Granny Goes Glam! A sparkly stash bag from Crafternoon Treats!
The present you’ve all been waiting for! Kathryn Senior from the fabulous Crafternoon Treats blog has created a sparkly stash bag exclusively for us!
If you’re a keen follower of crochet trends, you might have seen the gorgeous Granny Stash Bag that was hugely popular this year – the gorgeous pattern designed and created by Kathryn Senior, complete with fabulous tutorial pages for making up and lining your bag!
It’s made up in Stylecraft Chunky, so it works up very fast, and there’s plenty of time to make one for Christmas … but…. we are delighted to announce that Kathryn has designed a “Granny Goes Glam” stash bag which is crocheted double stranded with a gorgeous King Cole sparkly yarn!
This elegant and sparkly crochet evening bag is sophisticated enough to take along to a seasonal party or dinner out and roomy enough to hold a small crochet project for an evening with the girls (knit and natter for an evening at the pub!). The sides can be folded in for a Chanel box bag look or pushed to the sides when you want to pack more yarn in!
The main box of the bag is made from five granny squares, joined with double crochet. It has a chic Chanel handbag look with cute short handles that are very straightforward to make. The finishing touches of a bright coloured lining, racy black lace trim and a silver snowflake button makes this a perfect crochet gift this Christmas or New Year. There’s still time to order the yarn and settling down to follow our detailed tutorial.
What you’ll need
Yarn and crochet hooks
- 2 balls Red Heart Sparkle Soft in the colour of your choice. I used Plum (01507) for one bag and Black (012) for the other.
- 1 ball King Cole Cosmos – this comes in several colour ways; I used Starburst (1100) with plum and Lunar (1097) with black.
- Crochet hooks: 4.5mm and 4mm
- Scissors and darning needle
Lining and finishing
- About half a metre of felt (or 6 pre-cut sheets) in the colour of your choice, or other lining fabric of your choice.
- 15cm square of table protector or other stiffening material for the base of the bag.
- Matching sewing thread, needle and sewing machine if doing pockets
- 1 metre of 0.5cm black piping cord
- One button
Each square is 17cm in diameter so your bag will be an 18cm cube once its joined.
Hints and tips
You can make this bag if you know these basic crochet stitches (UK terms):
- Chains (ch)
- Slip stitch (sl st)
- Double crochet (dc) [single crochet (sc) in US terms]
- Treble (tr) [double crochet (dc) in US terms]
It will help to have made a granny square before and if you have some experience of working with two yarns together. If you haven’t, get used to it by working two balls of stash yarn together to make a practice square, rather than rushing in with your shimmery bag yarn.
Working with a combination of the metallic thread with integral sequins and a softer yarn takes a little getting used to. It helps to work at a table, with each yarn ball in a separate bowl. These can be kitchen bowls, they don’t have to be yarn bowls. Hold the two yarns together with your non-hook-holding hand, keeping them closely aligned and feeding them into your hook. Work slowly at first and you will soon be speeding up. Your tension needs to be firm but not so tight or the sequins become stuck as you work.
To deal with the ends, thread both yarns onto the needle and weave away as you would normally. A couple of sequins may ping off but there will be plenty left to give you sparkle.
To use your yarn wisely, make three squares from the first ball, then switch to the second ball to make the final two. The first ball will then be used for assembly, while the second (which will have more yarn left) will be ready for the handles and closure.
Right, lets get started. The first thing to do is to make five super sparkly granny squares. This pattern is based on my retro granny square pattern but I’ve modified it as a one-colour square. Note that you need to turn your work between rounds from round 3 onwards to achieve a perfect square.
Make five using the Red Heart yarn and the King Cole Cosmos held together.
Start with 4ch; join with a sl st to form a ring.
Round 1: 2ch, then work 11tr into the ring. Close round 1 with a sl st.
Round 2: 3ch, then 1tr into the base of the starting ch. 2tr into each stitch. Close round 2 with a sl st. [24 stitches]
Round 3: Turn. Sl st into next space. 3ch then 2tr into that space. 3tr into each of the next 11 spaces. Close with a sl st. [36 stitches]
Round 4: Turn. Sl st into next space. 3ch then 2tr into that space. *3dc into each of next two spaces. 3tr, 2ch, 2tr into next space.** Repeat * to ** 3 times. 3tr, 2ch into first space to complete the corner. Join with a sl st.
Round 5: Turn. Sl st into next space. 3ch then 2tr into that space. *3tr into each of next three spaces. 3tr, 2ch, 2tr into next space.** Repeat * to ** 3 times. 3tr, 2ch into first space to complete the corner. Join with a sl st.
Round 6: Turn. Sl st into next space. 3ch then 2tr into that space. *3tr into each of next four spaces. 3tr, 2ch, 2tr into next space.** Repeat * to ** 3 times. 3tr, 2ch into first space to complete the corner. Join with a sl st.
Round 7: Turn. Sl st into next space. 3ch then 2tr into that space. *3tr into each of next five spaces. 3tr, 2ch, 2tr into next space.** Repeat * to ** 3 times. 3tr, 2ch into first space to complete the corner. Join with a sl st.
Round 8: 3 dc into corner space. 1dc into each stitch along the each side (15 stitches each side). 4 dc into next three corner spaces. Complete first corner with 1dc and sl st to close. Fasten off and weave in ends.
You should now have 5 gorgeous sparkly squares, all the same size. Weave in all the ends.
