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Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags

Posted on April 22, 2007

Tan Handbag

Crochet this cute eco-friendly handbag from recycled plastic grocery bags. It’s a great size for an everyday handbag purse. Handbag features a roomy oval bottom and comfortable handles.

Here is a closeup of the bottom and handles.

Tan Handbag Bottom Tan Handbag Handles

I want to show these closeups so you can see how the bottom has been made oval by adding increases at the sides. The handles are shown laying flat to show how each side is done to matched each other so that the bag is evenly formed.

I have explained this further in the pattern below. If you have any questions while working this crochet pattern, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

As always enjoy this recycled bag project!

______________________________________________________________________
Crocheted Hand Bag Using Plastic Grocery Bags

Materials needed: One large ball of plastic bags cut into strips and interlocked to create a ball of yarn or Plarn to crochet with.

Hook: “N” size metal hook

Description: Small handbag tote purse –
Bag measures 10” wide at top and 9” long with 6” oval bottom and 5” handles.

Directions:
Ch 3 and join with a Sl St to form a ring.

Round 1
Ch 2, then work 9 Hdc in ring, join with a Sl St to top of Ch 2.

Round 2
Ch 2, Hdc in same st, work 2 Hdc in ea st around, join with a Sl St to top of Ch2.

Round 3
Ch 2, Hdc in same st, *Hdc in next st, 2 Hdc in next st*. Repeat between * – * to end of round, joining with a Sl St to top of Ch 2. Lay bag round flat and mark both side edges.

Round 4
Hdc in each st around (without the Ch 2), just continue working Hdc in rounds until you reach mark for side edge of bag, work 2 Hdc in ea next 3 sts at side mark. Hdc in ea st around to other side mark, then work 2 Hdc in ea next 3 sts at opposite side of bag. (This creates an oval bottom to your bag.)

Rounds 5-6
Hdc in each st to side increases, then work 2 Hdc in next st, Hdc in next st, and 2 Hdc in next st over last rounds increases. Hdc in ea st around to other side, then work 2 Hdc in next st, Hdc in next st, and 2 Hdc in next st over last rounds increases. (Make sure you work your increases over the prior rounds increases so your bag bottom stays oval and the shape is even. Adjust your increase sts if needed to have a even shaped bottom.)

Rounds 7 -22
Continue working in rounds with one Hdc in ea st around.

Lay bag down flat again with increases for the bottom at the sides.
Match center front and back of bag. Mark center of bag at top edge.

Finish round 22 by stopping at the side edge of bag.

Round 23
Starting at the side edge of bag, Hdc in ea of the next 7 sts.
Ch 12, (for handle opening) then work Hdc in ea of the remaining 7 sts to side edge of bag.

Check to make sure your center mark is centered at front of bag. You may need to adjust your sts to have your handle opening centered and the sts on either side of opening balanced.

Continue around the other side of bag by work Hdc in ea of the next 7 sts.
(Again check your bag to make sure both sides match. Lay it flat and compare. Adjust your sts if necessary.)

Ch 12, then work Hdc in ea of the remaining 7 sts to side edge of bag.

Round 24
Hdc in ea st to handle, work 14 Sc around chain of handle, then work Hdc in remaining sts around to other side’s handle. Work 14 Sc around chain of handle and in ea remaining st to side of bag.

Round 25
Hdc in ea st around to handle, work Sc in ea Sc st of handle, Hdc in ea st around to other handle, Sc in ea Sc st of other side’s handle, then Hdc in remaining sts of round to side edge.

Round 26
Sc in ea st of bag and work Sc in ea st of handle also. Continue Sc to last 2 sts at side of bag, end with Sl St in last two sts to make a nice smooth edge.
Finish off and weave in ends.

If you have any questions or find discrepancies in this pattern, please email me using contact tab above.

Abbreviations:
Ch – Chain
Sc – Single Crochet
Hdc – Half Double Crochet
Dc – Double Crochet
Trl – Triple Crochet
St – Stitch
Sl St – Slip Stitch
Rnd – Round
Sk – Skip

This pattern is copyrighted by Cindy at My Recycled Bags {dot com} and may only be used for private individual use. No commercial sales or use is permitted. Links to this pattern are acceptable. ©2007

****Please do not copy my patterns on your blog site or post my patterns on Internet sites. I do not allow my patterns to be republished without expressed written permission. Posting of my patterns, without written permission is in violation of my copyrights and is content theft.

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27 Responses to “Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags”

  1. [...] Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags. Crochet this cute eco-friendly handbag from recycled plastic grocery bags.[...]


  2. Tirzah
    Apr 23, 2007

    How do I know how many bags to use for a “large” ball?


  3. Cindy
    Apr 23, 2007

    Tirzah,
    For this handbag, I would say about 30 bags. I have actually never counted them. The beauty in using plastic bags as yarn as you can always add more if you need to. Just make sure you have a source for the bags you are using to make each project.

    Good luck!
    Cindy


  4. [...] Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags [...]


  5. Lamp Store
    Apr 26, 2007

    What I’m Currently Up To…

    [...] This blog is one of my all time favorites, and I suggest you take a look at it if this stuff interests you [...]…


  6. Sandra
    May 14, 2007

    Really cute bag and great recycling project! Please, would you allow Fiber Femmes to re-publish this pattern/photos? You’d retain all copyrights, have links to your blog/web sites, have a biz card on our sales page and have a bio about yourself, your products, sites, etc.
    It would appear in our Sep/Oct 07 issue.

    Thanks for your consideration!


