Friday, October 10, 2008

Free: Crochetastic Tote

First of all, new word: Crochetastic. Crocheting with plastic bags. And it's fantastic.

Here's a more specific pattern for a purse/bag, with more detailed numbers than the general bag recipe in the last post on this subject. That post also has instructions for making yarn out of plastic bags.

Free Pattern: Crochetastic Tote

Crochet hook, size P
Brown/Tan grocery bags, XXX grams. This works out to be 3 basketball-ball sized balls of yarn--WAY more than you think.
Note on yarn thickness: Cut the plastic bags into loops that are between 2 and 2.5 inches wide. See my earlier post for instructions on making the yarn.
Optional: White grocery bags, if you want stripes. About a softball sized ball of yarn.

Skills Required
Chain crochet stitch
Single crochet stitch, worked flat
Single crochet stitch, worked in the round
Single crochet decreases.


Bottom of bag: Chain 20, turn. Work flat in sc for 8 rows. Down forget your turning stitch.

At end of 8th row, turn, and work down short side for 8 sts. Turn again, work down long side for 20 sts, then turn once more and work 8 sts along the second short side. You are now back at the beginning of the round.

**Base of my bag is 14" long by 5" deep.

Work Body: Work bag in the round for 17 inches, for a tall tote like mine. Add stripes if you want--I put in 2 rows of a white bag yarn to create the stripe near the top of my bag.

Decreases: 5 rows before the start of your handles, you need to add a few decreases. As you can see from my bag, the decreases don't look like decreases--the bag tends to fan out, though, and the decreases make it look straight on the sides.

Work a one stitch decrease at each end of the bag (on the "short" sides), 2 dec per round. Decreases work like this: sc, skip 1 st, sc. The next round, sc as normal. Then work one more dec round. 4 total sts decreased. Work 2 more rounds in regular sc, then start the handles.

Work handles: At start of next round, beginning on a long side, work 7 sc sts. Then, chain 6 sts. Skip 6 sts on fabric, reconnect and work to the end of the long side--7 sts--then across the short side--8 sts--then 7 sts down the second long side. Chain 6 sts, skip 6 sts on fabric, reconnect, and work sc to end of round.

Work regular sc for 3 more rounds. Break yarn. Weave in ends.


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