Ruffled Scarf

A new fashion trend right now is ruffled scarves. They are frilly, fun, feminine and surprisingly easy to make. They can be knit or crocheted. When I saw Red Heart's Boutique Sashay yarn on a recent trip to JoAnn's I had to give it a try.

You only need one ball of yarn to make a ruffled scarf. Red Heart includes knit instructions on the label. Of course, crafting rebel that I am, I wanted to crochet instead of knit, so I developed my own pattern. My design is about 50 inches long and filled with plenty of springy color.

Materials




Directions


When it's in a skein, this looks like really chunky yarn, but it's not.


 






All you have to do is open up one end of the yarn to see that it is more like a mesh. The secret to working with this yarn is to crochet with only the top two strands of the mesh. The middle section of mesh and the metallic edge will make up the ruffle.







Begin by inserting your crochet hook, front to back, about 4 inches from the end.









Now insert the hook, front to back, through the next space in the mesh and pull through.








If you were using regular yarn this is like tying that first loop in your yarn and sliding it over your crochet hook when you begin a project.








Using the top two strands of the mesh, ch 5.

Turn your work clockwise now and throughout the entire project so your ruffle wraps in the same direction.

Row 1: dc in 3rd ch from hook, dc in next ch, ch 3, turn.


 

Your work should look something like this.

Row 2: dc in next dc twice, ch 3, turn.

Repeat row 2 until twelve inches of yarn remain.





Continue to open up the mesh as you work.

Remember, only crochet with the top two strands of the mesh and always turn your work clockwise.






Last Row: dc in next dc, twice, gently pull entire width of mesh through the last loop.









To finish, fold the end of the yarn over.









Then fold it over again.

Use a needle and thread to tack the end of the yarn to the inside of the scarf.

Finish the other end of the scarf in the same manner.





Enjoy adding a little spring time color and fanciful frills to your wardrobe.








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Ribbon Jacket Loop

I hate feeling cold. That's probably why I own nine cold weather jackets even though I live in Tucson, Arizona. From mid-March through October my coats and jackets remain tucked away in the very back of the closet, never seeing the light of day. This time of year, my favorites are hung on hooks in our laundry room, just in case I need one.

I am careful how I hang my jackets on the hooks. I don't like to hang them by their hoods because they get stretched out. I usually slip the little loop by the jacket tag over a hook. Unfortunately, sometimes those little hanging loops fall off  and some jackets don't even have them. So, every once in awhile I find myself sewing a new loop onto a jacket for perfect hanging.

Materials


  • 4 inches of 1/8-3/8 inch wide ribbon 
  • no sew glue
  • basic sewing supplies

Directions


I used 1/8 inch wide ribbon for my jacket, but you can use anything up to about 3/8 inch wide.








Put a drop of no sew glue on your finger.









Rub it onto the end of the ribbon to keep it from fraying. Do the same on the other end.

Let the glue dry.






Fold under about 1/2 inch of ribbon on each end and position it on your jacket or coat. Pin the ribbon in place.








Stitch the ribbon in place with 5-6 whip stitches. Make sure you are not stitching completely through the jacket. You don't want to see these stitches on the back of your jacket when you wear it.







Stitch the other end of ribbon to the jacket.









That's it. Your jacket or coat can be hung from a hook without stretching out the hood or leaving any strange, permanent bumps and lumps in the fabric.

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Fun Find Friday

'Black On White ' by slouchiehats

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Sculptural lampwork glass bead focal Black Splash Contemporary glass by Anne Londez OOAK SRA - AnneLondezGlass
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Nylon Shopping Bags with Carrying Pouch

I've said it before and I'll probably say it again. I love reusable shopping bags! I keep a set of five or six large shopping bags in the trunk of the car at all times. But, they are a little bulky for taking to the mall or when I am window shopping. So, I keep a couple smaller bags in my purse. That way I can still be nice to the planet if I decide to make a little impulse buy somewhere.

My goal was to create a shopping bag that's lightweight and compact. Also, since I carry them around in my purse I wanted something cute. Being nice to the planet doesn't have to look frumpy. The result, this set of two, coordinating nylon shopping bags with built in carrying pouches. Adorable and useful.

Materials


  • 1/2 yard black ripstop nylon
  • 1/2 yard white ripstop nylon
  • spool of 3mm polyester ribbon
  • 2 two-hole buttons
  • thread
  • 3 - 8 1/2 x 11 pieces of tagboard or a couple of cereal boxes
  • scissors
  • rotary cutter and cutting mat
  • stencil cutter, wood burner, soldering iron or multipurpose heat tool
  • large piece of glass from a picture frame
  • plastic yarn needle

Directions


Print the pattern for the handles and pouch. Make sure to print it the "Actual Size" and don't "Shrink to Fit."








