Saturday, September 29, 2007

green clutch

I took a brief break from orders to finish up some bags I'm going to attempt to submit to a purse book. Eep! Kyle, my awesome photographer friend, is going to take some pictures for me so that my horrifyingly awful photography doesn't immediately disqualify my submission.

I really like this yarn color and I was ridiculously pleased with how this one turned out. At various stages of its creation I would hold it in front of Lorne's face to demand praise.

I was running out of yarn when I attached the handles. The deadline for book submission is mid-October, but I'm sending the bags up to Kyle in Seattle for photograhy, so I didn't really have a lot of time to spare. And I'm pretty sure this is one of the colors I had to order from the internets, not available in my local yarn stores (LYS, for the knitting nerds). I finished with three little scraps to spare. I was freaking out when attaching the last part of the second handle, I was afraid it'd be an inch short. But it wasn't. Phew.

P.S. The blue vinyl strips the clutch is sitting on are straps from a forthcoming tote bag. I was too lazy to move them.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

I think I'm turning Japanese.

I really think so.

My friend Heidi, who is super awesome, really liked the big half vinyl bags I've been making and asked me to make one for her. Heidi is into Japanese art and found this fabric from Japanese fabric designer Mame-Yakko.

one side of Heidi's bag

I really like the little mushroom looking things. I have no idea what they are, but I find their shape to be pleasing. They remind me of the goombas in Super Mario Brothers.

the innards

You may have guessed from the linings of other things I've made that I like stripes. And I do like stripes. But my first love is polka dots. And this amazing fabric manages to combine both stripes AND polka dots, all in one place. It's busy and kind of funky, but so is Heidi. I mean funky in a good way, not in a "Heidi doesn't shower enough" kind of way. Heidi smells quite good. She shares my obsession with Lush.

the innards' innards

You may notice that both pockets are a little off center. However, I did that on purpose. No, seriously, I did. No real reason, I just thought it looked neat.

the other side of Heidi's bag

P.S. I thought briefly about using this other Japanese fabric for the lining, so that Heidi would feel like she was on an acid trip every time she tried to get her keys out.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

another wedding purse

Beth liked the look of Andie's purse and asked me to make something similar for her. She said her dress was taupey/silvery satin, covered in ivory lace.

I made hers a little different than Andie's. No reason...just for the hell of it. The fabric store had all the taupey stuff I used under the lace hiding away from all the other satiny fabric, so I spent a half hour wandering through the fabric section trying to find it. I knew I'd seen the color when I was buying fabric for Andie's purse. Finally, an elderly woman that didn't even work at the store, asked what I was looking for. Apparently I'd passed by her with an angry look in my face one too many times. When I told her, she led me (by the elbow) to a little display at the end of one of the sections of quilting fabric. Why would you put it away from the rest of the special occaisons fabric? Why?

Anyway, Beth's wedding is in October, with fall colors. She suggested brown, gold, burnt orange, or amber for the lining. Orange! She said the magic word. Like I would have used anything other than orange after being given the green light...or, orange light, I guess I could say.

Look! I took a good close-up picture of the lacy stuff! I'm improving! Or maybe I just got lucky with the lighting.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


After this post and this post and the post you are currently reading, you might think that I have some sort of George Washington obsession. I don't, really.

Here comes George, in control.

I am pleased to come from the state named after him, as it's a pretty awesome place, and I'm sure he was a pretty awesome dude. But I don't really know a lot about him, other than the lies told to me in the Brad Neely video (have you watched it yet? come on, this is your third chance), whatever was said in the letters from him in 1776 and that he didn't really chop down a cherry tree. Oh, and he was our first president. I know that.

Women dig his snuff and his gallant stroll.

It's just that he has a really distinct profile. He's on two denominations of our currency (the dollar and the quarter, in case you don't come from America or you're very forgetful). I showed the cutout on the coin purse to several people and asked if they could tell who it was, and they all said yes. It seemed like a good profile to use.

Ate opponents brains...invented cocaine...

Anyway, this clutch is for Kedrin, who will be getting married (or maybe just having her rehearsal dinner) in George Washington's hometown, which the internets tells me is Alexandria, Virginia (see, I'm not obsessed, I had to look it up). She has promised me pictures of the George purse visiting George's hometown. I'm sure this will only fuel my obsession. I mean, pique my curiousity.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

maroon tote

Michelle saw the birdie bag I made for myself and saw two things she liked: the bag style, and the innards. She asked if I could make her something similar, but with the maroonish innards on the outside, and with black vinyl.

Ask and ye shall receive.

She also gave me free reign on the lining, which excited me ever so much. I love this fabric and have been wanting to use it on someone for awhile, so when I pulled it out and some of the maroonish colors matched up with the fabric for the outside of the bag, I was thrilled.

