Monday, March 20, 2006

The L.A. Marathon of Knitting

Los Angeles Marathon XXI
I was so obsessed this weekend with knitting that Ferragamo knock-off bag, that I didn't get anything else done! Luckily, the L.A. Marathon ran right through our neighborhood, so we couldn't really leave.....forced to stay home and knit!
After looking at the Berroco pattern and trying it out, I decided it wasn't enough like the original pattern stitch, although I do like the addition of the Suede yarn at the top of the bag, simulating leather. Also, my basketweave crochet was just too grid-like and static for this purse. The beauty of the Ferragamo is that the body is biomorphic and curvy, the top is structured. Lisi's pattern from the Stitch Cafe was it.
I zoomed over the hill on Saturday to the Stitch Cafe on Magnolia near Whitsett in Valley Village fka North Hollywood. There was a scumbling crochet class going on...Shout out to Kim of Playa del Rey. I saw that you were deeply engrossed in the class, so I didn't stop to say hi.
Lisi's 'Ferragamo' has a bamboo handle and is made from a chunky yarn. It looks really great, so I purchased her pattern. I gave Lisi the Berroco pattern and for her next bag sample, she may add some suede yarn at the top too.
When I got home I tried Lisi's pattern with the 2 strands of the yarn I initially used for my first attempt, basketweave crochet. After a few tries, I figured out the pattern. It's intense and kinda' complicated, but now I get it. The 2 strands of yarn were too busy for this pattern. I needed to switch to one light colored yarn. I wound up some off-white mystery yarn from my stash and started yet a third time on my obsession. Perfect!
I spent most of Saturday afternoon, Saturday night and all day Sunday knitting!!! The L.A. Marathon ran right through our neighborhood, so I put my own knitting marathon on hold to go outside and cheer on some of the runners. Since we were trapped until about 2:30 in our little area due to traffic barriers, runners, etc., it was a perfect time to knit.
Then, I was thinking about the structure of my bag. I wouldn't be able to construct anything like the original Ferragamo closure at the top of the bag. I do like how the Berroco pattern finishes off with leather handles and some suede yarn. Lisi's design, with just the bamboo handles doesn't look quite finished to me. So, once the traffic barriers were down I trundled over to my local Target and checked out the purses and tote-bags. My friend, Brandi, manager at Stitches From The Heart, buys Target totes and adds crocheted covers to them...they're fantastic looking. Now, Target is selling totes with leather-like handles and mesh sides....perfect to attach knitted and crocheted masterpieces to! I picked up a copper and beige tote. I think that the natural color yarn I'm working with will look great once it's attached to the tote. Stay tuned for updates!
Thank goodness the Marathon is I can go back to knitting at a leisurely pace!



At 4:27 PM PST, Blogger ~drew emborsky~ said...

Love love love the texture you are creating with this design!! Woo HOO!

At 9:53 PM PST, Blogger WineGrrl said...

At least you accomplished something....I just goofed off that day! I am an expert at slacking off...

At 8:16 AM PST, Blogger Susan Wike said...

What if you used the basketweave crochet for the top? That would look like the original. Can't wait to see how it all turns out!

At 8:59 AM PST, Blogger DarcyArtsy said...

Amazing to me that women pay $1,600 for a handbag! You have to finish and sell it for a $1000 such a deal!

At 10:26 AM PST, Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone. Ooops, Darcy...The Ferragamo handbag at Nordstrom's lists for $1,650!!! Outrageous. Andre' and Drew...thanks for the vote of confidence!
Susan in Ohio: Excellent idea to use the basket weave for the top of the bag! I think I'll do it!
I've finished knitting one side and just started the other. Then, I'll join the pieces and crochet the top in the round!

At 11:14 AM PST, Blogger MonkeyGurrrrrl said...

I was trying to get into Blogger all afternoon - BLOGGER HATES ME. Anyway, your bag looks FABU already. Makes me want to do one. And I wanted to know if you were planning on going to Canter's - their 75th anniversary, so they had their corn beef sammich + for just $0.75!

At 11:57 AM PST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ellen, Blogger hates me too, so if this works, I'll be surprised!

What a surprise to read that you were at Stitch Cafe on Sat. You should have yelled over at me!
That was a fun Freeform class (Myra Wood teaching) and I get to go to part 2 next Sat.!

I used to live just by Hollywood and Normandie and I know what it's like to be trapped by the Marathon.

And to the point, what a great project you're working on! Thanks for the complete details, I'll keep watching to see the resuls. After you've finished, the bag will definitely be worth $1,650!

Kim (from Playa del Rey)

At 12:24 PM PST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ooops, Forgot to thank you for the tip on the bags from Target. They might look great covered in Freeform!

Kim (from Playa)

At 12:34 PM PST, Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Monkeygrllll....Wow! 75 cents for a corned beef sandwich at Canter's? Incredible, since these wiches usually cost up to $8 each!
Did you try to go to El Coyote last week for their 75th anniversary? Bigger crowd than the LA Marathon! I'll probably skip this event.

At 4:55 PM PST, Blogger Susan Wike said...

Not to burden you with more ideas, but we had a snow day here in Ohio, so I had lots of time to think about your project. I was reading a blog where a crocheter used plastic canvas to reinforce flimsy parts of her purse. Could you cut it to give body to the top part, under the basketweave?
You should sell these babies for, oh say, half of the original $1650? You'll be the toast of the "Swell Set."

At 6:55 AM PST, Blogger mj said...

Yes, the corned beef sandwich at Canters will be 75 cents for their anniversary. It comes with a "taste" of potato salad and one rugulah!

Thanks for the reply. I'll do my best to be there at the Farmer's Market on Thursday. I'm making an attempt at socks right now. I've just made the heel turn and am really encouraged!

At 9:05 AM PST, Blogger DarcyArtsy said...

You were trapped by the marathon and there was no parking for blocks at my place because of Canters 75 cent corned beef. Don't people realise that it was the left overs from St. Patrick's on Friday?! Canters: Hey, it's time to have our anniversary special. Pastrami again? No way, let's unload all the left over corned beef!! El Coyote: Damn, why didn't we plan our anniversary for Ocho De Mayo!!

At 10:59 AM PST, Blogger Ellen Bloom said...

Wow! The response to this post has been amazing. It's either the purse, corned beef or tacos!

Susan in Ohio...yes, I've used plastic canvas alot to reinforce my handbags....excellent idea! Thanks.

Darcela...see what happens when you live in a hip and happening 'hood?


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