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August 2016

Bags for Beach or Festivals

FestivalBagII.jpg

Summer season bags in crochet this time - for beach - or for festivals if you want the full seventies vibe. Easy to make using a single basic granny square motif.

Instructions.

The bags are made up by joining a number of the same basic "granny square" motif. If you are feeling adventurous you could make up your own version of the squares to approximately the same size or you could use a variety of colours (in the "granny square" tradition) to use up wool oddments.

Motif

With Gold (G) make 4 ch, join into ring with slip stitch (ss).

1st round: in G, 3 ch, 11 tr into ring. [12 sts]
2nd round: in Red (R), join with Ss to top of ch, (3 ch, 2 tr, 1 ch, 3 tr), all in next stitch, miss 2 stitches, * (3 tr, 1 ch, 3 tr,) all in next stitch, miss 2 stitches, repeat from * 3 times; join with Ss to top of ch
3rd round: in Cream (C), 3 ch, 2 tr, in space between last tr and ch of previous round, (3 tr, 1 ch, 3 tr) all in next ch sp, * 3 tr in SP between 2 groups, (3 tr, 1 ch, 3 tr) all in next ch SP, repeat from * 3 times; join with Ss to top of ch
Fasten off.


Handbag

Make 10 motifs.
Join motifs as follows: wrong sides to inside, place 2 motifs together.
With C, make loop round hook (as if starting a chain), insert hook through corner ch SP of each motif and draw loop through, then draw
loop through loop on hook (this fastens the yarn to the work). Insert hook through both loops of next stitch of each motif and draw loop through, (this joins the motifs together), and draw the loop through
loop on hook, (this completes the join - you are essentially slip stitching the motifs together).
Continue in this way, ending at ch SP at opposite corner.
Fasten off.

Join remaining motifs in the same way, thus having 5 strips made of 2 motifs each

Now make a square by joining 2 strips together using the slip stitch technique as before. Make another square the same.
You now have two squares made up of 4 motifs and one oblong made up of 2 motifs.

Handbag - main part

[Editor's note: In this section you make diagonal edgings for each side of the square sections of the bag. You end up with another square with the original 4 motifs set "on point" as you can see in the photo.]

With right side facing and Gold (G), join yarn to corner ch SP of one of the squares, and work along first side edge as follows :
1st row: in G, 3 ch, 2 tr in corner ch SP, (3 tr in SP between next 2 groups) twice, 3 tr in centre of joining row, (3 tr in SP between next 2 groups) twice, 3 tr in corner ch SP [7 groups].
Turn, 1 Ss in each of last 3 tr of previous row.

2nd row: in Red (R), 3 ch, 2 tr in 1st SP between first 2 groups, 3 tr in
each following SP [6 groups].
Turn, 1 Ss in each of last 3 tr of previous row.

3rd row: in Cream (C), as 2nd row [5 groups].

Alternating colours as before, work 4 more rows, thus ending 3 ch 2 tr in G worked in SP between 2 groups. [1 group].
Fasten off.

Joining yarn to corner ch SP already used, work along 2nd and 3rd sides of square in the same way, then work along 4th side starting
and ending with corner ch SP already used.

Work the other main part in the same way on the second 4-motif square.

Handbag - flap

[Editor's note: At this point you might think "flap" is an instruction - but it isn't - it' just the description of the piece you are making next. The instruction is "just keep calm and carry on". Crochet is always more difficult to read from a pattern than it is to actually do it.]

With right side facing and G, join yarn to corner ch SP at long side of remaining oblong strip and work as follows:

1st round: in G, 3 ch 2 tr in corner ch SP, (3 tr in SP between next 2 groups) twice; 3 tr in centre of joining row; (3 tr in SP between
next 2 groups) twice, 3 tr 1 ch 3 tr in next corner ch SP, (3 tr in SP between next 2 groups) twice, 3 tr 1 ch 3 tr in next corner ch SP Continue in this way all round strip, ending 3 tr 1 ch, in 1st corner ch SP again. Join with Ss to top of ch at the beginning of the round.
2nd round: in R, 3 ch 2 tr in corner ch SP, then - as you did in 1st round - 3 tr in each SP between 2 groups, 3 tr 1 ch 3 tr in each corner ch SP, ending 3 tr 1 ch in 1st corner ch SP again. Join with Ss to top
of ch at beginning of round.
3rd round: in C as 2nd round.
Fasten off.

Handbag - gusset

With G, make 10 ch

1st row: 1 tr in 4th ch from hook, 1 tr in each following ch
Turn with 3 ch.
2nd row: miss 1st stitch, 1 tr in each following stitch Turn with 3 ch
[ 8 stitches, including turning ch of previous row which counts as 1 tr].

Repeat 2nd row until strip measures 24 inches (61 cm).
Fasten off.

Handbag - to make up

Using a warm iron and damp cloth, press parts lightly on wrong side.
Cut lining as for 2 squares and gusset, allowing ½ inch (1 cm) extra all round for turnings.
Pin gusset round 3 sides of each square; sew in position by stitching tip of each group of main part to edges of gusset .
Sew flap to remaining side of 1 square.
Using G, work 1 row dc, along 3 free sides of flap, working 3 dc in each corner and making a 10 ch loop at each end of long side approximately 2 inches (5 cm) in from the edge - these are the button loops (see photo).

Make twisted cord from 18 strands of remaining yarn, each strand 100 inches (254 cm) long (or however long you want the shoulder strap to be), and attach to top of gusset at each side of bag.

Join lining and place inside bag with seams to inside, turn in raw edges at top and inside flap, and slip hem neatly in position.

