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Big Brown Bag

I’ve been trying to do some stash-busting so made the Big Brown Bag (designed by Laura Irwin and published in Boutique Knits) from some yarn I’ve had around for a while. It’s wasn’t the best yarn choice, though. It’s a little “hairy” and didn’t felt as completely as I would have liked because there’s a tiny bit of I think acrylic in it.

Felted Bag

I gave it a full lining with a couple of slip-pockets and a couple of zippers, plus a clip to hang keys.

Felted Bag

I wasn’t able to locate the exact “hardware” she suggests so had to come up with alternatives. It’s a great pattern, though, and I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out.

Fiber Trends felted clogs

One of the all-time best patterns, and one just about every knitter is familiar with, is Bev Galeskas’ Felted Clogs, published by Fiber Trends (and available in both adult and children’s sizes as a download from Ravelry).

Andrea knitted a pair of these for herself a few years ago, loved them and wore them out.  So I gathered together bits and pieces of Cascade 220 I had left over from other projects and this is what I came up with.  (Those are her feet, so the fit is probably … perfect?)

FiberTrends felted clogs

I love stash-buster projects that work out this well.

Haute couture

Years ago I knitted an oversized sweater using skeins and skeins of expensive Noro. The fit was “generous” to start with, and knitted loosely, using large needles. A throw-it-on-over-anything sweater. But it elongated and elongated and elongated with each wearing, until the body was so long I couldn’t reach to the bottom of the pockets with my arms held straight down, and I had to roll the sleeves up in huge cuffs.
I thought, “Well, what do I have to lose? I’ll just wash it and see what happens.” To make a long story short, I succeeded in seriously felting it.
Now, you just can’t throw away that many dollars-worth of Noro. (I can’t anyway.) I packed it away and forgot all about it for years. Then during a serious de-junking frenzy last Fall, I ran across it. I still couldn’t just throw it away. It was, after all, nice felt … surely it could be used to make a purse or hat or something.
Then serendipity happened. I was at Marshall’s, just trolling for bargains. I saw a charcoal sweater. Actually, it wasn’t the sweater that caught my eye, it was the detachable collar.
I wish I had a photo of the sweater before the felting so you could see how really huge it was. But here it is after felting.

Felted jacket - Before

I put the collar next to it, and color-wise and size-wise, it was a match. But when I put it on the sweater (now a felted jacket in my eyes), it was still sort of … strange. So I got out the scissors and did a little trimming …
I cut the pockets loose from the side seams and turned the whole jacket inside-out so the cut edge would be inside, just like an ordinary side seam.
One sleeve was longer than the other, so I trimmed about ¾ inch off the longer arm.
And tried this… and that …

Felted jacket Felted jacket

And after some rounding and softening of cut edges of what used to be the pockets, ended up with a sort of a double-breasted buckled look.

Felted jacket - After Felted jacket - After (left open) Felted jacket

Thank you, Miss Lucy. You look quite smashing, and it’s definitely one-of-a-kind!

Eva’s stocking (and contents)

Here’s the stocking, and the projects alluded to earlier as getting finished up like crazy.

Stuffed stocking
Felted stocking for Eva, with Harry Bear (pattern free from Berroco) and earflap cap with matching mittens (photos of both below).

First the stocking. Felted, a little fair isle, a little intarsia, nothing too ambitious but I’m pleased with the result.
I knitted the stocking using Cascade 220 (single strand) and size 11 needles, using just a basic sock pattern for proportions.
(A note about the intarsia section: When I came to the tree section, I put the stitches involved in the intarsia on a straight needle, leaving the rest on a circular. I worked the tree rows, left them on a holder, worked back and forth on the stitches on the circular needle until I had the same length as the tree panel, then put all the stitches back on the circular needle and continued in the round. When I was all done, I just stitched the panel in place and the seams disappear completely in the felting.)
(Oh, and just for the sake of documentation in case I ever want to make another, I did an afterthought heel.)

I took some photos along the way because the shrinkage during felting always seems like such a guessing game. So I wanted to record just exactly what happened.

Before felting front, after felting

Measurements before felting: 28″ long x 10″ wide at ankle
Measurements after felting: 20″ long x 7.25″ wide at ankle

Before and after felting measurements

And stuffed inside a fluffy white Harry Bear, about 7 inches or so long,

Teddy bear

and snowflake cap and mittens set.

Baby cap and mittens

Whew! Best Christmas ever!

Eva’s stocking – finally completely finished

Okay, this is the last post about Eva’s Christmas stocking… I promise.
I just had to show off my first try at needle felting. I took some tufts of pink and white roving and added Eva’s name to the stocking.

Eva's stocking

Needle felting is fun. You should try it.

I finally felt like felting

Eva’s Christmas stocking, before and after (click them for bigger versions):

Eva's stocking, pre-felting Eva's Christmas stocking

Bad lighting on the “before” shot notwithstanding, I’m very pleased with how this turned out! I was worried the stocking would be way too ludicrously huge, but it became appropriately huge after felting. And here’s a little closeup on this gorgeous yarn (Plymouth Boku):

Eva's stocking, closeup

And, wait a minute, what’s this under the tree?
Felted clog. Not as noisy as a wooden clog
A present for me. This is one of the Fiber Trends felted clogs that I finished knitting almost two years ago and never got around to felting. After I pulled Eva’s stocking out of the washer, I was so high on felting I threw the clogs in the washer immediately. And now that they’re all felted, my very warm and happy feet are mad at me for not doing it much earlier. These slippers would have made maternity leave a little more cozy.
Felting is fun! I have two more Christmas stockings to knit and felt (though that probably won’t happen until after the holidays) so I have something to look forward to.