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Red White and Blue Striped Plarn Tote

Posted on May 10, 2013

I have tons of white plastic bags as many people do. Most people that craft with recycled plastic bags find it difficult to find pretty colorful bags. You can usually find a few unique colors but it’s almost impossible to find enough bags to crochet a complete tote bag. So I’m always on the quest to find new ways to embellish my white tote bags. Here is my latest crocheted recycled plastic bag. It’s a red, white and blue striped reusable tote bag. It uses around 30 white retail bags and only about 3 blue plastic bags and 3 red newspaper bags. As you can see, just a few colorful bags can dress up an otherwise boring white plastic bag tote.

To crochet this recycled tote bag you basically use my Ultimate Grocery Bag pattern and add the stripes using the red and blue plastic bags cut into plarn. I also changed up the handles a bit and will detail the changes below to explain how to crochet this recycled plastic tote bag.

I used a N (9 mm) crochet hook to work this tote bag. The finished size is 13 inches wide and 14 inches long with 9 inch handles.

Following the basic pattern link, crochet with white plastic bag yarn (plarn) for 19 rounds. End at side of bag with a slip stitch.

Attach blue plarn yarn at side of bag and Hdc (Half Double Crochet) in each stitch around. Work 2 rounds with blue plarn and end at side of bag where you began with a slip stitch.

Work one round with white plarn in same manner as you did with the blue. End with slip stitch into beginning stitch at side of bag.

Attach red plarn and work Hdc in each stitch. Work 2 rounds with red, ending at side of bag with a slip stitch.

Now attach white plarn and work 4 rounds. End round at side of the bag.

Lay the bag down flat. Mark center 18 stitches at center front and back of tote bag. These will be the openings for your handles.

Round 1:
Hdc in each stitch to the mark for handle opening, Chain 20 and skip those 18 stitches at front center. Then Hdc in each stitch around to back where you have mark for the handle opening for the other side. Chain 20 and skip the 18 stitches at back. Hdc in each remaining stitch to finish round. The end of the round will be at the side of the bag where you began. (Don’t join at this point and just work in the round.)

Round 2:
Hdc in each stitch around to handle chain. Sc around the chain for the handle evenly. Then Hdc in each stitch of bag around to the other side handle chain. Sc around that chain evenly also. Finish round with a Hdc in each remaining stitch of round.

Round 3-5
Hdc in each stitch of bag and Sc in each stitch of handle.

On final round, end at side of bag with a Sc and Slip Stitch in the last few stitches to finish so the edge is even. Weave under ends to make the edge smooth.

Pattern details are in US crochet terms.

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 of this pattern or photos are permitted. Links to this pattern are acceptable and appreciated. © 2013

****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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8 Responses to “Red White and Blue Striped Plarn Tote”

  1. Martina Iverson
    May 14, 2013

    I saw in one blogger that she used old tarpaulins to create a new bag. She used a sewing machine to sew those tarpaulins, but yours is nicer because the bags that you created did not look like that it came from old plastic bags! And yours look durable. Maybe it is because you crocheted it?
    Thanks for sharing your talent.

  2. Aditya
    May 15, 2013

    Nice Blog post !! My mother user to Make this type of Articles from Plastic bags and they are very useful!! thanks for sharing this i would like to give the printout of this article of my Mother!!


  3. Icahbanjarmasin
    May 15, 2013

    Beautiful bag really I like it great day for you and keep in touch from INDONESIA.

  4. dott
    Jul 25, 2013

    Where do the little flecks of color come from in the body of the tote?

  5. Cindy
    Jul 25, 2013

    @Dott — The speckles of color on the white portion of the bag come from the original writing on the plastic bags. When you cut up the bags and make the plastic yarn, the writing and colored logos become just small splotches of color here and there throughout the project. Thanks for stopping by to visit my blog.

  6. Lee
    Dec 22, 2013

    My mother crocheted bath mats from homemade plarn 40 years ago. She got the idea from a magazine or newspaper. I don’t know her method of making the plarn. I’m sure going to give it a try. There is also a method of cutting a T-shirt in continuous rounds but I do not have the pattern.

  7. Cindy
    Dec 23, 2013

    I just love hearing the stories of crafting with recycled materials. And especially those from years ago. I too craft with recycled t-shirt material and here is my tutorial on how to make a continuous strand of t-shirt yarn. I also sent you an email with more details on t-shirt yarn projects. Best wishes and thanks for stopping by my blog.

  8. Lee
    Oct 24, 2015

    I have finished my 2nd wheelchair/walker bag in patriotic colors for our local veteran’s home. They were very grateful for the first one that I made in camo colors. A hand written note and a deck of cards was very appreciated.

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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!