers closed, one friend decided to invite us all to a weekend of scrapbooking at her house with some giveaways and free Make & Takes like we’d have at Archivers.  🙂

So, I thought I’d do a Make & Take, too, but I had to have some fun & try out a few things I found on Pinterest.

If you’ve never done Quilling, it’s great!  To try to show you what I do, I’ve included a few pictures below.  I saw this beautiful tree on Pinterest, so I worked to make one similar.  (It’s almost impossible for me to make one exactly like someone else.  I don’t think I know all the secrets of Quilling yet.)

I started out by making 2 “S” scrolls, 2 “C” scrolls, & 3 “Y” scrolls.  I bet you can tell why they’re called that!  And I also made some loose “1/2 S” scrolls (on the right in the picture below).  I doubt that’s really what they’re called, but that’s the best way I have to explain them.

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And then I put it all together by gluing them in place on a card.

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Can you tell it’s a tree?  I hope so!  Lastly, I add some of my favorite embellishments, and ta-da!  How fun!

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For my “Make & Take”, I made the following card, which is a lot more simple.  I even got to use a crimper.  It reminded me of crimping our hair as girls.  I wonder if Mom still has that hair crimper.

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Hope you had fun reading up on my latest fun.  Love you, sisters!

Darcy

Tile Grout

I have mostly tile and hardwood floors.  And tile counters in my kitchen and my bathrooms.  That is a lot of tile.  I love my tile floors (I don’t like the tile counters, but that’s another story.)  But what I do not love, is the grout.  Why? It’s dirty.  Filthy dirty.  I wouldn’t notice it, except that my mother-in-law had a buffet that covered a large section of the tile for close to 20 years.  I don’t have a buffet to cover that area so there is one large section of grout that is a nice peachy tan color.  The rest is brown.  Dark brown.  So I went to Home Depot and got my tools.  TileLab Grout Cleaner and Polyblend Grout Renew.

My supplies

My supplies

So I first sprayed the grout with cleaner and used a grout (hard-bristled) brush.  But I found that actually was scrubbing the tile too much.  Probably cleaning the tile to what that used to look like too.  But that will be a project for another day.  Or year.  Abigail, my 4 year old helped me scrub. We used old toothbrushes.  Abigail thought it was fun. 🙂  We also watched Jane Austen movies as we scrubbed.  Good bonding time. It amazed me how well the cleaner worked.  We used a cloth to wipe away the cleaner and voila.

Grout cleaned with cleaner vs. non-cleaned grout.

Grout cleaned with cleaner vs. non-cleaned grout.

It took me several hours a day and many days to complete all the tile that runs through my house: dining room, kitchen, hallway and 2 bathrooms. But it was done and looked wonderful.  But I couldn’t stop there!  I discovered that when the dishwasher was installed, two tiles were removed and when they were put back in, they color-matched the grout with the dirty brown grout.  So I could scrub and scrub and scrub and those two tiles would be surrounded by dark brown grout.  So out comes the the grout colorant and sealant. I picked a brown rather than a pinkish tan color.  Maybe the dirt wouldn’t show as bad? It didn’t end up being as dark as I thought it would be, but it looks great.  But it takes much much longer to do.  I do one side of the tile at a time, brush in the colorant, wipe away the excess on the tiles before it dries, and move on.  And no little helper for this.  Too difficult. But the results are again wonderful.

Non-colored grout vs. colored

Non-colored grout vs. colored

Click on the picture to enlarge it and the difference will be much more apparent.  Trust me, click on it.  The grout has an even color to it, rather than shades of light and dark, some dirty spots I couldn’t brush away, etc.  And it’s a sealant so hopefully this means it’ll stay this color longer and keep the grout from deteriorating.  I’m not done with the whole house yet.  I lost my enthusiasm and drive when it became such a slow process.  So I don’t use every spare minute on it, like I used to, but I keep working on it. Definitely worth it! It makes the tile look brand new!!

And my funny kid quip: My 4 year old went outside to play in the 60 degree weather.  She came inside and told me: it’s freezing out there, it’s like Iowa!

~Mindy~

A fancy pillow (sort of)

Dear sisters,

I’ve been looking around pinterest for some DIY sewing ideas and found one that really intrigued me.  It was a pretty fancy looking pillow, but I decided after reading the directions that it couldn’t be too hard.  I kept it in mind for a future project. (See the tutorial here.)

All done!

All done! The fabric is actually an off-white sort of color.  I think it looks pretty nice on our dark brown couch.

