Sides and Bottom
Cast On 12 sts in Stockinette with taupe yarn using anchor yarn.
Work 56 rows in taupe.
Cut and tie on blue yarn.
Work 93 rows in blue yarn.
Cut and tie on taupe yarn.
Work 56 rows in taupe yarn.
Bind off board and anchor yarn with 2-loop method.
Be sure to sew with strong yarn in similar color.
Be sure to match the change of colors of bag sides to bag front and back. We suggest that you do some tacking before doing the actual seams so you'll be sure to keep the pieces aligned properly.
The sides of bag will extend above the bag front by 6 rows. This extension will create the ring holders that will secure the straps. Be sure to leave this extension when you sew in the sides.
Use the invisible stitch when sewing the blue bottom and sides to the bag front and back.
Sew the side seams with the darning needle up to top edge of bag. Do not sew the side tabs until after the bag is felted and you are ready to add the rings.
Set washing machine at hottest water setting at low level of water. Fill tank before adding bag. Place bag into machine when agitation begins. Check the bag after 10 minutes. Be sure the machine continues to agitate while bag is felting. If the felting is not complete, place back in agitator for another 5 mins. You may need an additional 5 mins as it depends on your washer temperature. Be sure to check bag every few minutes to prevent over-felting. (Our sample needed 20 minutes of agitation). When complete, the taupe knitting will be almost solid with some evidence of stitches. The blue will be solid. Once the felting is complete, remove bag from machine and squeeze out as much water as possible. Use several towels to expel as much additional water as possible. Allow the bag to air dry while you gently shape the bottom and sides. Extend the tabs so they stretch out as smooth as possible. It may take several days for your bag to dry completely-do not rush the drying process.
Use scissors to trim any stray hairs of yarn.
Place the metal rings at each tab at top edge of bag. Fold over to inside and stitch securely with darning needle and taupe yarn. If preferred, you can use black nylon thread.
Bag straps can be purchased at bag accessories sites, leather stores, or any belt can also be used. You may even find an unwanted leather bag with reusable handles. If you prefer a knit strap, you can knit 12 stitches, 34 inches long and felt this piece with bag.
Wrap the ends around the metal rings and stitch in place.
We have used brown Velcro strips to secure the center of bag at inside of top edge, about 1 down. These can be sewn in with yarn or thread. You can also purchase a magnetic snap that can be sewn to each side of top edge, about 1 from top edge. If you prefer, you can make a knitted tab to wrap over the top of bag at center. This would be about 8 long (knitted) with 8 st cast on with large buttonhole in one end. Or you can knit it 10 long with 6 sts cast on and create a loop at one end to go over the button. Either way you select, sew the tab onto the bag back about 1 down from top edge prior to felting. After bag is complete, you can sew on your button for proper placement to match the length of your tab.