Category Archives: Clothing

Simple Crocheted Headband

My mother and grandmother taught me how to knit when I was really young.  I can’t remember how young, but the first thing I made was a blanket for my doll, so that should give you some idea!  My mother and my other grandmother taught me how to sew.  My first project was a drawstring bag with pig fabric.  I still use that bag (20-ish years later!)  to hold toiletries on camping trips!  All three of them along with my dad taught me how to cook and bake.  All this domestic training and not a single one of them taught me how to crochet!  I did inherit several crochet hooks from my knitting grandmother, but I don’t remember ever seeing her crochet.  The point is, I felt the need to teach myself.

At some point when I was a kid, I taught myself how to crochet a chain.  I was pretty proud of myself at the time, but chains aren’t particularly difficult or interesting by themselves.  Lion Brand Yarn has some excellent videos for the crochet beginner.  I just started crocheting a few rows and thought it was so easy I couldn’t stop!  I decided to turn my practice project into a headband.

Note: Ignore the wet hair in the picture above.  I was headed out the door and wanted to catch Husband to take the photo while he was actually home.  Yes, I do leave the house with wet hair…blow dryers are too much of a bother!  Also, I realize my headband isn’t perfect, but keep in mind that it is my very first attempt!

Materials needed:

  • Worsted weight yarn (scrap yarn works because this really doesn’t use much yarn)
  • H crochet hook
  • 2 buttons (mine are about 1/2″ diameter)
  • Sewing needle and thread
  • Yarn needle
  • Scissors


  1. Start with a chain of about 8 stitches.  I’m not sure if they are technically called stitches, but I’m a beginner, so that is what I will call them.
  2. Single crochet rows until the headband is as long as you want it to be.  I made mine a little loose because I hate when headbands pop off the back of my head.  Am I the only one that has this problem?  Also, no hair wedgies with a loose headband!
  3. Add 2 button holes with one row between them.  I didn’t bother researching the proper way to create a button hole, so you may want to do this or you can follow my directions.  It’s pretty easy!  Since I started with 8 stitches, I single crocheted the first three stitches, chained the next two, and single crocheted the last three.  Single crochet the next row as usual.  This should leave a hole in your headband just large enough for a button.  You may need to adjust the size of the hole based on the size of your buttons.  Repeat this process for the second button hole.
  4. End your headband with one last single crochet row.
  5. Use the yarn needle to weave the loose ends into the headband.
  6. Line your buttons up on the opposite end of the headband from the button holes.  Sew in place.
  7. Enjoy life without hair in your face!  This is a major priority for me!

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Filed under Babies/Kids, Clothing, Yarn

Bead Necklace

Fabric covered beaded necklaces have been around for a long time.  I remember making one in Girl Scouts when I was a kid.  For this reason, I wasn’t really big on the idea of actually wearing one as an adult.  Then I saw this adorable bracelet from Hannah Handmade!  I considered making a bracelet, but I really like statement necklaces.  I also found this tutorial for a fabric covered beaded bracelet by Goody-Goody Handmade in my awesome sewing calendar.  I decided to combine my favorite parts of both bracelets to come up with my own design!  The best part about this project was that I had everything I needed on hand and it was easy enough that I could wear the necklace the next day!

Materials needed:

  • Beaded costume jewelry (the beads are easier to work with if they are already attached in a string – mine are about 3/4″ in diameter)
  • Fabric
  • Embroidery Floss
  • 30″ of ribbon
  • Two 3″ segments of ribbon to cover the fabric/ribbon connection
  • Sewing Machine
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun (or another type of fabric glue, if you prefer)
  • Fray check (optional)


