Well, here it is
This, my friends, is the felted bag that I spent the entire day working on. It’s stuffed with plastic bags as it dries for shaping.
Here’s the story behind it:
At some point Friday night I found a pattern here for a felted backpack.
I’ve been wanting to do something felted and have been coveting a bag a girl at work has, obsessing over how “I could do that.”
So, on Saturday, after spending too much time on the couch with the daff ghan, I decided to go to Joann’s. There, I bought 300 gms of Paton’s Classic wool, a spool of ribbon (that I’ll never use) and some silver beads (in place of the wood beads in Cris’ pattern).
I came home, did a little more work on the daff ghan and then I started with the wool.
Now, ya’ll, I have animal allergies and, I’m not saying I’m allergic to wool but I had that hairball feeling.
Anyway, I posted a question at “seeking patterns” over at the ‘ville, asking for favorite felted bag patterns and showing the one at Cris’ blog. The conclusion: I was using wool that was too light (Cris used a bulky weight) for the pattern.
So, I adjusted my thinking and combined Cris’ pattern with the Lion Brand Market Tote of which I’ve made two.
That resulted in a lovely sized bag that, if left UNFELTED, would’ve stretched to my toes.
So, off to my laundry alcove. There I placed the crocheted bag in a lingerie bag and commenced “felting” (Hot wash/cold rinse).
That was around 2-something p.m. on Sunday. Here I sit at 7 p.m. and, well, it’s on it’s last cycle in the washer and I think I’m happy with it. I swear to you, I shoulda taken before, during and after pics, because this was RIDICULOUS.
I used the hot cycle until I maxed out my hotwater heater. I have two pairs of jeans that no longer fit me, that have been through hell (literally) today. I boiled water on two stove burners and in the microwave and did some hand felting. My hands are a pruney, wrinkled mess from being in water hotter than my skin can tolerate and, NO, rubber gloves DID NOT help.
I used the highest setting on my dryer (and an indoor “workout” shoe to knock around the wool). This sucker took FOREVER to get done and I used EVERY method I could think of.
I’m out of baking soda, I’ve used soap. The only thing I didn’t use was vinegar (check out felting how-tos on the Internet, there’s all sorts of suggestions for getting this done).
However, now that I think I have it down, and I think I KNOW how to do this (see, I just dove head first without looking in the pool for this bag and while in the process did my research), I’m gonna buy different wool yarns and try different bag patterns. I think I’m going to add a costume jewelry pin from the collection of stuff my mom had when she died, but I’m not sure where on the bag to add it. It’ll be silver and have waaaaaaaaaay too many rhinestones in it. Of course, there are always those pins from when I Irish Danced that I could add. How entertaining would THAT be to explain to folks?
I spent a total of $24 at Joann to buy the materials for this bag (including the ribbon that would’ve helped with the “drawstring effect”), and that’s what I usually spend on purses in leather, plus about as much time picking out the “perfect” purse. Was it worth it? I dunno, I WILL use the bag and I HAVE been wanting a new one.
I figure, this way I can design the bag myself and I’m not necessarily in need of a trip to a high-dollar merchandiser to buy it, I’ll just hit a local yarn store or craft store.
So, friends, enjoy viewing this bag. It’s not perfect. I noticed the flap I created isn’t exactly centered.
But, please, by all means, cross your fingers that you’ll see more in a variety of colors in the future (after I finish the Hostess’ bag and the daff ghan).
Oh, I also started a table in software on my computer to keep track of my projects. I need to make some wine charms and dishcloths and other things for gifts.