Wednesday, December 18, 2013


Isn't this adorable? 
I mean, come on, right? Scotties? Yeah! I actually saw this bag while I was wandering around Wal-Mart not long ago. Ultimately, restraint kicked in and I was able to leave it on the shelf. But, as more time passed, I realized that this would make a great gift for Bluebell. I went back to Wal-Mart and picked one up. 

Just after arriving home, I discovered this label. Yeesh. I wasn't really planning on washing it, and I didn't think Bluebell would have a huge need to wash it either. Who washes a tote bag? But, the more I thought about it, the more I became nervous about this. Does this mean that if it gets wet, the scotties will run off the bag in a black, liquid mess?

So, I did what any nut would do: I decided to immediately wash the bag. I mean, I'd rather have the scotties run down the drain in my sink than wind up staining Bluebell's clothes! 

Thankfully, no scotties were harmed in the washing of this tote bag. However, all of the wet areas were subject to that nasty browning shown in both of the pictures above. Also - the bag really stunk when wet. So weird! 

The great news, though, is that once the bag was dry, the problems disappeared! The smell and stains went away, though the bag had gotten pretty wrinkled when I washed it by hand. I busted out the iron and made quick work of that. 

I had the idea early on that I wanted to personalize the bag before giving it to Bluebell as a Christmas present. It took me a few iterations, but soon, I realized embroidery would be the thing! 

I grabbed the washable fabric pen and got drawing. I know it's a little hard the see in this photo, but I decided some of the scotties would be talking. Most were just barking, though one special scotty was going to say Bluebell's name! 

All that was left was to do the embroidery. I used the simplest stitch - the back stitch - to go over my drawn on design. Once the embroidery was done, I washed the stinky bag once again to get rid of the lingering blue marks. I had to pinch the fabric to get the right tension while stitching, so I actually had to iron the bag once more before it was ready to give (or to photograph). 

Of course, the words weren't totally perfect, and neither were the stitches. But, I'm still pretty happy with how it turned out! 

The best part is that Bluebell loved it too! At first, she didn't see the side that had her name on it, so she thought I'd bought it already embroidered. That was a pretty awesome compliment - especially because the work on this project (excluding drying time) took only a total of about 3 hours. It was awesome to personalize it for her! 

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