The Myrtle Knitting Bag is currently being redrafted and having some new images taken, and will be back very soon!
Myrtle is a knitting bag that would easily double as a bag for the beach. The pattern used in the bag is the brickwork stitch pattern, which is known in the US as the ‘ball band’ pattern (although I’ve never found out why – do you know?)
The bag has its roots in a real knitting bag. My grandmother, Myrtle kept her knitting patterns in a patchwork, brick patterned bag while I was growing up. My Mum tells me that it was made in the 1950s, while she was a girl and by the time I remember it, in the early ’80s it was well worn to say the least.
I stayed with my grandparents on the Isle of Wight often, when I was growing up, and whenever we went out for the day, the bag would be used. It carried our sandwiches, a flask of tea and a bottle of squash, and of course, Nan’s knitting. I wanted to recreate something from this memory for today. As well as taking my handbag with me, I like a market type bag to take on a day out. One that you can fit lots of knitting into, but that doesn’t get in your way held on your arm while you peruse the seaside postcards. A knitting bag that you could also use to throw in a light book, some marmite sandwiches and run with to catch the train to the coast. You have to wrap up the sandwiches well though, you understand. Don’t want the marmite getting on your knitting 😉
So, to the specifics: I used a cotton DK (Jo Sharpe’s Soho Summer), to give ithe bag that slouchy look, but also so it would dry out easily if you (horror of horrors) accidentally dangled it in the sea while knitting on the sea wall.
You knit the bag base-first, with the body picked-up and knitted in the round. The opening is finished with an i-cord cast off. There’s a lining to make and add if you wish, and you’ll need a set of handles too. The ones that I used were donated by Susan. I love them.
The bag’s finished dimensions are 40cm x 16cm x 30cm (16 x 12 x 6.5 inches). I have been keeping my many, many UFOs in it and let me tell you, you can fit in a fair few!
Do let me know if you have already knitted one!
Images copyright Arbour House Publishing (thanks, Susan!)