Making simple crocheted necklace with beads and embroidery floss☆ パールビーズと刺繍糸でかぎ針編みのネックレス☆

I made a simple crocheted necklace using faux pearls and gray embroidery floss (I used pearl cotton).


Necklace can be worn two-tiered or three-tiered, whichever I prefer.


I basically followed instructions from this lovely crochet book from Japan.

Publisher: Jitsugyo-no-Nihon-sha
ISBN-10: 4408420336
ISBN-13: 978-4408420332

今回は村林和子さんの編み物本を参考にさせていただきました。可愛いもの、編みたいものがいっぱいの素敵な本です♪ →☆

To make this necklace, all faux pearls (or pearl beads) are threaded through the embroidery floss before being crocheted.  Tip: Adding a dab of craft glue to one end of the floss and drying it completely will make the threading easier.

このネックレス、まずはすべてのパールビーズを糸に通すことから始めます。 刺繍糸の先に少量のクラフト用ボンドを付け、完全に乾かしてからビーズを通すと簡単です。

First row is entirely chain stitches (foundation row). Then, second row is made up entirely of slip stitches, but by adding beads at desired intervals.


Once all beads are threaded, crocheting part goes fairly quick.  It only takes some beads, embroidery floss (or crochet threads) and a crochet hook to make this simple beaded necklace.  I'd definitely like to make more of these effortless charm in the near future!  

いったん、ビーズさえ通してしまえばあとは時間を見つけて少しずつ編めば完成です。編み物はどこへでも持ち運びできるのが嬉しいですね^^  難しいテクニックなしに仕上がるのでこれからももっと作ってみたいです♪

Speaking of handmade necklaces... Here are the fabric necklaces that I made for my mom and my younger sis in early summer. 


As you may recall, I've made a couple of these lightweight fabric necklaces in the past for myself and for my friends, such as this one I made for myself... 


 And these I made for my girlfriends!


Here, the fabric necklace is worn by my younger sis #1. 

 I don't own expensive necklaces..., but for me, these *inexpensive* handmade necklaces are as amusing and delightful to wear everyday!

Happy handmade necklaces (^^♪

私にとっては高価なネックレスをするよりも、シンプルな手作りアクセサリーを日常使いするほうが似合っているのかもしれません。というより、高価なネックレスは持っていないからしたくても出来ないというのが本音かも~! (苦笑)

***Love, Amy***

My Original Tote Bag with EPP Star Pockets ☆トートバッグのポケットにパッチワークの星飾り☆

Happy September everyone!

Our kids are finally back in school (phew!), and we are adjusting ourselves back into our normal routine schedules (which means very sleepy mornings) zzz...


Here's a tote that I made a couple months back as a sample project of my original tote bag pattern, The Kate's Tote. As you can see, the tote turned out quite *scrappy*... which I love!


To try something different, I stitched these English Paper Pieced (EPP) stars to embellish both sides of tote pockets.

このバッグ、ペーパーライナー法という手縫いのピーシング法(英語名は English Paper Piecing = EPP)で作ったパッチワークの星を2つ、バッグ両面のポケットに縫い付けています。



For tote lining, I used my fave turquoise blue solids. Magnetic snap closure opening.


My original "The Kate's Tote" pattern is available in my etsy shop.


Trying different fabrics (and adding some stars!) really make a difference when making tote bags out of one sewing pattern... And we all agree that's the fun of sewing, right?


Happy stitching!

***Love, Amy***

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How I made my Original Hawaiian Wreath Mini Quilt ♪ハワイアンリースのミニキルト作りました♪

My long time girlfriend just got married over this Labor Day weekend, and here's what I stitched up for the newly wed couple, in addition to the ordinary store-bought gift card... I made a mini quilt featuring a machine appliqued Hawaiian wreath :)


Just like me, my girlfriend's career background is quite unique - she is an accountant and a hula dancer. You know, I'm an accountant and a craft book author, so we often talk about the challenges we face to balance out two very contrasting!


She loves everything Hawaiian, and I have made these Hawaiian themed lavender sachets for her in the past. These sachets are embellished with the monstera leaf stamp and hibiscus stamp that are hand-carved by me.  (You can find how to make these eraser stamped lavender sachets in my book ;)  



Anyways... instead of making a traditional Hawaiian quilt that involves (hand stitched) needle turn applique and echo quilting, I decided to create my original Hawaiian wreath mini quilt using bright and happy colored fabrics (all from our local Joann) and raw edge machine applique.

今回のご結婚祝いにハンドメイドさせていただいたハワイアン(ふう)ミニキルトはすべてオリジナルのデザインで自己流に作ってみました。 ご存じの通り、通常ハワイアンキルトは手縫いでアップリケとキルトを施しますが、私は今回すべてミシンで作ってみました。というわけで、出来上がったのは「なんちゃってハワイアンキルト」です(^^;)

Let me quickly show you how I made this machine appliqued Hawaiian wreath mini quilt. This paper-backed fusible web came in very handy when stitching raw edge appliques.


After fusing the fusible web to the wrong side of the colorful fabrics, trace and cut out monstera leaves and hibiscus flowers. (I used my original hard paper templates.)


