Knitting Progress – Dice Bag Almost Finished

I’ve been making some progress knitting, and I have the pictures to prove it:

Soon to b a dice bag

This is the beginnings of a dice bag, done in garter stitch with Shepard’s Wool (worsted weight merino, I think) on size 8 needles. I’m really liking the Brittany birch needles I got, and I bought a pair of 3s and a pair of size 5 dpns from the same brand. The bamboo size 5 dpns (I forget the brand) that I bought at Pennsic don’t seem to be working for me. They seem a little too slick, if that makes sense, especially for working with a really smooth yarn.

The photo above shows the piece before I blocked it. I wet it down and pinned it to a towel and let it dry overnight. I’ve discovered that using a towel or sheet for a straight edge is pretty helpful when blocking–there’s no way I can *eyeball* a straight edge.

Here’s a close-up of the stitching on the bag. A few flub-ups, but over all a pretty good first attempt if I do say so myself.
Close-Up of Stitching

The trickiest thing to get the hang of was making sure that the last stitch was hanging below the needle, rather than turned a little. My first few tries, I kept getting pieces with a weird slope, and it took a while to figure out that I was making one stitch into two at the end because of that. There are also a couple spots where I tore into the plies in the yarn, rather than getting between them. I think that was an issue of having the stitches too tight.

As the drawstring for the bag, I made a spiral braid (fingerloop – a lace bend round of eight bowes) out of cotton embroidery floss.

Fingerloop Braid

Sadly, it’s too thick to go between the stitches, and a little bit short, so I’m going to have to try again. I’m debating either plying some of the purple yarn I’ve been spinning and using that, or else trying to do a spiral with 3 bowes to make it a little narrower. Either way, the bag itself is sewn up, and just needs the drawstring to be finished.

Dice Bag

If I were going to do it over, I’d have made it a bit narrower and a bit longer, but I didn’t actually do a gauge sample–I just winged it. By that time, I’d done and ripped out so many practice pieces, though, that I really had to just start work on the project. Next time, I’ll do a sample, figure out what measurements I want, and go from there.

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