  7. Lori Jones
    May 14, 2007

    This site is marvelous, I had my sister in law cut the bags for me (to save time) so I could try this, It was amazingly simply and what a conversation starter, when my guest saw the coasters made from recycled bags on my table. Now Im onto getting as many more as I can to try some of the larger objects.
    Keep up the good work
    Lori
    P.S. I was linked here from one of the *many groups Im on, thanks again, your an inspiration


  8. Hazel
    May 20, 2007

    How do you “interlock” the bag strips?


  9. Cindy
    May 20, 2007

    Hazel,
    I just sent you a PM. Here is the link to the tutorial at this website on how to make the plastic bag yarn. Click on this http://www.myrecycledbags.com/2007/02/17/instructions-for-cutting-plastic-bags-creating-recycled-plastic-yarn/

    If anyone out there needs any help, please send me an email. I’m always happy to help.


  10. Bgirlsquirrel
    Jul 20, 2007

    I love this site!!! I have worked up this bag twice and it really is so very cute. I also tried the larger expandable bottom bag with the thick shoulder strap, but I think this one is my favorite. I am always amazed with the projects you come up with. I am ok at crocheting, but I don’t have the knack for coming up with patterns. Thanks so much for offering all of this free. :)


  11. Shirley
    Sep 05, 2007

    It might be worth mentioning that in Ireland anyway plastic bags are now biodegradable so if you cut them up for ‘yarn’ they will turn to dust in about 8-12 months. (giving away free plastic carrier bags is now illegal in Ireland, which has made a huge improvement to plastic litter)


  12. Wen Rou
    Oct 25, 2007

    Hello Cindy, I made one!
    Check the picture here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/ournew/1746644745/


  13. Cindy
    Oct 25, 2007

    Wen Rou,

    Oh it’s so cute. I love it! Thanks so much for sharing your finished bag with me.


  14. Mama Squirrel
    Mar 02, 2008

    Has anybody had a problem with the ink coming off the bags? I was thinking of doing a test run with a wet dustcloth just to check.


  15. Cindy
    Mar 02, 2008

    @Mama Squirrel:
    I’ve never really had the ink come off while crocheting or using the bags. I have had a bit of glue or sticking build-up on my hook after crocheting though. I just clean off my hooks with a dab of rubbing alcohol on a towel to remove any build-up. I think most bags have the writing and logos done so the ink doesn’t come off. Otherwise people would complain when they took their groceries or other retail items home in the bags. It’s a good idea though to test your bags to make sure. Hope that helps and happy green crafting to you.


  16. Rose
    Apr 13, 2008

    I’m almost finished with this bag. I put a pretty white and blue band around the middle. They are calling me “Bag Lady” at work now. I guess I could be called worst names. LOL


  17. Carole
    Aug 08, 2008

    just two questions..

    .how do you fasten the strips of plastic together..and how wide do you cut the strips


  18. Cindy
    Aug 08, 2008

    @Carole:
    You intertwine two loops together and pull tight to create a knot. Here the link for the picture tutorial on how to do it. I cut my strips about 1 inch wide.


  19. C
    Apr 23, 2009

    How long did it take you to make this bag?


  20. Cindy
    Apr 23, 2009

    It’s hard to say for sure as you have to make the plarn first and then the
    crocheting part. This isn’t a real big bag so the crocheting part probably
    took me like 3 hours. Hope this helps.


  21. Kamiel & Odille
    Feb 02, 2010

    After I saw your bag made of plastic bags I started this evening also to make a bag like that. For this evening I’ve just recycled 1 plastic bag. I’ll send you a picture when it’s finished.
    Thanks for the idea!
    .-= Kamiel & Odille´s last blog ..Eigen oogst in koude tijden … =-.


  22. Riki
    Nov 14, 2010

    thanks for sharing


  23. [...] (I’m going to re-learn crocheting now that I’ve seen some very cool ideas of making handbags from plastic [...]


  24. [...] HERE [...]


  25. [...] started making a reusable shopping bag from the stack of flimsy plastic ones everyone seems to accrue – where would I be without [...]


  26. [...] Otra bolsa de bolsas/Another plastic bag bag Image by Wen Rou Thanks Cindy for the pattern! [...]


  27. […] Otra bolsa de bolsas/Another plastic bag bag Image by Wen Rou Thanks Cindy for the pattern! […]



Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. [...] Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags. Crochet this cute eco-friendly handbag from recycled plastic grocery bags.[...]

  2. [...] Crochet a Recycled Handbag from Plastic Grocery Bags [...]

  3. Lamp Store says:

    What I’m Currently Up To…

    [...] This blog is one of my all time favorites, and I suggest you take a look at it if this stuff interests you [...]…

  4. [...] (I’m going to re-learn crocheting now that I’ve seen some very cool ideas of making handbags from plastic [...]

  5. [...] started making a reusable shopping bag from the stack of flimsy plastic ones everyone seems to accrue – where would I be without [...]

  6. [...] Otra bolsa de bolsas/Another plastic bag bag Image by Wen Rou Thanks Cindy for the pattern! [...]

  7. […] Otra bolsa de bolsas/Another plastic bag bag Image by Wen Rou Thanks Cindy for the pattern! […]

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About Me

Hello, I’m Cindy or aka RecycleCindy. I love to learn and share information about crocheted and other items crafted from recycled materials. This is a green, eco-friendly website that is dedicated to recycling and crafting.
This blog and my life have taken on a new journey when on March 10, 2008, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I have added a special area on my blog in which I chronicle my journey into the pink.
Thank you for stopping by to visit and for your interest in My Recycled Bags!

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