Knitting Bag (detail)
Some days I wake up in a fever of creativity, and clamber over a sleepy R. at ungodly hours of the morning to reach my sewing machine.

Last Saturday was such a day. I had been thinking that my current knitting project was looking bedraggled and flustered. On the train on the way home on Friday I felt somewhat shamefaced at carrying a silk lace stole-in-progress in a crumpled old plastic zip-lock bag. So I decided to sew a knitting bag that would set off my knitting with more grace.

Knitting Bag

The inspiration for this came from this lovely bag by knittingalot, though I altered the proportions, and generally figured out how to put it together. The shape reminded me of those cartons of juice that I used to buy from newsagents on my walk home from school, and which were often frozen as ice lollies in summer.

I’m very bad at measuring for small sewing projects – I tend to use a piece of heavy tissue paper from my pattern-drawing stash and fold and tear it until it makes the shapes that I need. I cut out two pieces for the front and one for the back, and contrasting strips for the ends. It is a source of some embarrassment to me that I still don’t know how to install the zip-foot on my sewing machine, having instead to call R. over to do it for me every time I need it changed. I think it must come from my general hatred of zips, and my corresponding love of buttons and popping fasteners.

Knitting Bag (detail)

If the fabric looks like if could have made a pair of flowery curtains or an antimacassar-covered armchair, that’s because it could. It’s Francis Price’s “Joanna” fabric from one of the cloth shops on City Road. I tend to pick up pretty fabrics from the remnant basket in these shops – sometimes a meter or more for 50p. The mystery blue cotton also comes from these baskets.

My fevers of creativity don’t always correspond to a successful finished product. In fact, more often than not they result in me sitting in despair in front of the sewing machine, waiting for R. to wake up so I that can complain to someone. He often finds me furiously tugging at my project, trying to detach it from where I have accidentally sewed it to my pyjamas, or my hair!

All the more reason to be pleased with last Saturday’s work. An hour or so of sewing produced this useful and pretty bag for my knitting.

And here it is peeking out of the bag – much better!