quilts, treadle sewing machines, crochet, watercolor, dogs, & other fun stuff

A Scrabble Bag, Bobbins, and Two WIPs

The silver plastic tile bag that came with our game of Scrabble was falling apart at the seams, so I decided to sew us a new one.  I don’t have a lot of experience sewing bags– or anything “3-D” / not blanket-flat.

I’ve hemmed some cut-off jeans (hurray for cooler capri pants!), made some pillow shams, pillow inserts for stuffing, dog toys (smaller pillows/tubes), a cover for my old sewing machine, and a couple of extremely simple (but still flawed) bags, but I’m definitely not in my comfort zone when sewing anything that has “shape”.  (I’d like to make myself some pj pants and a lightweight kimono-style robe from sheets, but I’m kinda scared of sewing clothes!)

Considering all that, even a small bag was a little intimidating!  I found this video tutorial, though, and thought, “That looks manageable.” So I went stash-diving and chose a colorful (even kind of crazy) fat quarter, part of an old sheet for the lining, two smaller scraps for the ribbon-holders, and a lime grosgrain ribbon.

It’s not perfect (I can name at least three imperfections), but as someone who’s not particularly comfortable sewing bags, I’m proud of the results!  It should certainly do the job, which is the most important thing.

Scrabble Tile Bag

I recommend the tutorial linked above.  It was a big help!  My bag is smaller than the one demonstrated, and I added a zigzag stitch around the top of the bag, but other than that, I followed the tutorial fairly closely.

Here’s the other side:

Scrabble Tile Bag

…And this is what it looks like when the bag is open (i.e. the ribbons aren’t pulled tight):

Scrabble Tile Bag

We’ve used it once so far; it seems to work. ;o)

I might even consider making another similar bag or two in the future for project bags, for knitting and crochet projects.  I don’t often have a need for project bags, but it might be fun to have a couple available.  I like that this type of bag doesn’t have a zipper (which can catch the yarn/thread) and would be silent, compared to the rustling plastic bags I tend to use when I do crochet on the go.

Scrabble Tile Bag

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The toilet paper bobbins I ordered came last week!

The bobbin out of the bag is one of the few that came with the quilting machine.  It looks like an exact match.  They were supposed to be the right thing (based on description, photos, and reviews), but you never know until you get something in your hands if it’s going to be “as described”.  These are!


Actually, the photos made it look like these other bobbins might not have quite the same… profile(?) on the top.  They looked perfectly flat, whereas the ones that came with the machine have a slight… I don’t know how to describe it.  Not a ridge… A bevel?  There’s a slight angle on the flat sides, as you can clearly see in both my photos.  For whatever reason, that wasn’t easy to see in the product photo, but they do have that same angle.

I’m not sure if that bevel would matter or not.  I considered some other bobbins that have a hole for the thread to come through, which might be slightly easier to wind (not that this type is difficult to use).  But these had good reviews and would get here faster… And I just wanted to play it safe and get something that was exactly the same (as far as possible) to the ones that came with the machine.


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I’ve made some progress on the “Sitka Spruce” hat.  My tension is not perfect.  Those twisted stitches are throwing it for a loop, but I guess it’s good enough.  I’ll see how it looks after blocking…  Maybe it’s even normal for it to look like this– or at least not uncommon.  I can deal with it.

I’m having fun with this project, for the most part, though sometimes those twisted stitches can be a little harder to work than a plain old-fashioned knit stitch.  (Through the back loop, indeed!  How rude!)

I’ve glimpsed a project note or two that refer to adding a repeat or at least a partial repeat of the chart to get the hat to the right size, and I suspect I’ll need to do that, too.  It certainly looks a bit short, at this point.

WIP: "Sitka Spruce" Hat
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One more WIP– “Ahmanet”.

It feels like I haven’t made a lot of progress on this one since last time, but looking at it, I’m a bit further than I thought.

Rnd 25 slowed me down for a while.  There’s a link to a FB video (I think) demonstrating a special stitch (“special FP-quadtr2tog”) for that round. The link wasn’t working when I tried it, and I was having a hard time visualizing where to insert the hook.

However, I remembered a similar stitch in another pattern and found the PDF photo demo for that stitch very helpful in reminding me what it looks like to insert the hook into a specific “yarn over” in an earlier stitch. For future reference, see the PDF linked in Rnd 23 of “Kalani” (the Y-stitch demo). (That demo shows the hook inserting into a different yarn over than specified in this round of this pattern, but it’s easy enough to count up to the right one.)

There’s also been another round of crab stitch since then, as well as some back-post stitches, which can be a little more time-consuming to crochet– for me, at least. 

WIP: "Ahmanet" Doily

This is a big doily, and each round keeps getting longer, but it has a lot of variation in it, so far.  It keeps things interesting!


I’m Michael (a female Michael, to remove any doubt).  I live on the Alabama Gulf Coast with my husband, Donald, and our crazy American Eskimo Dogs. 

I love to fill my spare time with various crafts and other hobbies, and this blog is where I share photos, record my progress, and ramble endlessly.

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