Some of you may have recognized the stack of unfelted flowers I showed a few weeks ago as part of the Flower Basket Bag (Vogue Knitting Winter 2005, I think) that made the rounds on the knitting blogs earlier this year. To fit with Mom's being a busy "Red Hatter," I wanted to do the bag in coordinating colors of purple and red. Because the pattern is shown worked in black with a green trellis, I spent a lot of time deciding what combination to use. I had enough purple in my stash for the base of the bag (and it was the perfect bright purple shade), but I needed to order leaf and flower colors. I considered shades of green for the trellis, but it just seemed like it would have the wrong "feel" to it (lime and purple). I also toyed with the idea of a red trellis, but that, too, didn't thrill me. The light purple for the trellis was sort of a last-minute decision, but I think it was the perfect choice. I love the combination, and it sets off the red and fucshia flowers really well.
This was a fun knit, but I do have to say the trellis pattern gave me some fits to start. When you hit the first decrease, there is no information about how each line of the trellis pattern has to be altered. Determining where I was as I began each row took me some time, and I quickly realized I needed to write down the "new" beginning of each row so that I had a record of how I had to start each (since the bag decreases steadily down). Boy was I glad I'd taken time to make those notes. When I began the second side, later, the knitting was a relative breeze because I'd already figured out what I needed to do. I just had to refer to my notes as I began each row, and things were smooth sailing.
It does take a while to make all those leaves, and all those flowers. If you decide to make this bag, be forewarned! And, when I felted mine, my flowers ALL FELL APART. It was really disconcerting. I was able to flip them around and neaten them up, but I was really upset when I first pulled them out and saw that they had not held their shape at all even though I'd carefully seamed them up before felting. I ended up using a few less flowers and many less leaves than the pattern calls for. (I made them all, they just didn't really fit.) The final assembly of the bag is also tedious. It's tough to sew those flowers and leaves in place, but the end result was totally worth it.
I think the bag turned out beautifully. Matthew deemed it "Adorable." And Mom opened it last night and was really tickled, I think.