Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Handy "Bag O'Bags" Storage System Tutorial

Is your house littered with plastic bags? Can you sew? Problem solved.

I made this handy "Bag O'Bags" storage system a few months ago and it has eliminated the plastic bag full of bags system I used previously. By doing better at bringing reusable tote bags with me to the store in conjunction with this, my house is no longer being swamped by plastic bags!!!

(Here is my tutorial for an easy lined tote bag. Wanna make it easier?? Don't line it!)

Step 1: Cut out a rectangle. The dimensions don't really matter. I've seen these in different sizes, but the standard size wasn't really big enough for me. Mine is about 18" by 22". The picture I drew is much more "rectangular" looking than what I cut, which was more "square" looking.

Step 2: Sew the long edges together (right sides together or course). This will make a cylindrical tube.

Step 3: Hem the top and bottom edges. I double-folded mine for a nice clean hem, but since this is for plastic bags and you won't see the inside, a simple hem will do. Leave a gap in your hem on both ends of your tube to run elastic in them.

Step 4: Insert elastic into both ends of your bag. I cut my elastic about 9" long. You want the elastic to be tight enough that bags don't fall out of the bottom, but loose enough that you can reach into both the top and bottom to insert and remove bags as you need to. Sew the elastic ends together, and sew the gaps shut.

Step 5: Add a strap to hang up your bag. I used leftover bias tape for my strap. I sewed it to the seam on one side and Voila! I was done.

Baby makes Three!

This year my husband and I welcomed our third child into the world, Miss Juniper Kathlene! She was named after our love of nature, her birth month, and her grandmothers. She has further eaten up my already limited time for crafting, but it's worth it!
Juniper is pictured here, and below with her daddy, wearing the Angel Wings Pinafore that I made for her. I highly recommend this pattern because it was easy to do, didn't take long, and looks absolutely adorable!

Here are my older two kiddos, Eleanor and Arthur, enjoying their baby sister before she was born!

Sweet Little Newborn Crocheted Sunhat

 When I found this sunhat pattern, I was elated! It was so easy to follow and the hat was adorable. The problem: it's too small. I made it before my daughter was born, so I used a baby doll as a guide (pictured below). It fits my daughter sort of, but not good enough to stay on, and I don't think even a chin strap would help that.

The Pattern: Sweet Little Sunhat found on the blog Hyphenated and Overextended.

My recommendation--use a bigger hook, or add a couple rows if you want this to fit your newborn well. The pattern calls for an H hook. There are instructions for making it larger on the blog. The size I made said "0-3 months." It looks more like a preemie size to me, although it's possible that I crocheted tighter than the pattern's author.

The good news about this project is that my older daughter now has a fun new hat for her baby doll!

Crocheted Brimless Baby Bonnet

 I adore baby bonnets, and just had to make one for my daughter. I searched the Internet quite a while to find a  pattern I liked, that didn't use a very small hook. I like projects I can get done in a day or so! This one fit the bill perfectly and still had to lacy "prettiness" to it that I wanted.

The pattern is titled Samira -- Apricot Baby Bonnet on the blog Crochetlatte. This is offered as a free pattern. I used a different yarn than that shown on this blog, so it has a different effect.

This bonnet does not have a brim, so if you really want a sun bonnet, this isn't for you. Adding a couple more rows is a good idea though if you want it to cover more of your baby's forehead. I think it looks really sweet on my darling baby, Juniper.

Crocheted Sweet Little Sundress Example

 I crocheted this dress using the Sweet Little Sundress pattern on a blog called Hyphenated and Overextended. I of course tweaked it a bit, changing up some of the stitches in the skirt and adding a fun shell stitch border to the bottom.

This dress (as the pattern is written) fits a newborn pretty well. The blog says a "5-7lb" baby in the comments, but I would put it closer to an 8-10lb baby, or even a 0-3 months if your stitching has a bit of stretch to it.

This pattern isn't difficult, but might be challenging for a beginner. It depends on how well you read and follow patterns! Adding a decorative border to the bottom is simple enough, but keep in mind it adds length to the gown...mine was a little long on my daughter!