Usually a top loading washing machine is recommended, but I have a front loader. So, I Googled how to felt in a front loader, followed the directions, and after four permutations, nothing was happening to my bag!
Well, I certainly wasn't going to let almost 8 months of work go down the drain. So, I decided to knit up the bag as-is, but with knitted handles (I figured I would save the nice bamboo handles for when I totally don't screw up a project). Figure 2 below shows the final product - not bad, I suppose. It is cute, but it's not very sturdy. So, I will have to figure out what I can tote around in my tote bag that's not too heavy.