Simplifying The Bag

Well, thank you!!! I’m quite proud of my corduroy skirt, and would gladly share more detailed photos with you if there was a way to photograph black fabric without losing my mind. I certainly couldn’t have completed this project without help from my amazing sewing teacher. She was the one who recommended cutting the corduroy on a 60° bias, which created extra flounce and a very flattering drape.


The Bag definitely needs to be knit in two colors. The slip stitch pattern produces a dense, textured, and sturdy fabric, extremely well-suited for a bag (and ill-suited for just about everything else, in my opinion). However, ditching one of the colors will only complicate the construction, I think, because the alternating loops act as visual cues, guiding the knitter, clarifying what comes next.

I started the knitting with a provisional cast-on, just as suggested in the book (though I used the crochet cast-on instead of the recommended looping one). This is because I’m not sure what kind of hardware will finish my bag (certainly not garter stitch flimsies), and I want to be able to knit an appropriate backbone for the handles after that’s decided.

A few words of advice to those of you who might be considering this pattern: first, do not knit blindly. It will be extremely easy to get lost in all the verbiage if that’s all you’re using as a guide. Look at the stitches, notice how the slipped stitches travel across the fabric, and how the fabric is broken up into eight sections. Soon you’ll realize that the pattern is composed of only 3 different rounds, not 12 as you might have thought, and that each round can be deduced from the one before.

Second, when you set up, place markers as follows: k30, pm, (k11, pm, k36, pm) 3 times total, k11, pm, k6. Of course include a contrasting marker at the beginning of the round. This will break up the fabric into the eight sections I mention above, and make your life easier :).

Once you do those two things, you will be knitting The Bag without much thinking! Instead of following the pattern, you’ll be able to shift your focus to the incredible rustic fiber goodness, be it the Hempathy I’m using, or the Allhemp6 recommended in the pattern.


20 thoughts on “Simplifying The Bag

  1. Ruth

    Very nice!

    I like slipped stitch fabrics for garments, too, but only in moderation — and certainly not in hemp!

  2. Gena

    I like the color variation you’re using much better than the one in the pattern. I couldn’t tell any differences in the pattern! The texture of the fabric is great, it really pops out.

  3. Zarah

    It looks beautiful – I never would have put those colors together, but they’re perfect. Don’t you love the Hempathy? I’m making a sweater for myself out of it right now.

  4. Nicole

    That looks incredible – I love the color choices… do you think that the texture of the bag means you may be able to skip out on a lining….?

  5. Sarah

    That is certainly some thick fabric you are knitting up! Aside from giving you visual cues, the two colors are really giving the fabric some added depth — me likey!

  6. Ann

    That is knitting up quite nicely! Now I’m very interested in knitting that pattern … some other projects may get bumped!

  7. April

    It looks really pretty. I made a baby blanket that had a similar slipped stitch pattern, too, I used cotton yarn and it turned out very nicely, but a rather tedious knit after awhile. But the finished project was heavy like a quilt and the recipient still gets compliments on it. (yaay cuz I was a little scared of the color contrast at first) Can’t wait to see your bag when it’s done!

  8. Heide

    Every time I come to your site I leave with a case of knit envy and a longing to go cast on a new project. This bag is looking great.

  9. Knitripps

    I am enjoying the orange and green together in your bag. Your black skirt is lovely! I wouldn’t even know where to start with a project like that.

  10. Emily

    You can totally photograph black fabric–just meter on it and then underexpose a little. You can totally photograph black fabric–just meter on it and then underexpose a little. <3

  11. Emily

    You can totally photograph black fabric–just meter on it and then underexpose a little. You can totally photograph black fabric–just meter on it and then underexpose a little. <3

  12. Emily

    You cam totally photograph a black skirt! Just meter on the skirt and underexpose a little (1/2 or 1/3 stop increments until it shows up adequately, whichever your camera can do).

  13. Julia

    Great advice. I always go “off chart” as soon as I can learn to “see” the pattern. Understanding what you’re doing is the key.

  14. Ryn

    Ooooh, it’s so delicious! I love the contrast. The Bag is going to be STUNNING when you’re done with it. Personally, I think it would look great with some light-coloured wood handles.

    Thanks for the advice on the pattern! If/when I knit it for myself, I’ll definately follow it, since I like to understand how the pattern “works”, and how it builds on itself, especially in lace. It’s addicting. 😀

  15. Amy

    I use slip stitch for my wash cloths. It gives them bulk with stretch which is nice in a wash cloth. 🙂

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