Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Lacy Walker Bag

The subtitle for this post should be "The $75 Market Bag Revisited..."

The Crochet Crowd had a challenge for the month of June... to make a market bag in a rather complicated stitch... with thin yarn and a smaller hook. I decided to give it a try... I started out with a cotton/acrylic blend that had an interesting texture, but ended up frogging it (rippit, rippit) and starting over with regular cotton yarn.
I ran through a skein of peach yarn and had to finish it up in green. Each of the pattern rows took me half an hour to complete, so when I input the information into my crafts calculator app, typing in my estimated yarn costs ($9) and time (13 hours), it came up with a $75 price tag for this bag. It is quite pretty, though, and I'm hoping it will sell for $20 at one of my craft shows this fall.

I liked the pattern stitch and decided to try it on a smaller project. Since I do a few craft shows at senior housing, I thought a bag that could be hung on a walker would be a fun project.
Here's how it turned out! Actually, this bag is already sold...but I'm itching to get started on another one! Here's how I made it... Rather than copy and paste the pattern stitch, I will just link to the Red Heart Pattern for the challenge.

Yarn: about 7 ounces of knitting worsted. I found that two pattern rows used up about 1.3 ounces of yarn, so if you have a postal scale, you can use up some of those small balls of scrap yarn for stripes!
Size H crochet hook
Three buttons

The base of the bag is a rectangle - you start with a chain and work on both sides of it, increasing at the four corners.

Chain 27
HDC in 2nd chain from hook and each chain across. In last chain, make 3 hdc. Turn and make HDC  in the other side of the chain, ending with two HDC in starting stitch. Join.

Note: You can chain 2 to start each row, but I prefer to do a chainless starting HDC. I think it makes your starting point harder to see...it's a good skill to add to your crochet repertoire   

Round 2: HDC in first stitch, HDC, ch 1, HDC in next stitch (corner made). HDC across, until you get to the 3 HDC at the end of the row. Make a corner in the first of those stitches, hdc in next, then another corner. HDC to the end of the row, making your last corner in the next-to-last stitch before you finish the round.

Rounds 3-6: HDC around, doing (HDC, ch 1, HDC) in each of the ch-1 spaces at the corners

View of the bottom

Pattern Stitch:
Now you get into the lacy pattern stitch - Start with row 9 of the pattern linked below. The pattern is worked over 5 stitches... so if you're getting toward the end, and you don't have a multiple of 5, you can adjust by skipping 3 stitches instead of 2.

Pattern Stitch

I highly recommend that you watch the video that Mikey from The Crochet Crowd made to explain the pattern stitch. I was thoroughly lost until I watched it and saw the little diagram he made up to explain the stitch. Now I can do the pattern from memory.

I did 9 rows of the pattern stitch (row 9 of the pattern, then repeated row 10 8 times)
After that, HDC around for 3 rows.

Measure in 3" from side of bag.
 Do 18 rows of HDC over 8 stitches.
Row 19: HDC in first 3 stitches, chain 2, skip two stitches, HDC in last 3 stitche
Row 20: HDC in each stitch (8 stitches)

Measure in 3 inches from other side and repeat for other strap.
Sew buttons on border at bottom of straps.

Back view of bag attached to a chair's handle

Sew a button on the front center.
Make a loop from the center of the back (attach yarn, chain 20, slip stitch to back center).

Tuck in yarn ends.

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