Friday, 10 August 2012

Tropical Summer Bag

Attic 24 bag
Tropical Lucy Bag

Back in June I had to spend the day in Bristol waiting about for a few hours whilst my 16 yo S had a college trial day, this was not a hardship. I had no desire to go shopping and as I was out in the Brislington area anyway I pre-arranged to go and spend a few hours crocheting at the wonderful Get Knitted. I was working on my Rainbow Ripple blanket! What a lovely yarn shop with friendly and knowledgable staff, I had a squashy sofa to myself, lots of yarny magazines to read, free tea and of course yarn to browse and great company/customer service. Fortunately Get Knitted stock Rico Design Creative Cotton that I had been lusting after, a 100% cotton yarn in Aran weight, perfect for an Attic 24 Lucy Bag. I spent most of the five hours agonising over colour choices, but I plumped for 2 balls each of six colours in the end. My bag will be tropical; Sky Blue, Pistachio, Light Yellow, Orange, Light Pistachio and Fuchsia (more red than pink) I was good and waited until my ripple blanket was finished before embarking on this project, although I only rippled a few rows that day!
Rico Creative Cotton
Rico Designs Creative Cotton; Orange, Lt Pistachio, Pistachio, Sky Blue, Fuchsia, Light Yellow

As ever Lucy’s instructions are fabulous, this is the first time I have crocheted circles and it’s so easy. I changed colours every round, and started in a different place each time so the join didn’t become noticeable, but I did find I got a lump at each join from tying off which was hard to work round as the cotton is solid, I got better at disguising as I worked up the bag (you can see some gaps). The outermost olive is the last of the 14 rounds increasing for the base, after that you just keep working round and round.
Not happy with the new yarn joins!
crochet circle
Easy to disguise mistakes with clever photography lol
I have always just looped in a new colour in the past, but on the ripple I knotted at the start of each colour as that is what everyone seems to do nowadays, and I wish I hadn’t. I have gone back to no knots at all and weaving in ends very thoroughly with a needle. On the bag I did crochet over the ends but you still have to thread a needle to run back in another direction anyway so it’s best just to leave the ends I think, and do them properly, with a needle for peace of mind.

Is it a hat?
Do you like my model, should he give up the day job?
I enjoyed making my bag, but working with cotton is harder work, you have to be so careful with each stitch to avoid yarn splitting (where a little partial loop of the previous stitch still remains on the hook) It’s not as stiff finished as I hoped it would be, but I still love it.
In your face stripes, subtle or what!
Bag Straps, just finishing off the last row
I thought it would stand up a little on its own. I probably will line in the future but the bright stripy curtain material I thought I had buried in a trunk seems to have been used for something at some point by a daughter! A good tip I saw was to find a plastic place mat to place in the bottom of the bag, the cork one I put in for photographing won’t be robust enough to use in anger!
Lucy Bag
Finished Bag
Yarn Bag, don't look at the very carefully woven in ends that are escaping already!
I couldn't find the pattern for the flower Lucy uses on her bag to cover the strap joins, which I machined on. I did eventually find it on another page of her blog, but after I had invented my own substitute. I am pretty chuffed with them and will write out the pattern as a tutorial over the weekend if anyone is interested. I call it a Medallion Flower and it turned out like this, with a wooden button sewn in the middle to finish:
Crochet Medallion Flower
Medallion Flower
Medallion Flowers finished off with a wooden button
TROPICAL BAG finished 5th August 2012, it took me about two weeks but that was working on another project at the same time!

FINISHED SIZE: Top of handle to base 60cm, not sagging! Diameter of base 30cm (14 rounds) Height of bag to scallop 30cm, 40 rounds in total including base and 1 round scallop to finish. Strap end to end 65cm for 100 chains

YARN:  2 Balls each Rico Creative Cotton (a light aran weight yarn) I had ½-3/4 ball left of each so if you bought 1 ball in 10 different colours there wouldn’t be much over.
Sky Blue 37
Pistachio 41
Light Yellow 63
Orange 74
Light Pistachio 44
Fuchsia 13

Yarn is available in about 38 very bright and zingy shades, great colours, 85m per ball.

HOOK: 4mm to keep the stitch tight

Lucy Attic 24 Bag
Flower Medallion is my own pattern that I have written up as a tutorial.


I think she (S age 16) gets her modelling skills from her father, not! Sums up their attitude to my crocheting!!
crochet bag
My finished Tropical Bright "In Your Face" Crochet Bag!


  1. Looks great!! I made one as well, except I used a linked double crochet. It eliminates the gaps between the usual doubles and make it a bit stronger.

    1. I've never come across linked double crochet before (presume you are talking US terminology?) I need to investigate! Thanks for the tip Fiona x

  2. Tropical is the perfect word to describe this bag, it's so bright and sunny and cheerful! Just what you need to brighten up this non-summer. Lovely work Fiona. :)

    Sandra x

    1. No point in moping around I say! Thanks Sandra Fiona

  3. Fiona, that is just beautiful beautiful beautiful and oh the buttons - beyond gorgeous! I know what you mean about the knotting, I don't like it either, I prefer to just loop the yarn in as well. I will be looking out for your flower pattern as well! Yvonne xx

    1. Oh good, I am glad its not just me and the knotting, I feel that if I do things differently I must be wrong, shock horror! As you have requested the flower pattern (I am sure you're just flattering my ego) I will write up the flower medallion, I took lots of photos yesterday of wip. Thanks Yvonne!

  4. Gorgeous! Such happy summery colours :) xx

    1. I'm not good at being can't help but smile at bright colours. Thanks!

  5. Your bag came out so stunning! I just love the tropical colours, it is sure to brighten up even the most dreary of days. The cotton is tricky to work with, but so worth the effort.

    1. The sun came out today in celebration of a finished bag! The cotton has lovely definition and with practice I found the knack of being very careful with every stitch was mastered. Thank you Elle.

  6. Beautiful bag and fun models lol.

    1. Doubt I'll ever get any cooperation...!

  7. I just love the colours. I've just made this bag too in greens, purples and creams....shame the camera insists my green is blue! Oh well.
    I'm also making Lucy's ripple blanket and I was so influenced with your design I'm using your method of 1st colour, 2nd colour, 1st clour twice to blend the yarns. I've linked to your ravelry page both here on blogspot and on the projects page on ravelry. I hope you don't mind but if you do then I will take the link down but I wanted to share your amazing work xx

    1. I like your idea of making it into a bag with a flap, I was thinking of altering the base shape and making a messenger bag style that would fit a laptop too.

  8. Hi, I'm thinking about having a go at the bag. I started crocheting last month and have done about 12 different colours on the Granny Stripe....I thought it might help me if I was doing the same stitch in a straight line!! I love it. I now feel ready to progress to circles so your ideas over joining and yarn have been very helpful. I think I'd better join your followers so I can find you again!! Joan


Comments are very welcome, thank you for reading!

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