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Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag

Posted on May 3, 2008

Check out my latest recycled plastic bag “plarn” handbag.
White Handbag

This was crocheted from some recycled Walmart plastic bags. The white with black lettering isn’t the most attractive material but I added just a bit of ribbon and it really made the bag look cute. This bag measures 9″ by 9″ and was created for a promotional giveaway that will be going on at the Birmingham City University in the UK. The event is to raise awareness for Aids and HIV and to incorporate fashion. I hope their event is a big success and that recycled crafting can be recognized as a green fashion alternative.

Free Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag Crochet Pattern

Materials needed:
One ball of plastic bag yarn AKA plarn (approx. 25-30 bags)
1-1/2 yards of ribbon yarn (1/2″ or 3/8″ wide)

Hook: N (9 mm) metal crochet hook

Description: Tote Handbag
Bag measures 9 inches wide and 9 inches long

Ch 24 with white plarn

Rnd 1
Hdc in 2nd ch from hook and in ea chain st down to end. Continue around other side of chain by working a Hdc in ea st to other end.

Rnd 2 – 16
Repeat round 1. Do not connect at end of rounds, just continue working Hdc’s in rounds as this creates a seamless bag. End at side to begin handles. Mark center 10 sts on bag for handle opening.

Rnd 17
Hdc in each st to mark for handle opening (approx 7 sts.) Ch 10, leave 10 stitches un-worked for handle, then Hdc in remaining stitches and across other side to mark for handle opening. Ch 10, leave 10 stitches un-worked for handle opening on other side of bag to match front side. Hdc in each stitch around until you reach side of bag. Check your work to make sure the back opening and handle matches the front of bag. Adjust your sts as needed to match.

Rnd 18
Hdc in each st around to handle opening. Work Sc’s around the chain of handle evenly (approx. 12 Sc), then Hdc around in each stitch until you reach handle on other side. Work Sc’s around chain of other handle evenly, then Hdc around in each remaining st of rnd.

Rnd 19
Hdc in each st around to handle. Work one Sc in each st of handle, then Hdc in each st of bag to other side’s handle. Work one Sc in each st of handle, then work one Hdc in each remaining st of rnd until the last 3 sts. Work Sc, Sl St, and Sl St in the last 3 sts of round ending at side of bag. This should blend the edge so round ends with edge being even with last round.

Fasten off and weave ends under on inside of the bag.

Weave the ribbon around the base of Hdc sts as shown in picture and tie a bow at front.

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

Ch – Chain
Hdc – Half Double Crochet
Dc – Double Crochet
Plarn – Plastic Bag Yarn
Rnd – Round
Sc – Single Crochet
Sl St – Slip Stitch
Sk – Skip
St – Stitch

This pattern is copyrighted by Cindy of 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. ©2008

****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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17 Responses to “Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag”

  1. […] See more here: Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag […]

  2. Stefanie
    May 04, 2008

    How creative! It’s cool to see someone making use of items that you would think would just end up being waste… the ultimate recycling!

  3. Moonshadow
    May 04, 2008

    That ribbon certainly made all the difference. It sure is a pretty little bag now.

  4. jessica
    May 04, 2008

    I really like this one!

  5. Lynne
    May 05, 2008

    Very cute – that ribbon certainly adds a lovely touch.

  6. Greenstylemom
    May 05, 2008

    Cindy, I’ve been practicing crocheting with my “plarn” but I seem to keep getting areas where the plarn stretches to much. Am I cutting my strips too thin? Is my tension just too tight? Any advice? Thanks! Kristen

  7. Cindy
    May 05, 2008

    Don’t cut your strips any less than 1 inch wide. Some bags do stretch more
    than other others so use care with those if you make plarn. Also crochet a
    bit loose so you don’t pull on your plarn.

    I hope this helps.
    Best wishes,

  8. meghnak
    May 06, 2008

    Hi Cindy,
    I’ve been back after a long time and I apologize….The new classes and the enhanced burden of studies has been taking a toll on me!
    But it’s always rejuvenating to see a blog owned by as creative as a person as you….I loved the ribbon bow in the centre…

    BTW, wouldn’t you gift one of these lovely bags to me on one of my birthdays 😛
    Just kidding 🙂

  9. Rosemarie Shepard
    May 15, 2008

    Gave one to each daughter for Mother’s Day with some other little goodies. They love and use the bags and get lots of positive comments. Thank you for your directions. I will have a go at it. I have been making up my own.

  10. Jane @ Kidzarama
    May 15, 2008

    I remember doing this with plastic wrap when I was a kid on the 70’s!

    It was lots of fun, and I had something extra for the dress~up box.

  11. miranduh821
    Aug 11, 2008

    wow, i don’t even like handbags/purses and i’d use this, just cause it’s THAT cute. now im trying to learn how to crochet cause i already made my plarn. ha! its gonna take me a while to learn, if anyone has any easy ways of crocheting PLEASE help me. thanks :]

  12. Cindy
    Aug 11, 2008


    So glad to hear that you’re learning to crochet. Try and find a local group that you can learn at. It’s much easier if you can attend a class than trying to learn from a book. But if there isn’t a local crafting group, check out your library or craft store for a “learn to crochet” book. Best wishes on your plarn bag!

  13. Michelle
    May 05, 2010

    Thanks so much for this pattern! I’ve just stumbled upon this whole idea of making reusable bags out of plastic shopping bags (love the whole recycling thing!), and have been dying to try it. I have absolutely no prior crochet experience, but have been sitting here looking at the photos and reading the instructions, and so far my bag seems to be turning out – yea! We’ll see when it comes to finishing it up with the handles though. Thanks again, and LOVE your site! You’re so talented! Peace. 🙂

  14. It’s DIY Friday! | How to Make a Recycled Plastic Bag Tote
    May 07, 2010

    […] Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag […]

  15. Jen
    Jun 15, 2010

    I love the idea of weaving a ribbon through the bag, nice touch!

  16. […] Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag […]

  17. […] Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag | My Recycled – Check out my latest recycled plastic bag “plarn” handbag. This was crocheted from some recycled Walmart plastic bags. The white with black lettering isn’t the …… […]


  1. […] See more here: Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag […]

  2. It’s DIY Friday! | How to Make a Recycled Plastic Bag Tote says:

    […] Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag […]

  3. […] Recycled Plastic Plarn Handbag | My Recycled – Check out my latest recycled plastic bag “plarn” handbag. This was crocheted from some recycled Walmart plastic bags. The white with black lettering isn’t the …… […]

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About Me

Hello, I’m Cindy or aka RecycleCindy. Welcome to my blog site that is dedicated to recycling and crafting. I love to crochet and create crafts and other useful things from recycled materials. I share many free tutorials and patterns for creating recycled projects as well as other handmade items.

Here is a direct link to all my free patterns available here on My Recycled Bags.

Thank you for stopping by to visit and for your interest in My Recycled Bags!