Sew on buttons.


Beach bag

Make 55 motifs.
Joining motifs as for handbag, making 11 strips of 5 motifs each

Beach bag - back

Join 6 strips together, thus having an oblong.

Point: With right side facing and using G, join yarn to corner ch SP of oblong and work along 1 short edge as follows:

1st row: in G, 3 ch 2 tr in corner ch SP, * (3 tr in SP between next 2 groups) twice, 3 tr in centre of joining row; repeat from * ending 3 tr in corner ch SP [16 groups].
Turn, Ss in each of last 3 tr of previous row.
2nd row: in R, 3 ch 2 tr in SP, between first 2 groups, 3 tr in each following SP [15 groups].
Turn, Ss in each of last 3 tr of previous row.
3rd row: in C , as 2nd row [14 groups].

Alternating colours as before, work 13 more rows, thus ending 3 ch 2 tr in G, worked in SP between 2 groups. [1 group].
Fasten off.

Beach bag - flap

Working along opposite edge of oblong, work as for point.
In make a 10 ch loop into centre of last group (button loop).
Fasten off.

Beach bag - front

Join 5 strips together, thus making a square.
Work as for back, making one point for bottom of bag and omitting flap.

Beach bag - to make up

Press as for handbag.

Cut lining as for front and back, allowing ½ inch (1 cm) extra for turnings.
Place back and front together from points upwards, with wrong sides to inside. Using C, work joining row up one side, then work in
dc up side of extra motif of back.
Join second side in the same way.
Work 1 row dc along upper edge of front.
Fasten off.

Using a flat-stitch seam, join points by catching together tips of each group.

Make twisted cord as for handbag and attach to sides.
Line as for handbag.

Using 18 strands of remaining yarn, each strand 12 inches (30 cm) long, make tassel and attach to point.

Sew on button to match loop.

Materials

The yarn is an Aran or worsted weight in balls of 50g.

Handbag:
1 ball each in three colours: Cream, Lipstick Red, and Harvest Gold.
2 buttons.
½ yard lining fabric.

Beach bag:
4 in Cream, 3 in Lipstick Red and 2 in Harvest Gold.
1 buttons.
1 yard lining fabric.

One No 8 (4mm) crochet hook.

Tension

One motif measures approximately
2¾ x 2¾ inches,
(7cm x 7cm)

Size matters

Hand bag:
About 8 inches (20cm) square.

Beach bag:
About 14 inches (36cm) wide and 20 inches (51cm) high.

Crochet abbreviations:

ch: chain
dc: double crochet
tr: treble
Ss: slip stitch
SP: space

Remember these are English crochet instructions where dc is equivalent to US single crochet - see "Terminology" in the side bar.

A Word on the Wool

The original yarn was Patons Capstan - an Aran weight yarn knitting to a tension of 18 sts to 4 inches. No clues as to the yardage but it was a fairly dense pure wool so I would not expect it to have a long yardage.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

August 2015

Festival Bag

FestivalBag2.jpg

Festival season is well under way so I am posting this a little early - too late for Glastonbury but in time for WOMAD if you are a fast knitter (or knit while you are there..!).and Cropredy.
You can use any stitch for the bag that appeals, taking the pattern as a basic shape. You could try a multicoloured honeycomb pattern, or you could combine stripes of different pattern textures. The simplest shape (on the left) is the type I remember with the tasselled handle continuing all down the sides.

Instructions.

Striped bag (left)

Using No 3 needles and main colour A, cast on 36 stitches.
The bag is worked entirely in garter stitch (every row knitted); begin by knitting 2 rows.
Now pick up your contrast colour B and * knit 2 rows with B, 2 rows with A, 2 rows with B, 6 rows with A, 2 rows with B, 4 rows with A, 2 rows with B.
Repeat from the point marked * * 5 times altogether.
Cast off all the stitches.

To make up the striped bag

If you want to line the bag, cut the lining to the size of the bag, allowing 6mm (½ inch) turnings.
With right sides of bag facing each other, join the side seams.
Join the lining side seams.
Insert the lining and stitch round the top opening of bag.

Cut 6 strands each of A and B into 178cm (70 inch) lengths. Divide the strands into 3 groups and plait together to form a handle, making an overhand knot at each end and leaving the ends to form a tassel.

Stitch the plait in position along the side seams of the bag, having a tassel at each lower edge and leaving the remainder to form the handle.

Sew on one button or bead to the centre of each side of the top edge of the bag.
Make a double figure of eight with yarn A, large enough to fasten over both buttons, and work round the figure with buttonhole stitch.

Shoulder bag (right)

To make this bag you can experiment any textured pattern.
The bag shown is made from a strip worked in bobble stitch

Cast on 62 stitches and start knitting in your chosen pattern.
[Editor's note: work out your tension with your chosen yarn in the pattern you are planning to use , and cast on enough stitches for the width of the bag that you want to make.]

Continue in pattern until the length is about 3 times the height you want the bag to be, allowing up to 2 inches additional for the bottom of the bag. The bag shown was knitted 76cm (30 inches) long.

For the strap, cast on 11 stitches and work 106cm (42") in single rib.

Finishing the shoulder bag

Sew together so that the strap makes a gusset at the sides of the bag. You can optionally line the bag and add a couple of buttons and loops as shown in the Picture.

