Posts Tagged ‘felted bag’

This is my beloved bag after felting.  What is wrong with this picture?  Notice that even though- and I know this because I counted obsessively- that I had the same number of stitches on the front and back of the bag- the front is about 6 inches bigger.

And I particularly like this:

The dog bone shaped bottom.  I’m just going to call it the Dog Gone bag.  How could you do this to me?  I had so much invested in our relationship.

What’s that you say?  Mercury Retrograde?  You mean what we have here is a failure to communicate?  To who?  the washing machine????  I thought I made my demands needs perfectly clear.   The color design turned out exactly as planned how could the rest go so wrong???  So I can fix it with darts.  Just not now, OK?  My trust has been broken.

This, though, this is making me happy right now:

I can’t tell you what it is because it’s a gift.  In something I never thought I’d ever knit with- it’s a soft quite nice- no really it’s nice- acrylic- Fantasy  from Dark Horse.

Since, unlike the Yarn Harlot, I’m not traveling during the Mercury Retrograde it hasn’t been that bad.  Only well, I’m unemployed for a few weeks and the wireless Internet I had been picking up for the last year disappeared and I’m stuck with dial-up which takes forever to load everyone’s blog pages and pictures and just because I’m home all day doesn’t make me want to clean even though, yes, I do know that there’s dust everywhere and someone or thing put a deep scratch in my windshield and well, wake me when it’s over, Ok?


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Now that I’m putting away my Stitches South treasures I’ve discovered that there’s no room at the inn:

 This is only the on display in the basket stuff-

I also have a BIG shopping bag of yarn in the closet and 2 plastic comforter size sweater bags with lace wt and Brooks Farm under my work table.  Plus, of course, 2 or more (5) wips in or about the sofa.  I don’t think I’ve quite gotten to Stash Beyond Life Expectancy, yet.  What’s that?  No really, if I knit everyday for 8 hours I could still use it up in a year…. Ok, well, I could do it in 5.  However, I may have reached Stash Beyond Functioning Adulthood and the EMTs will have to untangle me when I forget that I’m knitting and drag the yarn all thru the house then call 911 because some imaginary evil doer has booby trapped my house.   

I’m trying really hard to be faithful to my wips but the anxiety level…   the stash is big enough that using it up seems inconceivable and makes my head spin with project possibilty overload. I’m  dying to start a lace project, a couple of fun toys, something for a friend’s baby, another lace w/beads project, and, and, and… my lys is having a great contest to knit a chicken (yes, really) using  yarn purchased at the store, personalize it, and the winner gets a $25 gift certificate to the store EVERY MONTH for a year.  Only, I’d have to buy some yarn to do it and how will that help my stash problem?


Meanwhile I am slogging through, sticking my nose to the grindstone- que the Volga Boat song– trying to finish my bag before I go on to anything else.  Engineering the flap with the color work proved to be a frogging nightmare of do overs  a challenge but I  almost done with the flap and just have the never !@#$% ending strap to do.


I finished the multi directional scarf what

seems like months ago-

and in  what I think must be a subconcious need to control some aspect of my stash obsession- I’ ve been sewing.   Maybe if I sew up all the fabric, I’ll have room for the yarn, hmm.   I finished the jacket of Japanese Cotton I started last fall.  Made a linen bathing suit cover up last week and a dress from the fabric I got in Berkeley last summer today.  I also made my granddaughter this lovely blue dress:

   Not a great picture, but it makes her look like Alice in Wonderland.


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Ah, Spring….. balmy weather, nature bursts forth, I am renewed  (once I adjust to the time change anyway) and there’s the  possibility of true love…….

No, there is no new man.  No, it’s not a man whose put the spring in my step.  I have a new exciting project in my life.  A new designed by me project which makes it just a little dangerous and all the more attractive.

Only, funny,  it seems to be working out just about the same as my romantic entanglements  usually do.

First I clear my schedule in order to give my undivided attention to romance. Then I  make myself available socialize more in the hopes of meeting someone new.

Accordingly, I finished my hat in an evening- immediately after the needles arrived.  Last week I finished a jacket ufo I started sewing last Fall.  I’ve mentally put my sweater and the Habu in time out even though they are still on the sofa with the other wips. My diagonal scarf is half done and I’m saving it to work on at Knitch on Friday- like the girlfriend who goes along so if you don’t meet anyone there’s still someone to hang out with.

I spent the weekend checking patterns on Ravelry and adding things to my queue.  Then I pulled fabrics and sewing patterns out of my other stash (The Bigger Sewing One) and fondled ideas.   If my fingers were racing as fast as my mind I’d have finished my 2009 Christmas knitting by now and have a complete new summer wardrobe.

Now, I am soooo ready it’s just a matter of time before someone picks up on it.

