Wednesday, 7 March 2012

African Flowers Bucket Bag

I love the African Flower motif and suddenly just had the desire to make a bag for my knitting. Took a bit of playing around to figure out how to make the shape I wanted.
I wanted a bucket shaped bag. I ended up breaking the shapes down - I made a tube from the hexagons and then a circle for the base. I used half hexagons to give the tube a straight edge. I used Littleberry’s half hexagon pattern - though I restarted the yarn on the right hand side every round.

I used the magic circle technique for the centres and crocheted over the ends of the yarn and connected the hexagons as I went.
I managed to find some fabric in my stash that matched the colours of the cotton and used this for the lining. I made twisted cord from the cotton for the drawstring.

There was a bit of yarn leftover so I made a little drawstring pouch for my stitch markers.



Bag Construction

Make a tube with the hexagons, eight across and 4 high. Make 8 half hexagons for the top and bottoms to make the edge straight. I found it easiest to attach the motifs as I went. This tutorial is good for making the hexagons



Complete a round of sc (UK dc) around the top and bottom of the bag. Now at the top of the bag make the section where the drawstring will be. Work a round of dc (UK tr), turn, and work another round of dc (UK tr). It is important to turn to make a gap for the drawstring. See the photo below. Continue in this manner until this is about 1 inch deep. Fasten off



Using a bit of geometry I worked out how big the base circle wanted to be ( I measured the width of the tube and multiplied it by 2 to find the perimeter - then divide it by pi (3.14) this should  give the diameter of the circle)


Base

For my bag I had to make a base 17.5 cm in diameter.


Using a magic circle or chain 4 and slip stitch to make a ring. 
Round 1:    8hdc (UK htr) in the ring
Round 2:    Ch3 and dc in same stitch, *2dc (UK tr) in each dc, repeat from *
Round 3:    Ch3 and dc in same stitch, 1dc *2dc in next stitch, 1 dc repeat from *
Round 4:   Ch3 and dc in same stitch, 2dc *2dc in next stitch, 2 dc repeat from *
Continue in this manner until you reach the desired size. For me, my final round was Ch3 and dc in same stitch, *2dc in next stitch, 10 dc repeat from *


I changed colours on my base to use up some of the oddments of colour.



Lining
To make the lining, cut a rectangle and a circle the same size as the bag (plus seam allowances). Make these into a bag shape. I attached the base of the lining to the base of the bag so it can't be pulled out when you are taking your knitting out or other goodies!. Fold over the top of the lining and sew down to the top of the inside of the bag. I used monofilament to do this as it doesn't show if your sewing is messy. If not using monofilament make sure you use blind hemstitch so it looks neat.

I made a twisted cord for the drawstring - using two different colours. Cut 2 pieces of yarn twice the length of the final length of the drawstring. Knot them together and put this end over something solid (like a door handle). Keep twisting this until you can't twist it easily much more. Place a weight in the centre of the cord - like your sewing scissors and fold the cord together. The cord should twist together.

Fold over the crocheted edge and sew the edge of this to the inside of the bag. To make life easier I put the drawstring inside before sewing it up so I didn't have to lace it through. I put beads on the end and a toggle on the drawstring. Voila, one bucket bag.



5 comments:

  1. This is gorgeous and even better in real life x

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  2. I have seen this in 'the flesh' and it is stunning...I want one!!!

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  3. Absolutely beautiful also seen in real life and love it. Hopefully one day I'll be as professional ;) I want one too x

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  4. Thanks so much for sharing. This is so pretty.

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