Textured Pattern stitches

Bobble rib

Cast on a number of stitches divisible by 6 plus 2.
1st row (right side): P2, * K1, P2, repeat from * to end.
2nd row: K2, * P1, K2, repeat from * to end.
3rd row:. P2, * K1, P2, (P1, K1, P1, K1) all into next st, this is done without removing the stitch you are working into until the 4 stitches have been — called M4 — P2, repeat from * to end.
[Editor's note: try to make these stitches fairly loose.
4th row:. K2, * K6, P1, K2, repeat from * to end.
5th row: P2,* K1, P2, (P4 then turn both needles round as if you are starting a new row and knit these 4 sts, turn work round and P these 4 sts — called B4 —), P2, repeat from * to end.
6th row: K2, * bring yarn to front of work, and insert right hand needle through the next 4 sts on the left hand needle from right to left and purl these 4 sts tog—called P4tog — K2, P1, K2, repeat from * to end.
7th row: As 1st row.
8th row:
As 2nd row.
9th row:. P2, * M4, P2, K1, P2, repeat from * to end.
10th row:. K2, * P1, K8, repeat from * to end
11th row: P2, * B4, P2, K1, P2, repeat from * to end.
12th row:. K2,* P1, K2, P4tog, K2, repeat from * to end.
These 12 rows form the pattern.

Cane basket stitch

Cast on a number of sts divisible by 6 plus 2.

1st row (right side): K2, * P4, K2, repeat from * to end.
2nd row: P2, * K4, P2, repeat from * to end.
Rep 1st and 2nd rows once more.
5th row: P3, * K2, P4, repeat from * to last 5 sts; K2, P3.
6th row:. K3, * P2, K4, repeat from * to last 5 sts; P2, K3.
Rep 5th and 6th rows once more.
These 8 rows form the pattern.

Tassel stitch

Cast on a number of sts divisible by 6 plus 2.
1st row (right side): P2, * K4, P2, repeat from * to end.
2nd row: K2,* P4, K2, repeat from * to end.
Rep 1st and 2nd rows once more.
5th row: K2,* insert right hand needle from front to back between 4th and 5th sts on left hand needle, take yarn across back of sts and draw through a loose loop across front of 4 sts and leave on right hand needle, K1, P2, K3, repeat from * to end.
6th row: * P3, K2, bring yarn forward to front of work, insert right hand needle through next st and loop on left hand needle from right to left and purl these 2 sts together to decrease one st — called P2tog — repeat from * to last 2 sts, P2.
7th row: K3,* P2, K4, repeat from * to last 5 sts, P2, K3.
8th row: P3,* K2 P4, repeat from * to last 5 sts, K2, P3.
Rep 7th and 8th rows once more.
11th row: P2, K3, .* insert right hand needle from front to back between 4th and 5th sts on left hand needle, take yarn across back of sts and draw through a loose loop across front of 4 sts and leave on right hand needle, K1, P2, K3, repeat from * to last 3 sts, K1, P2.
12th row: K2, P4,* K2, P2tog, P3, repeat from * to last 2 sts, K2.
These 12 rows form the pattern.

You can find more textured stitches in these links:

A different basket stitch and blackberry stitch.

Honeycomb stitch in two colours

Materials

Striped Bag: 200gm (7oz) of uncut rug yarn in main shade A.
100gm (3½oz) in contrast colour B.
One pair No 3 (6½mm) needles.
Two wooden buttons or beads.
Optional lining: 30cm (12 inch) length of 90cm (36 inch) wide fabric.

Textured bag:
About 200gm (7 oz) of double knitting or worsted yarn.
One pair of No 8 (4mm) needles.
Optional lining fabric.

Tension

Striped bag:
About 12 sts to 4 inches

Textured bag:
22-26sts to 4 ins over pattern.

Size matters

Striped bag: 30cm (12 inches) by 25cm (10 inches)

Textured bag: About 25cm (10 inches) high by 23cm (9 inches) wide

Abbreviations

k2tog or p2tog: knit or purl 2 sts together (decrease one stitch).

A Word on the Wool

The suggested use of rug wool is good for bags though can be hard on the fingers. Rug yarns are fairly thick - a chunky or bulky yarn equivalent.

Always check the tension and you can make a bag of the exact dimensions you want.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

These types of bag were very popular in the 1970s - I used one instead of a school satchel. Probably the striped bag on the left above is the most stylistically similar to the ones I remember - I might choose different colours!
My own bag - now long lost - was woven in a mixture of dark red and blue. Below is a genuine "gap year" cloth bag from the 1970s which made its way backpacking to the far east and back. It is a mail bag style like the knitted version pictured on the right above.

FestivalBag3.jpg

Below is a detail from the picture. The bag is woven of course but you could reproduce this pattern in knitting and easily add lots of tassels.

FestivalBag3-detail.jpg

The main bag has the stripes running vertically, and the flap has them horizontal. If you want this effect, as it's not easy to knit vertical stripes while keeping the integrity of the fabric, you could use this chart as written for the flap, and then use it to knit the front and bag in one piece from side to side. If you were feeling really confident you could knit front and back (sideways rectangle) then pick up the stitches from the side of the knitting and knit the flap.
So - to do this - before you start - work out your tension and then how large you want the bag to be. Lets say that it's 12 inches high and 10 inches wide. You need to cast on enough stitches to make 24 inches in the width of your knitting. Then knit stocking stitch in pattern for 10 inches and cast off. At the side of the knitting, pick up stitches for the flap. Usually this means picking up 2 stitches for every 3 rows to make a flat fabric without puckering. Then knit in the pattern for up to 12 inches to cover the front of the bag - if you are adding tassels you might want to knit as little as 4-6 inches.

FestivalBag-chart.jpg

Finally I'll leave you to extemporise on the handle and tassels. You might want to knit a plain handle about 2 inches wide and back it with some kind of webbing - then you would use it as the sides of the bag as you can see our original was made. Or you could just fold the bag without sides and apply a plaited cord handle as for the first bag on the left in these instructions.

