Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas Gifts

In September I got such an idea to knit a shawl as a Christmas gift for my mom. She always enjoys handmade gifts the most. Even if I'm no longer a child  :-)

I decided for Holden shawlette from Ravelry database. The pattern is available for free and can be found here. I chose a brown-orange yarn and it already looked well during knitting...

but the result after blocking was even much more amazing...

I'm looking forward to evening when my mom finds it under the Christmas tree :-)

And I've made also a shawl for my boyfriend's mom and sister, but I have to take some photos first.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Yellow Charm Bag

I went shopping and as it happens I visited one of my favorite yarn shops as well. I discovered this lovely yellow ribbon yarn and just had to buy it.

I came back home and thought a while about what I would knit from it. I didn't have to think too long and decided to make a new bag :-)

I was searching for some very easy pattern, as working with this kind of yarn is not as easy as I thought it would be. I was inspired by Debbie Stoller's Stitch 'N Bitch: Knitter's Handbook.

The bag is made from a knitted rectangle, which is then folded in a half, sewn at the side and bottom, and lined. The original bag has bamboo handels, but I tried to make a "cheaper" version of handels from silicon tube used in aquarium. I was inspired by one of my old bags I bought a couple of years ago.

I just cut 2 same long pieces of the tube, joined their edges together to form circles and sewn them to bag. As the bag is not too big, the handles are strong enough. And I think it looks just well...

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Weird summer

In April I started to work on a crocheted top. But I was really disappointed by weather of this summer. Even if I prefer mild temperatures instead of hot weather, rain and 20 °C is not what I imagined. So I had no motivation to finish it. But now it's finally completed so I could take some photos.

It's made according to White Hot Halter pattern, which is available for free on Ravelry.

The pattern used in body is very easy to make, but also very effective. And the cups fit amazingly. I hope there will be more occasions to put it on next summer... 

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Feast of St. Ludmila

As it was feast of St. Ludmila on Friday, I bought myself a little gift. I ordered some yarns from Vlnap a.s. I just love unwrapping packages...

There's a lot of things I'm going to do...

But it's not just for me. I will make some Christmas presents for my mom, my boyfriend's mom and his sister. When I was on holiday this summer I started to work on a lacy shawl according to Little Shells pattern, which is available for free on Ravelry. And I liked it so much I decided to make some more shawls as gifts for Christmas. Just hope I will finish them on time :-)

Sunday, July 31, 2011

July moving

At the end of June I said goodbye to my roommates and my boyfriend finally moved to my flat. Almost the whole July we spent by painting, arranging, buying new things and throwing old things away... 

Even if everything is not at the right place yet, we can already live here. And it will be just better and better. Now I just start to enjoy the new living. I have some plans and ideas how to make our flat even more beautiful. I just hope my boyfriend will manage the number of pillows I'm going to make :-)

Monday, June 20, 2011

Magenta Shrug

After a long time I wanted to knit some lace pattern again. It's a likeable change to work on something more difficult and have to think about every stitch. But it's really not a good idea if you like knitting while watching TV... too many mistakes...

But if you retain attention, the result is always worth. I wanted to make something else than a shawl  or scarf and decided for a shrug. I found so many beautiful patterns on Ravelry I almost could not choose just one of them. After all I chose Chocolate shrug by Katya Gorbacheva. It's available for free.

 You can find it here.

 Except the lace pattern, I was not worry about anything else. I just knitted a lace band...

... blocked it...

... and sew the ends of band to form sleeves. And a new shrug for cold spring evenings is finished :-)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Granny Square Bag

I really like Granny square motifs, but I've never tried to make anything out of them. Until now. I decided for a bag which consists of 16 Freesia squares (showed on the picture below). The original pattern can be found here.  

I was little bit worried about blocking the squares. But everything fell out well and all the squares were the same, with the same measurements.

Blocked squares were crocheted together with a row of single crochet according to the scheme from Inga's crocheted bag from Ravelry database. A different granny square is described here, also nice but not too suitable for my one-color project.

You can download the pattern here.
And here is the result of my effort...

I just love it, but I'm going to add a lining in addition to avoid things falling through. I decided for a fabric in a contrast color that would emphasize design of the bag. I used about half a yard of fabric.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Patchwork Table Runner

My mom loves fabric table cloths. She sews most of them. And because all of them are circular, oval-shaped respectively, after sewing the table cloth, there are four corners of fabric remaining. And that's what always warms the heart of mine. I usually use it for patchwork table runner or some pillows. 

