| Wendy Mierke
Crochet and Cotton Tote Bag Tutorial
Hello my fellow makers! I am so happy to be back in the role of Official Supporter for Dailylike Canada's Fall program! One of the things I admire most about the Dailylike brand is their nature inspired designs. Their love of animals and nature are evident in each of their beautiful fabrics. In an effort to include more natural materials in my daily life I started experimenting with adding crocheted elements to my fabric products.
After much trial and error I found my favorite fibres were cotton twine and jute. I also happened to try Phentex slipper yarn which is made from a synthetic called Olefin which is known for its durability, but for this tutorial I'm going to focus on cotton twine which was the most user friendly in my experience. I found jute and cotton twine at my local home improvement store and the cotton twine may also be called " butcher's twine" or "cooking twine" at other stores or online.
To make your own mixed fibre tote you will need crochet experience such as chaining, increasing, half double crochet and single crochet. Lets's get started!
Skill Level: Intermediate
-5.5mm (I) Crochet Hook
-Approximately 800 Feet of Cotton or Jute Twine ( A note about Jute, you will most likely have to hand sew the base to your tote because it may not go through your sewing machine, my machine wasn't having it ;)
-1/2 yard Cotton or Cotton Oxford Fabric for the Exterior. I used: Sunset Cotton Oxford
-1/2 yard Cotton Fabric for the Lining, I used: Pure White Solid Cotton
-1/2 yard Fusible Fleece, I used: 2 oz Iron-on Fleece
-1 yard Cotton Webbing Strap for the handles, I used Natural
Crochet Base Pattern:
hdc-Half Double Crochet
sl st-Slip Stitch
Row 1: Chain 2, 6 hdc in 3rd chain from hook, 1 hdc in each of the next 28 stitches, 6 hdc in the last chain stitch.(working on the other side of the chain) 1 hdc in each stitch until you reach beginning chain 2, slip stitch to join.
Row 2: Chain 2, 1 hdc in the same chain 2 space, 2 hdc in each of the next 6 stitches (a total of 14 sts) 1 hdc in each of the next 28 stitches, 2 hdc in each of the next 7 stitches, 1 hdc in each remaining stitch until you reach the beginning chain 2, sl st to join.
Row 3: Chain 2, *1 hdc in the next stitch, 2 hdc in the next* repeat until you have made 19 sts (including chain 2) 1 hdc in the next stitch, then 1 hdc in each of the next 28 sts. Now repeat the increase sequence you did earlier, *1 hdc in the next st, 2 hdc in the next* until you have made 19 sts, 1 hdc in each remaining stitch until you reach beginning chain 2, sl st to join.
Now we will be switching to single crochet. This helps the base to be more dense and sturdy.
Row 4-13- Single crochet in each stitch around. You no longer have to chain at the beginning of each round so you may find it helpful to place a stitch marker at the beginning of each round.
*When you finish round 13, slip stitch to the last stitch of the round and then chain 1, sc around then slip stitch to the beginning chain 1. (this helps to even out the top row of the base)
Now your crochet base is done! Weave in the ends and grab your fabric supplies to make the top of the tote!
*1/4 '' seam allowance used throughout. Topstitch with a 1/8" seam allowance.
With a cloth tape measure, determine the inside circumference of your crocheted base. I clip one end to the inside and gently, without stretching the base, move the tape around until it meets the beginning.
Take that number and add 1 inch for the seam allowance, then divide by two. For example:
Mine has a measurement of 27.5 inches.
So you will need two exterior and lining pieces that are the width of your final measurement by 13 inches tall.
Cut two pieces of fusible fleece and fuse to the wrong side of your exterior fabric.
Find the center at the top of each exterior piece. Cut two 16 inch pieces of cotton webbing for the handles. Measure 2 inches from each side of the center for strap placement. Baste straps in place.
Now pin exterior pieces right sides together and sew only the sides, leaving the bottom open. Repeat with the lining.
Turn the lining right side out and place inside the exterior, making sure right sides are touching. Stitch around the top edge. Turn right side out and press the bottom raw edge of exterior and lining under to the wrong side by 1/4 of an inch. Flip the lining back inside and pin the bottom edge of the lining to the bottom edge of the exterior and topstitch.
Next, topstitch around the top of the tote. Now you have a finished tube, yay! With a ruler and marking pen/chalk draw a line 1/2" up from bottom of the tote.
Grab your base and gently fold it lengthwise to find the center sides. Place a pin on each side to match up with the side seams of the tote. Using your marked line as a guide, pin the base to the tote starting with the side seams and lining up the top row of crochet stitches with the marked line.
All that's left is to sew the base to the tote! I didn't need a special needle or thread. Plain white thread is fine and will not be noticable if you sew close to the top row of crochet stitches. Use the photo as a reference. Go slowly and don't worry if it gets misshapen while you're sewing. It will return to normal once you're done.
That's it, you're done! Give your tote a good press and fill it with goodies! I hope you will make one for yourself and share it with me on Instagram.
Thank you and happy sewing!
This pattern is for personal use only!