You would probably need to use a 4 ply / DK / worsted on a smaller than usual needle to give a solid fabric, and it would be a good idea to line it with something firm.

I'm sure you could also make a simple bag from two woven panels (three for a mail bag) - perhaps made using a fairly crude home-made loom. I am planning to experiment with this in the near future. Watch this space (!).

September 2013

Chic Beret and Outsize Bag

ChicBeretOutSizeBag.jpg

Elegantly modelled on location in the Boulevard des Capucines for Paris in Focus showing "hand knits from Paris: top fashion to knit in bulky wool"

Instructions

The bag is knitted in a variation on fisherman's rib, or brioche stitch, while the beret is plain.

Beret

Cast on 72 stitches and work 2½ ins. k1, p1 rib, working into the back of every stitch to give a twisted rib.

Shape crown as follows:

1st row: * k8, increase 1 by picking up horizontal thread lying before next stitch and knitting into back of it; repeat from * last 8 stitches, k8. [80 sts]
2nd row: (k1, p15) 5 times.
3rd row: (k15, p1) 5 times.
Repeat 2nd and 3rd rows twice more.

8th row: (k1, p1, increase 1 by picking up horizontal thread lying before next stitch and purling into back of it, p13, increase 1 as before, p1) 5 times: 90 stitches
9th row: (k17, p1) 5 times.
10th row: (K1, p17) 5 times.
Repeat the last 2 rows twice more.

15th row: (k2togtbl, k13, k2tog, p1) 5 times.
16th row: (k1, p15) 5 times.
17th row: (k15, p1) 5 times.
Repeat the last 2 rows once more.

20th row: (k1, p15) 5 times.
21st row: (k2togtbl, k11, k2tog, p1) 5 times.
22nd row: (k1, p13) 5 times.
23rd row: (k13, p1) 5 times.
24th row: (k1, p13) 5 times.
25th row: (k2togtbl, k9, k2tog, p1) 5 times.
26th row: (k1, p11) 5 times.
27th row: (k2togtbl, k7, k2tog, p1) 5 times.
28th row: (k1, p9) 5 times.
29th row: (k2togtbl, k5, k2tog, p1)5 times.
30th row: (k1, p7)5 times.

Continue decreasing 2 stitches thus in each stocking-stitch panel until 20 stitches remain.
Next Row: (k2tog) 10 times.
Next Row: (p2 tog.) 5 times.

Break wool, thread through remaining stitches, draw up and fasten off.

Stalk: Cast on 7 stitches and work 4 rows stocking-stitch; cast off.

Making up - beret

Press beret lightly on wrong side under a damp cloth, avoiding ribbing.
Roll stalk lengthways and stitch down, then sew firmly to top of beret.

Bag Sides (make two)

Starting at base edge, cast on 60 stitches and work 1 row k1, p1 rib.

Change to fancy rib pattern as follows:-

Next Row: slip 1 knitwise, * p1, knit into next stitch but through loop of row below at the same time slipping stitch above off needle; repeat from * to last stitch, p1.

Repeat this row until piece measures 10 ins.
Continue in pattern casting off 7 stitches at the beginning of the next 2 rows.
Work 4 rows straight.
Cast off in pattern.

Make another piece the same.

Base:

Cast on 14 stitches and work in rib pattern exactly as for main part until piece measures 12 ins, slightly stretched.
Cast off in pattern.

Making up - bag

Make a hem across each piece of main part by folding over narrow piece at top to wrong side.
Cut lining to match front, back and base allowing a little extra for seams.
Join side seams of main part of bag with a flat seam (cast off stitches between hems form sides of bag).
Cover one side of cardboard strip by sticking down lining material for inside of bag. Now cover other side of cardboard base with knitted strip and stitch firmly to lining material all round edge.
Join side edges of lining material but do not turn to right side. Now fold back ½ an inch to the wrong side all round one edge of lining; sew this edge in position to base lining, pleating it at corners, so that right side of lining will be facing when you look into bag.
Place lining inside main part of bag, then join main part to knitted part of base very firmly all round edge.
Stitch top of lining in position ¾ inch down from top edge.
Unscrew ends of bars on frame, then slip each bar through hems. Place ends of bars into holes on frame bringing sides of bag inside ends of frame; screw knobs into position.
[Editor's note: The instructions in italics refer to a specific sort of frame - you will need to fit the handle according to the type you purchase.]

Materials

Beret: 2 hanks Patons Big Ben Knitting.
Bag: 7 hanks.
(Original colour: Black Watch 6141)

One pair of number 4 (6mm) needles.

Lining material for bag approximately 21 inches square.

Cardboard or stiffening for base 12x3½ inches;

9½ inch bag frame.
[Editor's note: Since you will be using a substitute yarn, I would wait until you have finished the bag and measure the opening before buying the handle.]

Tension

Equivalent to a basic tension of 15 stitches to 4 inches in stocking-stitch on No 4 needles.

Size matters

Beret: average size.
Bag: width at widest part: 13 ins; depth: 10 ins; width of base: 4 ins.

Abbreviations

k2tog: decrease by knitting 2 sts together.

k2togtbl: decrease by knitting 2 sts together through back loops, sometimes called ssk (slip 1 knitwise, slip 1 knitwise, place 2 sts back on left needle and knit 2 slipped sts together through back loops).

