Jun 29, 2013

Free Purse Tutorial

I'm reluctant to call this a pattern.  I don't plan to proofread or edit this and I don't plan to make any corrections.  This is just a loose set of instructions to make this bag.

(Editted to add): Here is my project page on Ravelry.
Link to the Pattern on Ravelry.

I used all acrylic yarn because it's easily washable and durable and doesn't stretch as badly as cotton.

I used about 250g of Worsted Weight.

With I Hook, chain 49.

Round 1 : hdc in second chain from hook and all the way across, 6 hdc in last chain and working on the bottom of the chain, hdc across, 5 hdc in first chain, join w. sl st to top of chain 2

Round 2 : ch 2, hdc in same st and in each across, 2 hdc in each next 5 hdc, hdc in each st across to last 4, 2 hdc in each, join w. sl st to top of chain 2 (chain 2 counts as a stitch)

Round 3 : ch 2. hdc in same st and in each across, once you get to the area where you have 2 hdc in each stitch, 2 hdc in each next 8 (or 9) sts, hdc across, to last 7 (or 8) groups of 2 hdc, and work 2 hdc in each, join w. sl st to top of chain 2

Notes:  At this point, depending on your gauge, you need to make sure it's flat and not wavy, so you may need to do more or less "2 hdc to 1 stitch" groups.

Round 4 : Here is where we begin working the body of the bag; ch 3 (counts as a stitch), dc BLO  in next st and all the way around, join w. sl st to top of chain 3

Round 5 : Ch 3, dc in next st, dc dec over next two stitches, dc to other "end" of the bag, where the curve is and somewhere near the middle do another dc dec over two stitches, dc across and sl st to top of beg chain 3

Round 6 - desired length : Repeat rounds 4 and 5 alternating until you reach your desired length and/or width
I did this until my bag was about 12" high, but if you keep going it could get very narrow, so keep an eye on width and stop the decreases once you're happy.  You can also not do any decreases at all if you want it to be straight on the sides

Last round : ch. 1 and sc in each st around, join with sl st to chain 1 and fasten off.


Spacing - measure the width at the place where you want to put the handles, for me it was about  1.5" down from the top of the bag.

16" - so, 4.5" in from the two edges of the bag I joined the yarn by sl st around the dc in the row, sl st around next 3 sts, 4 sts total

Chain 2, turn, hdc in next 3 sts, turn.

Repeat last row until strap measures 22", sl st to the body of the bag on the same side, make sure that the strap isn't twisted.  I attached it at about 4.5" from edge

That's it, weave in your ends and you're ready to go...!  I might line it with some fabric...we'll see.

Jun 27, 2013

Thursday Weigh-In

I got really sick last week, as my previous post has indicated...and still I'm not feeling back to normal.  I haven't even felt well enough to do my 30 minutes of walking, AT ALL.

So for this coming 7 days I plan to refocus and get back on track with my exercise.

WW Diet Stats:

SW : 148.2 lbs

GW : 135 lbs

CW : 138.8 lbs

WL : -1.2 lbs

Notes:  I'm at almost 10 lbs of weight loss and it's really encouraging.  I started this journey back in March and since then I've lost about 18 lbs.  I can't tell you how much better I feel and how encouraged I am to get to my goal and either rethink my goal (I might do 5 more pounds) or begin the "maintaining" phase of my diet.

Jun 24, 2013

Little bugs

I had grand plans....ok, well, may not grand, but....plans.  Unfortunately, late Thursday night, or...rather, early Friday morning I was over taken, by germs.  I thought it was food poisoning, but when I came down with a rather nasty fever, I knew....actual illness, yuck.  So, Mr. Hollybroke was away and here I am, with the baby, SICK...

Luckily, I have some rather helpful in laws, and Friday morning, I called them up to take E to day care.  Off he went, and up to bed I went.  I couldn't eat at all, I just slept ALL DAY and then my wonderful in laws again, came along and picked up E from daycare and brought him home to me.  Now, here is where I had to dig deep....I just had to make it until Mr. H came home at 9p.  I somehow managed to do E's dinner, bedtime routine, and get him down to sleep before collapsing in bed....where I stayed until Saturday morning.

So between resting, caring for E, and running to the W.C. I did not craft ANYTHING...so this week is a bust for knit news, sorry...

But I will do my Thursday weigh-in (which might be abnormally low due to my 36 hours of no eating) and my Photo Friday...see you then!

Jun 20, 2013

Thursday Weigh-In

This week is rough for me.  Ethan's birthday party was this past weekend and my husband is travelling on business.  I can be easily tempted to make lazy and less healthy food choices when I don't have someone else to feed.

I'm slightly discouraged this week because my measurements aren't changing much.  I keep hoping that my waist will shrink faster, but it's sooo slow...and it's frustrating to see.  I don't even take measurements every week because I know better, but over the past three weeks, I've only lost 0.25"...a quarter of an inch...ARGH...

I will keep chugging along...doing my crunches or roman chair crunches, focusing on my obliques and doing some mild cardio; fingers crossed that I lose a bit more.

Overall, I feel much better and I know that I look much better.  My clothes fit nicely, and I don't feel so self-conscious about how my clothes cling to me.

Something else that I've also noticed, when I eat kind of cruddy foods, then I feel cruddy for DAYS.  Whenever I would read in a book or hear some blather about how people feel as bad as the food they are eating, I thought it was a bunch of psychosomatic hooey, but now that I consistently eat healthy, when I deviate too much, I really feel it and it takes a few days of nausea and tummy troubles before I am back to normal.  It also makes me realize that I feel pretty good most of the time now, instead of tired and somewhat sluggish.

