Sunday, October 12, 2008

Punched Pumpkin Mat

I can't believe I finished something in time for the season. Usually, I would be done at the beginning of the next season and have to wait a year to use it. When deciding to make this particular mat, I discovered the secret of designing and getting the picture on the rug backing material. I know everyone who hooks probably knows this, but this is for the me, who has so many "duh" moments.

You start out with a pencil, eraser, and paper...preferably printer paper. It's nice and white. Draw the design you want tweaking as you go. That's what the eraser is for. :-) When you are totally satisfied with your picture, trace your pencil lines with a thin magic marker. I have been told the name 'magic marker' went the way of the dinosaur. I actually used a Bic Mark It ultra fine point. Erase any visible pencil marks. You may not see them too clearly now, but trust me, they will show on the computer when you blow it (the picture) up.

Now scan or take a photo of your drawing and get it in the computer. Your rug or mat will probably want to be larger than the actual size of the picture. Rather than spending money at an office supply store having them blow it up, you can do it yourself and it will only cost you a little time and paper.

For the rug above, I simply cropped the picture into thirds saving the original and each third separately. I then printed out each third to full size on the 8.5x11 paper and then folded the edges and lined up the design and taped them together. My original hand drawn picture of 5x9" turned into a rug of 9 x 22". If you wanted a larger rug, you could grid out the picture into 6, 9, 12 sections. OOOOh! I think I'll make a matching floor rug! I digress.

Tape red dot or quilters transfer paper (located in the interfacing section of most fabric stores) on the enlarged picture and go over it with a larger size magic marker. Now your design is ready to be transferred to your backing in the same method.

Nothing is written in stone. Even after your picture is on your backing, you can still tweak. I added the crow at the last minute. The only thing to remember if you are PUNCHING the rug, is that your image will be reversed. I realized that in the beginning and the rug turned out as it should have...only since working from the back all the time, I've come to like the rug better from the back side. Will I ever be satisfied with how a project turns out? Probably not.

p.s. The yarn used for the pumpkins was hand dyed on cream wool using Landscape's "Dingo". Each skein was around 200 yards. The lightest pumpkin used 1/4 teaspoon of dye and I increased the dye in increments of 1/4 teaspoon to get the deeper colours.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Pocketbook

I promised this pattern and I'm doing it now! Some people might like to get some done before Christmas. So, in all it's glory, is the WoolTales Pocketbook.

WoolTales Felted Pocketbook
With Pocket Options

Winter Pocketbook/Flap

Fall Topless Pocketbook

Topless Bag
Materials: 600 yards of feltable worsted weight wool in a solid colour
140 - 150 yards of variegated feltable worsted weight wool
1 or 2 buttons for pocket flaps

Flap Bag
Materials: 4 skeins Lamb’s Pride worsted (190 yards each) or about 750 yards
2 skeins Noro Kureyon (110 yards each)
1 large button for the top flap
1 small button for pocket flap
You may want to purchase the buttons and then select the yarn to match. I discovered it’s much easier that way.

Needles: US 11 double points and 16" circular
Crochet hook “H - K” Size not particularly important.
3 Markers and 1 End of Row Marker

Gauge: Not important. Finished felted bag is approximately 12-14" wide and 10 - 12" high.

BO - bind off
CO - cast on
sts - stitches
SSK - slip two stitches one at a time as if to knit. Place back on left hand needle and knit together through the back loop
dec. - decrease.
K2tog - knit 2 stitches together
YO - wrap yarn over needle

Ribbing: I have used a 2 x 2 ribbing in the pattern. If you prefer a 1 x 1 ribbing, do that. It’s your purse!

Bottom of bag -
With the solid colour and variegated wool, cast on 12 stitches and work garter stitch (knit each row) for 28 ridges. Knit one more row with the circular needle. Place marker. Pick up and knit across side (1 stitch per ridge), place marker, pick up and knit across the cast on edge (1 stitch per stitch), place marker, and back up along the last side, place end of row marker. You should have a rectangle with 12 stitches on each end and 28 stitches on each side. This is Round 1.

Rnd 2: Knit 12, slip marker, knit 2, *make 1, K2 and repeat from * down the first side (41 stitches), slip marker, knit 12, slip marker, knit 2,* make 1, K2 and repeat from * down the second side (41 stitches). (106 sts total.)

Rnds 3 - 6: Knit around

Rnd 7: Cut variegated yarn and join second strand of solid yarn and knit around.

Body of bag -
Rnd 1: Knit

Rnd 2: Knit 12, slip marker, SSK, knit 37 (to the last 2 stitches), K2tog, slip marker, knit 12, slip marker, SSK, knit 37 (to the last 2 stitches), K2tog. (102 sts total.)

Pocket Placement -
Rnd 3: Knit 12 end stitches, on each side: knit 13, purl 13, knit 13. These purl bumps are what we will be picking up and knitting when we put in our pockets.

Rnds 4 - 19: Knit.
If you would like to add a small cell phone pocket on the side, purl the middle 10 of the 12 sts for one or both sides on round 8.

Rnd 20: (for small flap pocket only) - knit 12 end stitches, knit 13, purl 13, knit 13. Work to end of round.

Rnds 21 - 34: Knit around.