Some time later I stumbled upon some really cool cording on clearance at Walmart (yes, walmart).  I thought it would look really cool on the pillow idea, so I bought myself some fabric for the pillow, too. In the end, I decided that I probably won’t do another one of these for a while.  The fabric frayed a lot and pulled … and I had to use a LOT of pins to get the gathers to stay put while I sewed it down.

Working on the gathered part on front of the pillow.

Working on the gathered part on front of the pillow.

So it turns out that I really have no idea what I’m doing with the cord around the edges.  I sewed it in but I couldn’t get very close; I ended up sewing around the whole pillow by hand to get the seam tight against the cord.  Ugh!  But the finished product looks pretty cool.

The back of the pillow.  Its a slip cover but it doesn't fit very well, making a little part of the pillow show through the opening.

The back of the pillow. Its a slip cover but it doesn’t fit very well, making a little part of the pillow show through the opening.

I did also try to make this a slip cover – without reading any sort of instruction on how to do it.  After I sewed the cord in by hand the slip cover ended up a little small, and so it doesn’t fit super well anymore.  Oh well.  I like to think it was a valiant effort on my part, and still looks kinda neat.  Plus I learned quite a few things about which fabrics NOT to use, and that sewing in cord is way harder than it looks!  (Or I just don’t know what I’m doing :D).  So not one of my best projects, but definitely a learning experience.

~T~

A Second Dose of Fun

Here it is!  Bag Number 2!

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I quite like this one.  Its more on the plain side, but I LOVE the bright colors.  I decided that since I needed some projects to test out my new sewing machine I’d make some “beach bags” for my sister in laws.  This one is for Maria (hence the big “M” on the back, see below).  She loves orange and bright and unusual things.  I hope she likes it!

My felt squares and lining fabric for Maria's bag

My felt squares and lining fabric for Maria’s bag

I got the fabric and some pre-cut felt squares at a local fabric store.  I also used some white canvas type fabric for the outside of the bag.  This will make it a little more sturdy and hold its shape a little better.  The colored print is just a cotton.

I started out by cutting two squares of the lining (colored print) and the white canvas.  I also cut some pedals from the colored felt.  These I arranged on one of the white squares.  I took a picture so that I remembered how I had placed them when it came time to sew them down!

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I really wanted this to be in the corner of the bag, but at the time I neglected to leave myself space for the flat bottom of the bag and the “side.”  I ended up seam-ripping a LOT and inserting a 4″ section to the bottom of this piece.  Otherwise my flower would have been mostly hidden when the bag was finished.

The pedals all sewed down!

The pedals all sewed down!

I sewed down the pedals one at a time.  I tried to sew close to the edge, but you have to be careful with felt as the thread will pull right through it if there is too much stress on it.  I decided after I had finished that I should have used a smaller stitch that what I did, but I wasn’t about to rip out all of those seams and start over!

Now its time to assemble the bag.  I started with the colored fabric, right side to right side.  I sewed down two opposite sides (like I did with my first bag).  The first two stitches will make the fabric into a loop.  Flatten the loop so that the two seams are on top of each other, in the middle of the fabric.

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Then sew across the length (this will be the bottom).  Then its time for a box corner.  This time I took a picture!  Press the corner into a triangle.  Sew across.

Box corner

Box corner

The seam that you see in the picture above is the 3rd stitch, or the bottom.  I used the ruler to make sure that the corner would be square, then drew some guidelines.  We will stitch along the ruler, all the way across.  I did this for both corners.

I followed similar steps with the white fabric, except that I left the side seams on the side.  Same basic process, but more seams end up in the corner.  Once I had both pieces sewed into a bag-like-fashion, (and adjusted for the bad placement of the flower) I decided the bag needed more.  I printed a big “M” onto a plain piece of paper, the same size as some extra felt that I had left over.  Instead of trying to cut out the “M” and sew carefully just inside the edge (like I did for the pedals), I cheated.  I pinned the felt AND the paper right to the bag!

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I pinned the felt and paper “M” strategically and started to sew.  Using the printed “M” as a guide, I sewed right on top of the lines.  It made some nice crunchy sounds and was a bit difficult to maneuver.  At this point I wished I had thought of the “M” before I sewed the two white squares together to make the bag.  Having to be sure I didn’t sew all the way through BOTH pieces of fabric was just another difficulty that could have been avoided, but oh well!  After i finished sewing all the way around, I ripped off the paper (carefully, though).

I still wasn’t quite pleased with the amount of color on the bag so I decided to roll the top of the bag over, exposing the lining material.  This wasn’t in the original plan, nor was the big “M” on the back.  I sort of made it up as I went along, bugging my husband for his opinion while he tried to run on our treadmill in the basement.