WW Diet Stats:

SW : 148.2 lbs

GW : 135 lbs

CW : 140.0 lbs

WL : -1.4 lbs

Total WL (on WW) : 8.2 lbs (5 weeks)

Jun 19, 2013

WiP Wednesday - TTL Mystery KAL

I have been so crazy busy at home that I haven't had much time to focus on knitting.  I try to get a few rows done before I get distracted by important tasks, but even that has been challenging.

I've finally finished with the first clue (!) for the TTL KAL, but I haven't even started the WendyKnits KAL.  I apologize for not even having edited photos ready...I will try to get some of that accomplished this weekend.  Unfortunately, the rest of this week will be devoted to being a single mom while Mr. Hollybroke travels for work; I don't know how some people do it...

Jun 13, 2013

Thursday Weigh-In

So far so good with Weight Watchers.  It forces you to realize how much you're eating.  It's really scary, to be honest.  I always thought that I was a relatively healthy eater, but was I ever mistaken.  Not just food choices, because mine aren't too bad, but more with how much.

Don't get me wrong, sometimes I splurge and eat more than I should, but with the points, it's really flexible.

I made another observation, some time last week.  Apparently, I almost like exercising.  Not to be confused with the fact that I enjoy it and want to spend all my time doing it, but now I get annoyed when I realize that I won't have time or that I won't get at least 30 minutes in.  I still do not exercise every day, but I do, at least, get my goal of 30 minutes, 3 times a week.

WW Diet Stats:

SW: 148.2 lbs

GW:  135 lbs

CW: 141.4 lbs

WL: -1.40 lbs

Total WL (on WW): 6.8 lbs (4 weeks)

Notes: I had a tough week, last week.  Ethan was sick and really clingy and unhappy and I had to adjust back from vacation.  I think this week will be challenging as Ethan turns 1 on Saturday and we're having a party for him (always hard to be good with dieting when you're throwing a party).

Jun 12, 2013

WiP Wednesday - KAL Projects

I have two KALs on-going at the moment (probably not my best plan), so Olive Basket is on hold until they are completed...hopefully, by July.

1.  WendyKnits Summer Mystery Shawl 2013 KAL : For the past two years I have joined this KAL and I always enjoy it.  She offers a discount on her pattern if you buy it early and her designs are always fabulous.  I also read her blog, which is great.  She spends a lot of time designing and she documents some of the aspects of her design process through her blog.  I think you should head on over there and check her out and while you do that, you should pick up the KAL pattern and join in.

For this project I am using the Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light in Cove...oh how I love this yarn.

My Ravelry Project Page

2. Through The Loops! (TTL) Mystery Shawl 2013 : This is a new one that I decided to join this year.  Generally I love Kristin's designs and I'm hoping that this will be no exception.  She also has a blog, that I follow and her photography and designs are lovely.  I also encourage you to head over to her blog and check that out and to get this pattern and follow along.

For this project I'm using three colors where I will be mixing my neutrals and adding bit of color.  I'm using a cream and silver for the striping with a medium cornflower blue as the lace section.

My Ravelry Project Page

Jun 10, 2013

Vacation & Wedding

My very best-est friend got married on June 1st and as you know I was in St. Kitts and Nevis to celebrate with her.  I had the obligation privilege to be her Maid (in my case Matron, I suppose) of Honor.  Needless to say, but the island was BEAUTIFUL and her wedding was FABULOUS.

She made so much effort to organize meals and tours for us.  There aren't so many sights on the island, but there is a ton of stuff to just do and experience, so we did...

We went to see Brimstone Hill, which is a World Heritage Site and a feat in architectural design and management.  That doesn't sound exciting but, when you consider that it's on the top of this enormous mountain "hill", took 100 years to construct on the backs of African slaves, and has been standing since the 1600s, it is amazing.  The road to get in is rather treacherous and I'm glad that I was sitting on a small tour bus instead of navigating the terrain.

By far that was the most interesting thing we saw, but we did go visit:

Ottley's Plantation Inn : this was for the wedding reception dinner, but you can wander around the place and see the ocean view or rain forest

Romney Manor : this place just has really beautiful picture opportunities as well as seeing the way that Batik clothe is made and catching a glimpse of a 400-year old saman tree.

Cathy's Ocean View Bar & Grill : this place was a more "local" thing to do.  It's along a strip of bars that back up to the ocean.  Here you can get all kinds of more local foods versus the touristy-American type of fare.  The link I gave isn't really directly for Cathy's but the food was awesome and if you're in St. Kitts you should check out that area.

Island Tour : I highly suggest this, as there are many many smaller sites to see and a good tour guide can give you a nice description of the history of the island.  I'm not sure if the link is the exact one we used, but I can say that our tour guide/bus driver was Michael and he was awesome!

I have so many pictures...close to 700 I think, but I promise I will only post a very small percentage of them. I think that many will be reserved for Photo Friday posts.

Also, the coffee....phenomenal....

Jun 6, 2013

Thursday Weigh-In

I'm back....somewhat.

Today is weigh in day....I was a little worried because last week we were on vacation and it's fairly challenging to track points and find healthy foods.  It's not too bad if you pay attention to the portions, but all in all, I didn't do as well as I would have liked.

WW Diet Stats:

SW : 148.2 lbs

GW : 135 lbs

CW : 142.8 lbs

WL : -1.0 lbs

Notes: My weight last week was the same, so in the past week I have not lost any weight, but over the past two weeks I lost 1 lbs.