Trellis Bag constructed

The Trellis Bag is complete. My theories on it’s construction were all proved as it went along. I’ve taken photos of varying quality during the various construction stages and a couple of completion photos. When there’s more light and more time I’ll take some, hopefully better, photos. Sewing in the lining, sewing the pockets for the rods of the handles and putting it onto the handles all happened at Edendale Farm in Eltham during a Home Education meet up. So I’ve decided to officially name it the Edendale Bag. A quick search of Ravelry tells me that no-one has used this name so far. I have to try and get pattern writing for this piece, in amongst too many commitments for the preservation of sanity. Here is a photo of the bag during construction.

The summer pullover (working title, “Shells’n’Bells”) is progressing well. A couple of days ago I rediscovered the advisability of a life line. Don’t ask me how. This slippy bamboo yarn seems to make it more necessary than usual. A dropped stitch gets away Pretty Damn Quick. I do find life lines a bit awkward, and would rather not use them, but I must reluctantly admit, they are worth doing. I use sewing thread for my life line, as I have found thicker thread/yarn leaving a slight mark where it has displaced the knitting. So, anyway, I would say I have half of the first piece done.

Trellis Bag progressing

I’ve been continuing on for a couple of weeks now, and am making slow, but consistent progress. The simple knit and purl rows are so quick and easy, it’s hard to buckle down for the more complex row, which appears every fourth row. But the stitch pattern looks so lovely, especially in this gorgeous colour combination.

School holidays are still happening, so I’m having trouble remembering what day it is at the moment. We’re short one car just now, which is slightly annoying, as these things always happen at the most inconvenient moment. It is sort of nice to be stuck at home sometimes, though.

Grey Day

It’s been the wettest start to winter for Melbourne in 9 years. Hopefully this means we’re getting back to normal winters, instead of the terribly dry ones we’ve had for so long. The rain held off for our train trip into the city centre today, but had well and truly arrived by the time we came back.

Waiting for the train.
I took DD2 into town to meet up with some friends to go to a birthday party. Then DD1 and I browsed up, down, round and round, all through Myer, to hopefully use some gift cards she’s received. Too much choice, I’m afraid. At least we know now what a huge range of stuff is available there. We were amazed by the cosmetics counters stretching as far as the eye can see.
I’d forgotten what it was like.
As often happens, we saw a couple of people we know. When the city is so crowded, it’s astounding that you can randomly bump into people you know.
The Trellis Bag continues, but a longer piece of the same thing is not interesting enough to include here.
I’m pleased to report that my sore arm is no longer sore. Phew.

The Trellis Bag is begun.

DD1 is due back tonight, and I have at least made a start on her bag, as shown. DD2 deems it “cool”. That’s good enough for me.
It’s been a very gloomy afternoon here, but I still managed to take a half-decent photo in the poor light. The camera want’s to use the flash, but the photos always look better without, unless it’s dark dark. A pain in my left forearm is annoying, but I’m sure it’s not knitting induced, and doesn’t hurt while knitting, only in certain non-knitting positions.

This yarn still looks great, even though knitted much wider than the tension square. It’s exciting seeing it grow.

I’ve started using Microsoft Excel, in a very basic way, to help with calculations based on stitches per cm, weight and measurement of tension square, estimated finished size of pieces and weight and length of balls of yarn. I’ve learnt a lot from Marnie MacLean’s excellent tutorials on the subject in her blog. After doing the same calculations over and over in my notebook and trying to remember, “how did I do this last time?”, it makes sense to put those standard calculations into a spreadsheet, and just enter the relevant numbers. Voila!
The full sweater spreadsheets are a bit overwhelming for me at the moment, so I’m trying to just focus on what I need to do for this little bit I happen to be working on. Hopefully I’ll be able to expand from here. I don’t go too well with blindly following someone elses calculations. I need to do and understand each little bit at a time.

Tension squares reduce my tension

The Sirdar Escape duly arrived. I’ve been away on camp over the long weekend, and was able to use the time to knit up a few tension squares. Some of the Sirdar Escape, I’ve knitted up into a tension square in Trellis Stitch. It’s very cute, especially in this yarn. I’m knitting it on smaller needles to create a denser fabric, as it’s for a bag. The combination of the yarn, stitch pattern and smaller needles certainly makes for a fairly condensed piece of fabric. The colour repetition is very cute, but I know it’ll be more of a stripy look when knitted over the full width.

The next thing to consider is the construction of the bag. The stiff bamboo handles mean that extra fabric at the ends of the handles, or longish splits down into the sides of the bag, will be needed, so that the bag will open more than just a sliver. I’ve been googling to research bamboo handled bags and carpet bags, to see what I can do without making it too complicated. My current favourite is to just leave the side seams open maybe a third, to allow leeway for opening space. This means I’ll still be able to use a simple rectangle of fabric without fancy shaping. Just gathering the top of the bag to fit the handles, and splits down the sides, should do the job. Sounds good in theory at least!

DD1 is away on camp at the moment, and I was hoping to have more than a little done by the time she gets back, but it seems it’s not to be.