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Thursday, June 28, 2012

I'm just a tweet away!

Cherishables is now on Twitter!

Click the button on the main page of the blog to follow me @cherishablesnj for product announcements and coupon codes -- including Twitter-only coupon codes -- one is coming soon.

Happy crafting!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Next! (Pink Granny Tote 1)

I'm jonesing for a new project. That's not to say I haven't been crocheting and otherwise crafting. I've been making key fobs and beaded bracelets like mad! I also made a 4th of July wreath for my front door. But what I really want is a project. Maybe another purse.

Then I saw this on Pinterest:
Photo by Machteld M.
Granny squares! Pink! Pink granny squares! I'm in love....But (and this is a big but) I don't make afghans. Nope. I don't like to wait months for a completed project. I like stuff I can finish in, at most, a few weeks. That's why I make purses and accessories. That's also why I crochet. It's faster than knitting. I digress...

You may recall, I've recently made a couple of granny square purses. Mine are framed in white. I just love the idea of all the granny square goodness surrounded by pink. So sweet and feminine and utterly summery.

So, I'm using this granny square pattern by Purl Bee.
I'll use what I have in my stash -- mainly white, off white, yellow, 2 shades of green, aqua, light blue, deep pink, you get the idea. Very summery. The first three rounds will be squares of all kinds of combos from the yarn listed above. Round 4 will be in pink.

Then I'll put the squares together to make this purse shape:

By Facile Cecile
Now that I see this pic again, I can see I will need more rounds. This bag was made using granny squares of 6 rounds. So I think what I'll do is use pattern above, but make a bigger square. So what I'll do is make 5 rounds of different color combos. Round #6 will always be pink.

This may also be the perfect time to try out this technique for handles:
Instructions by clothogancho.
If you're keeping track, that's 4 different people/blogs for inspiration and one person who will try to pull it all together. Check back in a week or so to see how, or if, it's all coming together.

Happy crafting!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Summer Stripe Tote

New item listed in my Etsy shop -- the Summer Stripe Tote!

This is a fun tote for summer. It's big enough to take to the beach, yet comfortable enough to carry every day. Look at all the stuff I fit in there, and I didn't even touch the pockets!

Made from cotton and cotton-blend yarns, this one can be spot cleaned or put in the machine on a gentle cycle.

Don't forget, you can use the coupon code "herecomesthebride" (without quotes) for 10% off through June 30th.

Happy crafting!

Friday, June 15, 2012

New Item Announcement and Coupon Code

They're here!  Wristlet key chains are now in my Etsy shop. There's a great assortment -- something for everyone!

Preppy -- Remember when we used to wear two golf shirts? (You know you did it too!) I put these same colors together in the wristlets -- eggplant and leaf green, light blue and red...Bringing back the 80s!

Patriotic -- All red, white & blue. Each one is made in a different color pattern. Perfect for 4th of July and Olympic pride!

Watermelon --  A summer staple. I make these in light & dark pink. Beads are on the outside only, so they're very comfy to wear.

Girlie -- A little thinner than the other wristlets, each is made with two colors that every girl will love!

See something you like, but would prefer a different color? Just email me for a custom order. Custom key chains will ship in 4-5 days.

Don't forget to use the coupon code "herecomesthebride" (without quotes) when checking out for 10% off your order. (Coupon good through June 30th.)

Happy crafting!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Paying It Forward

It always means so much to me when someone appreciates my work. From comments when I'm out and about (though my Mom gets way more comments than I do! lol) to friendly nods on the interwebs.

What really tickles me is when my item is featured either in an Etsy treasury list or, as happened for the first time today, on a blog. That's really something! Someone found my item and thought enough of it to tell people "you should look at this." Very humbling.

Today I pay it forward and thank the folks who have recently featured my creations in their blogs.

First up is Paper + Lace  from New Zealand wedding planner Jax Sutton. Jax posted about crochet wedding trends and included my bobble clutch. Jax has found some really fabulous stuff including a stunning crochet wedding dress, the sweetest slippers you ever saw, and a beautiful caplet. Check out the full post here.

A little earlier this week Creative Atelier featured my Rose Garden purse in an Etsy treasury full of rainbow colored goodness. You can't help but get a smile on your face when looking at this collection. See the treasury at the link above or on Etsy.

If you're on Etsy, you can look through other people's treasuries or create one of your own. It's a great way to highlight your finds and catalog items you may wish to revisit later. Here are a couple I've created:

Beachy Keen -- bringing a bit of the beach to home decor
Three Cheers for the Red White & Blue -- a sampling of patriotic items
In Memory of Crash -- a treasury I created when Crash passed and it's full of items I know he would love

Have you created an Etsy treasury? Please do share so we can admire and spread the love.

Happy crafting!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Three Cheers for the Red, White & Blue!

I've been making a lot of beaded bracelets lately. They work up quickly and each one is unique, which makes them a lot of fun to make.

I picked up some red beads when I was out the other day & thought they would look great on a blue bracelet. Throw in some white beads I already had in the house and -- ta da! Patriotic bracelet.

This one has inspired me to create other patriotic items. Keep your eyes out because there's more to come!

Do you like patriotic accessories? Only in the summer? What red, white & blue items are you making this summer?

Happy crafting!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

New Item Alert -- Key Fobs

I'm still playing around with these a bit, but they'll be coming soon to my Etsy shop.