The last time my mom wanted a really springy, optimistic table cloth. She bought a beautiful, bright green fabric and a piece of the same fabric in pink. She already thinks ahead :-)

And this is what I used it for:

and in detail with little help of my brother

Some time ago I was working on three pillow from the same kind of scraps. Each of them has a different design, all very classical. Unfortunatelly I don't remember names of these blocks anymore.  As I wanted  them to create a set I bought a fabric for back side of pillows and borders in the same color. And I gave them my mom as a Christmas gift.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Summer Handbag

I found out an awful truth. I suffer from an acute lack of handbags :-D Recently I had to set some of my older bags aside, they were not looking good any more. That's a disadvantage of non-leather handbags. So I need a new one. I decided I would make some, more precisely crochet some. I realize it won't keep fine forever, but the cost of such bag is much lower than that of leather one, so let's just start working...

The first of a number of bags I'd like to make is a small handbag made according to the Natural Bouclé Bag pattern, which is available for free at Ravelry. The original pattern is written in Japanese, but there is also an English transcription, which includes the pattern for making of flowers as well. The pattern can be easily modified, if you prefer bigger handbags. 

If you want to line the bag, I recommend to sew it before you start working on border sides. It's much easier to line a rectangle...

When I finished the bag, there was about half a ball of yarn remaining. I decided to utilize a part at least and make a new sock for my mobile phone. I needed some better one than this old one...

I discovered an easy but very nice pattern at Ravelry. It's also available for free.  

I think it's ideal couple...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Atarashii Cosmetic Bag

As I travel a lot to visit my boyfriend, my parents or grandparents, I needed a cosmetic bag for all the necessary things I usually take along. And here it is:

The bag consists of 12 squares made by a technique of Japanese folded patchwork called Atarashii. A big advantage of this method is that if you finish the square, it's complete and you don't need to line it. It's not too difficult to make it, but it needs a bit of patience.

Each finished square consists of a square and a circle. First you need to make a template, which should look like this:

Size of the inner square will be size of the finished square, you can make it in desired measurements. Make one paper template for square and as many circle templates as number of blocks that will be done. 
Cut one square from inner fabric and batting (without seam allowances!) and one circle from outer fabric with 0.5" seam allowance for each block. Pin the circle paper template in the center of each fabric circle, stitch the seam allowance, tighten the thread and iron.

When you finish the ironing, take the paper template carefully out and remove the thread. Pin squares (both fabric and batting) in center of circles according to the scheme and bend the circle around square (with seam allowance hidden inside).

Now everything is prepared for sewing. Starting in a corner, sew all the layers together. Seams are shown on the picture below:

Finished squares can be sewn together with small stitches to create e.g. coasters, potholders, any bags or anything you can imagine.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Fancy Flowerpot Cover

This weekend I resolved two problems at once - how to reuse plastic bags and how to decorate flowerpots for outside use. All I needed was a couple of bags and a big crochet hook. And I think it looks just fine...

A few months ago I saw somewhere bags, wallets and baskets that were made out of plastic bags or VHS tapes. It's an interesting idea, but I don't long for a plastic handbag. But now I found a way how to try crocheting from plastic bags.

I used a plastic box that packed meat is sold in as a case where flowers are placed in.

Then I needed some plastic bags of various colors. I recommend to use thinner ones, so you can make more flexible "yarn", which is easier to crochet with. To prepare the "yarn" (I don't know how to call it alternatively), simply smooth the bag, fold it to quater and cut 1" stripes.  

You will get separate stripes (circles respectively), which need to be joined to create a long thread.

Joining of stripes is very simple. Just slip one loop (green one) through the second loop (red one), slip the opposite end of the green stripe through the loop of green stripe and draw down. You get a connection that can be disconnected any time and it's invisible in the finished work.

With hook 10 (N/P) I made a chain as long as the circumference of the box was, joined with slip stitch to make a circle and made couple of rounds of single crochets. Then I just put it on the plastic box and the cover for flowerpots was finished.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Mesh Bag

I remember when I was a child my granny was used to carry groceries in a mesh bag. It was very popular and functional bag. Recently they seem to appear more and more often just like other kinds of shopping bags that can be reused. As I don't like plastic bags too much I decided to make one.

I searched through Ravelry database and chose Farmer's Market Bag. The pattern is free to download, you can find it here (registration required). I was thinking about the proper yarn. It should be strong enough to hold couple of kilograms. My mom advised me to use Chemlonka. It's a "forgotten" yarn made out of 100% polypropylene, which used to be very favorite in 70's and 80's.

The bag is made according to the pattern mentioned above but with different handles. I made 5 rounds of half-double crochets (HDC) and then I divided stitches as follows: 17 HDC, CH 26, skip 26 stitches, 34 HDC, CH 26, skip 26 sts, 17 HDC. In next round I made 1 HDC in each HDC and chain around. And then I made another 4 rows of HDCs.

I think I fell in love with crocheting of bags :-) I'm already working on next one, which will be made out of granny-squares.