  1. Measure your fabric against your beads.  The fabric should be wide enough to surround your beads plus 1/2″-3/4″ for wiggle room and the seam.  The fabric should be long enough to cover your length of beads plus several inches.  My bead string is about 12″ long and my fabric was about 20″ long.  I had some fabric leftover, but I wanted to make sure I had enough.
  2. Once you have cut out your fabric strip, fold it in half lengthwise with right sides facing in.  Sew a 1/4″ seam down the long side of the fabric.  Turn this tube inside out.
  3. Feed the bead string through one end of the fabric tube.
  4. Use the embroidery floss to tie a knot in between one set of beads.  Wrap the floss around the knot several times and then tie a second knot to secure it.  I started in the middle of the bead string and the middle of the fabric to make sure I had equal amounts of fabric at either end.
  5. Once you have finished tie all the beads in place, trim the excess fabric at each end down to about 1″.
  6. Cut the ribbon so that you have one piece that is about 20″ long and another that is about 10″ long.  Use glue to attach one end of each piece of ribbon to one end of the fabric.
  7. Glue the ends of the 3″ pieces of ribbon down to prevent fraying.  If you are using hot glue, use as little as possible for this step as the glue does not allow for much flexibility.  I was in a hurry to finish this project for the next day, so I did not want to wait for another type of glue to dry.
  8. Wrap the ribbon segments around the messy ends of fabric and ribbon and use glue to secure.
  9. Tie a bow with the two lengths of ribbon close to one end of the necklace.  Trim any excess ribbon.  Be sure to cut the ends of the ribbon at an angle to prevent fraying.  Fray check can be applied at this point, but I didn’t have any on hand.
  10. The finished necklace should be big enough to slip over your head.  Therefore, if you want to secure the bow with glue or thread, feel free!
  11. Wear the necklace and admire your handiwork!

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Filed under Babies/Kids, Beads, Clothing, Fabric

Birthday Hat


As promised here is the birthday hat I made for my nephew!  It is a simple cone design that can can be customized with shapes, numbers, and a super fun pom-pom!  I chose polka dots to match his birthday banner!

Materials needed:

  • Stiff felt
  • Scraps of soft felt
  • Pom-pom
  • Ribbon
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Fabric marker


  1. Cut a length of stiff felt about 6-1/2″ x 12″.  This size can be larger for an older kid or adult if preferred.
  2. Pinch the middle of one of the twelve inch sides of felt and roll the felt into a cone.  Be careful not to crease the felt too much.  Apply hot glue where the two edges overlap.
  3. Use a ruler to measure the length from the tip of the cone to the shortest point on the side.  This should be about 6″.  Use the marker and the ruler to place marks around the bottom of the cone to satisfy your measurement.  Cut around the cone following the marks until the bottom of the cone is even all the way around.
  4. Cut a length of ribbon so that it will be long enough to tie in a bow under the child’s chin.  With the seam in the back of the hat, glue one end of the ribbon on the outside of one side of the cone.  Repeat this process with the other end of the ribbon.  Make sure these two ends are directly across from each other.  Cut the middle of the ribbon at an angle to prevent fraying.
  5. Cut a strip of felt in a complimentary color about 1″ wide (to cover up the ribbon ends from step 4).  Make sure this strip is long enough to surround the entire bottom edge of the cone.  Glue the strip to the bottom edge of the cone.
  6. Cut out a birthday number or other shapes in different colors and use the glue to decorate the hat.
  7. Apply a large spot of hot glue to the tip of the hat and hold the pom-pom in place until the glue sets.
  8. You’re all finished!  Let the celebrations begin!

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Versatile Collar and Tie

I have a tiki man that my grandfather carved out of a tree stump a long time ago.  He greets people entering my apartment.  I’ve never really decorated him before (with the exception of Christmas) because I think he’s pretty cool by himself, but I thought it might be fun to dress him up!  Now, as most people cannot relate to the difficulty of finding the perfect attire for a 3-1/2 foot tall tree stump, I decided to design this tie to suit several purposes!  The tie features an adjustable hook and loop closure and fits everyone from the tiki man to dogs to full grown men.  This picture is my 11 month old nephew checking himself out in a mirror (again, taken by Mr. B’s Photo Shoot).  This project uses the collar from an old button down shirt.  I haven’t decided what to do with the rest of the shirt, but I’m sure it will show up on this blog at some point.  I am open to suggestions!

