Thursday, May 13, 2010

swap: it's all in the bag

At the beginning of April, I signed up for my first swap with the Malabrigo Swap Group on Ravelry. This swap is by far the most in-depth swap I have participated in yet. The theme for this round is It's All in the Bag--a project bag theme, where everything sent to the spoiler must fit inside a knitter's project bag. The only other rule is that only one skein of yarn can be sent. We had up to six weeks of planning and making and stalking our secret partners. My secret swap partner particularly likes cool colors, including blues and purples. She also likes pinups and cutesy animals. I sent her package out on May 10th.

And after two days of suspense, she has finally received my very special package. The project bag is from Funtific on Etsy. This cotton bag, which has a lovely girly print, is about 9" x 10" and has a drawstring closure and a nice long handle for easy carrying:

I chose this particular seller and her bag design because she makes the most fantastic pockets on the inside. This bag has two large pockets and four small pockets, as the photo shows:

Even though the bag is so tiny, I sure did surprisingly fit a lot of loot inside! Here's what I included in the package:

Along with the project bag, I started with the necessity: a skein of Malabrigo Worsted in Oceanos. I also included two sets of bamboo double pointed needles in US 9 and US 5, a little red tape measure, samples of SOAK Wool Wash in three scents--citris, flora and aquae, and a box of beautiful art deco notecards from Erte. And what pinup-loving knitter would not want a copy of the fun and sexy book Naughty Needles by Nikol Lohr? A copy came into work, so I snatched that up right away, too!

Those items were what I considered the basics of the project bag. Once I fulfilled those items, I scoured my partner's Etsy favorites for ideas of more creative, personal things she may like. I purchased a nifty little pinup girl pill box from sweetheartsinner and filled it with large and extra large stitch markers. The pillbox reads "I get totally drunk. What's your hobby?":

My partner also wanted a shawl pin. I was running out of budget at this point, so I decided to make a couple of stick pins with beading supplies I already had on hand. I know they are not all that fancy and maybe not quite what she wanted, but they are cute and I hope she will get plenty of use out of them anyway. The pin on the left is made with cloisonne beads and gold accents and the pin on the right is made with glass beads and silver accents:

And what knitting bag is complete without a notions bag? Like I said, I was running out of budget, so I turned to my craft corner for yet another handmade project. I have been drooling over the yarn bags and notions pouches from the wonderfully creative PopsieDaisy’s for ages now, and I was stoked when my partner said she liked her stuff too! But, by the time I had found that out, I had already used up most of my budget. Soooo, I made a lovely little owl notions pouch of my own design (view my pouch tutorial for more details):

I had wanted to include a snack for her to enjoy, but to be honest, there just was not nearly enough room, so I popped in three Stash Black and Green Earl Gray tea bags!

I really hope my secret spoilee enjoyed this swap as much as I did, and I hope she loves everything that I picked out for her! I really did have a blast stalking her. I tried to put together things she might enjoy and at the same time picking things I would love to receive, too--does that make sense? And the best (or worst!) part was the suspense from when I shipped the package until when she received it--that was unbelievable torture! Hopefully I will have the opportunity to do another Malabrigo swap again!

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