Knitting is a fantastic craft that opens up a world of creative possibilities. Whether you’re a seasoned knitter or a complete beginner, making your own knitted bag can be a fulfilling project. In this article, we’ll delve into the exciting world of how to knit a bag, providing a step-by-step guide that’s easy to follow and customized to your preferences.
The Basics of Knitting a Bag
Before we jump into the details, let’s grasp the fundamental concept of knitting a bag. The process is quite simple, you’ll create a long strip of knitted fabric, fold it, and then sew the sides together. This basic technique makes it an ideal project for those new to knitting. If you desire a roomier bag, you can easily incorporate gussets, which are triangular inserts of fabric. We’ll explain how to knit a bag both with and without gussets.
Materials You’ll Need
Before starting your knitting journey, gather the necessary materials:
- Yarn: You’ll need approximately 450 yards of worsted-weight yarn for the main body of the bag and a ball of contrasting yarn for accents.
- Needles: You’ll require US size 5 (3.75 mm) and US size 7 (4.50 mm) needles.
- Gauge: While gauge is important in knitting, don’t stress too much over it for this project. A general guideline is 4 stitches and 7 rows equal 1 inch.
- Finished Measurements: The bag, when lying flat, should be approximately 16 inches in width and 10 inches in height.
Also Read: How To Wash Chunky Knit Blanket
Step 1: Cast On
Begin by casting on 67 stitches using the size 5 needles.
Step 2: Work in Stockinette Stitch
Work in Stockinette stitch for 9 rows, ending on a knit row.
Step 3: Mark the Fold Line
Switch to size 7 needles and with the wrong side (WS) facing, knit. This marks the fold line for the hem.
Step 4: Stitch Pattern
Follow this simple stitch pattern:
- Row 1: Knit
- Row 2: Purl
- Rows 3-7: Knit
- Row 8: Purl
- Rows 9-10: Knit
Continue working on this pattern until your work measures 10 inches from the fold line of the hem. This should be approximately 24 ridges of Garter stitch, excluding the hemline row.
Step 5: Form the Bottom Gusset
Knit the next row. This marks the bottom gusset by creating a Garter stitch ridge. Work 14 rows of Stockinette stitch to form the bottom gusset, which is approximately 2 inches in height. End with a knit row. Knit another wrong side (WS) row to mark the gusset again.
Step 6: Complete the Bag Body
Continue with the stitch pattern, knitting up the other side of the bag for 10 inches. At the beginning of the hemline, work a wrong side (WS) row, and then switch back to size 5 needles. Knit Stockinette stitch for 8 rows to create the hem. Bind off your work loosely.
Adding Side Gussets
To ensure symmetry, create two side gussets matching the width of the sides to the width at the bottom of the bag:
- Cast on 8 stitches.
- Work in Garter stitch for 10 inches, which is the length of one side of the bag.
- Cast off your stitches loosely.
Repeat these steps to create a second side gusset.
Now, it’s time to put all the pieces together:
- Seam the side gussets to the bag.
- Weave in any loose ends.
- Lightly steam the hem to make it lie flat and sew it into place, leaving the ends open for the handles.
Adding Handles: I-Cord or Simple Knit Handles
You have two options for handles: I-Cord handles or a simpler knit handle.
- Make I-Cord handles in each color and seam them together.
- Thread the I-Cord through the pocket hem on your bag and seam the ends of the I-Cord handle together.
Simple Knit Handles:
- Cast on 8 stitches.
- Knit in a Garter stitch (knitting every row) until you reach your desired handle length.
- Keep in mind that the Garter stitch is stretchy, so it will lengthen when you wear it on your shoulder.
Knitting a bag is a rewarding and enjoyable project for knitters of all levels. With this easy-to-follow guide, you can create a stylish and functional knitted bag that suits your personal style and needs. Whether you’re a novice or a knitting pro, this project offers an opportunity to explore your creativity and produce a beautiful accessory that you’ll proudly use and showcase.