Crochet Club: ombré beach bag!
Beach ready? For crocheters that means having a fabulous bag to stash your yarn, hooks, books and suncream. We love Kate Eastwood’s gorgeous beach bag, bang on trend with an ombré stripe!
With holidays and vacations very much on everyone’s minds, what is more useful than a slouchy beach bag that’s big enough to carry everything you’ll need for a day out in the sun? What’s more, this bag is designed with side ties to enable you to adjust the depth!
The finished measurements of the bag are 42cm wide x 22cm deep ( adjustable ) x 28cm high, and whilst being sturdy and non-stretchy it is still lightweight enough to be packed up in your holiday luggage.
The bag is made in Berroco Weekend, and for my bag I used 2 x 100g Dark Denim, and 1 x 100g each of Cottage, Icy Blue and Cerulean. I worked with a 3.5mm hook to create a dense and solid texture to the bag. This tutorial is written in UK crochet terms, but you can convert to US using our handy conversion chart!
To finish the bag you will also need some ribbon for the side ties and a length of rope for the handles. I used a 13mm rope in the colour Natural, and used approx 2 m.
Berroco Weekend, above in skeins – below, wound into balls.
To finish the bag you will also need some ribbon for the side ties and a length of rope for the handles. I used a 13mm rope, and used approx 2m.
To make the base of the bag:
Make a starting chain of 81 and beginning in the 2nd chain from the hook work 41 rows of DC, remembering to ch 1 and turn at the end of every row. At the end of your final row, continue on around the corner and work a round of DC all the way around the base. Work 2 DC in to each corner stitch so the base keeps its shape. Finish off and sew in the ends.
Lie your base on a flat surface, right side facing you, and mark each corner with a stitch marker or safety pin. The stitch markers will be marking the beginning and end of your two long sides, and your two short sides.
You are now going to begin the sides of the bag and to do this you need to work the next round in to the back of the loops only, with the right side facing you. You are also going to be making the shape of your bag at this point so on the two long edges you will be working a DC in to each stitch and on the two short edges you will work the pattern of DC, 2DC in the next stitch, DC, 2DC in to the next stitch and so on until you get to the next long edge where you are back to DC in each stitch again.
At the end of this round you will have 182 stitches. You may find you have slightly more/less depending on how many stitches you worked across your short edges, so if you have less/more just adjust by increasing or decreasing the odd few stitches in the next round. You will notice that your base has flat edges along the long sides and slightly crinkled edges along the short sides. Finish off and sew in the ends. Mark the centre of one of the long edges and rejoin your yarn. You are now going to be working in rounds, and as each round will end with a SL ST join, by starting the rounds at the marked point you can keep the joining seam neatly down the centre back of the bag.
To keep a neat joining seam throughout, at the end of every round: SL ST to join, pull yarn tightly, chain 1, pull yarn tightly and then work a DC into the same stitch. Begin your next round.
As you work your rounds you will notice the shape of the bag developing, in that it has straight front and back edges and a more gathered effect at the two sides.
If you are working your bag in several colours, join in your new colours at the centre back seam to keep the stripes neat.
In your final band of colour you will need to work four buttonholes for the rope handle.
To make the buttonholes: Work 5 rounds in your final colour. Then mark the centre of the bag with a marker and count back 20 stitches on either side of the marker and mark with two further markers.
Do this on both the front and the back.
Now continue with the rounds as follows: When you get to the stitch markers , starting at the stitch before the marker and ending at the stitch after the marker , skip 3 stitches and work a chain of 3. Rejoin your yarn in the second stitch after the marker and continue round to the next marker. Repeat the buttonhole at each marker. In the next round work a normal round, working a DC in to each of the three chain stitches from the previous round.
Continue working rounds in your final colour and for the final round work a round of Rope Stitch. Rope stitch is DC worked from left to right, rather than the usual right to left. This will give you a neat finished edge. Finish off and sew in your ends.
Adding the side folds : Lie your bag out on a flat surface and line up the buttonholes so that they are directly on top of each other. Using stitch markers , mark where the straight edge ends ( and where the gathered side part of the bag begins ) along the top of the bag.
When the markers were in place I found it quite helpful to measure from the markers to the side of the bag, to check both sides were equal.
Now carefully make equal folds in the side pieces, as below, and run a tacking thread through the folds to hold them in place.
Once you have tacked the folds in place carefully thread a length of ribbon through all of the folds and tie in a bow.
Rope handles: Cut your length of rope into two and simply thread the ends of the rope through the buttonholes. Secure them in place by tying in a knot. The knots can either be on the inside or the outside of the bag.
Once finished I added a cardboard base to the inside of the bag to help it keep its shape.
All you need to do now, is book a holiday!