Knitting, Knitting Accessories

Perfect Imperfections

I’ve been making these soft leather knitting bags for a couple of months now, they’re a job that I really enjoy doing… Each one has it’s own unique character and markings. The leather I use is this beautiful buttery soft conker colour that glows in the evening sun… Perfect for autumn!

Each leather hide is different, it’s part of the joy and the frustration of working with this medium. I’ve had hides that have needed to be returned as they really just aren’t usable and likewise I’ve had hides that are just too beautiful and special that I want to keep hold of them!

Today was a day of getting orders completed for sending… It was quite a sad day actually, I absolutely love making these bags but in the build up to Christmas I’m also having to slow down and not do so much as my pregnancy is progressing. This is the last batch of these bags that I plan to make until I come back to work next September. I love my work and I’m not looking forward to finally packing everything down into boxes ready for babies arrival (don’t get me wrong I’m excited about the next step with bump but my work is my headspace and my peace… I love to create).

I realised this morning as I was planning and pattern cutting the leather that I didn’t yet have a bag for myself. I’d always intended on making myself one but somehow never quite got round to it.

When cutting leather I like to lay the hide out and plan where to cut pieces, choosing the strongest, cleanest and most durable leather to fulfil my orders. But today that left me with this piece… a large enough piece to make a bag but with a hole in (either from the skinning or tanning progress). Not wanting to waste that amount of leather I decided to make a feature out of it. This bag is about 3” larger than any knitting bag I’ve made before and as it’s for me I added a stitch marker holder on the outside and an internal patch and flap pocket (two pockets only one stitch line brilliant!… See pic above for outside back view and below for internal view).

The bag is made using leather closer to what would be the cows belly and so it’s softer than I would use for a customers bag but fine for me. There is nothing whatsoever wrong with the leather taken from that area, it’s just more fibrous and prone to stretching.

So what of the little hole? Well I patched it with a beautiful rustic red colour and then hand stitched round the outside of the hole using my favourite stitch, one that I used to use to decorate the backs of hand stitched leather shoes and boots. Part of me wishes that there had been a couple more natural holes to decorate in this manor and I just love the stitching!

Such a small and seemingly simple ‘flaw’ but one that I have completely fallen in love with.

So a special bag calls for special contents, I’m keeping my Riverknits custom dye ‘Gringer Nut’ in there ready to become my Whitehorse jumper.

Hope you’re all having a fab knitty weekend and enjoyed seeing a little into the process of how things are made and developed.

Nu xx

Knitting, WIP Wednesday

Pebbles & Leather

I am really fond of this pattern, it started about 6 years ago and is yet another one of those patterns that I never had the chance to write down. I love the bobble pebble texture of these mittens and how they fit, so this is my motivation to get them finished and the pattern written up at long last… Ready in time for winter hopefully! The pattern will be available in fingerless and as a full mitten (when I get round to writing it up).

The yarn is integral to these mittens, they’re fabulous mini skeins from Riverknits. You can spend hours playing with different colour combinations (and I have!)… I love these tones and shades and how they work together. They’re really special.

Knitting, Knitting Accessories

Leather Knitting Bags

So what’s so special about leather? Is it the smell, the texture, the way that it ages and softens so beautifully…? Or is it all of those qualities that make it a truly unique material to use and work with?

Leather has always been special to me. Good quality leather glows from within and ages so beautifully.

The Photograph below was a recent commission showing the incredible natural scaring that can appear in leather.

So when I was recently asked to make a leather project bag for a friends birthday I jumped at the chance. I made her a two skein project bag with her company logo embossed in gold on the front. It was a really special project for me and one that I really enjoyed making. After seeing the project bag again after a a few months use I was amazed at how beautifully the leather has softened. So there was only one thing for it… I made up more and set up a little Etsy shop so that other could enjoy these too.

If you’re looking for something a little bit different to the normal project bag then pop on over to our Etsy shop and have a look, I have three different sizes available to pre order a the moment and if you would like something specific then please get in touch and I can make you something to fill your specifications.

Happy knitting

Nu x