Winter of 2015 was the WORST I can ever remember as far as amount of snowfall. The last bit of snow didn’t melt until MAY in our front yard! I’m happy to report that so far, we haven’t had a ton of snow, and this week we’ve had pretty mild temperatures. A lot of snow has melted from my yard. I’m sure we’ll get more storms before spring arrives, but I’m still hoping for a better year than last. And it turns out that one of my satisfied customers named Becky took her Colleen Sharpe batik bag to Costa Rica recently! She sent me a photo of it hanging from a tree on a gorgeous beach:
I remember how excited Becky was when she was choosing a bag for herself, so it’s fun to see it in action on her trip!
As has become usual for me in January, I have been picking away at random craft projects purely for fun. Remember the Christmas banner from my last post? I decided I wanted to make a winter banner that I can hang in my living room after the Christmas decorations get put away. When my kids were little, we would make paper snowflakes to tape onto the living room window every January. We haven’t done that in a few years, so I decided I’d crochet some snowflakes from which to make a banner. If you look closely, especially, at the first photo, you can see that I crocheted sparkly beads to each tip (fractal) of the snowflakes.
First one finished:
As you can see, they will all be various shades of blue. I am working on a fifth shade of blue. There’ll be two each of four shades, and one of the blue of the first snowflake for a total of nine snowflakes. I’m not sure yet how I’ll make them into a banner – I’ve considered just hanging each from a handmade fabric ribbon, but I might also attach each to a fabric flag of some sort. I’ll figure it out after I finish crocheting.
The next project I started awhile ago is a new bag for me. I feel like I’m always making bags for me, but really, it’s an exercise in improving design and techniques each time. For this one, I decided to crochet some motifs to applique to the bag flap. Below is a flower and a leaf.
I love the fluffy look of this flower and the two-toned leaf. Below you can see that I’ve attached them (hand-stitches which are hidden) to the bag flap in a pattern pleasing to my eye.
And next is the actual bag. It’s typical for me – a reversible cross-body with adjustable strap. I added an extra layer to the strap to make it even more comfortable on me. I quilted the bag sides for extra sturdiness – it stands up pretty well on its own. I use polyester batting for that because I have it on hand, rather than going out to buy stiff interfacing. I’m trying to use what I have for projects this coming year. Inside, on the bottom gusset, I attached a piece of plastic mesh to make the bottom sturdier, too.
And my favourite feature of this bag is the divided lining! I finally figured out how to make one. You might be able to tell from the photo that I inserted a piece of plastic mesh in the divider part. Now I can have the space of a big bag (hey, a girl needs a place to put crochet/knit/small embroidery projects when she’s out running errands in case she gets stuck waiting!) AND still be able to find my keys without digging through one big mess! And DUH! Of course the lining had to be made from a piece of my latest find of a vintage cotton floral sheet! 😀 Happy brightness inside the subdued black outside. 😀
I hope to dip into drawing again this coming month. I absolutely LOVE geometric patterns such as mandalas and argyle, and I found this wonderful library book called Islamic Geometric Patterns by Eric Broug. I will learn some more about creating patterns using just a straightedge and a compass. I can’t wait!!!!!!! And hmmmmmm…., now that I am looking on amazon.ca at books by this author, I am thinking I need to find THOSE, too, at the library! Ooooo, I also just remembered I have a series of books about drawing Celtic designs…..maybe I need to raid my bookshelf….
And speaking of bookshelf, this is a portion of my bookshelves:
I know this seems like random information in what has been mostly a craft blog, but since I am also a home-educating parent and a reading tutor to other kids, I want to take this opportunity to point out the Tutoring page of my website. If you know of anyone in the HRM area of Nova Scotia who needs my services, I’d appreciate the referral!
Alrighty, see you next time I gather enough project photos for a blog post! Meanwhile, what projects are you working on this winter?