Project – Knitting Tote
Patons Pattern Book #500871 – Family Felting
Yarn – Patons Classic Wool in Dragon Dance
Blogger – K1Paula2
In my last post I showed you the un-felted pieces of the knitting tote. I'd never felted using baking soda before, but it worked well and even seemed to reduce the, um... distinctive scent of wet wool.
The pattern suggested using a gift box covered in plastic to help shape the body of the bag. I took a large gift box - the size a sweater might come in - and slipped a couple of plastic grocery bags over it. This is a bagless post-drying demonstration of the box's perfect fit:
Everything felted well in just two cycles:
The fun really began with the needle felting. I finally found a store with needle felting supplies, but the selection was paltry. Not wanting to spend $25 on a big fancy kit with several needles and a brush base when I didn't know if I'd enjoy it, I opted for the $5 kit with two single needles and a block of heavy-duty foam. I didn't get started until after 9 PM, but couldn't stop until I'd finished needle felting the designs on all three pockets. I freehanded it, finally finishing around 11:30.
You start by outlining your design (here, a sweater):
Then fill in as you go. The instructions said not to try to completely cover the felted fabric.
The hardest part of making the bag was assembling it. Even my sharp, pointy, heavy-duty tapestry needle was hard to push through two thick layers of felt. Yes, I stabbed myself a few times, but only drew blood once. One trick really helped: I put on a gardening glove - the kind with those little rubber dots to help grip things. So much easier and faster! Even so, I took my time assembling the bag just to let my hands rest now and then.
Here's the finished product:
It's even larger than I'd envisioned. Very sturdy, too. Don't you think very knitter deserves a great bag like this?