Materials needed:

  • Collar from an old button down shirt
  • Fabric for tie
  • 4″ of hook and loop fastener (can use more or less depending on your intended purposes)
  • Piece of paper, ruler, and pencil to create a template for the tie (or you can freehand if you want)
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron


  1. Cut the collar off on an old button down shirt.
  2. Trim this collar as shown in the following picture.  This will remove unnecessary bulk from the finished product.  The extra tab will allow you to attach the collar later on.
  3. Use a small zigzag stitch to finish off all the edges you just cut.
  4. Fold the collar so that the back of the collar is in half and the front of the collar folds completely over the extra tab.  Iron this fold.  The collar should retain a slight curve.
  5. Cut the collar in half and use a zigzag seam on each half to close up the newly created raw edges.  The folded over collar should now be directly sewn to the underside of the collar.
  6. Lay the two pieces out so the collar meets in the front and the extra tabs are overlapping slightly.  Sew a straight line through both tabs to attach the two pieces together.
  7. Time to design your tie.  You can make yourself a pattern using my template instructions or freehand a drawing.  Just be sure to cut two pieces of each.  If you use the template, make sure you place the pattern on the fold.
  8. Pin the right sides of the tail together.  Sew a 1/4″ seam around all edges except the 2″ top part.
  9. Turn the tail right side out and sew a 1/8″ seam around all sewn edges.
  10. Lay one piece of the knot on your table with right side up.  Lay the tail on top lining up the edges that measure 2″.  Lay the second piece of the knot on top of the pile with right side down.  Pin in place.
  11. Sew a 1/4″ seam around all edges of the knot except the 3″ side.  Trim the corners on the 3″ side close to the seam to remove excess bulk.
  12. Pull the knot up so the fabric is right side out.  Fold the top edge in about 1/4″ of an inch.  Pin in place.
  13. Sew a 1/8″ seam around the entire knot.
  14. Pin the tie in place on top of the extra tabs of the collar and under the collar flaps.  Sew a small seam to attach the tie to the collar.  Make sure these stitches will be covered by the collar flaps.
  15. Lay the hook side (the rough side) on the outside of the collar close to the back seam.  Pin in place.  Lay the loop side (the soft side) on the inside of the collar close to the opposite back seam.  Pin in place.  Stitch around both pieces to secure in place.
  16. Your tie is finished!  Here is a collage of everyone sporting this accessory!  (I apologize for the glowing dog eyes)

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Filed under Babies/Kids, Clothing, Fabric, Pets

Share the Love!

Ah!  The Moebius scarf!  This is a really fun scarf as it is knitted using circular needles and contains a twist as shown in this picture.  The scarf isn’t the point of this post though.  Therefore, I am not going to include instructions.  If you really want to make one (which I highly recommend), you can find the pattern in this book by Cat Bordhi.

The purpose of this post is the yarn!  In honor of Valentine’s Day, let’s share the love!  Of course you should focus on your loved ones on a day like today, but why not share the love around the world too?

My mom recently took me to a yarn shop in Bel Air, MD called Ewenique Yarns to pick out a yarn for this scarf.  Knowing how much I love all things fair trade and globally conscious, she pointed me in the direction of a basket of gorgeous yarns made by Manos.  My limited spanish vocabulary allows me to translate the word “manos” to “hands”, which is a very appropriate title considering that everything made by this cooperative is handcrafted.

For those of you unfamiliar with the concept of fair trade, here’s a crash course.  Unfortunately, much of the stuff you buy in stores today isn’t made in the U.S.  Importing companies buy it from factories across the world.  Far too often, the workers in these factories work long hours in poor conditions for ridiculously tiny wages.  Sweatshops.  Cooperatives pop up in different locations around the world and export the goods of local artisans for a fair price.  They offer local people jobs, decent wages, and dignity.

This particular co-op has been around since the 60’s, employs 350 artisans, and offers their employees benefits like health insurance and even maternity leave!  I LOVE the fact that my yarn was hand-dyed by a woman named Karen in Uruguay, who will be able to feed her family tonight because of this organization.  Just look at how gorgeous these colors are!

I promise to get off my soapbox, but not before sending some words of gratitude out into cyberspace.

Thank you, Karen.  I love my yarn.

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Filed under Clothing, Miscellaneous, Yarn