Saturday, July 22, 2006

Lettuce Mesh
Market Bag

(pattern is for the bag pictured at top)


Sugar n' Cream Ombre 2 balls (I used about one and a half balls, but note the ombres are 95 yds., and the solids are 12o yds. You can probably make this bag with one ball of solid). Pictured colorway is "Painted Desert" for the top bag, and "Hot Green" and "Cream" for the bottom bag

optional: Small amount contrasing color yarn for crochet edging

needles: size 7 circular 16"
crochet hook size G (for optional edging)

gauge: not really important. I was getting about 4 sts to 1 inch.

finished measurements:
strap width: 1.75 inches
strap length: 26 inches
bag opening: 12.5 inches across
length of bag (excluding strap): 14 inches
width of bag: will stretch from 12-20 inches or so

Garter Stitch strap and Bag Rim:

Cast on 80 stitches using long tail method

Rows 1-10: Knit

Bind off all stitches. You will have one loop left on your right needle. Do not cut yarn! ( I bound off in purl to keep an edge that matched the cast on)

Now we work the top of the bag.

Turn work clockwise so that the one remaining loop is at the upper right corner of the strap.

Pick up 6 stitches along the short edge of the strap (one stitch picked up per garter ridge). You should now have 7 stitches on you needle: the loop + 6 picked up.

Cast on 34 stitches using the backwards loop method.

Making sure the strap isn't twisted, pick up 6 stitches along the other short end of the strap.

Cast on 33 stitches using the backwards loop method.

You should now have 80 stitches on your circular needle.

Making sure the stitches aren't twisted, place a marker and get ready to join in the round.

Body of Bag:

Working in the round:

row 1: Purl
row 2: Knit
row 3: Purl
row 4: Knit
row 5: Purl

Bind Off (I also bound this off in purl)

Cut yarn.

Rejoin yarn (in a contrasting color if you like: see bottom pic) and pick up 80 stitches along the bound off edge; one picked up stitch per bound off stitch.

Begin working in the round again.
Knit for 25 rows or until the bag is about a third of the depth you want it to be.

Next row: K1 stitch, drop the next stitch off the needle. Repeat around. (You are knitting all of the odd numbered stitches 1, 3, 5, etc., and dropping all of the even ones off the needle)

You should now have 40 stitches left on your needle.

Let em' Rip: Carefully holding onto your needle tips to secure your remaining 40 stitckes, rip the dropped stitches down to the rim of the bag. This created the meshed look and expands the bag. If you prefer, finish the bag first, then rip down the dropped stitches.

Next Row: K2 top all around. 20 stitches remain.

Cut yarn leaving a long tail. Weave it tightly through the 20 stitches several times to close the hole. (If you want a straight bottomed bag, bind off, fold in half and seam edges.)

Weave in ends

Optional Edge: This is if you want to keep the strap and the fim of the bag from stretching.

Using crochet hook size G and contrasting colored yarn, pull up a stitch through the back loop of a cast off edge at a corner where the strap and bag rim meet.

Slip stitch and chain 1

Continue to slip stitch in the back loops of the cast on/off edges. This is to preserve the look of the Garter Stitch borders. The exception to this is the bound off edge of the strap; here you want to slip stitch through the front loop of those 80 bound off stitches.

Slip stitch through the first chain 1, cut yarn

Repeat for the other side.

Weave in ends.