Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Crochet Bag- Happy Holidays

As promised, here is the crochet bag pattern, before Christmas......just.

Why does everything become so hectic at this time of the year? The days rush on by, the weather mostly heats up & so do the tempers of the drivers & shoppers- so much for good cheer to all men- more like look out for No.1 or I'll run you over if you get in my way!

I am watching a storm cell move in, from my sewing room window-the sky an eerie colour, with the occasional flash of lightening & roll of thunder in the distance, looks like it will be quite a storm, if we get it.

Tomorrow our 4 year old GS, his father (our no1 DS ) & his Mum arrive for Christmas-the little one has more of an understanding this year just what this is all about & told me it was only 4 more sleeps when he rang me the other day. There is nothing like having a little one in the house for Christmas.

I may have thought I finished all my sewing but some friends & DD had different ideas- they had me doing towels with names on them-these are turning out to be very popular , especially as they don't have to pay for the monogramming! Makes for a really lovely gift for them to give. While I was at the sewing machine I decided I needed to have a few gifts in stash so embroidered 8 silk covers to slide on over satin (cheap) coathangers- these look lovely when finished & I've found they make a good stocking filler.

My friend Mary gave me a good belly laugh the other day- I have my bra class on her site (http://www.andsewitisnet/ ) & when she gets questions relating to making bras or fitting problems she sends them onto me.

One lady wrote that she was a size 34 K & was having problems getting a bra to fit or even a pattern to make her own. What could she do?

Mary's DH has the same first 4 letters in his name as mine & she thought she forwarded the email onto me with her added "Any suggestions?"- it went instead to her DH- who replied back to Mary

"keep away from sailors"-talk about laugh, it gave me my belly laugh for the day!, I was so glad I didn't have my morning toast or tea in my mouth at the time!!!!

Happy Holidays to you

Here's the pattern I promised you: If you look at my pic you can see the change in colour- this is what you get when you crochet in bed with a lamp- you don't see what you are grabbing!

Crochet Shopping Bag


2 balls (50g) 72m/78 yd cotton 8ply (or similar)

6.0 mm crochet hook


read a pattern


sl-st- slip stitch,

dc, double crochet (or single crochet for the Americans)

Dec- decrease. worked as follows over 2 stitches

hook through st of previous row, yarn over hook, pull through, insert hook into next stitch of previous row, yarn over,pull through, yarn over, pull hook through all 3 loops on hook.

Tension- its not that important, as it after all a bag-as long as its not too tight or too loose.

Don't get too worried if your stitch numbers don't exactly match mine- just don't do the decreases over the handles.

with 6mm hook & yarn either start with a knot or slip stitch, make 3 ch,join with sl-st to make a circle,
Row1. 2ch (counts as stitch), 7 dc into ring, join sl-st to top of 2ch
Row2. 2ch, 1dc in same stitch, 2dc in each st to end of round, join sl-st to 2 ch (16 sts)
Row3. 2ch,1 dc in next stitch, repeat to end,join sl-st to h
Row4. as row 2 (32 sts)
Row5. as row 3
Row6. as row 2 (64sts)
Row7. as row 3.

Pattern. Body of bag.
place marker if desired (I never worried about it)

5ch,miss 1dc, sl-st into next dc, repeat until end of round reached.Do not 'finish' round, just keep going.

Continue with 5 ch, sl-st into ch loop of previous round until length desired.

20 rounds if you are tall & want a biggish bag

15 rounds if you are short or want a smaller bag
these bags will hold lots & stretch in both directions!
Mine is a few more but its HUGE! (probably a little too long)

Top & Handles

when you've reached the length you want after last sl-st, continue
2dc in same loop as sl-st, 3 dc in next loop, continue to end of round, join sl-st to first sl-st of round.
2ch,1dc into each dc of previous round, join sl-st to 2ch. repeat this row.
next row.
2ch, *1dc in next 4 dc of previous round, decrease on next 2 stitches* repeat to end, join sl-st
Handles rows

Row1. 2ch, 1dc in next 10 dc, 25ch,miss next 20 sts, 1dc into next 20 sts of previous round,25ch,miss next 20sts, 1dc into next 10 sts, join with sl-st to 2ch.
Row2. 2ch, 1dc in each dc & ch of previous round.
Row3. 2ch, 1dc, decrease over next 2 stitches, repeat (decrease) to handle, 1 dc in each dc of previous round along handle, then dec (as before) to next handle, 1 dc in each stitch along handle, dec (as before) to 2ch, join sl-st. Tie off.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Finished.....well, sort of.

I've finished! Not a gift for anyone left to make- I can't believe it....never before have I been this organised....and probably won't be ever again, either!

Not only have I finished, I've cleaned my sewing room up & tidied it as well-completed it off with a thorough vacuum through as well. It must be a full moon or something.LOL

This week I wrote my list out of everything I needed to get done & as we had a function Friday night & then backed up for another lunchtime one on Saturday I knew I had to be well organised to get it all done.
Larissa, one of the RN's from work ,asked me to put an initial on some bath towels- seems her DH doesn't like the thought of sharing his towel with his young sons in case they wipe their backsides on his towel- apparently his backside on his towel is OK!.....so that was 8 towels as she brought me in 2 sets to do. Nice & quick & easy as I multi hoped them. One thing I did find out was that the embroidery arm does not like the weight of 2 bath sheets & 4 bath towels on it- it made some terrible noise & I quickly removed the hoop & started again for the last 2 bath sheets!
Next were the Xmas serviettes- 20 of them to have a design in the corner. I found a design I had in my emblibrary collection- edited it & came up with a simple, lower stitch count design. Took me a couple of nights to complete these-did 4 to one hooping-and managed to strip bed & clean up while I had the red colour going through.

