There it is! All finished except for some neatening that this perfectionist must do. I don't like the way the i-cord handles look like on the inside. They are all puffy and pulled in where the sts are. So I will get some wide grosgrain ribbon and sew it on over the handles on the inside to neaten it up. My grandmother taught me that the inside of the work should be as neat as the outside and I still tend to abide by that teaching.
The garter st bottom pieces felted much better than other garter st that I've felted. You can't see the sts at all in this bag. But the i-cord handles did not felt as much. You can see sts there.
As for the i-cord, I think I like it much better when I'm done. It is not fun to knit for me. I like the way it looks on the bag but I really dislike knitting it. However, I don't think I'm a big fan of the braided i-cord handles. I love the way the garter st handles on my first bag feel. They are cushion-y and comfortable. At first glance, these don't feel as comfortable but time will tell. They aren't uncomfortable.
With no planning at all, this bag is going to be the correct size for toting lunch to work. If I decide to use that, I'll have to make a removable liner or tie up my lunch in a furoshiki, which would also serve as a napkin. Otherwise, leaky bits will end up staining the bag.
On a completely different note, I am trying Marmite. I've always been intrigued by it and have wanted to try it. A discussion on Ravelry as to whether Marmite was preferred over Vegemite pushed me over the top and I bought some yesterday. I've eaten it twice. I spread a thin layer on WASA Light Rye Crispbread, topped it with a wedge of Laughing Cow Light Garlic and Herb cheese and another slice of the crispbread spread with a thin layer of Marmite. So far, I like it. It adds some saltiness and complexity to the mixture and seems to keep the cheese from soaking into the crispbread, which is a positive thing when you are bringing the sandwich to work.