An easy hand-sewing project - a wrap-around skirt!

Wrap Skirt (Pareo) with crochet ties

An easy hand-sewing project - a wrap-around skirt!

An easy hand-sewing project – a wrap-around skirt!

This is a super simple project – a wrap-around skirt. I cut a large rectangular piece of fabric, a size of my preferred length (mid-calf) and a width that goes around my hips once and overlaps halfway. I included a hole along the wasitband for the tie to go through. I tried to make the hole as neat as possible but it wasn’t easy!

The fun part was the ties. I used a long piece of fake leather string, crocheted the ties with it, and made a knot at the end of the ties. The ties go all around my hips which holds the skirt securely and also looks like a leather belt.

If you’re looking for a quick and easy hand-sewn garment project, a wrap-skirt is probably one of the easiest.

 

Some dresses I made during my stay in Manila.

Hand-sewing Dresses

Some dresses I made during my stay in Manila.

Some dresses I made during my stay in Manila.

During my stay with my mom in Manila, I was finally able to spend lots of time sewing. I bought some fabrics and decided to make my own dress. The design is very simple – I just copied it from my favourite dress, something which I got from a second-hand clothes shop several years ago.

Now that I am back in Bohol, I am making dresses again and they are all hand-sewn. I am using new dress designs too. I don’t have much of the special dressmaker’s materials and tools but that doesn’t stop me. I think it’s fun figuring things out by yourself and making use of what’s available. I got new craft scissors which are okay, but later I think I will need really good scissors for fabric. Even if I don’t have a sewing machine, I think I can’t ever get away without good dressmaker’s scissors.

Later, I’ll share here some of the new dresses I’ve made.

Quick and easy crocheting with beads to make necklaces.

Quick Bead Crocheting

Quick and easy crocheting with beads to make necklaces.

Quick and easy crocheting with beads to make necklaces.

I made these because of the gorgeous yarn that Imeng from Cavite, Philippines gave me, a beautiful melange of gold, silver and bronze colours. The yarn was the last thing I needed to complement the beads that came from crochet friend Carol from Washington, USA.

These necklaces were made by stringing the beads and then crocheting with simple chain stitches. A similar design which I made a few years ago is The Beaded Chains Bracelet, the free pattern available on Ravelry. So these necklaces are really just variations on that design.

One necklace uses a shell pendant which I picked up from the beach on Pamilacan Island. A variation on design can be made by twisting the strings of crocheted beads together. Other variations can be made by making knots in the necklaces.

It’s also fun selecting colours – I have made darker necklaces and one which has a lighter set of colours. The pink and gray combinations are also quite beautiful. I hope to make more bead crochet jewelry and come up with more complex designs, as time and energy permits.

Try bead crochet and have fun!

These kitchen towels have a crocheted top. I used yarns given by crochet friend Imeng from http://ginantsilyo.com

Recycled Dress Kitchen Towel

We are in need of new kitchen towels. There are a few crocheted ones, but when they’ve been washed and are out drying, we need more in reserve. ;) I have this blue house dress which I don’t particularly like. So I cut it up and made it into two kitchen towels.

These kitchen towels have a crocheted top. I used yarns given by crochet friend Imeng from http://ginantsilyo.com

These kitchen towels have a crocheted top. I used yarns given by crochet friend Imeng from http://ginantsilyo.com

These are easy projects. I started these while crocheting the Amineko.

To make kitchen towels like these you need old fabric that can absorb water easily and can dry easily too. If you have suitable old dresses, you can use those too.

I cut the bodice off the skirt part of the dress. I used the skirt part of the dress for the kitchen towel. I cut the skirt part of the dress into two lengthwise, to make two kitchen towels. Then I sewed the edges of the fabric.

To make the crocheted top/holder, I used two strands of yarn. The yarns came from crochet friend Imeng. I crocheted a lace trim design which I sewed onto the fabric. To make the handle, I crocheted along the trim with a gradual decrease. I made the handle long enough so I can just tie it around the refrigerator handle or the door knob.

That's me and my husband Trevor with the orange Amineko on the fast ferry to Cebu. I made two more Amineko, Pistacio and Strawberry.

The Crocheted Cat

That's me and my husband Trevor with the orange Amineko on the fast ferry to Cebu. I made two more Amineko, Pistacio and Strawberry.

That’s me and my husband Trevor with the orange Amineko on the fast ferry to Cebu. I made the orange Amineko for Trevor’s beautiful daughter. I made two more Amineko, Pistacio and Strawberry to give to my sister.

If you’re an avid crocheter, you must’ve heard of that cute crocheted cat called Amineko. Amineko was created by Nekoyama. Amineko is a Japanese word for “crocheted cat.” There is a book by Nekoyama about Amineko and her friends and how to make them: Amineko Life あみねこのいる生活 published in 2005 and Hello My Name is Amineko published in 2010.

Nekoyama has published the pattern of Amineko on the website webMITE. A direct link to the Amineko pattern is found at this page.

That's my cat Earl Grey, and a kitchen towel I started working on while finishing the Amineko.

That’s my cat Earl Grey, and a kitchen towel I started working on while finishing the Amineko.

I made a few Amineko to give away. Here are some photos and some notes that might help you when you make your own Amineko.

  1. To remember which round I am working on, I use a piece of yarn as stitch-marker.
  2. I made a chart (see photo below) indicating how many stitches there are in each round, as well as the number of single crochet stitches before the two-single crochet in same stitch is made. This helps me to remember the stitches and avoid making too many mistakes.
  3. I used small shells to add weight to Amineko’s feet but I didn’t stuff the arms and legs because this is a very small Amineko. I only stuffed the head, torso and mouth, and put small stones as weight at the base of the torso.
  4. Before attaching the head to the torso, I completed the face of Amineko so all the yarn ends can go in and out through the hole under the head.
I made this chart to help me remember the number of stitches and repeats in each round.

I made this chart to help me remember the number of stitches and repeats in each round.

I hope these notes are helpful for you when you make your own Amineko. Have fun!