Tuesday, July 28, 2009

FO: My first felting experiment

I'm a big time sweater knitter. I do on occasion knit small accessory and baby gift items, but sweaters are my favorite things to knit. Just recently though, I did get this bee in my bonnet about wanting to make a felted bag. I've always liked the comforting fuzziness of felted knits, and I had this Araucania Magallanes yarn sitting around that I wanted to use up. I got that yarn from Robin over at Yarn Crawl when she was giving away some yarn for the cost of postage. It's a very scratchy wool unsuitable for any garment I might want to wear. I found this free pattern on ravelry that is easily adaptable to any size. I just wanted a simple tote large enough to store a sweater project, so I made it bigger than the pattern's petite size. It turned out pretty well-- it's not quite as stiff as I would like, but that's probably because of its large size and also because my yarn wasn't that buiky, even though I knit it using double strands. It's quite suitable aa a project bag, and it does indeed have that comfy thick fuzzy feel.

I persuaded Large Dog to model it for me as a messenger bag.

Here it is before the washing and drying cycles. I was a little worried that I might have made it too big, and it was so floppy. It did shrink down nicely. I started with a 13" diameter base and about 12.5" height, and it shrank to 10" diameter and 9" of height. I did one wash and dry, then 2 wash cycles and a dry. The different colored handle is not a style element -- I ran out of yarn!

I don't think I'll ever try this large a felthing project again. It took WAY too long to just knit, knit, knit.... It cut into precious sweater knitting time!


Mr Puffy's Knitting Blog: said...

What a great bag! You will find it a practical - you or the large dog - can carry lots of things about in that :)

I'm in the mood to knit a felted purse again and I just ordered a kit in alpaca. Thanks for reminding me what a long knit it will be - LOL

crochetgurl said...

Your bag is beautiful! I love how Large Dog is giving the camera such a casual, model-like gaze. Hehe.

One day, I intend to learn how to felt. There's this beautiful pattern I want to try.


robin said...

It's cute! I've made a few felted purses and hats (the bucket hat at chicknits.com is awesome - it's probably too warm for your winters though) and a felted sushi wallet from a kit. Thanks for telling me about how scratchy the Magallanes is - the yarn you got was from my next door neighbor's stash clearout, but I have some in my own stash that I was thinking of using for a sweater eventually. Maybe a cardigan or something, or maybe I'll just destash it too.

betty said...

Hi crochetgurl -- that bag pattern you pointed to is indeed very stylish!

knitseashore said...

It's interesting that you posted about felting a bag, since I'm writing about that topic too for my next post (hopefully tomorrow).

While I like the end result, I have to admit felting is not as much fun as straight knitting.