Handle holes -
Rnd 35: Knit to 7 sts. before end of row marker. *K2tog, YO, knit 5, slip end of row marker,

Rnd 36: Knit 2, YO, K2 tog, knit 4, K2tog, YO, K2 , slip marker, knit 5, YO, K2tog, K25, K2tog, YO, knit 5, slip marker, Knit 2, YO, K2 tog, knit 4, K2tog, YO, K2 , slip marker, knit 5, YO, K2tog, Knit to end of row.

Rnd 37: Knit

For Ribbed Top:
Rnds 38 - 41: Knit 2, Purl 2 around.
Rnd 42: Bind off in pattern.

For Flap Top:
Rnds 38 - 40: K2, P2 over side sts, K39, slip marker, K1, P2, *K2, P2, repeat from * to end of round.

Rnd 41: K2, P2 over 12 sts, K39, BO remaining sts of row in pattern.

Rnd 42: BO first 12 sts, K remaining 39 sts.

Start of actual flap:
Using 1 strand of black and 1 strand of variegated
Row 1: Slip the first stitch as if to purl and purl to end.
Row 2: Slip 1, SSK, knit to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1.
Repeat rows 1 & 2 twice more.
Row 7: Slip 1, P.
Row 8: Slip 1, K.
Row 9: Slip 1, P.
Row 10: Slip 1, SSK, K to last 3 sts, K2tog, K1.

Repeat rows 7 - 10 until 15 sts. Remain.
Next row: Slip 1, P4, BO 5 sts in P, P5.
Next row: Slip 1, K4, CO 5 sts, K5.
Next row: Slip 1, P.
Next row: Slip 1, K.
Next row: Slip 1 P
BO Row: Working a corded bind off, add three sts by placing the right hand needle between the 1st & 2nd sts, K. Place new st back on left needle. Repeat twice. After you have added the sts, *K2, SSK. Slip 3 sts back to the left hand needle and repeat from * until all the sts are BO and there are three sts remaining. Cut yarn and draw through 3 sts.

Short Pocket -
With US 11 double point needle and leaving an 8 - 10" tail of yarn, pick up and knit 13 sts at purl bumps toward the bottom of the bag and holding your purse with the BOTTOM TOWARD YOU. This is row 1. Turn your work and purl back across these stitches. Continue in stockinette stitch until 10 rows have been completed. Bind off in knit on the next row. Pull yarn through last stitch and cut leaving an 8 - 10" tail.

With the tails at the beginning and end of your pocket, sew the respective sides of the pocket to the bag. I used a whip stitch.

Short Pocket Flap -
Using one strand of solid and one strand of variegated wool and holding your purse with the TOP of the bag TOWARD you, pick up and knit 13 sts from the top line of purl stitches. This is row 1.

Row 2: Slip first stitch, purl to end of row.
Row 3: Slip first stitch, SSK, knit to last 3 sts, K2tog, knit 1.
Row 4: Slip 1, purl across

Repeat Rows 3 and 4 until 5 stitches remain.
Next row: Slip 1, slip another, K2tog, pass second slipped stitch over, knit. (3 sts).
Next row: Slip 1, purl across.
Last row: Slip 1, K2tog, pass slipped stitch over. (1 stitch).

With this last stitch, crochet a chain of 9. Fasten off and weave tail to base of chain creating a loop which will fasten around the button of your pocket.

Long Pocket -
With US 11 double point needle and leaving a 10-12" tail of yarn, pick up and knit 13 sts at purl bumps toward the bottom of the bag holding the bag with the BOTTOM TOWARD YOU.

Row 2: Turn your work and purl back across these stitches.
Continue in stockinette stitch until you are approximately 1" from the start of the ribbing at the top of your purse. Knit 2, Purl 2 for three rows. Bind off the next row in pattern leaving a 10-12" tail.

With the tails at the beginning and end of your pocket, sew the respective sides of the pocket to the bag.

Handle -
Using 2 double point needles, one strand variegated and one strand solid wool, cast on 5 stitches. (If you prefer a solid handle, use two strands of your solid yarn.) Work I-cord for seven feet (7') for a shoulder bag handle. If you would like shorter handles, 5-1/2 to 6' should be fine. Remember that these will shrink during the felting process. Cast off leaving a tail. Feed the handle through all the handle holes and sew the ends together. Neatness counts but we don’t need to be compulsive. The felting process will even out slight blemishes in our work and the handle seam can be placed in the small area on the side between the holes.

Side of the purse with handle in place. The ribbing is the top of the cell phone side pocket,

Before you felt:
Do you want any more pockets? Perhaps one or two inside? Simply pick up some purl bumps from the inside and repeat the process for knitting a pocket. You could make a large divided pocket by simply picking up across most of one side, making the pocket and then sewing down the middle. It’s your purse.

Time to felt!
Use your favorite felting method your purse in a pillow case protector or pillow case tied at the end and throw in the washer. Just let it run through the cycles. Two to three complete cycles should do it. Lamb’s Pride felts more quickly than some yarns. Check your progress. Make sure your handle swings freely and doesn’t knot up in the washer or it can not felt properly. Pull it out before the last spin cycle to prevent creases. Let it drip and then press with towels to soak up excess water. Shape and let air dry - two to three days.

You may have to shave your bag after it is dry unless you like the fuzzier look of Lamb’s Pride. The fuzziness sucked up some colour of the variegated in the above. I will try the next bag using Galway.

Sew your buttons where you need them and you are ready to go. Enjoy!!

Copyright 2004 by Janis Garwood a.k.a. WoolTales. Revised 2008.