BYZANTINE STRAWBERRY BAG
Originally published in Magknits
A wonderful use of that skein of recycled silk, this bag goes well with a gypsy skirt, velvet tunic or faded jeans.
It's bottom-up construction is fast, not fiddly, the linen-stitch strap stays firm rather than stretching or curling.
This pattern contains complete instructions for all techniques mentioned.
Five Size 8 (5 mm) double-pointed needles
Magnetized clasp (optional)
Decorative Button or pin
1 skein recycled Sari silk yarn, 100 grams, appx 80-90 yards
1 spool gold lame yarn by Lion Brand (75 yards) or a spool of metallic multi-ply embroidery thread of your choice. Do not use the single 'ply' metallic mylar strip thread as that is too weak. YLI Candlelight embellishment thread would work fine. You could also use a lace-weight yarn, if you prefer. It is important to have a strong carry-along fiber, as it strengthens the thinnest parts of the sari silk.
NOTE: If you are going to make an over-the-shoulder strap rather than a hand-bag or wrist-bag length strap, you will need a second spool of the metallic fiber, or 150 yards of the carry-along yarn, and a larger (200 gram) OR additional 100 gram skien of sari silk.
This purse may also be made with any yarn you desire, adjusting needle size accordingly. The size of the finished product will be different depending on choice of yarn and needles, but it will still be a cute purse!)
Gauge: 14 sts/20 rows = 4" square in stockinette stitch on size 8 (5 mm) needles
Bag measures 6 1/2 inches at widest points, both top to bottom and side to side. Suggested wrist-bag length is 7 - 8 inches, hand-bag strap length around 20 inches. Suggested over-the-shoulder strap length is 50 inches or longer, to suit you. Width of strap is 1 1/2 inch.
M1: I suggest using a backwards 'e' loop for the increase (twist yarn to form a simple loop and place on right hand needle, pull yarn to snug the loop. Then stitch the next stitch on left hand needle as usual. On the following round, treat the loop as a separate stitch).
Alternatively you may use a 'Lifted Increase' ( Insert your right hand needle from front to back into the top of the stitch below the next one to be knitted. Knit the stitch in the usual way, then knit the first stitch on the left hand needle as usual. )
sl 1: Slip 1 stitch purlwise from left hand needle to right hand needle.
ssk: slip, slip, knit. (Slip next two stitches, individually, knitwise. Return them to the left hand needle, then knit both stitches together, through the back loops).
Cast on 6 stitches using both strands of fiber. Knit 5 rows in stockinette as follows:
Rows 1,3 and 5: sl 1 knit across
Rows 2 and 4: sl 1 purl across
Pick up stitches through 2 slipped stitches on side of rectangle on new needle. (needle 2)
Pick up stitches through each cast on stitch on a new needle. 6 stitches (needle 3)
Pick up stitches through 2 slipped stitches on side of rectangle. (needle 4)
Beginning of round, Use stitch marker if desired.
Rnd1: knit each stitch around.
Rnd 2: needles 1 and 3: sl 1, m1, k4 m1 sl1;
needles 2 and 4: k1, m1, k1, m1
Rnd 3: knit each stitch around.
Rnd 4: needles 1 & 3: sl 1, m1, k6, m1 sl 1
needles 2 & 4: k4
Rnds 5 and 6: knit each stitch around.
Rnd 7: needles 1&3: sl 1, m1, k8, m1, sl 1
needles 2&4: k4
Rnds 8, 9 and10: knit each stitch around.
Rnd 11: needles 1&3: sl 1, m1, k10, m1, sl
needles 2&4: sl 1, m1, k2, m1, sl 1
Rnds 12,13 and 14: knit each stitch around.
Rnd 15: needles 1&3: sl 1, m1, k12, m1, sl 1
needles 2&4; k6
You should have 16 stitches each on needles 1 and 3, 6 stitches each on needles 2 and 4 (you may adjust for your gauge, but you must have an even numbers of stitches and rows)
Rnds 16 through 30 Knit each stitch.
Bag should measure approximately 6 1/2 inches from bottom to top at this point.
Bind off the 16 stitches on needle 1 using your preferred method. Use the first stitch on needle 2 to bind off the final stitch on needle 1, then put stitch back on needle 2.
DO NOT CUT YARN! We will be using the yarn directly to knit the strap
of the bag on needle 2. Cap needles 3 and 4 if desired, we will be working exclusively with needle 2 to make the strap.
Strap is worked in linen or woven stitch. We will knit the entire length of the strap on needle two, then work a three-needle bind off with the live stitches on needle 4, from the purl side (inside) of the strap
Row 1 : *bring yarn to front of fabric, sl 1; bring yarn behind fabric, knit 1* repeat between ** across; turn
Row 2: *Bring yarn behind fabric, sl 1; bring yarn to front of fabric, p1,* repeat between ** across; turn
NOTE: When bringing the yarn around the fabric for the first stitch in each knit row, bring it under the front tip of the left hand needle, then slip the stitch.
This method provides a sturdy, firm, clean edged strap.
Repeat rows 1 and 2 until desired length of strap is achieved. End with a Purl row.
THREE NEEDLE BIND OFF
Position of the bag and strap, just prior to three-needle bind off
Working with the inside of the bag facing you, strap curved down around the bottom of the bag, and back up to fit against live stitches on needle 4. (see image above) With right (knit) sides facing each other, insert the tip of new (bind-off) needle into the first stitch of the front needle (needle 4, bag), then into the first stitch of the back needle (needle 2, strap). Pull yarn through both stitches from back to knit the two stitches together. *Insert bind off needle into the next stitches on front and back needles, pull yarn through both stitches to knit together. Pass first loop (the one on the right) over the second loop (the one you just made)* Repeat between **across.
DO NOT CUT YARN! We will be using this yarn to continue directly on to needle three and create the flap of the bag.
Slip last live loop (from three-needle bind off) from needle 4 onto needle 3.
Row 1. Purl across needle 3, pick up one stitch at base of strap, turn. (18 stitches)
Rows 2,4,6,8,10 sl 1, knit across, turn
Rows 3, 5 7 9 11 sl 1 purl across, turn
Begin Flap Decrease
Rows 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22: sl 1, k2tog, knit across to last 2 stitches, ssk turn
Rows 13, 15, 17, 19, 21: sl 1, purl across, turn,
Add magnetic closure if desired, Add decorative button or pin to flap.
Copyright Otterwise Designs, 2007