Monday, April 30, 2012

Little Crocheted Bags and Free Motion Quilting


After spending the morning troubleshooting my uncooperative sewing machine, I was so happy when the baby took a late afternoon nap while the girls were at a friend's house thinking I'd be able to get some sewing in today.  All was looking good until I noticed my iron was not warming up - sadly, I don't think I can fix it so my sewing will have to take a break for a few days.  What to do???  Crochet, maybe?!?


 
Actually, I made this little bag with the purple flower over the weekend (and the pink one years ago) - if I'd only known, I would have waited.

These bags are a relatively simple and quick project.  I've been giving these out for birthday presents for a few years and from the feedback I've received, I can say - little girls LOVE them!

To make the bags, you just need to make two Granny Squares of your choice and a big flower.  For the grannies, I recommend making two identical ones - you can vary the yarn color for the middle but I think it looks nicer at the end if your outermost row is the same for both.

Put the two squares right side together (if you have a right side) and starting in the middle of one of the sides, use single crochet to stitch around the rest of that side and the next two sides.  Then make a chain of your preferred length (mine was about 100 stitches) and stitch down the rest of the side you started with.  You can really attach them anyway you want but using this method gives the bags a nice boxy look.  Flip the bag around so the right sides are showing and attach your flower (or flowers.)

You can leave the bag like this or you can add a lining.  To make the lining, you need to first measure your granny square to figure out what size you need.  Your fabric should be about 1/2 to 1 inch wider than your square and double the length plus about 1 inch.  For example, if my square was 5x5, I would cut out two pieces of fabric measuring 6 x 11 inches.  Remember when choosing fabric, that the exterior will show a bit though the crochet - you might want it to stand out or you might prefer for it to blend in - I usually hold it up behind the square when deciding which fabric to use.

Put your two pieces of fabric right sides together and sew around all four sides leaving a gap on one of the sides for turning.


Turn it so right sides are facing out and topstitch around the rectangle enclosing the open gap while doing so.  Take the rectangle and fold it in half so that the short sides touch and sew down the two sides forming a little bag.  The seams will be showing but the raw edges will be enclosed because of the first step.  (You could also sew the fabric bag with no seams by sewing the exterior into a little bag and the interior into a little bag, putting one inside the other (right sides facing) and sewing around the top leaving a gap for turning.)


Then just put the fabric bag inside the crochet bag and hand stitch using your preferred method for invisible stitches around the top to attach.  Make sure to put your needle through just the interior side of the crochet stitches so that the thread doesn't show on the outside.  

I also made some of these little bags last night using some granny squares that I had made awhile back (I think I was originally going to make a blanket.)  


But back to quilting:

I've been building up to free motion quilting - using it in smaller projects and trying sketch stitching but I finally quilted a whole quilt (well, it was doll/baby size) using a meandering stitch.  I love the scrunchy look the quilts get when made this way.  



I used my go-to wonky log cabin for the blocks and appliqued the hearts using a zigzag stitch.


And here is the back:


I definitely want to make more quilts using FMQ.  My WIP this week is a little houses quilt that I started before my iron broke and I guess I'll take this opportunity to organize my stash and go blog hopping!



31 comments:

  1. Your FMQ looks nice! It's nice to switch up the projects every once in a while--have fun crocheting!

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  2. It is just not fun when the machine goes wrong and the iron too! Hope they are fixed soon. Well done on your FMQ!

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  3. love those little bags so much! x

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  4. Visiting from the Small Blog meet.
    Lovely FMQ and cute bags!
    I will be your newest Follower
    Kind regards
    liz
    xxxx

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  5. SUCH cute little crochet bags! I really want to try making a flower, I"ve heard it's easier than it looks!

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  6. Hi I have just popped over from the Small Blog Meet at Lily's Quilts. Like your FMQ and the bags are sweet. Di x

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  7. That little quilt is beautiful, and I just LOVE those darling bags!

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  8. I love your fmq on your quilt and those crochet bags are very sweet :)

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  9. So cute! The appliquéd hearts look great on the quilt. So sorry to hear about your sewing machine and iron troubles. At least you've got a good excuse to shell out for an Oliso ;-)

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  10. The bags are so cute! Thanks for the quick tute! Great job on the FMQ love the quilt! =D

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  11. Hi I am a new follower :) I love the bags, thanks for the tute, I think I might give it a try. I enjoyed reading your blog and looking at your quilts!!!

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  12. Beautiful quilt and your FMQing looks perfect! Loved seeing the crochet bags, I made some like that about.....oh my gosh......35 years ago. I used rug yarn.

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  13. Gorgeous quilt and lovely bags. Your FMQ looks pretty good to me :)

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  14. Uncooperative sewing machines are the worst! I feel like mine always has a new issue. Your crochet bags are adorable! Your quilting turned out perfect. The scrunchy look is the best! It adds a whole other level of coziness to a quilt.

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  15. I like the idea of those little crochet bags for little girls - yours are very cute with the flowers! I have a bag full of granny squares for a project that I abandoned years ago, but maybe I can repurpose them. I also love the quilt - wonky log cabins are one of my favourite blocks. Your fmq looks great!

    Yzo

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  16. Love that quilt!!! So pretty!! Your free motion looks great!! So sorry about the iron!

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  17. Wow they look fantastic!!! Thank you ever so much for the share!

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  18. Oh! Those bags are the cutest! My son and daughter both have girly b-day parties to attend in the next week. I am whipping up a couple of those for gifts! Thanks for sharing!

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  19. Love the quilt and your FMQ is amazing! Those crocheted bags are so adorable!

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  20. Oh my word those little granny square bags are too cute! Thanks for sharing! Love them! Have a great weekend!

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  21. Love the bags. WE have been making those very same lil coin purses is what we call them for a while. We put a piece of fabric on the inside too so the change doesn't fall out. Happy to have found you through Sew Chatty. I'm joined up with you now. Love any and all crochet ideas.

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  22. Great job on the FMQ, Beth! Those crocheted bags are adorable -- no wonder they are a hit! I came from TGIFF! - You forgot to mention us! :)

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  23. Cute bags! And nice quilt!

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  24. I love these crocheted bags! So cute! Thanks for sharing at my party! Have a great weekend :)

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  25. Super cute bags and great job with the fmq! Hope you are able to get an iron SOON!!!!

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  26. Those bags are adorable! What little girl wouldn't love having a cute little bag like that to tote around? And I love the free motion quilting you did, so pretty!

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  27. Such cute bags! And you fmq is lovely. Thanks for linking up!

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  28. Your little bags are adorable, and your FMQ looks great! Whoop whoop!!

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