Foggy Sunset

Foggy Sunset
Photo by Aisling Doonan

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Erne Handbag

We are having the strangest weather lately.  It's Spring, obviously enough, cast ne'er a clout and all that, but we are really experiencing everything the sky has to throw at us.  From bright sunshine and a brisk breeze to black clouds and hail the size of mini muffins.  Back to drizzle and greyness, then sleet and white skies to piercing blue skies and sun.  I'm confused. 

On Saturday I met with a friend and we took a walk around a lake close to where I live that I had never been to before with the kids.  It was breezy and cool but boy, was the sun shining.  

So I managed to fill my memory card with photos of pretty looking scenery.  Who'd have thought Leitrim was so rare?

I think I missed the bulk of the bluebell infestation, no blue carpets here, more of a scattering.

Ever decreasing circles.

Lot's of mini shores with cosy spots for fishermen to sit or in our case children to fling rocks and pebbles into the crystal clear water.

Reminds me of a book cover, can't think which one though :)

Leading lines...

I adore trees, I spent most of the walk gazing skywards through the budding branches.

I keep thinking a face is going to stare back at me if I stare at this too long, the colours are fabulous!

Beautiful colours and textures, perfect inspiration for knitting.

And the best for me I kept till last, my favourite colours, fabulous textures, like sunburned skin peeling or filo pastry all crispy and delicate.

My Erne Handbag is finished!  I had a vague idea when I was knitting it, how I wanted it to be, but sometimes the best thing with designs (as with writing too) is to let them take their own path and see what happens, you never know you might end up with a masterpiece!

I was nervous about the lining.  Mostly because I'm lazy and a perfectionist all rolled into the one smiling package!  You may wonder how this is possible, but I have high standards but not always the patience or staying power to make them happen:)

Still, I knew I wanted pockets, I knew I wanted it to be fairly firm (the bag is tall and quite floppy) and I knew I wanted it to be made in a light coloured hard wearing natural material.  

I chose calico cotton and made 2 rectangles of equal sizes.  Firstly I sewed the pockets together (I sewed a tube out of two rectangles - so that no seams are on show - and sewed them to the interfaced rectangle leaving a 3 inch space at the bottom for the bag base.  I sewed the side seams and made a second bag liner from the second rectangle.  I flattened the base by sewing a line at right angles to the side seams on both liners.  The two rectangles at the top were sewn into place with the handles in situ.  Then all there was to do was to slip stitch the actual fair isle bag into place.  Whoohoo!

You can see both here, the funny shaping at the top of the woollen bag is for folding over, through the handle and is slip stitched into place at the seam on the other side nice and neatly.

Here she is, purty?

The light is playing hide and seek through the new leaves.

It's my favourite spot across the lane, I've been sneaking out hoping that no one sees me taking photo's like a nervous ninny.

On the stones, sunbathing (it was mighty chilly though!)

Close up.

Internal shot (I even added one of my own labels!  Posh eh?)

I even have wool left over!  I have another idea germinating, I might have some photo's next post, something felted perhaps.

Happy knitting



  1. What gorgeous photos, you had a lovely day for your walk. It must have been in between the hail and the torrents of rain & wind ;) I LOVE your bag, it's absolutely gorgeous. A real masterpiece.

    1. The day was such a surprise because we were full sure we'd be stuck outdoors in a monsoon, the way the forecast was predicting. Instead we had a rare perfect day with sun and breeze and a bit of unexpected fun!

      Thank you, I love my bag too! I've been using it since I made it (I prefer cross body bags personally, but I also adore wearing woolly capes and the two do not go together :) and it's perfect, holds everything I need with a little spare room at the top!

  2. Lovely photos Aisling. We have very wet weather here - April showers with "bells" on!
    Love the bag, lots of patience required to make such a useful lining, I feel sure you will enjoy using it and attract lots of admiring glances. Also it is unique of course!

    1. Thanks Anne, I'm using the bag now and it's working out really well, it's big but not bulky and holds everything perfectly in it's little integrated pockets (aren't I glad I put them in!) so everything has it's own little organised spot. Love bags with pockets!!!