Friday, April 22, 2016


Today ONLY, all my PDF Knit patterns are on sale for $2.50 (regular $4.95) in honor of Earth Day. Sale is occurring in both my Etsy and Craftsy stores. No coupon code required, as prices have already been lowered to reflect the sale price. Happy Earth Day!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Bag Making: Spring Market 2016

So this week I got to make a bag (or I should say clutch) for the Spring 2016 International Quilt Market in Utah! I believe this is my fourth time making a Swoon bag to be displayed at the market and it's always fun to get to play with some pretty fabrics from a new line and to keep an eye out for it in pictures from the market scenes that blow up social media.

So for this market, I made the Dakota Tablet Clutch by Swoon (of course Swoon! I haven't made a non-Swoon bag for years now!). Sadly, this was my first time making Dakota and I have no idea why I hadn't made her before! Isn't she darling???

The fabrics I was sent to make her with are Free Spirit Fabrics from their Noteworthy line. I feel like they are perfect for a spring Dakota!

As the title of the pattern implies, this is a clutch designed to hold your tablets. The original size of the pattern pieces create a final clutch measuring 10" tall by 8" wide, but you can also print the pattern at a smaller scale for a snugger fit for smaller tablets. I made the original size and you can see my kindle peeking out above has more than enough room.  

This pattern is very beginner friendly, but it is also a highly gratifying project for the experienced bag maker who wants to take a break from their normal, more complex bags for some fun, more instant gratification. And though it is an easier design, Alicia's (Swoon's designer) brilliant, unique style still shines though with the optional contrasting exterior overlay and the functional back handle. Plenty of interfacing is required, as well, to safely cushion your tablet. 

Well have I convinced you yet to make her???  If not, I should add that this pattern is FREE!!! Seriously, go pick her up and make one today, either for yourself or as a gift. They would make an excellent graduation gift, which is coming up soon! Happy Sewing all and if you are headed to the quilt market, be on the lookout for Dakota! :)

*This blog post contains affiliate links. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Pom-Pom Tutorial

So I added a pom-pom to my latest pattern in the works: The Striped Cable Slouchy. This is my third hat pattern and the first one that I thought "Hey, a pom-pom might add a fun touch, especially for the smaller sizes."

When I went to look up some quick pom-pom tutorials to refresh my mind on how to make them, I realized there are a thousand different tutorials out there. There are ones using washers (which is how I remember my mom taught me), there were ones using forks (yes, forks and very clever), etc.

Because I didn't have any washers the size I needed (and because that method seems to take FOREVER) and because I knew the forks wouldn't give me the width I wanted, I finally decided to use a plain old piece of cardboard to create my pom-pom (this is definitely not an original concept I invented). Here is a quick tutorial (explanation) of how I made the pom-pom for the child size version of the Striped Cable Slouchy.


Worsted Weight Yarn of choice (the amount will depend on how thick you want to make it)
Tapestry or Yarn Needle


To begin, take your cardboard and cut a square the size you want the finished width of your pom-pom to be. For this pom-pom, I cut a 3"x3" square, which means my finished pom-pom would be 3" wide (or 3" in diameter). 

Next, take your yarn and begin to wrap it around the cardboard, from top to bottom. You will need to hold the first strand in place until you have wrapped enough yarn around to secure it. 

Continue to wrap the yarn around the cardboard until you get the thickness you desire (the thicker it is, the fuller the pom-pom will be). Be sure not to wrap it so tight that you will not be able to slip it off afterwards (which you will be doing). I wrapped mine until it was about 1/2 to 3/4" thick (on each side) in the middle and covered about 1" to 1.25" of the cardboard.

Once you have made your final wrap, gently slip the yarn off the cardboard, trying not to shift anything.

Take a long strand of the same colored yarn (around 16" or more) and tie it around the middle of your yarn bundle.

You want to tie it tight. I like to tie it tight once and then wrap it around again and pull a little tighter before double knotting it. Make sure you don't pull so tight that the yarn breaks (yes it can happen). Make sure to leave the tie strands long so you can use them to attach it to the top of your hat.Finally, take your scissors and cut the loops on both ends.

Fluff your pom-pom and trim around it if you see any uneven or long ends (but don't cut the two strands of your tie). You will have some fun yarn snow to sweep up! :)

Once you are done giving your pom-pom a fresh trim, use your tapestry needle to attach it to the top of your hat.

You are finished! Now sit back and admire your work! :)

Swoon Vintage Collection: Meet Harriet, the Expandable Tote

Just when you think the lovely mastermind Alicia has topped the charts with her bag design and its impossible to go any higher, she comes out with a new one that steals the show once more. And so she has done again with Harriet the second to the last addition to the Swoon Vintage Collection. I actually made this bag back in January but am just now getting ready to post about her.

Harriet is a brilliantly designed expandable tote! Check out her side zippers, which are both fashionable and functional in my opinion.

And these side zippers may look intimidating but I can assure Alicia walks you through them step-by-step. Harriet also has an interior zipper and a magnetic snap flap closure on top.

I have been toting Harriet around with me for months now. She is definitely a keeper! Be sure to check her out now and the rest of the Swoon Vintage Collection.

*This post contains affiliate links.