Thursday, August 19, 2010

Adventures in Felting

I made a felted bag for a friend who's moving to Texas at the end of the month.  Seems like all of my "knitty" friends are moving.  And none of them are moving altogether close by!  (Texas, South Carolina, Philly....) 
We all got together for our regular Wednesday night meetup, only we presented her with little handmade gifts and our best wishes in the Lone Star State.  The only problem is....what do you knit for a friend moving to Texas??  Due to the heat and humidity in Texas, one has little use for the usual things that one might knit.  Gloves, scarves and hats?  No thanks!

I've been in this predicament before, and I knitted that person a felted clutch.  This time, I wanted to do something a little more special.  So I knitted a Booga Bag. I had some wool yarn just kickin' it in my yarn stash from my first trip to Web's, when I just bought some yarn and didn't know what I was going to do with it.  It turns out that this particular yarn felts really, really well!

Wait....what's felting?  Oh, yeah.  Felting is when you knit something in a wool or wool blend, and then wash it in hot water.  If you've ever washed a woolen sweater or scarf in hot water, you know what happens.  It shrinks.  Then you probably curse up a storm and then throw it away, cause really, there's nothing you can do to fix it.  Felting is doing this on purpose.  It turns into a really neat fabric, just like heavy felt!

Allow me to demonstrate:

  Valley Yarns Berkshire Bulky.  Incredible stuff for felting.  I used the center and right yarns for this project, in charcoal and fuschia.

The knitted body.  Notice that the stitches are loose and you can tell that it is a knitted bag.  I also made i-cord for handles, which is a cool technique that produces a long "snake."

Extreme Close-Up!   Woah!!!!!!  (Waynes World reference for you, free of charge!)

Making the holes for the i-cord handles.  This was a little harder than I thought that it would be.  It's really just stabbing the bag with a couple of double-pointed needles, but it was the placing of the holes that hung me up.  Check out the felting up-close and personal.  :)

Voila!  The finished product.  Fuzzy, fuschia and fun!  It's a little bag, big enough for a skein of yarn, a short set of needles and a pattern. 

1 comment:

adventures in rhode island said...

that's REALLY nice!! love the bag and i'm sure your friend did too. i can't believe all the stuff you are knitting!