On-the-Go Knit Bag


Perfect for toting all of your daily essentials, the On-the-Go Knit Bag is an active knitter's best friend. This tote-style knit bag pattern features a comfortable shoulder strap, front pocket for smaller items, and plenty of space in the main compartment for groceries, books, and other items. If you've ever wanted to learn how to knit a bag, now is the time to start with one of our favorite easy knitting patterns that you are going to love.


Knitting Needle Size10 or 6 mm, 7 or 4.5 mm

Yarn Weight(4) Medium Weight/Worsted Weight and Aran (16-20 stitches to 4 inches)

Gauge20 sts and 26 rows = 4" [10 cm] in stocking st with smaller needles.

Materials List

  • Lily Sugar 'n Cream (70 g/2.5 oz;109 m/120 yds); Main Color (MC) Mod Green (01223) - 4 balls
  • Sizes 4.5 mm (U.S. 7) and 6 mm (U.S. 10) knitting needles or size needed to obtain gauge
  • 3¼ yds [3 m] of contrast color webbing or ribbon for straps


Front and Back (make 2 alike)

With smaller needles, cast on 50 sts.
Knit 12 rows (garter st), noting first row is WS.
Change to larger needles.
1st row: (WS). K2. *yo. K2tog. Rep from * to last 2 sts. K2.
2nd row: Knit.
Rep last 2 rows until work from beg measures 11½" [29 cm], ending with a 1st row.
Next 2 rows: Knit.
Cast off knitwise (WS).

Side Panel (make 1)

With smaller needles, cast on 27 sts.
Knit 12 rows (garter st), noting first row is WS.
1st row: (WS). Knit.
2nd row: Purl.
Rep last 2 rows until work from beg measures 34" [86.5 cm], ending with a 1st row.
Knit 12 rows (garter st).
Cast off knitwise (WS).

Pocket (make 2)

With smaller needles, cast on 24 sts.
Knit 12 rows (garter st), noting first row is WS.
Change to larger needles.
1st row: (WS). K2. *yo. K2tog. Rep from * to last 2 sts. K2.
2nd row: Knit.
Rep last 2 rows until work from beg measures 6" [15 cm], ending with a 2nd row.
Next 2 rows: Knit.
Cast off knitwise (WS).


With WS tog, stitch Side Panel to front along sides and bottom. Rep for opposite side. Sew WS of Pockets to RS of either side of Side Panel, matching bottom of Pocket to bottom corners of Bag. Cut webbing or ribbon for strap in half. Machine stitch or hand sew to bag along sides and bottom as shown. Rep for opposite side.

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I see most of the commenters are having an issue with this pattern with either the wording or the stitch counts being off. Unfortunately since the pattern is listed in full on this page, I am not able to go to the blog page and look for more info or maybe an edit that has been made to correct the problem / problems.

Looking at all the comments and the pattern, it probably needs a rewrite. Shame since it really is a nice looking bag. I might give it a try anyway and try to piece it together.

very strange pattern! Unable to piece it together, I think I will rip it out and try something else.

How wide should the webbing be?

I love this bag so much! I think I like that the straps aren't knit, so it adds a fun element to it and makes it a bit more sturdy.

I am not sure where some are getting stitches on one side and three onthe other If the row is done correctly at the beginning the first stitches would be k k yo and the last would be yo k k It does show the side panel in the front and would make more sense for that to be renamed front back panel and the front and back be the side panels And I am pretty sure the reason the th row starts as a knit row is because the first were garter stitch so they were all knit rows and row starts the stockinette stitch pattern which would start with a knit row There would be no real reason it would have to be purled I think this pattern would benefit from having more views of the bag which would maybe make it easier on some knitters to see theRead More pattern

Actually, the side panel should really be named center strip or panel because I think that would possibly clear up some of the assembly issues.

Yes, I agree. Or you could switch the names around, rename "front and back" as "side panels" and "side panels" as "front and back," since that is the way the person is carrying the bag in the photo. As it is pictured you sort of have to turn it around in your mind to understand how to put it together.

