This pretty purse can be made easily out of oddments of feltable yarn from your stash. Add stunning felted flowers and your new bag will be admired wherever you go.  You can use any colors and felted decorations, or none at all.  The pictures show the techniques, but in different colors for a different effect.

Finished Purse 

 

Materials: worsted weight feltable wool. Note: superwash wool will not felt, avoid using it for felted projects. Shown in Bucilla Persian wool.

Each calla lily: approximately 20 yards.   
Natural – 40 yards
Light pink – 40 yards
Yellow – 20 yards
Five green stems: approximately 30 yards total or about five yards per stem depending length.

The base and body:  
Dark teal approximately – 120 yards  

Light teal – 60 yards
Natural – 60 yards
Strap.
10 yards of yellow
20 yards of natural
20 yards of light green

If you would like to use just one color, or different colors, it takes approximately 300 yards total to make this project.

 

Needles and notions: Two #8/24 to 40 inch circular needles; blunt medium-size yarn needle for sewing flowers to bag; stitch markers;

 

Abbreviations: k – knit; p – purl; sts – stitches; pm – place marker; sm – slip marker; inc – increase by knitting front and back of next stitch; dinc – double increase: knit front, back and front of next stitch; k2tog – knit 2 together; ssk – slip next two stitches knit-wise, return to left needle, knit tog through back loops.

 

Pattern Notes:  The wool should be tested for color fastness.  Test and felt sample swatches for color fastness and also the degree of shrinkage.  If colors bleed or run, sew the lilies and stems onto the purse after felting.  Avoid using different weights and types of yarn which could pull the flowers or purse out of shape due to uneven shrinking during the felting process.

 

To make I-Cord: Knit three stitches, slide stitches to opposite end of needle. Knit three stitches again.


Cast On

 

Instructions: 

Oval Base
Loosely cast on 30 stitches on circular needle. With second circular needle, pick up 30 stitches along cast-on edge. 30 stitches on each circular needle.
Round 1:  k29 stitches on first needle, pm, dinc. Work stitches on second needle in the same manner. (62 sts on each needle)
Round 2:  k29 sts on first needle, sm, inc in next 2 sts,  k1. Work stitches on second needle in the same manner. (34sts on each needle)  
Increase Rounds:  k29, sm, inc in next stitch, k to within 2 sts of next marker, inc in next stitch, k1. Work stitches on second needle in the same manner (two stitches increased on each needle).  Repeat increases 13 times or until you have 120 stitches.  

 

Cast On Handle 

 

Sides
Purl one round, knit one round, purl one round.  Slip sts onto one circular needle if preferred.

Next round: k29, sm, k31, pm, k29, sm, k31, place contrasting marker on needle.  This marks the beginning and end of the rounds.  Switch colors at this marker and count stitches for handles from this marker.  Knit every round until bag measures 10 - 15 inches from the purl row.  

For three color bag:
Knit base and five inches in dark teal,
Knit four inches in light teal
Knit four rows natural
Knit two rows light teal
Knit four rows natural
Knit two rows light teal
Knit four inches in natural.
Next round: k29, sm, k31, sm, k29, sm, k23, bind off 8.
Next round: Continue binding off next 37 stitches, removing markers as you go.  k14, bind off 45.
You should have 15 stitches at each end of purse.  Do not break yarn.  Begin handle cast on.

 

Knitting The Ends In


Handle

Cast on 88 stitches.  Be careful not to twist stitches.  Join to opposite side of purse edge by knitting two stitches from opposite group of 15 stitches (this counts as the first row), turn.  
Row 2:  Knit first two stitches together, k88, k2 from purse edge, turn.
Rows 3 – 15: At the beginning of each row k2tog, k89. At the end of each row, k1 from purse edge, turn.  

 

Bind Off Handle

Continue working in garter stitch for a total of fifteen rows:  six rows in natural, three rows in yellow, and six rows in light green. 

 

Finished Handle

 

When all fifteen stitches on each end have been picked up and knit into handle, bind off stitches and fasten off yarn.  Work in ends.

 

 Felted Purse

Flowers
Cast on 1 stitch.  
Row 1:  k1.
Row 2 to 24 (even rows):  purl.
Row 3:  inc in single st (2 sts).
Row 5:  inc in 1st st, k1 (3 sts).
Row 7:  k1, dinc in next stitch, k1 (5 sts)

Image


Row 9 through 25 (odd rows only):  k1, inc in 2nd stitch, k to last 3 sts, inc in next st, k2 (2 more sts each row).
Row 26: purl, placing sts on double pointed or long circular needle dividing evenly.  Place marker on needle to mark beginning of each round,  begin knitting in the round.
Next round:  k2, k2tog, knit to within three stitches of marker, ssk, k2.
Repeat this round until there are 6 stitches left.
Knit two together all the way around.  3 stitches
Switch to green yarn.

blossom

Knit I-cord until stem is length you desire, remember that the felting process will shrink the stem significantly.
 

Making Up

Add floral embellishments.  Pin flowers on purse in a pleasing arrangement,  using the photo as a guide.  Using yarn to match either the flower parts or the purse, sew loosely in place.  Sew slightly under the edge of the flower by sewing through a stitch from the flower and then a stitch from the purse until you have gone around the edges of the flower and along the stem.  Felting will pucker stitches and flowers if sewn tightly.


I prefer a firmer, more densely felted finish, so I recommend felting in a top-loading washing machine to achieve a firmer finished product. Front-loading washers do not agitate enough to produce a good felt.  Use hot water, a small amount of detergent and agitate for 20 – 30 minutes, check often until bag is size you prefer. 

 

stem

 

If you experienced any colour bleeding in your sample swatches, felt bag and flowers seperately. Then use a heavy duty carpet and button thread to sew flower in place with small, hidden stitches just slightly under the flower.

 

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