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Stockinette Swatch Bag


Stockinette Swatch Bag

The front of the Stockinette Swatch Bag.

(c) Sarah E. White, licensed to About.com, Inc.

Swatch Recycling:

If you make gauge swatches for your projects and keep them, before too long you're likely to have a stack of Stockinette Stitch swatches you aren't sure what to do with. Combine several (I used eight) into this cool Stockinette Stitch bag -- it requires just a little bit of extra knitting and can be super cute and colorful depending on the swatches you use.

My version is even more eco-friendly in that the yarns used all contain either organic or recycled content, use alternative fibers like corn or are made with earth-friendlier processes. See the end of the article for the yarns I used.


  • About eight Stockinette Stitch swatches made from various fibers and colors
  • one skein Kollage Cornucopia, or 100 yards of a medium weight yarn of your choice, plus 50 yards in a different yarn or color for the bottom of the bag (optional)
  • one pair size 7 US knitting needles
  • light-colored, medium weight yarn for sewing and a yarn needle, or a sewing machine with light-colored cotton yarn


5 stitches and 9 rows per inch in Garter Stitch for strap. Gauge is not critical, and is likely to vary on your Stockinette swatches.


Varies. Mine is about 8 inches tall, 9 inches wide and 2.5 inches deep after sewing.


  1. Gather your swatches together. Hopefully you can combine them to make two panels of about the same size, unraveling a bit if necessary. Begin by stitching your front and back panels together, either by hand or using a sewing machine.
  2. Next, knit your strap. Cast on 16 stitches in your main yarn and knit until you run out, or have knit about 36 inches or the length of your choice (this piece is for both the strap and the side gussets, so bear that in mind.
  3. Change to a different yarn if desired and knit a piece the same length as the length of your panels. Bind off and sew the cast on edge to the bound off edge.

Finishing the Bag:

The sewing machine is the easiest and fastest way to put the bag together, but you can always sew by hand, with yarn or sewing thread, in the same manner.

  1. Begin by pinning one panel to the part of the strap that is meant to be the bottom of the bag, right sides together. Sew the seam.
  2. Repeat with the other side.
  3. Sew the panels to the side gusset in the same manner, right sides together, making the bag whole.
  4. Trim all thread ends.

Want a more stable bag? Try cutting pieces of plastic canvas to the dimensions of your bag and sticking them inside for extra sturdiness. You can also add a closure of your choice.

Yarns I Used:

Of course the point of a project such as this is to use what you have on hand, but in case you are interested in the yarns used in this project, they were:

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