I made the larger inside pocket a little bit shorter than in the version of this bag I made for myself, and reinforced it so it's not quite as floppy as it is in my bag. This means I didn't accidentally sew it to the top of the bag in doing the topstitching, so I swore a lot less than I did with mine. Less swearing means I'm more likely to make more of these.

Action shot!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

andie's purse - update!

Andie just sent me a picture of her wedding purse with the brooch she's adding to the front, so I thought I would share the finished product here.

She says it's more silver than it looks in this picture. I'm a little glad that I'm not the only one that has issues with photographing things correctly (I really should learn), but I think Andie's picture of the bag is better than most of the ones I took. The shame, the shame.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

apple cozy

You may find it hard to believe, but I've never made any sort of knitted cozy before. Unless you want to call hats head cozies or baby blankets baby cozies. But I don't, because that would be weird. Anyway, Kristen saw a picture of an apple cozy and asked if I could make one. I'm willing to try anything (craft-wise, that is), so I said sure.

objects may be less blurry than they appear

Once again, please excuse my horribly bad photography. This was knitted in the round, on five small double pointed needles. Every time I start something on dpns (that's the knitting community's way of saying "double pointed needles") I get really frustrated. I drop things like needles and stitches, both of which are important for knitting in the round. I stab my fingers and lap and eyes. I swear a lot. But once I get going I actually really like it. (I'm writing that down mainly so that next time I start a project on dpns and I'm angry and swearing, I can read that to remind myself that it gets better.)

I like the orange button.

When Kristen asked me to make this I'd never heard of such a thing before. I'm still not entirely sure what its function is, other than to make your apple cuter. But preliminary research has indicated that this cozy makes your apple 379% cuter than a naked apple. That's a lot of cute to resist. I might have to make one for myself.

In other news, today I ran to the craft store to get some green yarn to make the leaf. I had a hard time finding anything that actually looked leafy, and not like a neon light vomited in yarn form. The only color I found that actually looked okay was this brand:

Yes. That's Vanna White, of Wheel of Fortune fame. Yes, Vanna White has her own line of yarn. It's 100% acrylic, just like her.


risque apple, flashing some stem

Thursday, September 06, 2007

wedding purse

This bag is pretty much the complete opposite of the Washington bag in my last post. From vinyl and guns to satin and lace. Anyway, Andie is getting married in October. She has a gorgeous ivory lace Jim Hjelm dress with a black sash.

Andie's beautiful dress.

She asked me to make a round, ivory lace bag to go along with it, with some sort of bright color for the lining.

My craft dresser is just as glamorous as the Jim Hjelm fashion show. Yes?

I haven't actually worked with lace before. Or satin. Or whatever the ivory stuff was that I put under the lace. But I had enough that if I made a horrible mistake, I would be able to start over without making another trip to the fabric store, so I dove in.

A terrible picture.

I tried to take a closer picture of the lace here. You can see more of the lacy detail here, but the color is washed out. I've been doing much better in my picture taking lately, but obviously I still don't really know what I'm doing. (Kyle gave us instructions over the weekend, but I forgot how to set the camera the right I just took pictures instead of bothering Lorne or calling Kyle. I'm kind of lazy.)

This picture is also not the best, but you can see the underside of the handles here.

Purse innards with little snap.

I love the color of the lining. As you can see, it's a really bright blue. I used a small magnetic snap at the top so the purse will stay closed; the snap is pretty tiny, but the magnets on those babies are fairly powerful. I was afraid that if I used a larger size the fabric would rip when she tried to open it.

I was actually a little terrified to make a wedding purse. Andie seems pretty laid back and cool, but some of the most normal people can go kind of insane during wedding planning, especially if something isn't exactly what they envisioned. I sent her the pictures before I put the blog up, just in case it turned out to be not at all what she wanted. But she liked it. Phew.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Six Foot Twenty

I have mentioned before that I love Brad Neely's Washington, Washington video. All of my friends love it as well. So I made this bag for my BFF Alison's birthday.

Ali's birthday is actually in April, but I forgot to take pictures of the bag before I gave it to her. And she lives in Seattle, so I haven't actually seen it since April. She brought it with her to Lake Tahoe this weekend though, so I took the opportunity to document it for posterity.

Here is a close up of George. This image was taken from the line in the video, "Six foot twenty fuckin' killing for fun." If you haven't watched it (why haven't you watched it? I gave you a link to the video TWICE), this is just one of the many facts you will learn about George. He also invented cocaine, was made of radiation, and saves the children (but not the British children).

Here is the inside of Ali's bag. As you can see, it holds a notebook and some eyedrops with plenty of room to spare.

By the time I was finished with it, I kind of wanted to keep it. I wasn't sure the George jigsaw vinyl applique was going to work, but it did. I was quite pleased with myself. But I am a generous soul, so George and I parted ways. Alison treats George very well. He was in as good of condition this weekend as he was in April.

Besides, I already have one George in my life.

Two might just be too much.