To line or not to line
If you love sewing, you need not read this part! You will be way ahead of the game with inspired ideas on how to make a perfect lining for your evening bag.
If you’re like me and a bit wobbly when it comes to a sewing machine, the easiest way to line your bag is to add a square of lining before you join. For this bag I’ve pared this down as simply as I can by using felt. It doesn’t fray, it doesn’t need hemming and it can be bought cheaply in any colour you fancy.
Simple and basic lining methods
All linings need to be sewn into place on each square before joining. You can use ordinary sewing thread in a coordinating colour, stitching just below the outer loops of the outermost crochet stitches. These need to be free for assembling the bag.
- The simplest lining technique of all is to cut a square of felt slightly smaller than your finished crochet square. My squares were 17cm across, so I cut my felt 16cm by 16cm. Trim very slightly at each corner (a straight snip across is fine) and then hand sew into place.
- If you can do some sewing, you can add some simple pockets to your bag. I cut some luscious purple felt to line the sides of my bag and made two narrow pockets and a central wider one. To do this, I cut 4 rectangles, 30cm by 16cm,
- I then folded each one, pinning together and then adding machine stitching to create pocket spaces.
- To add firmness to the base of the bag, make a sandwich of two squares of felt with a smaller square of table protector in between. You could also use a square of quilting wadding to sandwich between felt.
Visit the Crafternoon Treats blog for more ideas about lining individual granny squares when making a crochet bag.
Crocheting your bag together
Once you have finished the linings and they are sewn into place, you can start crocheting again. Hurray!
Start by laying out your lined squares, with the lined sides facing upwards. You are going to use double crochet (dc) stitches to join the each side of the base to the bottom of each square in turn. Use your first ball of yarn to do this (the one that has less yarn left). Just use the yarn on its own, not doubled with the King Cole Cosmos.
I recommend using a 4mm hook for a tight join.
Start in the first corner with the base and first square held together wrong sides facing and make a dc stitch into each stitch, going through both loops of the outer stitches of both squares. Match up the squares carefully, stitch for stitch, so you don’t have any gaps.
When you have joined the fourth side square, do not fasten off. Carry on up to join the two sides together in the same way, making dc stitches until you reach the top. Do not fasten off. Leave your yarn in place as you will use this to crochet the finishing round at the top of the bag once the other squares are all joined to form a cube.
Use your other ball of yarn to join the other three sides, so that you have a cube. You will need to join the yarn at the bottom of each side and fasten off at the top each time. Weave in all your ends apart from the working yarn still in place for the top.
Use this yarn to make a dc stitch into each stitch all around the top. Fasten off and weave in the last two yarn ends. You should have a lined, sparkly cube.
Making and attaching the bag handles
Make two handles using the Red Heart yarn and the King Cole Cosmos held together.
- Use the 4.5mm hook and make a foundation chain of 60 chains.
- Make a turning chain, then a dc into each chain to the end. Make another 2dc into the last chain and turn around the end.
- Make a dc into the back of the chain to the end. Make 2dc into the last chain, 1dc into the end stitch, then 2dc into the first stitch as you turn again
- Make a dc into each dc of the previous row. When you reach the end fasten off the Red Heart yarn leaving a long tail end (twice the length of your handle). Fasten off the King Cole Cosmos and weave in.
- Use the Red Heart tail end to sew the sides of the handle together, enclosing the length of piping cord. Leave about 1cm at each end unsewn. This creates an attachment pad for the handle.
- Do not cut the yarn. You will use the remainder of the tail end to sew that end of the handle to the bag.
I made the handles for the plum and silver bag using a starting chain of 60. For the black evening bag I started with a chain of 50. The method is the same but you can work a longer chain for longer handles if you wish. You should have enough yarn left to make at least 100 chains.
Sew the handles into place on the front and back of the bag, evenly spaced and with each handle about 1.5cm from the edge of the central granny square.
Adding a closing flap
Adding a small flap to close the bag is very easy. Use the Red Heart yarn held double with the King Cole Cosmos for a sparkly finish, or just use the Red Heart on its own for something a bit more understated.
Mark the stitch that is mid point between your handles at the back of the bag. I used a tail end of contrasting coloured yarn. Start crocheting dc stitches four stitches to the right of this marker, remove the marker and add a dc into that stitch and then in the four stitches to the left. This will give you a flap that is 9 stitches wide. Continue working backwards and forwards in dc for 11 rows with a turning chain at the end of each row.
- On the 12th row, work 3dc, 3ch and miss 3 stitches, then work a dc into each of the last 3 stitches. On the next row, work 4dc into the chain space you created. This will form the button hole. When you reach the end of the row, carry on and work a dc into the end of each row along the side of the flap.
- When you reach the top of the bag, cut the yarn leaving a long tail end. Sew this through the back of the flap to reach the other side.
- Use the yarn to work a finishing row of dc stitches into the edge of each row of the other side of the flap.
- Fasten off and weave in your ends then add a button to close.
Stand back and admire! Your bag is ready for a night on the town!
Kathryn is a professional technical writer with a passionate leisure interest in crafts, particularly crochet. Having got hooked in her teens, she rediscovered crochet again a few years ago and is really excited by the current upsurge of interest in this textile craft. Kathryn writes about using colour and texture to create stunning and visual crochet items. Her clear instructions and detailed tutorials are increasingly popular both on her own blog crafternoontreats.com and on the Craftsy crochet blog.