Kalahari Tote by Vivian Høxbro

Kalahari Tote

May 2009
Fingering (14 wpi) ?
US 5 - 3.75 mm
1083 yards (990 m)
About 35¼" circumference and 20" high, before felting; about 28¼" circumference and 16" high, after felting
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This pattern is available from interweave.com for $6.50.
Errata available: knittingdaily.com interweave.com

Pattern Description from Interweave Knits, Summer 2009: “Vivian Høxbro’s Kalahari Tote holds market shopping, books, knitting, and more. Knitted in the round with mitered squares, the felted Shetland-style wool is strong enough to carry the heaviest loads.”

Finished Size: About 35¼“ circumference and 20” high, before felting; about 28¼” circumference and 16” high, after felting.

Yarn: Harrisville Designs New England Knitters Shetland (100% wool; 197 yd 180 m/50 g): #50 black, #40 topaz, and #39 russet, 1 skein each; #65 poppy, #22 plum, #66 melon, #80 foliage, and #81 mustard, about ½ skein each.

Needles: Size 5 (3.75 mm): short straight needles or 2 double-pointed needles (dpn), and 24” circular (cir). Adjust needle size if necessary to obtain the correct gauge.

Notions: Marker (m); stitch holders or coil-less safety pins; tapestry needle; ½ yd fabric for lining; 80” of black, plaited, 1 cm round leather cord for handles; four 2” squares of strong fabric; sewing machine; sewing needle and matching thread.

Gauge: Each square measures 3 1/8” × 3 1/8” before felting and 2½“ × 2½” after felting.


  • The gray area of the chart shows the sixteen squares at the center bottom of the bag. Work squares in charted numerical order. Numbers/letters are oriented in the same direction as they should be knitted. The letter indicates the colors of the square (see Stitch Guide).
  • The knitted method is always used for casting on, and stitches are always picked up with right side facing. The first stitch of Row 1 after a knitted cast-on is always knitted; for the rest of the square, it is slipped knitwise.