Sparkling Tutorial #3: Sylvia’s Fairy Poke

Continuing with the companion project series to the Sparkle Stories audio book, Martin & Sylvia’s Knitting from the Beginning, which you can find on the Sparkle Single Stories page, this time we’ll make a wee satchel out of a small rectangle of knitting. This is a sweet project to make with a first piece of knitwork.


In the 3rd story, “The Fairy Poke,” Sylvia overcomes her nervousness around knitting.  She thinks that it might be too hard to learn to knit, until Miss Melinda chooses the perfect project for her – a fairy poke.  These little satchels are the best way to carry something close to Sylvia’s heart – fairy gifts!

Again, I am not going to attempt to build a better mousetrap by providing basic knit instructions. There are amazingly wonderful visual tutorials on the web to go along with the verbal instructions in the Knitting from the Beginning stories!

For this project, I used size US11 needles and a chunky yarn. Use a bulky weight commercial yarn or handspun. Both the examples in the photos are made from scraps of handspun yarn. You won’t need very much yardage to make this little bag!

Cast on 9 stitches (that’s right, just 9 stitches!) and knit until you have about 10 inches of length. As you can see below, I ended up with about a 4-inch width and 10-inch length. Since this isn’t a garment, don’t worry about getting exact measurements.


Btw, it’s not good practice to let kittens into your lightbox. Dirty feets. Beezer can’t resist yarn, though. Typical.

So, the fun part. Once you have your rectangle, it’s time to sew! Here is another eyeballing effort. Fold over your rectangle until it looks the way you want it. Then, sew up the side seams with a mattress stitch or whip stitch (these are also techniques you can easily find great tutorials on). Young ones will find the whip stitch easiest for seaming. If you leave yourself a nice, long tail after binding off, you can use that tail to sew up the seams. I just bring it through the bottom of the bag so I don’t have to attach a new piece of yarn to seam the other side.


Once you’re all seamed up, simply attach a button to the front of the “pocket.” Because the stitches are large on size US11 needles, you should be able to shove buttons up to 3/4″ wide through the knitted fabric of the front flap. No buttonhole required!

The last step is to finger-crochet or crochet a chain to use as a strap for your Fairy Poke. Again, this measurement is up to you. In the story, the Poke is worn around the neck, as are my examples. You could make the strap longer to wear as a tiny purse, or satchel to wear against the body down near the hip. My son prefers the latter.


Enjoy, and don’t be shy about sharing your projects!

Next up: Martin’s Acorn Hat. This will be a comprehensive knitting pattern for purchase. Stay tuned for the preview and pattern link tomorrow!


2 thoughts on “Sparkling Tutorial #3: Sylvia’s Fairy Poke

  1. Thank you for the sweet Martin & Sylvia projects! We are attempting our first year of homeschooling with actual lessons… along with the M & S audio book, your projects will be a perfect start to the knitting in our “curriculum.” I also adore your blog (I peeked around after looking at the tutorials) and will keep reading! I (re-)started blogging myself since moving away from family this summer and I love your Project 52… mind if I “borrow” that idea with a link to your blog as thanks?

  2. I just wanted to tell you how grateful I was that you posted this Fairy Poke project. My son and I have been listening to Martin and Sylvia and he told me he wanted to make a fairy poke. I had no idea where to begin, so I googled “fairy poke” on the off chance that someone in the world would tell me how to make one. And there you were! Thank you! And I’m so glad to know you’ll be posting more projects on the Sparkle Stories blog. Are you as excited about the advent stories are we are? Best wishes & thanks again. Julie

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