I agree, this is a great idea to rename the sections - that makes much more sense. This is a great pattern once you get the hang of it.

The only way you can end with YO K,K, is to cast on 51 stitches to begin with.

I actually wrote the end wrong. It is a k2tog, then k,k. But, no, the row could still start with 50 with yo,k,k, but without the decrease it would add an extra stitch and make the next row 51, and it would continue to add an extra stitch each row.

I believe there are errors in the pattern. Front/Back are slanted due to the fact that there are 3 knit stitches on one side and 2 on the other. The photo shows the bag with the side panel as the front. The side panel 1st row is WS knit 12 rows. Row 13 WS row should begin with a Purl row. Photo is not very good for being able to make the bag by site. This is not EASY

I like how floppy and casual this bag looks. Very "everyday." I'll have to try it.

Looking at the pattern instructions, I gather that there is only one yarn used - the direction lists brand then colour and therein lies the confusion. I agree with rsdb that this bag looks great and roomy, with pockets to hold little things, while the shoulder straps give it style - another have to do it project, just hope it does turn out to hang gracefully as in the photo accompanying it says easy and I have been knitting for years, so..... wish me luck

I do not understand how you use two different yarns for this project. What did I miss?

You don't, there is only 1 yarn used in the project.

Although I have always wanted to knit a bag, I have not done so because the patterns seem so complicated and long. I like how this bag not only looks great but is roomy and has two pockets to hold little things as well! And the shoulder straps look very stylish, too. Has anyone made this bag successfully?

yes, I knitted it and had no problems. It turned out really cute.

Useful pattern . Easy

I have been able to stitch...just knit and started stitching...the 12 rows of garter stitch are at the open...the other three sides of the side panel is stitched along the centre panel...you get it as you keep stitching...however, it does not look as graceful as the pic...once done

I found I am having similar issues as Smile Today and shannonriley09. The picture doesn't seem to look like the way the finishing instructions say it should unless I'm missing something. Also, 50 stitches for the front and back and 27 for the side panel? 11in for the front and back and 34in for the side panel? I honestly can't quite grasp how this is put together. Can you maybe clarify? This bag is so cute and I really want to finish it soon. Thanks! )

It's not that I don' lie the comment by snowflake girl, it's that her commentas been cut off! Why did you change the format for comment boxes, they're often truncated and hard to read, so why did allfreeknitting change what was working fine before?

Hey there, Judith! Our new comment system shouldn't cut off anyone's comments, especially those that are less than 110 characters long. You can see through your comment, which is much longer, that it was not cut off. If snowflakegirl's comment was cut off, the most likely situation is that she accidentally hit "enter" and submitted her comment before she was done typing it. I hope that helps! Happy knitting!

Made this bag, but it is more like a big, flat circle. I was thinking of gathering the sides to make it more

No, but read some of reviews.....any corrections??????

Has anyone finished this. I really cannot tell how this goes together. I am not sure I will finish this bag.

Same here. Wish someone could help out on this.

How in the world is 27 sts for the side panel going to match up the 50 stitches for the fronts& back panels...? I'm thinking I'll rip it up and start over the side panel with 50 stitches. Anyone have suggestions???

The side panel is supposed to be narrower than the front and back and long enough to fit the length and sides of the bag. The 27 stitches is the width-you knit the length and fit it up the middle of the panels to construct the bag. hope this helps.

I'm finding the same thing happening, very disappointing...the picture looks so cute. I've got a lot of time in this & of course money on yarn & straps.

Assembly instructions are very poor....

Agreed !

To make pockets, either cast on 26 stitches or knit two together at end of row.

I haven't finished this yet, but it isn't coming out straight, it's pulling to the side. While I'm sure I can block it straight, I'm concerned it will continue to pull. Has anyone tried this yet? Any advice?

I'm having the same issue



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