A Word on the Wool

I don't know the size of the Big Ben hanks, but I am guessing they were at least 2oz (around 50g). My experience with chunky weight yarn bags leads me to guess that at least 6 50g balls might be required.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

 

ChicBeretOutSizeBag2.jpg

ChicBeretOutSizeBagSketch.jpg

August 2012

String Bag

StringBag.jpg

A crochet "holdall" or "tote" made in dishcloth cotton (subsequently re-branded craft cotton). This one is lined and the craft cotton is soft and flexible. You could make it from a coarser type of jute, (I would use a larger hook), and leave it unlined, to use as a vegetable or market bag. I have also seen some excellent bags and bowls made from Herdwick yarn; these are crocheted very tightly to create a rigid fabric so the bags will keep their shape unsupported.

Instructions

The bag is made in one piece starting at the base, and the straps are then attached separately.

Bag

Start at the base and make 21 ch.
Work in rounds as follows:

1st round: Work 3 dc into 2nd ch from hook; 1 dc in each of next 18 ch; work 3 dc into last ch; then continue along other side of ch by working 1 dc in next 18 ch; join with slip stitch to first dc of round. [42 sts]
2nd round: (inc1, 1 dc, inc1, 18 dc) twice. [46 sts]
3rd round: (2 dc, work 3 dc in next dc 20 dc) twice. [50 sts]
4th round: (1 dc, inc1, 1 dc, inc1, 1 dc, inc1, 19 dc) twice. [56 sts]
5th round: (3 dc, inc1, 2 dc, inc1, 2 dc, inc1, 18 dc) twice. [62 sts]
6th round: (5 dc, inc1, 3 dc, inc1, 21 dc) twice. [66 sts]
7th round: (9 dc, inc1, 23 dc) twice. [68 sts]
8th round: (6 dc, inc1, 6 dc, inc 20 dc) twice. [72 sts]
Base is now complete.
Next round: Make ridge by working 1 dc into back loop only of every stitch

Increase round: (inc1, 8 dc) 8 times. [80 sts]

Work in ridge pattern as follows:-

1st round: Work 1 dc in each dc.
2nd round: as 1st round but working into back loops only.

Repeat last 2 rounds until work measures 11½ ins. from the the first ridge worked at completion of base.
Fasten off.

Straps (Make 2)

Make 49 ch and work in rows.

1st row: 1 dc in 2nd ch from hook, 1 dc in next 47 ch , I ch , turn.
2nd row:
Miss 1 dc, 1 dc in next 47 dc, 1 ch , turn.
3rd row: as second round
Fasten off.

To Make Up:

Cut piece of card to fit base.

Cut lining, 18 x 24 inches (this lines the depth of bag and allows for gathered top as well).

From remainder of material, cut two strips for lining handles, 15 x 2 inches, and for base, draw round the card shape on material and cut out about 1 in. away from pencil outline.

Cover one side of card with lining, folding over and sticking surplus material onto the other side.
Pin one longer edge of lining round covered side of base, then stitch in position.

Join the 2 side edges of lining to make a tube.

Top Finish: Fold over top edge of lining to wrong side to make 3½ inch hem, and stitch in position. ¼ inch down from top folded edge. make 2 rows of stitching, ½ inch apart, for draw-string. Open seam between the 2 rows and insert tape.
[Editor's note: This assumes you are going with the covered-in draw-up top, but this can be left off if you wish to make the bag as a shopper.]

Slip lining into bag and stitch into position by catching the 3½ inch hemline behind crochet (about ½ inch down from top of edge of crochet).

Catch lining to base.

Line handles and stitch on each side of bag.

Draw up tape and tie.

Materials

2 x 4oz. hanks Dishcloth Cotton.
No 6 (5mm) crochet hook.
Piece of stiff card for base.
½ yard 36-inch wide glazed cotton for lining.
1 yard white tape for draw-string.
[Editor's note: This gives the bag a covered draw-up top, but this can be left off if you wish to make the bag as a shopper.]

Crochet abbreviations:

ch: = chain
dc: = double crochet
inc1: increase by working 2dc into 1dc

[Editor's note: Remember these are English crochet instructions where dc is equivalent to US single crochet - see "Terminology" in the side bar.]

Tension

3 stitches to 1 inch in width.

Size matters

Depth: 11½ inches; Oval base: 9½ x 4½ inches.

A Word on the Wool

There are a number of brands sold as "dishcloth cotton" or "craft cotton" but it's a little pot luck with the thickness - you will have to experiment with the tension and how you want the bag to look. You are looking for an Aran weight yarn with a yardage of about 75m to 50g.

Lion Brand Cotton is fairly common in the US and would be suitable if you can obtain it (and comes in exciting colours too...).

You can literally use balls of string for this kind of bag but I've always found that works out surprisingly expensive.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any patterns it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

July 2010

Simple Carry-All Tote

CarryAllTote.jpg

A minimalist 1960s design "carry-all" bag. The sides are meant to be rigid and incorporate cardboard (or plastic) supports. Yet another perfect project bag.

Instructions

Cast on 54 stitches. Work in bands of garter stitch (every row knit) and stocking stitch (knit one row, purl one row) as follows:

1st band: 3 inches in garter stitch (20 rows)
2nd band: 2 inches in stocking stitch (10 rows)
3rd band: 2 inches in garter stitch (14 rows)
4th band: 2 inches in stocking stitch (10 rows)
5th band: 2 inches in garter stitch (14 rows)

Place markers at each end of the last row.

[Editor's note: You are about to knit the base of the bag.]
Now work 6 inches in garter stitch, placing markers at each end of the last row.
[Editor's note: You have finished the base and are about to knit the other side of the bag.]

Now work back of bag to match front, ie as 5th to 1st band in this order. Cast off loosely.

