Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tote Bags

No matter how many you already have, you can always use another tote bag! I'm always looking for an extra bag to haul around my stuff. They also make great gifts! Tote bags are a super easy sewing project and there are a ton of blogland tutorials you can follow (here, here, or here) and then adapt to make your own.

These two bags were made for the 5 year old daughters of two dear friends...

But I wanted a cute new bag too! Recently a neighbor was holding a garage sale and I found the most amazing fabric on sale for $2 a yard! With a 1/2 yard of the oilcloth (that was all she had) and one yard of the polka dots I made a new "Cath Kidston" look-a-like bad for $3! Three dollars, I tell 'ya!

Yep, that is a special book on the table in the background!
This was the first time I've sewn with oilcloth and the oilcloth is a little tricky (check out this tutorial) but the results are great and I'm so happy with it! My daughter is jealous, so it looks like I'll be making another one - here's hoping that I can find another screaming fabric deal!!

Knit Baby Shower Gifts

I'm always on the hunt for a darling pattern that I can crochet or knit into a meaningful baby shower gift. Hadley Fierlinger's gorgeous mary jane bootie pattern is a favorite of mine because it knits up fast and easy and the finished booties turn out super lovely. The pattern also works well for boys or girls - I just knit in a yummy brown color for the boys. This pattern calls for a 4-ply fingering weight yarn, and my favorite to use is Dale of Norway's Baby Ull 100% merino wool.

I found this lovely little knit vest pattern on Ravelry by Georgie Hallam (or visit her blog), which knits up into a super hip baby/kids vest, but the pattern calls for a DK/8-ply yarn. I wanted to use the Baby Ull yarn (so it would match perfectly to the baby booties) so I knit the 9 month pattern size using the Baby Ull yarn on a size 3 needle and the sizing came out perfectly! I was hoping that both the booties and vest would only use up 1 50g skein of yarn, but it needed a little bit more. So I adjusted the vest pattern a little so that it uses less yarn.

Knitting the vest without the addition garter stitch portion below the armholes did the trick. These are being packed and shipped off to dear procreating friends!

Aren't they yummy?
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