I actually sewed the lining to the white fabric, good side to good side, with the white fabric on the inside.  I sewed around the top, leaving a hole to flip the whole bag inside out.  This essentially hides the seam I used to attach the lining to the fabric.  Then I folded the top over, and sewed 1/4″ from the edge, all the way around.  This holds the folded over part in place.  I like to do double seams, so I sewed a similar stitch 1/4″ around the top.

I used some of the white canvas for handles, and sewed these in place, trying to sew in line with the double seams holding the flap in place.  I think it looks cleaner this way.  I hid all of my “starting” and “ending” strings inside the bag by hand with a spare needle.

The front of the bag

The front of the bag

The back of the bag.  "M" for Maria!

The back of the bag. “M” for Maria!

And there you go!  This one turned out MUCH different than I had planned… but I think it ended up better.  That is a lot of what I enjoy about sewing.  I actually have a plan, but really you never know how its going to turn out.  You don’t have to be super awesome at sewing to sew.  And it doesn’t matter if you mess up, which I did!  Because I seamed ripped and even added some extra pieces of fabric to make up for it.  It still turned out just fine 🙂

I do have a plan for another bag… but its quite complicated and I’m not sure I have the patience for it just yet!  Maybe this summer sometime 🙂

~ T ~

Scrapbooking and Iris Folding

As you may know, I love to scrapbook and make cards.  Occasionally, I go to an Archivers Scrap Night with some co-workers (Karen and Sharon).  Often, we’re joined by Leanne, a long-time friend of Karen’s.  It is great fun!  And it’s probably one of the few nights I ever stay up until midnight!

My main goal of the night was to make cards, so here are a few of them:

 

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I really enjoy using some embossing (using embossing folders rather than powder) on cards when I can.  One of my favorite ones is a cupcake with a candle.  This is perfect for a birthday card!

 

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After making about 14 cards, I thought it was time for scrapbook pages.  You can tell I’m really behind (as they’re from when Ally was about 1 1/2 years of age), but here they are:

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While I was there, Leanne was making one of the most beautiful cards I’ve seen.  It’s using a technique called “Iris Folding”.  I love it!  I didn’t quite have enough time to work on it there, so the next day, I gave it a try.

First, I googled to find a pattern.  (This is a necessity for a beginner!)  I found a wonderful little onesie pattern which I thought would be perfect for a baby card. Before I could begin, I printed off 2 copies of the pattern, traced one and cut it out (using an X-acto knife), and taped the 2nd pattern behind it.  I picked out 4 coordinating papers, cut 3/4 inch strips (although I learned it would be better to do 1 inch strips), and laid them out.

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Then, I scored each one in half, and I was really ready to begin.  🙂  I taped portions of the paper (with the fold facing to the inside), on numbers 1-3.  It then looks as follows:

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When I was all done, it looks like this.  Pretty, right?  😉

 

 

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Okay, that was the back side.  Now to flip it over for the front:

DSCN3730I LOVE IT!  That was fun to do!  Time-consuming, yes, but fun!  I can’t wait to add an embellishment or two and use the card!  I have another pattern which I might try to get done yet today.  If you like to try something new or want to make a card really special/unique, I highly recommend giving this a try!

~D~

Starting a Garden

Well, I’ve lived in California for almost three years now. Now that we own our house I decided it was time to plant a garden.  Did you know that in California people BUY soil to plant a garden? I’m just used to that rich, dark Iowa soil that grows everything.  Well, I didn’t buy soil.  I just decided I would use miracle grow instead. 🙂  And to be economical I decided to buy seeds rather than buying the small plants that have been started for you already.  I can get many more plants with a lot less money, if I prosper.  I wanted to be successful with the seeds, so I bought a starter-grower thingy. Also known as a seed starter tray.  I planted tomatoes (the skinny little plants) and pumpkins (the big ones.)

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Then I ran out of room!  So the rest of the seeds will just have to go straight into the ground. While I left those plants to grow, I began digging up the weeds and grass for my garden.  I made a little bit of progress:

