“In both the Stepping Stone Throw and the Scrap Tote, Erika reached into the way-back of our beloved and storied craft. She fished out an old-school technique called entrelac, shook it off, and made it fresh and new.”
—Kay in her article Squares on Point
My own experiences with entrelac are indeed from long ago. Somewhere in the world there may still be a two-toned turquoise, boxy vest, knit with an acrylic that will last forever, that was both somewhat amazing and horrible. And oh, the classic Lady Eleanor, a beloved entrelac stole that lives on in nearly 3000 project pages on Ravelry.com.
The Scrap Tote is a great small project to refresh your memory of entrelac. It’s also a ticket to fun improv projects.
Let’s Go Crazy
Inspired by Erika’s sense of adventure, I saw the Scrap Tote’s leaning, interlocking rectangles as blank canvases, ready for everything! Decorative knitted stitches, intarsia, duplicate stitch or … embroidered designs.
Hiding in plain Sight: Daisy, Heart, Feather, Fly, Chain, and Cross Stitches on my Scrap Tote
I have been in love with crazy quilts forever—I’m currently inspired by this quilt in the background, from the collection of my friend GK. A few of the stitches in my friend’s quilt just had to become finishing details for my Scrap Tote.
I referred to my beloved copy of Elegant Stitches by Judith Baker Montano, for embroidery techniques (and for life knowledge t00). My fingers went a little wild.
Although a crazy quilt usually has embroidered details covering the patchwork seams, I applied my embellishments where the Field Guide sample places a single row of duplicate stitch.
I used the same colors of Atlas as for the Field Guide sample: Barn Red, Pear, Truffle, Cork, Seaglass, and Cedar
The Lining: Inner Beauty (and a pocket)
The canvas bag I chose to line my Scrap Tote was a perfect fit. I cut off the handles (saving them for a sewing project) and used an extra pocket from a Sonya Philip demo. At last year’s MDK Knitting Getaway at Shakerag Workshops, Sonya showed us how to make matching patch pockets. I stitched the pocket to the inside of my Tote liner, turned the top hem once to the inside to slightly shorten and stabilize the fabric bag, and I’ll whip stitch the lining to the bag’s inside top edge..
Why Not? A Scrap Pouch!
Following the Scrap Tote pattern, but using half the number of stitches per rectangle, I’m also whipping up a zippered Scrap Pouch. You’ll notice I arranged the colors so that the fabric looks like woven strips. I picked up stitches and knit a few rows at the sides and top of the piece, for joining the pieces and sewing in the lining and zipper.
Atlas in Truffle, Pear, Cork, Cedar, and Seaglass