 Ah, here it is:  a brainstorm. I perk up, shoulders back, I’m prepared to flirt with possibilities.  

What if I cast on for a circular project, a bag perhaps, by putting every other stitch on one dpn and the other stitches on a second dpn and knitted in the round from there?  No seaming, no Kitchner Stitch?  Worth a try, doncha think? Ok, all you toe up sock knitters, you can stop laughing and pointing.  I don’t knit socks and I knew I couldn’t have invented this I just thought it was clever of me to have figured it out on my own.  

I love bags.  I can always use a new bag.   I made sketches.  I could knit up a small bag with maybe some eyelets at the top for a drawstring just to see if  it worked.  Out of what?  Ah Ha!  Organic cotton- I have a whole ball left from Christmas knitting!  It did work, although the first round was a little tough. 

Because I wanted a shape to the bag and not just a tube, I began increasing at the sides.  One side looked fine, one side was weird and it had a places where it looked like the yarn was carried up several rows.  I tried to fix it.  No matter what I did- it looked the same- screwed up.  I threw it into the pile of ufos in a discouraged huff set it aside.

I want to like it, but no matter how hard I try, it just doesn’t work out.

But really, it’s OK.  It was just a warm up for the real thing.

Because I learned that the cast on technique works and that means I could use it for a bigger bag, a felted one, and oh look, right there in my stash some Lion’s Brand Wool, one teal, one brown.  Why, I always  intended that to be a felted bag!  Better yet, it could be the bag in this sketch!  Enthralled, I cast good sense aside I just went for it.  I did some very quick (and flawed) math and cast on. 

 My new love is perfect.  Fantasies of moonlit beaches, cuddling by the fireplace, and our beautiful children, sigh…  It  just needs a little tweak…

 I looked at the design again.  It reminded me of some Arts and Crafts style motifs I had seen somewhere.  I could possibly improve it.  I pulled all the books I have on Arts and Crafts era design off the shelves.  I didn’t find the exact design but I was inspired to make some changes.  I was inspired to design a couple of other bags too- offspring of the first.   Visions of sage green, burnt orange, sienna danced a rumba in my brain along with olive and aubergine …..

Time to take it one step further.  Dinner at my place.  I spend money on this.  Wine, Duck, no, Lamb? how about Dover Sole?  or off season rasberries? new undies and sexy shoes?  I throw myself into the preparations.  I will it to be perfect.  I am frantic it won’t be.

Back in the brown and teal world, I knitted up about 4  inches.  Then I thought; do I have enough yarn for a decent size bag?  I checked on Ravelry.  Most felted bags take 600 yards.  I have 158 yards of brown to make the body of the bag and 158 yards of teal for the colorwork part.  So unless I want to make either a very small bag or a striped bag without any cool Arts and Crafts inspired motifs- I need more brown yarn.  I knitted some more anyway.  It will work out, I know it will.  I’ve invested too much in this; I need it to work.  I’ll just get more brown yarn.  Obssessed, I went on a yarn hunt.   I found  that every Michael’s in town is sold out of that color, I checked Ravelry and discovered that YES!  someone had  2 skeins  for sale.  I am waiting not patiently for it to arrive.  I am NOT going to worry about the dye lot.  I will use my old yarn for the part below the color work and the new yarn for above.  NOT WORRYING, no, not me.

 I discover my new love is not exactly what I envisioned but it’s OK because I can fix it.

Then it occurred to me that perhaps, just perhaps, the square motifs which I had planned to knit 3 stitches wide by 3 rows tall, might felt more lengthwise than width wise and then they wouldn’t be square, now would they?  I tried to ignore this for a bit not wanting to accept that it could be true.   I thought, OK, I’ll just make them 3 stitches by 5 rows that should fix it.  Then…. what if the whole bag needs to be bigger?  Based on past experience, what I have right now…. it would end up…. 10 inches wide by 4 inches tall.  Who cares if he’s short, I’ll just wear flats!  A  felted swatch suddenly seemed like a really wise thing.  Not wanting to use any of the precious brown, I pulled out the Christmas Red wool,  produced this and felted it at work on Monday.

I have now with some assistance from a calculator figured out the correct cast on and the correct row to stitch ratio for the motifs.  If in fact the swatch is a faithful guide to the behavior of the finished object.  What makes you think you can really trust this?

Now I need to frog and cast on again.  Which it, just so happens, is a good idea anyway because… well… my clever 2 needle cast on gives the bag a flat envelope style bottom and it won’t make the nice square one I want it to have no matter how hard I try to force it… 

Which means I have adjusted my fantasy to better reflect reality that is my beloved.  Yes, it’s ok, I’ll  watch the game with you instead of Masterpiece Theatre.

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