Then carefully remove the paper backing from the cut out flowers and leaves.


Fold the background fabric in half triangle twice and press to create creases.

 After deciding the applique position, press the flowers and leaves to the background fabric using hot iron (follow manufacturer's instructions).


 The flowers and leaves are machine stitched using matching colored threads. I sewed straight stitches around the entire raw edges of applique pieces to perform this step.


After hand embroidering the names of the bride and groom and their wedding day on to the central white flower, I machine quilted the entire mini wreath with simple diagonal grids.


Reverse side... is of course Hawaiian themed fabric (also from Joann)!

ミニキルトの裏地も・・・もちろんハワイアンファブリックです。今回使用したすべての生地は近所の手芸量販店 Joann にて購入しました。

The mini measures approximately 16" x 16" or 40 cm x 40 cm.

出来上がったミニキルトのサイズは約40センチ x 40センチ大です。

After finishing the quilt, I hand stitched quilt hanging sleeve to the back side. I followed this helpful video tutorial to make the sleeve.

ミニキルトを仕上げてから、キルト裏側に筒状の通し穴を縫い付けました。その際にはこちらのビデオを参考にさせていただきました (ビデオは英語です)。

This Hawaiian Wreath mini is obviously not a "traditional" Hawaiian quilt... but it's made with lots of love and wishes from me to the newly wed couple... I just wish them tons of happiness, joy, and laughter together in their marriage! Congratulations to two wonderful people who make a great couple!

出来上がったミニキルトは伝統的な技法で作ったハワイアンキルトではありませんが・・・ 友人カップルが末永~く幸せな結婚生活を送れるようにたくさんの願いを込めて作らせていただきました♪ どうかお二人ともお幸せに!

***Love, Amy***

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Flex Frame Pouch with Doggie Fabric ♪ワンちゃん柄でバネポーチ♪

You know how much I love to sew stuff and give them away to my loved ones... and here's another one! It's a flex frame pouch I whipped up for my teenage niece who lives in Tokyo with her family.


My niece has an adorable pet dog, so I picked up  this *terrier* fabric (from Kokka) and combined it with polka dots linen (although her dog isn't a terrier!)  I added a tiny cross-stitched bow at the front of the pouch.



12 cm or 4.8" flex frame is used to make this pouch.


Despite minor size alterations that I made to whip up this pouch, you can find how to make similar flex frame pouch from my book.  


Zakka Handmades, my book!


***Love, Amy***

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Scrappy Coaster/Pot Mat Making ♪ハギレでコースター・ポットマットづくり♪

Here's what I've stitched up recently using my ever growing scraps... 
a very scrappy coaster/pot mat!


I've been quite busy ever since I returned from my recent Japan trip to catch up with my work, home, kids... so it's been a challenge for me to find time to sit down and sew lately.


When time is scarce, what to do? For me, making quick-gratification-scrappy-project is the best! 

そんなときはストレスもたまりがちなので、簡単に作れるハギレ利用の作品作りが私には一番です♪ これなら細切れ時間を利用して、ミシンでダダーっと作れます^^  

Reverse side of coaster/pot mat: simple navy and white pin dots cotton. 


To make this coaster/pot mat, I used scraps left behind from making this project that I made earlier. 

Happy scrappy sewing!  Enjoy your weekend.

以前このポーチ→☆ を作ったときに残った切れ端が残っていたので今回はそれを利用してみました。ちょっとした作品作りで気持ちもすっきり♪  やはりソーイングはやめられませんね。主婦なのでお金のかからないハギレ利用というのもポイント高いです(笑)。

***Love, Amy***

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Half Moon Patchwork Pouch made of Strippy Scraps ♪ 半円パッチワークポーチをハンドメイド(細長いハギレで) ♪

Prior to my recent Japan trip, I made a couple of handmade gifts to my friends and family. Today I'd like to show you the Half Moon Patchwork Pouch that I made for my sister-in-law, using strippy scraps.


The pouch is made from my original pattern that can be found in my etsy shop.


The pouch pattern comes in two sizes: medium (10" zipper) and small (8" zipper).  This is a small pouch I made, which is a perfect size to carry coins, lip balm, and small necessities.


Instead of creating a log cabin patchwork as described in my pattern, I made this one quite scrappy by using various strippy scraps. Each strip measures approximately 1" to 1.25" in width.


When giving away handmade pouches to my girlfriends and family members, I like to include small extra something inside... like a lip balm or a hand cream. This time, I placed my favorite Kiehl's lip balm tube inside the pouch. 

ハンドメイドのポーチにはこっそり小さなプレゼントを中に忍ばせておくのがお約束です(笑)。 今回は私の愛用する Kiehl のリップバームを中に忍ばせてみましたよ♪

The gift was well received by my sis-in-law :)  I'm sure that many of you agree with me that the best part of making handmade stuff is when they are given away to the people we love...!

ポーチは義妹にプレゼントしました♪ 私にとってハンドメイドの醍醐味はなんといっても大好きな家族や友人にプレゼントすること。。。 使ってもらえたら嬉しい限りです~。

Enjoy your weekend.


***Love, Amy***

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