December 6, 2014

The Cat is Out of the Bag


      Hello folks! This week I have been busy. The cat box episode, as I am coming to call it now, has almost come to an end. I never would have imagined it would involve so much drama. What seemed like a good idea at the time was looked upon less than favorably by the cats and for two days they avoided the box entirely. I did joke that I had come up with the perfect way to have a clean cat box but deep inside I was worried. Where were they going? And if they weren't, do cats explode? I'm surprised I didn't have nightmares. To avoid "accidents" in new places I kept many of the doors in the house closed. After only one incident, outside in the screened porch, the cats have surrendered to the new cat box. I did have to move it back inside the cabinet first, but I'm hoping in a couple of weeks I can sneak it out, close up the cabinet once again and move on with my life. I'm over this now.
      I did get a wonderful surprise from my lovely daughter, Jessica, my very handsome grandson, Thomas and completely thoughtful neighbor, Fay. Jessica came to pick me up early one day to go  shopping and said she needed to stop in and ask Fay about babysitting on the weekend. Instead I was treated to morning tea and a lovely birthday cake. Fay made homemade fudge and gave me a gorgeous silk scarf. I was so touched. My darling husband had taken me out for the weekend and we had a great Sunday together sharing our birthdays that are one week apart. It all made my birthday very special.
      Also this week, while looking for a way to camouflage my sofa, I ran across an interesting t-shirt up-cycle tutorial that cleverly turned a tee into a handy bag. I had to take a few minutes for a bit of sewing. The design was so simple and perfect I definitely plan to go through all my t-shirts to see if I have a few that would make better bags than shirts. As soon as I saw the design the first shirt that came to mind was a shirt from a musician friend. I love the design on the shirt, and the lovely colors. I got out my Orion Freeman t-shirt.
     The plan is easy. Lay the shirt flat. Draw around the neckline to make it much more open (a dinner plate makes a good template).  Cut out the neckline and cut off the sleeves. The shoulders will become the bag handles. Using the neckline as the top, figure out how long you want your bag to be and put in a pin near the bottom. I went short since I plan to use it to carry my smaller sock knitting projects. Turn the t-shirt inside out and sew across where you marked with your pin. Cut off the excess.
      My t-shirt was long so I kept the fabric I had cut from the bottom and made it into a notions bag to match. It took about ten minutes to do the shirt bag and another fifteen for the pouch. I'm still planning the sofa makeover.
The completed bag:

The bag laid flat:

The notions bag from the extra material from the lower part of the shirt:

The bag stuffed:

With my sock-in-progress:

    Check your t-shirts, you might have one that would look better with something other than you inside it. In the meantime I am working on my next book, Selective Service, which will be out next year. It's almost entirely love letters written by a young doctor and his wife while he is away in France during the First World War. The research I put into my historical novels takes me many places. This Veteran's Day has been particularly moving and I'm enjoying writing the novel. It's a bit of a departure from my usual writing style. I'm looking forward to beginning the next mail-order-bride saga soon.

Thanks for stopping by!  


Update: Here is a lovely picture sent to me by a young woman and her mother who took their bag making seriously. Not only did they make a mess of T-shirt bags but they made a reversible version and took the remnants and turned them into infinity scarves. Great job ladies! I love to hear from all of you and to see what you are making!

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