Cumin Cotton Bag, entrelac update, and segway into holiday knitting

First of all, thank you for the comments on my Cascade Yoke Sweater! It is, by far, my favorite sweater I’ve knit so far. I’m just so psyched it fits me! And I feel so clever for finding that great two color pattern. It made me want to knit the entire sweater that I took the pattern from. As I mentioned, I’ll be wearing it this weekend, so I’ll get some modeled pictures then and post them!

Caroline asked about the contrasting color of the hems – it’s a really easy trick that adds a beautiful detail to a simple sweater.   I was inspired by the Seamless Hybrid Sweater by Jared of Brooklyn Tweed (scroll down to see his hems!).  I used a provisional cast on and smaller needles, and knit for about an inch with the contrasting color.  I switched to the larger needles and main color and knit one row.  After that, you knit a turning row – usually a purl row, but I did a picot edging [simply a row of k2tog and yos] – then knit until the section past the turning row is the same length as the section before.  I unraveled the provisional cast on, put them on a needle, then did a giant super row of doom.  Which translates to carefully doing a three-needle bind off/knit two together action, taking a stitch from my current needles and a stitch from the cast on and knitting them together.  Much better tutorials on the technique can be seen here and here, as well as in the Brooklyn Tweed post I already linked.  I love love love the clean, rib-less edge it creates, and the professional look it gives the sweater.

I finished up the sweater on Sunday morning. Even after a good soak and blocking, I still had an entire day devoted to movies and knitting. So, even though I have a lot of holiday knitting going on, and a lot of projects on the needles, I cast on for the Everlasting Bagstopper from the Summer 2007 Knitty suprise.

Two skeins of Blue Sky Alpacas Dyed Cotton in Cumin (to the last bit!), some US5 and US10.5 needles, Running With Scissors, Hard Candy, another movie I can’t remember, a commute, and some Monday night television… and it was done!

Finished Knit Cotton Bag

I didn’t change much. I did an i-cord for the handles, instead of the ribbon called for in the pattern. I left four stitches live four stitches in from the edge of the front and back as I cast off, then picked them up, knit an i-cord with a double strand of the yarn on a US5 or US6 DPN I had laying around, and grafted it to the other set of live stitches on the edge.

I used the double strand of yarn because I wanted the straps to be really nice and sturdy – I left a little bit of extra yarn at the beginning, and used the extra yarn at the end of the i-cords to weave in the ends very securely, adding another layer of strength to the straps.

Finished Knit Cotton Bag

The other change I made was to use a provisional cast on. The pattern calls to knit a rectangle in garter stitch, then pick up the stitches all the way around to form the base of the bag. I used the provisional cast on so I didn’t have to pick up the 44 stitches from the cast on row, and knit the rectangle until it was 14 garter stitch ridges high, which made picking up the stitches along the edge very easy. It was a little tough to knit those first few rows of the base, with the rectangular shape, but once I got into the lace portion – smooth sailing.

I couldn’t be happier with how this came out. I love the color, the softness (this cotton yarn is so soft when knit up at a tight gauge, like the bottom of the bag), and how fast it was!

In other news, I wore my entralac Noro scarf today, since it felt like scarf/no jacket weather. When I got on the elevator, I discovered something odd about it.

Entrelac in the Elevator

I had never woven in the ends. Oops. So I did it on the train.

I was going to use this scarf as a holiday gift, but the only person who I thought would like it already has a crazy Noro scarf I knit. Plus I really liked it. I guess I can never have too many scarves, huh?

Entrelac Waiting for the Train

 

Next up? The Shifting Sands scarf by Grumperina in Polar White Malabrigo (modified to 42 stitches for worsted weight yarn) for my grandma for Christmas. Then the sweater vest for my stepfather!

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3 Responses

  1. i love the bag! i want to make one, too…actually, i want to make a whole bunch of them in a rainbow of colors to keep in the trunk of my car. so cute!

  2. I love the color of your bag- I need some of that! I like that you’re keeping your scarf. It’s so pretty!

  3. that bag is gorgeous!

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