Shades of Color Tote Bag


Materials
:
Worsted weight felting yarn 6 colors; 2 balls of main color, 1 ball of all other colors –- I used Cascade 220 in the following colors:  main color is black; Color #’s 9345, 7807, 2450, 7806, and 9559.
Size 15 circular needle – 29”
Size 11 double-pointed needles
Note:  Two strands of yarn are used throughout this pattern.

Instructions:
Using 2 strands of main color, cast on 50 stitches.  Knit every row for 24 rows.
Next row:  knit across 50 stitches, pick up 15 stitches on short side of bag, pick up 50 stitches along cast-on edge, pick up 15 stitches on short side — total of 130 stitches.  Join, placing marker to indicate start of round.  Knit 3 rounds.
Next Round:  *Insert left needle into purl bump at back of stitch 3 rows below next stitch, knit next stitch on needle together with picked-up stitch  *continue to end of round. This will create a decorative ridge which helps give structure to the bottom of the bag.

Knit 3 additional rounds using main color.  Break one strand of main color and knit the following:

Using 1 strand each of main color and color A, knit 4 rounds.  Break main color.
Using 2 strands of color A, knit 8 rounds.  Break one strand of color A.
Using 1 strand each of color A and color B, knit 6 rounds.  Break color A.
Using 2 strands of color B, knit 8 rounds.  Break one strand of color B.
Using 1 strand each of color B and C, knit 6 rounds.  Break color B.
Using 2 strands of color C, knit 8 rounds.  Break one strand of color C.
Using 1 strand each of color C and D, knit 6 rounds.  Break color C.
Using 2 strands of color D, knit 8 rounds.  Break one strand of color D.
Using 1 strand each of color D and E, knit 6 rounds.  Break color D.
Using color E, knit 1 round as follows:  *Knit 8, Knit 2 tog; *repeat across round.
Purl 1 row.
Using main color, knit 1 row, purl 1 row.
With color E, knit 1 row and cast off purlwise.

POCKETS:  Knit 2 pockets by casting on 16 stitches and work stockinette stitch, making one pocket 7.5” tall and the other 9”.  Then switch to garter stitch for 3 ridges (including the purlwise cast off).

FLAP: Pick up 14 sts along the bottom garter ridge centered along one long side of tote bag.  Knit 1 row, purl 1 row for 12 rows.  On the next row, center a 4 stitch buttonhole, purl 1 row.  On the next and following rows, decrease on both sides of the fabric and continue in this fashion until 6 stitches remain.  Cast off remaining stitches.

HANDLES:  Make 2 5-stitch i-cords for approximately 41 inches.  Once finished, pull them through the fabric along garter stitch edge of totebag.  Knot ends of handle on outside of the bag.

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