Just an idea

I had this idea that tortured me for days till it finally saw the light of day.  Ideas float in my head begging and pleading to be implemented into something more tangible than just an idea in my head.

The idea behind this is so simple.  A starting chain, then rounds until it is as tall as you would like plus a little extra.  Then you fold the button and sew on some buttons and add handles.

How easy is that?

Pattern

Chain 51.

SC (Single Crochet) in the back ridges of the chain (50SC), slip stitch into first SC and turn.

SC in the front loops of the chain (50 SC)

The rounds start now.

Chain 3 and DC all around. (100DC)

You can make it a solid color or striped.  I was just using up leftover cotton yarn.

Keep going until the bag is high enough, add a couple of more rows because when you create the base it gets slightly shorter.  Add one last row of SC for a cleaner finish.  Finish off and weave in ends.

Lay the bag on a flat surface align the side seam with the starting chain so a triangle is formed.  Sew on a button to keep it in place.  This creates a base for the bag instead of just being a flat rectangular bag.  I saw the same method being used on canvas totes, that’s where I originally got the idea.

Do the same for the other side.

Handles

You can either add crochet handles ( like the one’s in Lucy’s Bag or Alice’s Starling)

I found the middle 24 stitches on each side and marked with stitch markers on either side.

Attached a new color and did 24 SCs then 4 rows of SCs.

I set the handles in their place by surface crocheting the bag and the little rectangle I just made for the handle.

Repeat for the other handle.

This really only took a couple of afternoons and I wasn’t really focused and using a 3.5 mm hook.  If you focus and use worsted weight it could easily only take a couple of hours.

If you want to add a rigid base check out this tutorial

Pencil, paper and ideas

Pencil And Square PaperI’ve been thinking about where this blog is going recently and I was doing a bit of blog-soul-searching.  When I started out back in August of 2006 I had no idea where I was going.  I grew older (and wiser)  and so has the blog.  It has evolved from a little bit of posting here and there to a place where I have a creative outlet.  I was considering starting a second blog for craft related posts only and after a lot of thought decided against it.  This is who I have become.  Trying to label my interests under different spaces would be the same as pretending to be two different people. I know what might interest me might not interest you but I can’t help it.  Part of the journey of growing up means learning self acceptance and understanding that sometimes even our closest friends will walk away when we change and grow apart.  It is not a sad thing but should be a beautiful thing, everyone has to move on sometime in their life.  I hope all of you who already enjoy and visit this blog stay even if what I write now is different than what I used to.

I am glad I got that off my chest.

My husband and I have an interesting habit.  We both love scribbling little notes, reminders and ideas on pieces of paper and notepads around the house.  Although his writings are different than mine and usually concern more serious things, rarely a caricature (he should have been an artist but he doesn’t really know it) and occasionally little notes he leaves for me.  I usually doodle ideas and inspirations.  I love writing down quotes I hear so I can look them up later.  I sometimes write down blog post ideas.  Sometimes even things I just randomly think I should know more about.

Needless to say we both love pencils, 2B old fashioned pencils.  When I was in school, I’d shave the paint off of them using a knife and either leave them bare or color them according to my own mood.

A couple of days ago I had this idea that I should make pencil toppers.

Let me correct that, I had this idea that kept popping up in my head driving everything else out.

So I drew a little kitty pencil topper.

Isn’t that cute?

Don’t you just love square paper?  I do.

After a little bit of experimenting and fiddling around I made a cat, bunny and a Chucky like pencil toppers.

Bunny and Cat crochet pencil toppers

Having decided to start selling the stuff that I design and make I thought to myself maybe I shouldn’t be sharing these patterns.  But my self answered back that that would be selfish and mean.  I mean at the end of the day I just do all this because I love doing it.

They also make really cute finger puppets if you have teeny tiny 2 year old fingers :-).

I have to be honest here.  I don’t like embroidering the eyes and faces on, because mainly I am really bad at it and need so much more practise.  But being someone who has decided to face all fears and obstacles even if that means embroidering cute smiles onto cute kitty cat pencil toppers then so be it.

Crafting really does bring out the fearless person in me.  :-))

Here is how you can make your own:

Things You will needYou will need:

  • A small amount of yarn  ( I used some sports yarn held in a double strand)
  • An appropriate hook (4.5 mm hook)
  • Tapestry needles
  • Scissors
  • A little bit of micro fill (I have a pillow that I steal from)

Notes: This is worked in a spiral, there will be no turning.  Also note that you have to repeat the stitches in between the asterisks.

There are two ways to start this off.

Round 1: Chain 2 and 6c in the second chain from the hook or by doing 6 sc in a magic circle.

First Row 6 sc

Round 2: *1 sc increase each sc *(12 scs)

Round 3: *1 sc increase next sc, 1sc in next sc* (18 scs)

Round 4 – 6 : *1 sc in each sc* (18 sc)

After row 6Round 7 : *1 invisible decrease, 1 sc in next stitch* (12 scs)

After row 9Round 8: 6 invisible decreases. You should now be left with six scs

Insert micro fill

Fill it up with the micro fill and sew it shut using the back loops only.

Round 9:  6 sc in the front loops.  This is the first round in the kneckSew shut through the back loops only

Round 7 and 8. 6 scs

Finish off and weave ends

3 More rows and you have a kneck

Embroider the face.Add the face

Make two ears.

Chain 2, 3sc in the second chain from the hook.  Turn and chain one.

*1 sc increase in each stitch* 12 stitches

Finish off and weave in ends

Sew on the ears

Make the ears

And voila! You have yourself a pencil topper.And we're done

For the bunny ears chain 6, turn and sc 5 in the chains.

And now I have some very cute companions for my pencils.  Who knows? They might even boost my creativity.

Super Easy Chocolate Cake

Yummy Chocolate Cake

Yummy Chocolate Cake

I wanted to make desert today but had run out of butter so that ruled out cookies and brownies.  I found this recipe but slightly modified it as usual.  It is very easy and turned out really nicely

Cake

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1/3 cup cooking oil
  • 1 cup water

Mix all the dry ingredients really well.  Add the liquid ingredients and mix with a fork.  Pre heat the oven  to 180 degrees Celsius.  Put batter  in a pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes until the fork comes out clean.

Icing

  • 4 chocolate squares
  • 3 Tbsp Milk
  • 2 Tbsp Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Icing sugar

Melt the chocolate, blend all ingredients together.  Cover the cake with the icing.

Enjoy.