Side panels

(Make two the same) cast on 22sts, and work in bands of garter stitch and stocking stitch as for front.

Cast off.

Handles

(Make two the same) cast on 8sts and work 13 inches in garter stitch.

Making up

Press pieces lightly on the wrong side.
Cut lining to fit inside bag allowing ½ inch extra for turnings. Cut 3 pieces of cardboard to fit side panels and base of bag.
Join short edge of side panels to base between markers then join side seams.
Stitch cardboard in position inside the bag.
[Editor's note: I used plastic canvas (7 count) for support when lining the bag. It seems ideal in that you can sew it together to make the boxy shape and also catch stitch it to the knitting without undue distortion. The picture also shows that I used a fabric base for my bag - see "adapting the bag".]

Join lining and place inside the bag with seams inside.

Back the handles with petersham ribbon, then sew to top of bag 2½ inches from side seams.

Turn in raw edges at top of lining and slip-stitch hem neatly in position.

A Word on the Wool.

I substituted 100g balls (each 75m/81yards) Debbie Bliss Cashmerino super chunky in Leaf green (colour 16022), knitted on number 5½mm needles, and this took double the stated requirement of the original yarn. I think you would require at least 5 balls of this wool to make the bag as written.

I favoured a plain colour but the simplicity of the pattern would probably suit wilder colours.

Debbie Bliss Cashmerino is a rather high quality smooth wool (it was on sale). As the size of a bag is not critical, substitute any superchunky with good results (checking your tension). It is suggested to support the sides with cardboard, but it may also be a good idea to use a smaller needle size than normally recommended for the yarn, so that the knitted fabric is firm - note that I did not do this.

Adapting the Bag.

As I used sale wool, I had only 4 x 100g balls, and in consequence I adapted the bag significantly to make it work.

I made fabric handles and a fabric base (6 inches in length and matching the width of the bag).

The handles are robust webbing covered in fabric. I sewed the handles firmly to the plastic canvas side supports - so the handles and the plastic canvas lining will take all the weight of the bag contents.
I used dental floss (very strong) for sewing the bag handles on to the canvas - and also for sewing the canvas sides and base together.

I made the base using plastic canvas (7 count) cut to size, and covered with some wadding plus the fabric, and then quilted through all layers, using the canvas as my guide.

I machine sewed the sides of the bag to the base before hand sewing the knitted pieces up the sides using mattress stitch from the outside of the bag.

Finally, in case you are tempted to try this as a felted bag - be warned: felting garter stitch produces different results from stocking stitch and your bag may end up a funny shape - or funnier than you intended....
Happy improvising!

Materials

Original pattern calls for 6 x 50g balls of Patons Camelot which was a bouclé yarn (in colour Corncob). See "a word on the wool".
I recommend planning on at least 400-500 yards.

One pair of number 7 (4½mm) needles.

Fabric for lining.
Petersham ribbon or webbing to line handles.

Cardboard or plastic canvas to support the sides.

Tension

Original tension 15sts x 21rows to 4 inches (10cm) on No 7 (4½mm) over stocking stitch.

[My tension using Debbie Bliss yarn and number 5 (5½mm) needles is 14sts x 20rows to 4 inches over stocking stitch.]

Size matters

Original bag is approximately 14in by 11in and 6in deep at the sides.


Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any pattern it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

 

November 2008

Gold Mesh Bag

GoldBag.jpg

From November 1940:
"This pretty gold mesh bag will rejoice the hearts of those can still enjoy a little social life. Personally we are at this moment sitting in an air-raid shelter!"
One wonders if that was literally true - but I am sure the editorial team spent a lot of their time in shelters in this period of history in the UK.

Instructions

Starting at the top make 37 chain.

1st row: Miss 2 ch; 35tr; turn with 2ch.
2nd row: 35tr, working into the front of each st; turn with 2ch.
3rd row: 35tr, working into the back of each st (right side facing); turn with 2ch.
4th row: as second, but make 5ch at the end of this row; pull through thread and fasten off. Cut the thread.
[Editor's note: This is the piece of work that fits into the metal frame. Your 35 treble need to be as wide as the handle frame and your 4 rows need to be as deep as the frame. My frame was roughly 5 x 2 inches; my width was OK but I needed to add in 2 rows to make the length, so I repeated rows 2 and 3 before moving on to row 4 as above, making 6 rows in all. Beware if you make a odd number of rows as there is a "right side" to this work - working into the front and back of the sts makes ribs on the right side.
I thought I would have to
add width as well (the frame size stated as 5¾ins and my work was barely 5); however, once I got the frame it was clear that my work fitted perfectly as the insertion width was about 5¼ins plus you do need the work to be very slightly stretched, not relaxed.
My advice is get the frame in your hot little hand first and make the bag to fit.

Be careful if you do add chain to make the bag wider, as you will need to be able to make the shell pattern fit later on. I varied my crochet hook size until I got a satisfactory tension to achieve the right width, rather than adding in sts.]

Now make a second piece exactly the same, and at the end of the final row, make 5ch, and then join the two pieces together by working across the first piece to end of 5ch in slipstitch, then slipstitch across 2nd piece, making a round.

Now change to pattern and work backwards and forwards in rows,
[Editor's note: This confused me at first - but you are "working backwards and forwards" and slip stitching at the end of each row to join the round.]
working into the back of each stitch as follows:

1st row: 1ch; 3dc into 3rd of 5 ch; 3dc into first space * miss 2 spaces; 3 dc into next space; repeat from * across all trebles; then 3dc into 3rd of 5 ch; work across the other side as for the first [27 groups]. Slipstitch into the middle of 3dc made on the 5ch. Turn.

