Tuesday, October 10, 2006


I kind of have a "thing" for bags. Always have had. Not, admittedly, the sort of free-form sculpture my husband leaves behind when he unloads the groceries. I think he does this in hopes I'll take over.

So no, not that species of bag. Nice bags. Field's Christmas shopping bags. The Victoria & Albert Museum bags Clare and I brought back when we went to London, just the two of us. The Taylor & Ng bag, back from when there was a Taylor & Ng store at the Stanford Shopping Center. I join museums and zoos and subscribe to public television because they give away bags.

So, of course, I delight in knitting bags. The little Lantern Moon ones are my favorites. No, I don't have one in every color.


It was natural and inevitable that I would be overcome with the desire to knit my own bag. I just hadn't found anything that inspired me. Of all the bag patterns out there, not one called me. Too small. Too deep. Too cute. Too fussy. I was beginning to fear I'd have to concoct one, or do without.

My quest for the perfect knitting bag meant I enjoyed Tracy Ullman's anecdote about how she invented hers, and wished the pattern had been included in Knit 2 Together, the book she wrote with Mel Clark. How I passed right by the pattern for the Doctor's Bag, I have no idea. I didn't really see it until I closed the book.

But there it was: My perfect knitting bag.

I admit, I wish I were a better knitter. More experience would probably help, too. I need a pattern to lay out the increases and decreases line by line, and this one isn't set up that way. Having frogged three attempts, I wrote it out.

It is fun to knit - a slip stitch pattern that runs side to side instead of up and down. I learned to love slip-stitch patterns from the Ballband Warshrag in Mason-Dixon.

The pattern calls for double stranding Manos del Uruguay, and while I admit I'm lusting after Autumn Multi, I raided the stash instead. The yarn is Stretto in Mineral from Fleece Artist. I think it might be discontinued. It's actually one of three huge skeins I ordered while in the grip of the insane notion that not only would I like to knit a sweater, I would like to knit a sweater as rustic as one made from this yarn would have turned out. Not wanting to wait to start the bag had nothing to do with it.

I got row but not stitch gauge, so my bag will be a little shallower. If I had done my math a little sooner, I probably would have cast on four to eight more stitches. The fabric is very stretchy, though, so I may get a surprise come blocking time. One can hope.

The yarn is thick. The needles are size 11 Addi Turbos. The knitting is fast.

Maybe I'll need two?

1 comment:

diane h said...

You're going to need those grocery bags for the UFOs that seem to be piling up. Or are you actually finishing these projects before starting on the next one???