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So there is my partially dug up garden, which took a lot of work. There were a LOT of weeds.  First I dug it up and pulled the grass and weeds including their roots.  It was a lot of work.  But my little helpers, 2 year old Isaac, and 4 year old Abigail would take the weeds and put them in a pile for me.  Until they got bored, of course. Saraiah came over and helped me plant some seeds.  I purchased 10 year old Saraiah’s services as Mommy’s helper at my church’s silent auction.  So we planted cilantro, watermelon, and sweetcorn.  But alas, as I was digging up more of my garden to remove weeds I saw a long piece of grass about 2 feet outside my garden wiggle to and fro and then disappear into the ground! I took my shovel and slammed it into the ground as hard and deep as I could.  Did I get the rotten gopher? I do not know.  I brought the subject up to my husband, Josh, who promptly told me I better gopher-proof it.  *Sigh* More back-breaking work.  I did my research and decided the best course of action would be to dig up 8 inches of soil and lay down wire.  Josh had leftover wire from when he built an aviary in the back yard as a high-schooler, so I already had that at hand. (We live in the house Josh grew up in.) So I found boards to lay around the garden to staple the wire to so it wouldn’t shift. It was difficult since I had part of the garden already planted.   I couldn’t just dig out the entire garden, but had to do it piece by piece.  I had to be careful not to throw dirt on top of the already planted areas and I felt as though I ended up doing double work. Here is the first section completed.

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And what did I find as I dug? A gopher hole.  Running the entire length of my garden, smack dab in the center.  Now I’m very thankful to my husband for telling me to gopher-proof. Most of time I worked I had my wonderful helpers at my side.  Not that they were actually helped. Just observing.  Or getting in the way.  Abigail peppered me with questions, and repeated the questions when she ran out of new questions.  Why are we digging up the garden? To lay the wire.  Why do we need to lay wire? To keep the gophers out. Why do you want to keep the gophers out? Ahh!!! It about drove me nuts! But I know she’s just curious and it was a great time to explain about gophers, how they live, what they eat, etc.  Science lesson in the garden!  Abigail would also wander around and was rather a nuisance getting in my way, sitting where I wanted to dig, standing in the pile of dirt watching it cascade back into the already-dug area.  She did help dig slowly, since her shovel was only a small spade.   But she was helping – in her own way, even if she did end up putting dirt back where I had just dug it out.  Is that what God feels like? Watching us try to do something, thinking we are doing good when we are actually undoing the good that was there before? But anyway, back to the garden.  My legs are killing me.  My hands have blisters.  And Abigail’s inquisitive mind is coming up with question after question. But I made more progress! Pushing the dirt over the first section, digging out the second.  Then I ran out of wire. 😦

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Well, it’s getting there, and meanwhile Abigail came up with a new topic of conversation.  Jesus’ crucifixion. Since it’s Easter time, she has been hearing the story of Jesus’ death quite a bit.  Why did Jesus die? Why did they want to kill him? Did he have to die that way to save us from our sins? Did he want to die?  I was amazed at some of her questions.  Especially when some of them I had never thought of myself.  DID Jesus have to die on a cross to save us from our sins? My response: Ask your daddy, because I don’t know. But then the repetition begins again.  I just wanted to tell her to stop asking questions.  Yet it brings to mind Matthew 19:14, “But Jesus said, Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”  Would I be hindering Abigail by refusing to answer her questions?

Back to the garden: so, the plants are growing.  What is growing? Sweetcorn!!!!! DSCN0128

I hope the gophers don’t destroy it.  (It’s in the non-gopher-proofed area.)

Now my husband comes to help, yay!  He wired the overlapping pieces together so there is virtually no way the gophers can get in.  He has been battling mice in our aviary and has learned that rodents are quite smart and can get through the smallest of cracks.  So now the wire is pretty tight and when pulled acts like one piece of wire.   So we can finally put the dirt back on!  And plant more plants!!   I did buy soil for my already-started tomatoes and pumpkins.   So I dug a small hole, filled it with store-bought soil and then planted the small plant in the soil.

Gopher-proof garden! (left side beyond the board buried is NOT gopher-proof)

Gopher-proof garden! (left side beyond the board buried is NOT gopher-proof)

Ahh…success.  Feels so good to see if after all that hard work!

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Pumpkins - the kind that are great for baking

Pumpkins – the kind that are great for baking

Watermelon - in the non-gopher-proofed area

Watermelon – in the non-gopher-proofed area

Sweetcorn - it's getting bigger!!!

Sweetcorn – it’s getting bigger!!! With strawberry plants in the background.

The cilantro I planted still has not popped up.  I hope it will, I’m being patient.  Trying anyway.  And now my garden has turned into an experiment – since only half is gopher-proofed.  We shall see if the gopher proofing was worth it.  Do the gophers eat my watermelon and sweetcorn? Is the gopher-proofed area really gopher-proofed? We will find out in a couple months!

~Mindy~

Sew cool!

My first project on my new sewing machine!

My first project on my new sewing machine!

My mom used to sew quite a bit.  She would always make me and my sister matching dresses for Easter and Christmas.  I’ve always been a bit of the creative type, so I dabbled in sewing pretty early.  The first project that I remember was a red and navy skirt from some scrap fabric.  I had the idea, but I didn’t know how to work the machine yet.  My mom ended up sewing it for me.  Basically it was just a tube that I pulled on for “play.”

