The second knitted bag for my shop is finished. A relatively painless job I am pleased to say and made even easier by the encouraging comments I received both online and at home. Thanks!
Things I learned the hard way after knitting the first bag:
1. A ball of wool might say '8 ply' but there's a lot of variation within that. Do not ever knit an intarsia motif (e.g. the house above) in a yarn that knits even slightly thicker than the background yarn. Two different colours of the same yarn is the safest bet.
2. Blocking can be your best friend after knitting two different pieces that are to be joined together, as above. (Blocking: steam ironing a finished piece of knitting, usually with a cloth or thin towel in between. )
The next bag is in the planning. I like to complete the Fair Isle side first, which I generally design on the computer. Coming up with ideas will be a cinch with this incredible Latvian mitten-o-rama link from the ever cool Kindra is here. And for the other side, my old favourite Helmuth Bossert's Folk Art of Europe might be the go.
ATTENTION FELLOW KNITTERS! I have been informed by the awesome Pencil and Pipette that Save the Children is seeking 20cm knitted squares to sew into lovely blankets to send to regions of Asia which have been hit by an unusually cold winter. Click here for more details. Shouldn't take long at all in front of your favourite TV show.