2nd row: (1dc, 1tr, 1dc) into middle of each group of 3dc. Turn with a slipstitch to the next treble.

3rd row: 1dc into same treble as slipstitch, * (1dc, 3tr, 1dc) into next group, 1dc into centre of next group, * repeat from * to * once.
Work a group of (1dc, 3tr, 1dc) into each of the next 3 groups; repeat from * to * twice.
Work a group of (1dc, 3tr, 1dc) into each of the next 2 groups.
[Editor's note: This completes one "side"; it seems asymmetrical as you have one shell group designed to sit on the side of the bag.]
Work the other side of the bag to correspond.
There should now be 18 shell groups of (1dc, 3tr, 1dc) in all.
Turn with a slipstitch into second treble.

4th row: (1dc, 5tr, 1dc) into the middle of each group; turn with a slipstitch into second treble.
5th row: As 4th.

6th row: (1dc, 7tr, 1dc) into the middle of each group; turn with a slipstitch into second treble.
7th row-10th row: As 6th.

Now pinch the two sides of the bag together at the bottom edge and slipstitch across from one side to the other, taking two outside scallops together, to join. The scallops that were on the "side" of the bag are twisted slightly to accomplish this, joining 9 full scallops and avoiding a half-scallop at the sides of this edge.
Fasten off.

Making up:

Sew in all ends.
Sew bag to frame. You are intended to "draw up the work at the sides" so that it fits over the hinges, but as my work was lightly stretch over the frame - and I think due to the design of the frame - I could not make this work, and the hinges are exposed in the finished bag.
[Editor's note: Some frames have no holes in them for sewing and you are intended to glue the fabric in place; check carefully before you purchase.]
Make a fabric lining; I used a fine corded velvet (a remnant) in black.

If your frame has fasteners designed for a cord handle, make a cord or buy a fine chain to form the handle. I made a kumihimo cord, as this is a current interest of mine.

Materials

Example shown is made from 2 balls of Twilleys Goldfingering.

Bag handles from Bags of Handles
[see under 'frames'].
I used this one.

One No. 11 (3mm) crochet hook.

Fabric remnant for lining.

Crochet abbreviations:

ch = chain
tr = treble crochet
dc = double crochet

Remember these are English crochet instructions where dc is equivalent to US single crochet - see "Terminology" in the side bar.

Tension

No tension given - my 37 treble worked out to 5 inches when not eased out on frame.

Size matters

Fits 5¼ inch width handle.
My advice is get the frame first and make the bag to fit, by varying the hook size or adding stitches.

Disclaimer
(well...almost)

In transposing any patterns it is always a risk that errors will be introduced, in spite of dedicated proof reading.
If you have any problems with this pattern, please and I will try and assist.

April 2007

Pebbles bag

Pebbles_bag.jpg

I intended to knit this bag from a pattern where the designer confessed she had been forced to change her mind half way through knitting a hat, and call it a bag. I did not go ahead with my plan, and my pattern is now far removed from that original idea, (except for the handles!). The colours in this wool remind me of the stoney flint beaches on the south coast of England, where I was born and brought up.

Instructions

With No. 3 needles, cast on 51 stitches, and work 5 rows stocking stitch starting with a knit row.
Next row: wrong side facing, Knit to end.

With right side facing, commence pattern as follows:

Row 1: P4, K3, (P5, K3) 5 times, P4
Row 2: K4, P3, (K5, P3) 5 times, K4
Row 3: P4, K3, (P5, K3) 5 times, P4
Row 4: (P3, K5) 6 times, P3
Row 5: (P3, K5) 6 times, P3
Row 6: (P3, K5) 6 times, P3

[Editor's note: I chose a textured stitch to best suit the random and nubbly texture of Chunky Print. The muted stone colourway works well, I think, with this basket-weave stitch. If you have a more 'romantic' colourway you may prefer a different pattern. See "blackberry stitch" section below for an alternative four-row pattern to substitute here if you like].

Repeat the six-row pattern 20 times or to desired length, and then the first 3 rows again.
[Editor's note: I tried to knit this very precisely to use up all the 3 balls of wool; you may wish to knit a few rows fewer in order to be sure you will have sufficient with your chosen wool. You can knit the sides before finishing off the body to try and gauge if you are running short].

Next row: wrong side facing, Knit to end.
With right side facing, work 4 rows stocking stitch starting with a knit row. Cast off.

Side panels (make 2 the same):
[Editor's note: you may wish to omit the sides altogether, either for simplicity, or to save on wool. See notes on "adapting the pattern" below.]

Cast on 10sts and work as follows in reverse stocking stitch throughout.

Row 1: P10
Row 2: Inc in the first st, (by knitting into the front and back of the st), K9, inc in next st, K1. [12 sts]
Row 3: P12.
Row 4: K12

Continue in reverse st st for 28 more rows.
Decrease one st at each end of the next row, [10 sts].
Work a further 11 rows.
Decrease one st at each end of the next row, [8 sts].
Work a further 5 rows.
Decrease one st at each end of the next row, [6 sts].
Work two more rows, and then cast off knitwise, decreasing one st at each end of the cast-off row.

Making up - Cut and construct the lining before sewing the bag sections together.
Attach the handles to each end of the main body section, as follows:
Sew a hem at each end of the bag, folding down the st st rows and using the purl row as your hem edge.
Starting about 2 inches from the edge of the bag, oversew the hem ends (using huge binding sts) to the circular bamboo handles. Ease the straight edge of the bag around the handle as you sew. Stop sewing about two inches from the other side of the bag.
[Editor's note: If you are knitting "to the wire", as I did, to use up all the wool, you need to remember to reserve some yarn to attach the handles; I used about 14 yards of the yarn for this binding.]

