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Anatomy of a Knitting Bag

Don’t you love it when a plan comes together?  Me too and though some haven’t worked out lately, this one did.  I ordered a recycled leather bag/ knitting bag from the Ruta Design shop and it was even better than it’s Etsy description.

I sometimes have misgivings about ordering from an online shop, especially one I’ve never heard of before.  It’s bad enough when I buy from a walk in store, where I can actually see the item before buying, yet it still falls apart after a few wearings; but buying from an unknown individual across the world is even more of a gamble.  

But after looking all over the web for interesting knitting bags or could-be knitting bags, this was the only one I really wanted.  It’s made from a quilted, leather jacket and was a reasonable price (even after shipping from Lithuania?!), especially when you consider how expensive a good knitting bag can be.

When it came it was even nicer than I’d hoped.  The quality of the quilted leather, stitching, lining, suede, inner and outer pockets, and swivel clasps, and removable strap… all so nice.

I love how the suede underside of the pockets and flaps is exposed like piping.  Since it’s a larger bag, I’m thankful the straps and seams are durable enough for me to load it down if I have to.  After seeing the craftsmanship she put into this bag, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy another one someday.  Though it seems that Ruta mostly sells smaller messenger bags, I’ve spotted a few more of her upcycled leather bags that I really love like this or this.

Sarah at KnitYorkCity’s post about pouches and organization got me thinking yesterday about how I’m going to break this bag in over the summer.  Whatever the occasion,  yarn and needles will pretty much always be a fixture.  But I like that the outer pockets are substantial enough to hold wallet, keys, and phone, since they usually get lost in my bags.  They’ll also be separate from my yarn. I hate nothing more than yarn getting tangled in keys or stuck to the velcro of my wallet.  There’s still plenty of room for my ipad, cable needles, stitch markers, and even a sweater-in-progress.

Speaking of bags, I can even fit my camera and an extra lens inside via the Ona bag.  The Ona is my favorite camera accessory.  It’s a bag insert that can fit in any messenger bag or purse and transform it into a padded camera bag with dividers.  I use it in my knitting bag, bike pannier, backpack, or to protect my camera in my luggage.   The Ona bag obviously is a cat and dog hair magnet, too.

So I guess I’m ready to take it out on a big Knit in Public Day this Saturday.  Knit in Public here means I knit in public all by myself, if not sit all by myself.  I can’t force my daughter to knit with me because she’ll be at camp and that would be too similar to another favorite holiday:  Embarrass Your Kids in Public Day.  Sigh… I lack craft community.

Maybe I could go to a coffee shop and knit while chatting with my Ravelry KAL groups.  I do have lots of online community.  There’s the Pour Moi KAL that is ending as the Nachtfalter KAL is starting up.  I plan to knit the Riverine Pullover for the Pom Pom Quarterly Summer KAL and I can always count on The Summer Sweater KAL when everything else is winding down.   But I’ve been thinking that it may be time for me to start a knitting group.  My hesitation is that I’d have to teach people to knit and make time to show up regularly to get it going.  I don’t know how good I’d be at either of those things right now.  If it took off, though, it would be very rewarding and worth the awkwardness.

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  1. The bag is gorgeous! Most of my purses are large, since I carry a myriad of things, including whatever project I'm working on. To protect my projects from all the hazards in my purse, I've been using these oversized ziplock bags I use for organizing my stash. They work pretty well until the project gets too large.
    I too lack a crafting community, which is why finding a virtual one on Ravelry has been so awesome. For a while I was holding monthly craft nights (so as to not force knitting specifically on others) at my house. We had a lot of fun but most people seemed more interested in food and drinks than crafting *sigh*. I have fantasies of having a weekly knitting group, but until that happens virtual KALs will have do.

  2. It is different, the kind of community knitting inspires. It's a very meditative craft and sparks good conversation- unless it's a really complex project that frustrates and should probably be left at home. Good for you for trying to be proactive and create a group. I don't know that I have that kind of organizational, motivational skill right now beyond what I do for my family. But I'm going to consider what you've said and maybe I could do a once a month thing.

  3. I agree, Stephanie! I love that it was repurposed from a jacket, too. I'm trying to buy handmade from independent designers, dyers, craftsmen, etc when I can. Hence the post I just did on your lovely jewelry. 🙂

  4. What a great bag! It is so lovely! I just bought a new Walmart one. It'll probably fall apart in a year like my last Walmart knitting bag/purse. I might have to upgrade to something like this. The quilted leather is fabulous! I love that Ona bag, too! I'd love to be able to carry my camera around like that.

  5. I usually use a Target tote or something to carry my stuff, too. I am all about saving money. But I have been taking a break from buying clothing and such for myself in order to save for handmade items from crafters I admire when I can, or sometimes I make my own (of some things). So I found this bag at a time when I could actually get it. I cant go the ethically sourced, organic, free trade, small business, indie route all the time, but it's nice when I can.
    I have found that taking the padded dividers out of old camera bags and wrapping them around my camera inside any smaller purse has works fine too.

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