My machine does not like RA thread. I'm not sure why it doesn't like it, but it doesn't. Every time I tried to use the RA it would shred & break constantly,so I slowed the speed down-which makes the whole process take longer, but then the trade off is I can multi task while its doing its thing!
Saturday saw me finish the serviettes, make 2 tablecloths, 3 tote bags, 2 receipt book wallets & my GS a pillowcase!

Sunday I had an easy day- made my MIL an embroidered bag which I filled with goodies for Xmas & a V pillow case for my friend, Marge, as part of her Xmas gift! While the machine was stitching out the design I wrapped all the Xmas presents & started making a list of everything I need to pick up.....
Even though I'm this organised I still haven't actually gone shopping to buy any one a gift....not even sure when I'm going to get time to go.

Do I get up at sparrow fart next Saturday & brave the crowds for that mad rush of Xmas shoppers, do I order online & hope whatever I order is in stock & is delivered before Xmas-or do I just give them all money & tell them to go buy their own....sounds perfect to me!
DH likes me to buy him something. I have suggested many a time that we buy what we want for ourselves- give it to each other to wrap & put under the tree-we'd get what we want that way-but no, he likes to do it the traditional way.
I thought I had his gift all worked out. I'd been sneaky. He had wanted a macro lens for his camera & I was with him when he was asking about it in a camera store. I picked up the brochure & marked the one he was after....ah, the perfect gift.....just had to order it & surprise I got you what you wanted.
Well that was the scenario.
He went & ordered it 2 weeks ago! ARGHHH!!!! I could have shot him. When he showed me the new lens I told him I was going to order him one & showed him the brochure.....he back tracked & said I could pay for that one (no way) or buy him another type (done your dash)....so now I have to come up with something else.
A ticket to my friend Ruth's place is looking perfect.....she lives in Canada! he always wanted to see real snow! He'll get it there!LOL

My crochet bag is making slow progress-I'm nearly to the top-so not long now before I have the pattern worked out. Should be done by the end of the week.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The week that was

What a sensationally productive weekend I've had. Embroidered names on 10 towels (not all mine)-designs on 8 place mats (gifts), 2 more of those huge designs for cushions & managed to sew the 3 cushions up as well (gift to my DD), wrote all the Christmas cards out & had my hair done as well! what a woman!LOL

Oh, I sewed all the ends into the dishcloths I'd knitted when we were travelling- one of those little things that kept on being put off! Have even managed a bit of tidy up in both the rooms where my sewing stuff is as well!

Writing the Christmas cards has to be one of my least favourite tasks of Christmas-its mindless in a way. I have often said that I was going to stop sending them but DH gets up in arms about me not doing them......but he refuses saying he hates doing it & is flat out doing the 5 I insist are his to write! So how come I get saddled with it & he escapes it- doesn't seem fair to me!?

For a number of years I used to include a family newsletter- writing a little bit about each one of the kids & what DH & I had been up to through the year as well. Then a couple of years ago I thought this is so naff-it sounds like I'm bragging about this wonderful family as you only ever get the good bits- let's face it- who wants to hear the bad?

And as for DH & I it sounded like we were on one eternal holiday somewhere exotic or exciting in the world, which is far from the truth- we travel, yes, but not ALL the time! So I stopped writing it-I have had a few comments from friends that they liked the newsletter but I'm not going back there-my family is not the Brady bunch of perfect kids & I truly don't think everyone wants to know where we travel each year.

I have friends that still do their newsletters- now its the addition of Grand children,marriages, elderly parents passing, them retiring & thinking about touring Australia in caravans & 4WD's (I can only be thankful we have put that notion to bed, never to rear its ugly head again!).I love to hear their news, but I won't be tempted again.

So my Christmas cards are empty- just a scrawled message to each friend & maybe a sentence or 2 at the most on a very few of the cards.
Monday night we put the Xmas tree up-it is supposed to be a family affair-a time spent together in each others company.....yeah right. Two of the boys had put it up -mostly no4 son with DH & no 2 son watching-when I came down to see what they had done DS no2 tells me we are going for the minimalistic look this year (that means he was too lazy to put all the decorations on)-I said its a Xmas tree- it needs lots of decorations & you will put them on & enjoy this wonderful time together while we're at it! In the end I told them to bugger off & I'd do it-so much for the Christmas spirit! The tree now looks beautiful ,although I keep forgetting to go put the angel on top of it!

My moon flower (the flower is the pic at the top of my blog) has buds all over it- so far I've counted 10 & it looks like they'll all be out on the same night & I bet anything it'll be a night when we have a function!

This cactus only flowers of a night time- the cutting came from a patient some years back & the last couple of years it has produced an amazing number of blooms-I'm sure moon flower is not its correct name but it flowers only when its dark-I never tire of taking pics of the blooms or looking at them- they are absolutely amazing to see flower over the few hours it takes for the bud to open.

I have a black agapanthus coming into bloom at the moment- this is the first year it has flowered & although they call it black its really a very deep purple-it seems to be taking forever to open out completely- should make a stunning display when it finally does come out.

Both our accident victims are coming along OK- GS is very sensitive about the loss of his tooth not wanting to talk so you cant see it & DS's GF is now out of traction but not allowed out of bed as yet.

Started a crochet shopping bag through the week- don't seem to be getting as much done as I hoped I would- progress is slow but for those waiting on the pattern it should be done before Xmas!

One thing I learnt this weekend was don't walk away from your embroidery when you are using a topper & you have the ceiling fan on- what a mess it made & I was lucky that the machine didn't get damaged-it also took me all night to soak the solvy out! Lesson learnt!

Lets hope all remains quiet & peaceful for a while...a long while!