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Archive for September 13th, 2007

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Thursday, September 13th, 2007

babyzig20.jpgWell, I’m happier about my new design than I have been in months. I wish I had a photo of the second shape ZiggyBag (it holds a water bottle) but I left that sample at Rae’s shop before I remembered to photograph it. A third bag is in the wings…

This one can hold a wallet, cell phone, keys and maybe another small item. It’s perfect for wandering around an art fair or music festival with a little cash in the pocket for a cup of tea or something from the artist vendors on site.

I am excited to again be planning a pattern with many sizes/shapes in one pattern. This makes it a bear to write the pattern, but it makes a really solid collection that is worth the pattern price for my customers. I started with an idea for a project bag and it just multiplied before I could do anything about it.

Diana and I are still working on getting a sample bag of the full-sized project bag version (which will be even *more* colorful than what you see here, if that is possible). The larger bag will hopefully bring Turkish Socks to mind. I expect that early next week we will have a photo or two of that project, if it keeps going as well as it has for the last few days.

I tell you all, I do not know what I would have done without Diana for this particular project. I would sort of flip out and call her, tell her my roadblock, she would listen, hang up, work something out, and call me back with a solution. I am really grateful for her more and more every day.

There were questions and good input about why my preliminary bags might not have worked. It’s true, Noro Kureyon does not felt easily and Patons Classic felts very well. I have used them together in my Watercolor Bag, where I wanted more dense fabric at the bottom, handles and top edge of the bag.

For this design series, I am using colorwork with these yarns stranded alternately, two stitches of one and then two of the other. But what has caused trouble in particular for this pattern is the colorwork, more than the yarns involved. Stranded knitting just plain doesn’t stretch like other fabrics and it pulls in easily.

I started with a bag bottom style that has worked for me in the past (it was in one color). Then I added colorwork on top. They did not get along well. I had bag bottoms that were not flat at all, more like domes. This was pretty but it was not what I had in my mind. I thought that it would felt more than the sides (as it did in the Watercolor Bag) but stranding the colors together changed my felting proportions and changed all my plans.

I have really learned a lot through this. Sometimes we just have to puzzle and struggle a bit to learn a new lesson. It’s OK to have these things happen. Since I started with a really strong picture in my mind of what I wanted for the larger bag, I kept working on the shaping and proportions until I got it right. I made a small bag (picured here), and a water bottle bag which is delightful (Rae’s brother thought it was really great when he visited the shop the other day).

Diana has knit three or four of the prototype small bags/pouches already. I have knit three water bottle bags and this purple sample bag pictured today. Now I am working on the big one! I’m knitting what feels like a zillion stitches after those nice smaller projects.

The larger project bag will be larger than the Watercolor Bag (which was a relatively small and lightweight bag, by design). I want this one to be able to handle a larger project than the other style.