I have since learned how to actually use a sewing machine.  Most of the things I have sewed were just ideas that I thought I’d try out.  What this means is I did a lot of pinning, and quite a bit of seam-ripping.

I saw a bag a few weeks ago that I thought was pretty cute, and looked fairly simple.  Plus I just got my own sewing machine this past Christmas and haven’t had chance to use it yet!  I was pretty excited to try it out.  I tried to take a few pictures while I was sewing, but I was a little too excited and I kept forgetting!

I got some fabric from a local store.  The solid is a canvas type fabric.  Its pretty stiff and sturdy.  I wanted the bag to be able to have a little bit of shape.  The print is also a more stiff type, but maybe not quiet as much as the yellow canvas.  I cut 2 rectangles from each fabric.  I used 18” x 20”.  I also cut two 4” x 43” strips from the yellow for the handles.

Fun bright fabrics!

Fun bright fabrics!

I started with the handles.  I folded the fabric in half and sewed the LONG way down one side.   (Generally I’d say fold good-side to good-side, but my canvas didn’t really seem to have a wrong or a right side).

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Then you need to turn the whole long tube/handle inside out, so that the seam is hidden inside.  This turned out to be a bit of work with the stiff canvas fabric!  Thankfully my husband helped me work on this while he watched some basketball on TV J  I found it was easiest sticking my thumb inside, pinching the fabric on the outside, then rolling my pointer finger down the fabric so that my thumb is exposed again.

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Basically I rolled the fabric between my thumb and forefinger.  It takes some pulling and pushing.

Then put your 2 outside rectangles together, right sides together.  Sew down the two opposite sides. This step will create a circle of fabric.  Fold the fabric so that your two seams are laying on top of each other in the middle.  Sew across the bottom to make the bag.

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Then we will do a box corner.  This is where I should have taken more pictures, but I was getting excited that it was actually turning into something recognizable!

Push the corners of the bag into a triangle shape, with the seam running down the middle of the triangle.  Then you’ll sew about two inches from the corner across to actually make a triangle shape.  (Google a box corner if this isn’t making sense.  Someone out there has to have a good example!)  Do this with the other corner.  Then repeat the whole bag sequence with your lining fabric.

Now we’ll add the handles to the outside fabric.  I pinned them down where I thought they looked good.  I brought the ends all the way to where the “bottom” of the bag was.

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I tucked the very end of the straps inside itself so that there is a better looking hem.  Sew from the top of the bag down the strap, across the bottom, then back up again.  I only did three sides, being sure not to sew the back ALL the way to the top of the bag.  You’ll need some room for a seam.  Do this for both handles.

See how I tucked the raw ends inside? It looks much cleaner this way.

See how I tucked the raw ends inside? It looks much cleaner this way.

Now stuff the “outside” fabric (mine is colored) INSIDE the “inside” fabric (mine is solid).  Put the fabric good-side to good-side.  Sew around the top attaching the outside to the lining.  DO NOT SEW ALL THE WAY AROUND!  You need to leave yourself an opening a few inches wide to flip the whole bag inside out.  Pull the whole bag through this hole so that you see both “right” sides, like it should be!  This also takes a little work as there is a lot of fabric and its fairly stiff!

After I sewed the lining to the outside.  I gave myself a pretty big seam allowance.

After I sewed the lining to the outside. I gave myself a pretty big seam allowance.

 

After flipping the bag inside out, I sewed around the top of the bag again, very close to the edge.  This time I went ALL the way around.  To help the seams hold (and because I think it looks nice) I sewed around the bag a THIRD time.  This time about a half inch from the edge.  So if you look closely at the pictures of the finished bag you’ll be able to see two lines going around the top.  This will help the lining stay on the inside and the outside stay on the outside.

After I nearly had the bag complete, I finished the square I started sewing to attach the handles.  I did one more stitch on each handle to complete the square.  This also attaches the lining to the outside.  This will help the lining stay put a little better when you’re putting things in the bag and taking them back out.

To finish it off I took out a needle and hid all the strings I had hanging everywhere from sewing.  My “starting” and “ending” strings were still hanging out because I hadn’t cut them off.  What I did was thread the needle with the string I had sticking out.  Then I put the needle into the fabric near where it was sticking out, then pushed the needle out an inch or so away.  Here is where I cut the string.  This way there is about an inch length’s worth of “tail” hidden inside the bag.

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Ta Da!  This bag is pretty fun and really not too hard (though as I’m typing it out it sounds very confusing!)  I already have an idea for my next one… stay tuned!

~ T ~