Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Harvest Time

I bought the Elegant Edibles kit for two reasons; 1) it was a great value for the yarn and notions (I don't know much about zippers) and 2) for the pea pod purse pattern.

I used size 7 double pointed needles. The purse is made out of less than a ball of each wool of the andes Jalapeno and Avocado. The final measurements of the purse (just the storage area): 8" long and 3" wide.

While knitting, I loved the fact that the chart was pretty much to scale. Not that I was paying attention to gauge, but it helped me get a sense of how large the final product would be, and that I was on target for an appropriate sized purse.

The body of the purse is finished... and the chart is to scale!

The pattern included two pockets. They were knit in the contrasting color, and then sewn onto both interior sides of the purse... with the lighter green yarn. I was concerned about keeping these stitches invisible, but that ended up being much more natural than I had thought.

The purse with sewn in pockets flipped inside out.

The peapod purse held open so you can see the pockets.

If I ever make one of these purses again, I may not put in the interior pockets. They fit into the purse well, but they take up a lot of the interior space of the bag! Then again, I love wristlets with pockets, it makes it easier to not bring an entire purse...

Adding many more items will really fill out this purse quickly.

I knit so many toys, so I don't always pay close attention to gauge. I knew that for this purse, it was most important for the fabric to be tight enough to hold objects, but I also needed to make sure that the included zippers would fit into the purse. My gut, non-calculated instincts ended up working out perfectly.

The purse body with the zipper (the first zipper that I'll ever sew into anything)

I've never sewn a zipper before, so I was pretty nervous. I loved the way the purse worked, and I didn't want to ruin the project with bad stitching. I also didn't want the zipper to pucker or change the silhouette of the purse. I spent a lot of time zipping and unzipping the zipper as I sewed it in. I really took my time to make sure I inserted this properly.

First I pinned one side of the zipper to the purse. While lining it up, I placed it such that the edge of the knitting lined up just below the teeth of the zipper. I was hoping to make the zipper as invisible as possible.

Both sizes of the zipper pinned into place. I had to unzip the zipper to start sewing.

This was a fast and fun knit, easily whipped up in a day. The leaves were fast and fun to knit, too. I even minded the Icords less than usual! I blocked each piece before I installed the zipper, again to make sure everything would line up perfectly.

I love the way the purse came out. My sewing of the zipper is not beautiful when you look at the inside, but it is (mostly) invisible on the outside, so I'm very happy! I should try to find some thread that is the same color of the zipper for next time...

I sewed over the zipper two times to make sure it was secure. From the outside you cannot see the stitches, but they are clearly visible on the inside.