The key fobs are adapted from a pattern from the wonderful folks at KnotSewCute. Seriously, you can't go wrong with any of their patterns.

Happy crafting!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Watermelon Purses

Watermelon! Who doesn't love watermelon? The juicy, sweet, yummy goodness. Nothing is better than eating one, but this comes pretty close.
Pattern by

Don't you just want to bite one?

Watermelon totes for summer. How fun!

I have one of each ready to go -- the ripe watermelon tote in the top pictures and the more traditional softer pink tote shown on the bottom. OOAK -- each is handcrafted from 100% wool and felted. They are very sturdy and roomy. You could even use it as commuter bag. Another advantage is wool is water-repellent, so those fast-moving summer storms that seem to pop out of nowhere? No problem! The water rolls right off these purses.

So, what's your favorite?

Happy crafting!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Weddings and a Coupon Code

Announcing a new category in my Etsy shop -- Weddings! In this category you will find listing for custom bobble clutch purses and add-on options to upgrade the linings from cotton to bridal satin or organic cotton.

Purchase one for yourself, or as a gift for someone special. Discounts available for custom orders of 4 or more purses. A free bridal clutch is included with custom orders of 6 or more purses. There's even an option for the green bride -- a purse crafted from 100% cotton, cotton/linen blend or recycled yarn and lined in organic cotton. Perfect for the earth-conscious bride who still wants something fabulous on her wedding day!

To celebrate, I'm offering 10% off purchases in my Etsy shop. Use coupon code: "herecomesthebride"(without quotes) when checking out. This coupon will expire on June 30th and cannot be combined with any other discount offers, such as discounts for multiple custom purses. This code can be used for custom orders up to 3 purses and any other listing in my shop and on the just-in-time-for-summer, Watermelon Purse.

Happy crafting!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Summer Granny Square Purse 4 - It's finished!

Sometimes you just have to take the plunge.

I actually finished this purse a little over 2 weeks ago. I even used it. The problem is, I wasn't crazy about the handles I made. Let me rephrase. I LOVE the way the handled looked. I didn't like how they were attached or how much they pulled when I loaded up my purse. Let's face it, I'm a loader. That's why I carry such a large bag. Too much stuff!

So I removed the handles (and cried b/c they really are pretty) and contemplated. I tried pre-fab handles. I liked the bamboo handles, but the span was too small and they looked really silly on my big tote. I definitely needed yarn handles. But what kind?

Since I didn't want anything sewn on, I decided I wanted something more like the handles I made on my Mom's & Sister's purses. They went around & around and were completely attached to the bag with no additional sewing.
Mom's purse with white handles.
Since the granny squares were outlined in white, I figured I would do the same as my Mom's purse and work the top and handles in white. The trouble is, I didn't have a lot of white left. Certainly not enough to complete the longer handles I wanted. I tried every yarn in my stash and none matched. Finally I came upon the green yarn, which I love!

I wasn't sure if I would like the handles in green, but I gave it a shot b/c I was sick of this unfinished purse sitting on my dining room chair NOT. BEING. USED. I wanted to use the purse so bad!! So on went the green yarn and you know what? I LOVE IT!! It's different without being overly dramatic. Not too overwhelming.

So, how do I make these handles?

The handles are pretty easy to do. Mark where you want each handle to begin & end. The space in between will be the handle opening and will not be worked when crocheting around. Join the yarn before the mark and crochet up to the first marker. Now crochet a chain to make the handle. It can be the same number of skipped stitches (as Mom's purse above) or you can chain more stitches to make a bigger opening. If you crochet the same number, the handle will lay flatter and almost look like a clutch. If you make it longer, it will look like a shoulder bag. For my purse, I crocheted a chain that was longer than the number of skipped stitches.

Now, depending on how you want to complete the purse, you can crochet around & around until the handle is as thick as you would like it. For Mom's I made two more rounds after the initial handle chain. As you crochet around, you will naturally work into the handle chain. With this method, the sides of the purse will have more rows than the front opening. This looks great if you're going for a clutch look and/or only making a few rounds. This is also a good method if you haven't yet lined the bag b/c you can make your lining taller to cover up the first row or two of the handle round.

Remember, my purse was already completed once. So the lining was in and was made based on the dimensions of the completed purse with sewn on handles. Therefore, I didn't want to build up the purse too much more because the lining would look too small. In addition, I wanted a nice, thick, handle so I knew I would need more than just 3 rows of single crochet (sc.) So, instead of the method above, I worked the handle in rows.

After making the chain and attaching it to the corresponding marked stitch, I turned my work & crocheted back along the handle. When I got to the end, I slip stitched (ss) into the next stitch. This attached the handle, but did not build up the row. I did this 5 times so I would end up on the opposite side of the purse. This allowed me to crochet to the next stitch marker and make the next handles. I repeated the steps above to make a same-size handle. Since the handles were crafted in rows, I now had a thick handle, but only one additional row on each side of the purse. After I finished off, I went back and weaved a bit more yarn into the handle seams on the wrong side of the purse. Since I used the green yarn, the additional stitches are undetectable and I feel confident loading up this purse.

I made the handles longer by crocheting more chains than the number of skipped stitches. 
So I have a granny square purse of many colors, with Truffula tree fabric lining and green handles. My new every day purse!

Happy crafting!