Wednesday, January 11, 2006

I decided to try knitting a cabled purse. It was my first attempt at cabling. I was surprised how easy it was. I finished this purse very quickly. It ended up shorter than the one pictured on the pattern. I think I used too thick of yarn. I'm in the process of making another one with less chunky yarn. The pattern is from Knit Pick's website It's called Chunky Cable Handbag. I purchased the handle at WalMart. It was even on sale! The butterfly pin is also from WalMart, and also on sale.

I made a second gray striped felted bag. Here it is before I felted it in the washing machine.

This picture is of the bag after felting. I want to do some kind of needle-felted trim on this bag too.
I got some of the pictures the newspaper people took when they interviewed me right before Christmas. For the most part, they are great pictures, so I thought I'd share them here.

These are my hands knitting the sweater I finished for my husband for Christmas. This picture, and most of the others, didn't actually make it into the paper.

This is a close-up of one of the snowmen I made. This one is my favorite. He turned out so cute! I gave him away for Christmas, but I might just have to make one for myself like this!

Another hand shot. There's nothing wonderful about my hands, except what they can do.

Here's a picture of three little snowmen. I made a total of 5, and have requests for more. The pattern didn't have felting instructions, but I thought I'd like them better felted, so I made these out of 100% wool and felted them. I like the way they turned out. This picture did make it into the paper.

This is the first adult-sized sweater I made. I finished it about a year ago, and it has become a favorite of mine to wear. I have no idea why I didn't center the tag when I sewed it on. Never thought anyone would see it, much less a picture would end up being published in a paper, so I never bothered to take it out and center it!

These felted apples are very cute. I like how the picture was taken to focus on one and leave the other two blurry.

Okay, this is the last of the newspaper interview pictures for now. This purse was home with me because I thought it was rather ugly. The pink wool didn't felt as well as the blue wool, and I didn't really like how it turned out. Looks better in this picture than it does in real life. But, they wanted to see some of my work and that's what I had lying around.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

I've had so many requests for the pattern for the pink knitted purse I made, I decided to post the instructions here. The yarn I used for the pink purse was from a cone of silk blend fingering weight machine knitting yarn. Since it was treated for use on a machine, it was stiffer and made a purse with "body." I am sure most kinds of yarn would work fine.

Pink Ruffled Purse Pattern

The pattern is very easy. With bulky yarn (or two strands of worsted weight held together, or three strands of fingering weight held together--which is the best option), and size 8 needles, cast on 36 stitches. Knit in garter stitch (knit every row), until purse measures 12 inches from CO edge. Bind off 4 stitches at the beginning of the next two rows. Knit in garter stitch for approximately 4 more inches. Bind off all stitches. Your purse should look like this:

If you are going to line your purse, now is the time to cut out your lining fabric. Lay your purse over the desired fabric and cut around the outside, giving an extra 1/2 inch or so seam allowance to your lining on all sides. Cut out lining. Sew the lining the same way you do the purse.

Fold the purse so that the bottom edge is even with the row where you cast of 4 sts on each side. Weave the side seams. I tucked a little extra fabric in at the bottom "corners," to make it more rounded.

Time to make the ruffle. Using fingering weight yarn and size 4 or 5 24-inch long circular needles, Cast On 116 sts.
Row 1: Knit
Row 2: *K1, yarn over. Repeat from * to end. (230 sts)
Row 3: Purl
Row 4: K1, *Increase one by knitting into the front and back of the stitch. Repeat from * to end. (459 sts)
Row 5: *K1, P1 (or K2, P2). Repeat from * to end.

Continue to work in ribbing stitch until the ruffle measures 2 inches wide. Bind off all sitches in pattern. The ruffle should look something like this:

Thread a tapestry needle with one strand of fingering weight yarn and thread it through the holes made by the yarn overs. Gather to fit around the flap of the purse. Sew the ruffle on top of the purse flap, overlapping the back a little to your taste.

With a crochet hook, make a chain, using fingering weight yarn. Tie into a bow and attach to the middle of the front flap.

Turn under 1/2 inch on top and flap edges of lining. Insert lining into purse, wrong sides together and blind stitch edges to purse.

The handle I used is an unused skinny belt from a thrift store. I cut it to size, leaving the buckle as part of the handle, so that it is adjustable. Stuff the purse with some plastic bags to find out where to attach the handles to get the best balance. I used D-rings to attach it to the purse as shown here:

And you're done! Enjoy your lovely little purse. Make one for a friend.

I decided to needle felt some trim to my gray bag. It is my first attempt at needle felting. I really like the way it turned out, and it was SO easy!