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Dinner Party Backstage Bag Pattern

Difficulty: Easy

The theme of the dinner party was amateur theater, opening night. A local art deco theater with a deep stage and velvet curtains was rented out for the event. A set from a performance of M. Butterfly was half-set-up. There were old couches, a pink velvet chaise right out of an I Carte painting, an ensemble of small tables for the setting down of drinks. The code of dress was creative black tie: "bring something you can change into, or out of" the invitation had said.

The appetizers were passed by slender waiters with their hair slick as ice, starched white collars, black tails. The men wore black tuxes or blue jeans with tails. There was even a man with a ten-gallon hat and chaps talking to a woman in a gown that she held up to walk, revealing cowboy boots and patterned stockings held up over her knees with butter-yellow creased ribbons. Other ladies wore an array of beautiful cocktail dresses punctuated by the unexpected: a pair of decorated blue flared jeans under a flapper-style sheeth, a feather boa with men's style three piece suit, a motorcycle jacket and beaded tulle gown . . . Everywhere you looked it was a sensation for the eyes.

While some twosomes and threesomes were seated here and there on the many couches, engrossed in conversations, nearly everyone else stood, tiny plates in one hand, goblets in the other. The cream velvet settee by the stairs offstage was piled high with coats of all sorts, the ladies purses were arranged in a spectacular tumble on a tufted linen couch by the ladder to the catwalk.

The Dinner Party Back Stage bag was inspired by that spectacular chaos of purses on that linen couch: there are three sizes, from a small-just-what-you-need handbag to a large, I-brought-more-than-one-outfit overnight bag.

Unadorned, these bags have the casual elegance of a saddle-bag and the practicality of the most austere tote. Decorated with cabochon rivets, these bags will catch the eye of everyone at the dinner party, rodeo, and everyone you meet on the way.

Look at Additional Details below for information about dimensions, gauge, materials, and hardware kits.


Delivery Method:
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  • Shepherd's Wool yarn in select colors

    Shepherds Wool Worsted



    I am delighted to let you know that Stonehedge Fiber Mill will continue to sell their gorgeous 100% USA-Made Merino to Noni! We began our businesses at almost the same time and became connected way back in 2008. Nonibags are best made with this yarn. I am excited about the ways that Stonehedge Fiber Mill is evolving and moving toward hand-dyeing. It's so exciting! More to come as they introduce new future colors and products!

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  • Anouk and Just the Change with Cabochon Rivets

    Cabochon Rivets 20 pack


    Metal Finishes:

    Many of the newest designer handbags are decorated with cabochon rivets, and the newest releases almost always sport them. Now, the home-knitter and crafter can use these same top-quality rivets to make similar cutting edge designs on the flaps and bodies of felted, fabric, or leather bags. 

    Now available in Gunmetal, and Antique Brass so you can match your bag hardware with each, our package of 20 9mm Cabochon rivets add interest to felted and finished bags, knitted and ready-to-wear garments, coats, boots, sandal straps . . . Both rivet head and shank have smooth caps so they are pretty on front and back.

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Finished Dimensions

Small Bag

6" (15cm) square bottom
6" (15cm) wide opening
8" (20cm) tall from bottom to handle

Medium Bag

10" (25cm) square bottom
10" (25cm) wide opening
12" (30cm) tall from bottom to handle

Large Bag

14" (35cm) square bottom
14" (35cm) opening
16" (40cm) tall from bottom to handle

Pattern Difficulty

Intrepid Easy: Requires knowledge of knitting, purling, picking up stitches within the knitted fabric, decreasing, knitting in the round, hand-sewing and riveting are required for the finishing process.


12 stitches and 16 rounds = 4" (10cm) in St st with a double-strand of worsted weight yarn.


A Dinner Party Backstage Hardware Kit is Available

1 Noni 30" (76cm) custom YKK zipper with 2 bottom stops (we like picking unexpected colors for a fun surprise when you peel back that flap)
1 20-pack Cabochon rivets in shiny nickel (also available in antique brass and gunmetal)
1 Noni Amazing Magnetic Snap
1 JUL Lisbon 26" (65cm) handle
1 Noni Design label

NOTE: The hardware and handle kit does not include the pattern or yarn. Please purchase those items separately so as to choose your preferred style and color. Also note that additional Cabochon rivets were used for the smallest and largest bags shown on the cover.

Yarn Requirements

Small Bag: 650 yds (595m)
Medium Bag: 1320 yds (1210m)
Large Bag: 2100 yds (1919m)

Needles and Other Materials

Size 11 (8mm) 24" (60cm) circular needle for small and medium sized bags. Longer circular for largest bag may be desired.
4 stitch markers, 1 of a different color
Tapestry needle
Sewing needle
Nylon beading thread
Sewing pins
Quick, clear-drying glue for attaching Cabochon rivets

Pictured Samples

Pictured samples were made in Stonehedge Fiber Mill Shepherd's Wool. The pictured purses were made in the following colors: The small bag is made in black, the medium bag is made in Granite, and the large bag is made in Pewter. The large and small bags contain extra cabochon rivets.

No errors have been reported for this pattern.