Cut the pattern out with scissors.










Before we go any further, I'd like to share a little tip about cutting ripstop nylon.

If you don't want to worry about finishing the edges of nylon fabric with your sewing machine, you can heat cut the material. Seriously, no scissors required. The idea is that you use a heating tool  to melt the edges of the fabric as you cut it so it won't fray. I was a little skeptical that cutting nylon with heat was possible until I gave it a try. It's pretty simple to trace around a cardboard template and make clean cuts.

You can get versatile heating tool like this Walnut Hollow Creative Hobby Tool for less than $20. These are really cool because you can use them for wood burning, soldering, cutting plastic stencils, cutting nylon and more.

Read the package instructions and follow all the safety precautions before using this tool. And be careful. It gets HOT.


First, you are going to make a template that you can trace with your heating tool so your cuts are nice and smooth.

Trace the pattern for the handles onto two pieces of tagboard and the circular pouch onto one. If you don't want to buy tagboard, you can use a couple empty cereal boxes instead.

Cut out the pieces with a scissors. Tape the two handle pieces together at the center.


Use a rotary cutter and mat to trim both pieces of fabric so they are 17 inches wide.









While your heat tool is warming, fold one piece of fabric in half and lay it on the piece of glass. I'll show you how it works with the white fabric, first.

Position the top edge of the bag template 16 inches up from the fold. I taped the sides of the template to the glass after it was positioned so it stayed properly positioned as I cut.




Use your heat tool to trace around the top of the template.









Remove the extra fabric.









Remove the template. Don't panic. The top edge and handles of the bag will be lightly fused together.








Gently separate the front and back of the bag.









Now, with the remaining scraps of white fabric cut two circles using the template. You can cut them both at the same time, but I found it was easier to cut them separately.







These circles will be the pouch.










Cut the black fabric in the same way.




You will be using the black circles to make the pouch for the white bag and the white circles for the pouch on the black bag. I'll show you the assembly process for one bag just repeat it for the second.

Pin the two white circles together.









Stitch 1/2 inch from the edge around the circle leaving a 1/2 inch opening. Make sure that you are using the correct needle on your sewing machine. A needle that is too thick could damage the nylon.







Unfold the black bag fabric. Position the pouch on so that it is centered from side to side and 2 1/2 inches from the bottom of the "U" shape between the handles. The small opening on the pouch should be toward the bottom  of the bag. Pin the pouch to the front of the bag.






Stitch all the way around the pouch 1/2 inch from your first set of stitches.









Now it's time for some decorative stitching inside the center of the circle. If you are into quilting or embroidery, you can show off your skill. I did something simple and stitched a grid pattern using the lines on the fabric as a guide. Be creative. Just make sure all your decorative stitching is inside the center stitched circle of the pouch.





Once your decorative stitching is completed, you can finish the sides of the bag. Pin the bag right sides together. Using 1/2 inch seam allowance, stitch each side.

To finish the sides you can either use your heating tool to cut a narrow strip off each side or use a zig zag stitch or serger to finish the side edges.





Turn the bag right side out.









Pin the handles on the front of the bag, right sides together.









Then pin the handles on the back of the bag, right sides together. Use a 1/4 inch seam allowance to stitch each of the handles. There's no need to do any finishing here because the edges were already heat cut. You can however press the seams open and stitch them to the handle for a more finished look.






Cut a length of ribbon about 25-30 inches long and thread the yarn needle. Insert the needle between the two white circles of the pouch.








Pull the ribbon all the way around the pouch and back out of the opening between the circles. Make sure the pouch is still laying flat and is not gathered at all.  








Pull the ribbon up through one button hole









then down through the other. Knot the ends of the ribbons together and trim any excess ribbon.








To gather your bag into the pouch, set it face down on a flat surface. Loosely fold the edges of the bag toward the center of the pouch. Pull the ends of the ribbon to gather the pouch.







Finally, slide the button towards the pouch to secure it.









Use the same process to create the second bag with the remaining fabric.

The only thing I did differently on my second bag is the decorative stitching on the pouch. This time I made a swirl instead of a grid pattern. It kind of looks like a record when the bag is open.

Enjoy your beautiful new set of shopping bags or give them as a useful gift!





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