Construct the lining - do this before attaching the sides to the bag.
[Editor's note: I advise you to read the whole of this section before you start cutting anything].

Cut the fabric to the width of the bag, using the body section as a guide, and remembering to leave enough for the seams at the edges. Do not cut the fabric to length at this point, unless you are making a simple pocket style bag (see "adapting the pattern").

Press the side panels lightly using a damp cloth. Using the side panels as pattern pieces, cut two fabric side pieces from the fabric you have left over, not forgetting to leave a seam allowance. Fold over the top edge on each piece.

[Editor's note: A lining does not have to be too exact, (the knitting outside is stretchy); it should support the contents of the bag and protect the bag from distorting - I try and make it err just slightly larger than the knitted bag "at rest".]

Form the internal pocket section in the lining as follows:
Turn down the ends of the fabric that you will attaching to the mouth of the bag (where the handles are).
Lay the fabric over the knitting, placing the turned down edges roughly in position at the handle ends. Make the fabric fit the length of the main section of the bag by making a pleat as shown in the picture; this pleat forms the pocket. Pin the pleat into position at both sides, and mark the position for, and then make (by hand or machine), a button hole to fit your exotic button, through the top two layers of the pleat. Sew the button in place on the bottom layer of the pleat to meet the button hole.

Pin and sew the side panel lining pieces to the main body of the lining.

Inserting the side panels - and completing the bag.
Pin the knitted side panel sections into position, and crochet the two edges together with a single row of double crochet, to form an external "seam", as shown in the picture.

Sew the lining into the bag, slipstitching around the handles and bag mouth. Do not pull your stitches too tight.

Adapting the pattern

You may wish to adapt the bag by omitting the sides altogether, either for simplicity, or to save on wool.
To do this you simply fold the main body in half and join the sides to make a simple pocket; you can crochet up the sides (as above) or just sew them. Likewise the lining is formed by folding the fabric in half to fit the bag, sewing up the sides, and attaching to the mouth of the bag as above.
Note: If you choose to adapt the bag, it will not have a "base", so it will look proportionately longer than the knitted example with sides. So if you plan to do this you may want to knit the main body 2 inches shorter than instructed above. You can test how the bag looks by folding it in half every so often, as you are knitting.

Blackberry stitch

An alternative four-row pattern to use in place of the six-row basket weave pattern. [Editor's note: Because of its "one-from-three, three-from-one" nature, this stitch is also know in the Irish tradition as Trinity stitch.]

The four-row pattern is worked over 50 sts using number 2 needles:
Row 1 (right side facing): Purl.
Row 2: K1, (P3tog, inc 2 by K1,P1,K1 into next st) 12 times, K1
Row 3: Purl.
Row 4: K1, (inc 2 by K1,P1,K1 into next st, P3tog) 12 times, K1

To complete the main section of the bag, repeat the four-row pattern 26 times or to desired length, and then the first 3 rows again.
Next row: wrong side facing, Knit to end.
With right side facing, work 4 rows stocking stitch starting with a knit row. Cast off.
[Editor's note: If you use this pattern your bag will work out a slightly different proportion and shape than the basket-weave one due to the stitch making a different tension. You could compensate by working over 54 sts instead of 50 and knitting some rows fewer in length; whatever you choose, remember to keep an eye on your yarn quantity as you knit. Bags are very adaptable.

Materials

3 x 100g balls (each 100m/109yards) Rowan Chunky Print, colour 078, Pebble Dash, or 081 Shriek.

One pair of number 3 needles.
One crochet hook, number 5 (5½mm).

Two bamboo-style round handles.

Half a metre (or half a yard) of cotton fabric for lining.

1 exotic button oddment (about ¾-1 inch in size.)
[Ed: We all have them]

Tension

14sts x 18rows to 4 inches (10cm) on No 3 (6½mm) needles over basket-weave pattern.
16sts x 16rows to 4 inches (10cm) on No 2 (7mm) needles over blackberry pattern.

Crochet

Remember these instructions use UK terms. Double crochet is equivalent to US "single crochet".

Size matters

Bag is approximately 14in by 12in and 2in deep at the sides.
The dimensions of the bag were determined by eye in proportion with the chosen handles, and knitted in order to use the complete 3 balls of the chosen wool.

A word on the wool.

Chunky Print has been discontinued by Rowan (sadly, as it seemed to have a pleasing colour range, and knit up quickly and economically).
Chunky Print has a yardage of 100 metres (109 yards) per 100g ball, and knits to a tension of 11sts x 14 rows to 4 inches on No 0 needles (9mm).
A good substitute might be Debbie Bliss Soho (6 x 50g balls).
Rowan Biggy Print comes in similar colours but is a vastly different tension; it would be quite feasible to convert this pattern to a different tension yourself.

Quilting fabrics are ideal for the lining; they are inexpensive and come in a fabulous range of colours.
You can afford to be adventurous with linings; choose a lovely rich colour, probably one that you would not care for in an item of clothing!
The lining is important - don't skimp on it.

Here is my completed Pebbles bag, in the Shriek colourway with blackberry stitch. As a decoration I used a brooch that Alison gave me years ago - the idea being that it was a heart for me to "wear on my sleeve". The lining is an old Kaffe Fassett quilt fabric which turned out to be an improbably good match.

Here is the original Pebbles bag in the Pebble Beach colourway with basket weave stitch. The brooch decoration, like the heart above, tones so well with the wool that it provides a very subtle effect on the bag.


© Christina Coutts 2007

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