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Monday, 1 August 2016

MY AFRICAN FLOWER TOTE


MY AFRICAN FLOWER TOTE

I have been pretty vociferous about my *love* (not! L ) for granny squares and motifs.. but I love their beauty .. I’m just against the ends we need to weave in and fasten off and all that extra hard work! J   That said, there are some patterns that you can just not miss out on, and this pattern is one of them. Sound like fun?  Come on then, let’s get to it.

For this beauty, I’ve used the superb African flower pattern for a donation project with Project Chemo Crochet.  So I thought I’d make a hexagon instead of an eight-sided one.

My earlier African flower was a granny square at https://shyamanivas.blogspot.in/2015/01/jus-granny-squares.html

Edited to add : After I’d made this bag, I showed it to my friend before I posted it anywhere.. and she said she’d thought she’d seen this somewhere.  Before I could say ‘Huh’? she’d already pinned it https://in.pinterest.com/pin/470063279839614671/



This page has a neat photo tutorial as well – so do go ahead and check it out.. so you can get the best of all worlds!

Materials used : Polyester purse yarn, about 7 cones (5 + 2 black), with a 3.5 mm crochet hook ; Embroidery needle

Size : (of each hexagon) is 4”

Skill level : Intermediate to advanced
While the stitches used are easy enough, this is a bit of a long(ish) project and needs patience

Stitches used :
Magic circle : To refresh your skill, please view this easy videohttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLuSVyKvoUg

How to join sides of the bag with single crochet : Check the links below :

How to join sides of the bag with whip stich : Check the links below :

How to line your bag : Check this link below

How to attach a zipper on your bag : Two self-explanatory links for you here http://www.liz-makes.com/2014/01/liz-makes-crocheted-clutch-with-zipper.html?m=1rochet

How to make a rounded cord for the handle : View the video link below for a really simple way to make a rounded cord handle for your handbag.  http://vimeo.com/88972371

How to make an I-cord : A neat way to make an I-cord in this video by June at http://www.planetjune.com/blog/how-to-crochet-an-i-cord/


Abbreviations used : Using U.S terminology
lp(s) : Loop(s)                                                                  sc : Single crochet
dc : Double crochet                                                      ch : Chain
sp : Space                                                                          sl-st : Slip stitch
st(s) : Stitch(es)                                                               hk : Hook
yo : Yarn Over                                                                dc 2-tog : Double crochet 2-together
                                                           
So let’s start on our first motif for our beautiful bag, shall we?

I’ve made an eight-petal African flower in a granny square for an earlier project.  Using the similar idea, I thought of starting with 6 sts and making a hexagon for this one, just so that there are lesser sides to attach.. Trust me to find an easier way out and enjoy the laziness of lesser work, if I could! J

Our African flower is a set of stitches worked around in a hexagon. To get this flower look, one usually changes colour with each round or alternate round.

Now that said, I decided to have only two colours, but I have given you suggestions on the colour changes.

I used this chart for my African flower motif.



Start (Using Colour 1) : with a magic circle and 6 sc in that circle.

Round 1 : (Using Colour 1) : 2 dc in the 1st sc ;
*ch 1, 2 dc in the next sc* ;
rep *to* all around ; ch 1 and join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.  

Round 2 : (Using Colour 2) : sl-st into the 1st ch-1 sp ;
(2 dc ; ch 2, 2 dc) all in the same 1st ch-1 sp ;
*sk next 2 dc ; rep (to) in the next ch-1 sp* ;
rep *to* all around ; and join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

Round 3 : (Using Colour 2) : sl-st into the 1st ch-2 sp ; 
7 dc in the same ch-2 sp ;
*7 dc in the next ch-2 sp* ;
rep *to* all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st dc.

In the following round, we will be marking the edges of our flower.  
For this, we will work sc’s around the ‘petal’ of our African flower, and to mark two petals apart, we will work a dc into a st on Round 2.  
So let’s take a look at Round 2 and see where our dc goes in.

In Round 2, we’ve worked (2 dc ; ch 2, 2 dc), right?  So at the ends of these sts there are two sets of 2 dc without any stitch between them.  It is in between this set of 4 stitches that we will work our long dc.
Now in most cases, when we work our dc or sc, we work in the stitch.  To get the effect we’re looking for here, we will work in between.  So right now, take a look at where your dc will go – as I will not write all this long explanation below.  
I will just state that the dc goes into the stitch in Round 2, and I hope you know which one it is now. It is this row that defines and *makes* our African flower. J
                    
Round 4 : (Using Colour 3) : (dc into the stitch in Round 2) ;
*sc in the next 7 dc ; rep (to) once* ;
rep *to* all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

In the following final round, we will work a dc only in all the sc, ignoring all the dc that we have worked.  This will pull our flower back together and give it the definitive hexagonal shape.

Round 5 : (Using Colour 4) : skipping 1st dc,
(dc in the next 4 sc ; ch 1, dc in the same sc ; dc in the next 3 sc) ;
*sk next dc, rep (to) once* ;
rep *to* all around and join with a sl-st to the 1st st.

Fasten off and weave in ends.

You have completed the first superb African flower motif.

Now you go ahead and make more of these lovely hexagon motifs and check out the attachment ideas.

So I first made 21 hexagons. I then attached them as per my chart below.
So the 5 blue hexagons with the red line running across the centre is the bottom of the bag.  The red arrow shows you that that’s where you fold it upwards.




We then have the centre row of orange 4 hexagons that are neatly ending on a straight line, so that’s your end neatly matched up.

The top row has 5 green hexagons, and the bottom one has 3 green hexagons.  As you have figured, (and following the green arrows on either side), you fold the top green hexagons and attach them to the lower 3 green hexagons.

Now the slight confusion in joining is in the two corner blue hexagons, which are outlined in yellow.  So the top of that blue hexagon will be attached to the orange hexagon BUT there will be 3 sides of one hexagon to be attached to 2 sides of the other hexagon – but you will manage to join these in neatly and this gives our bag a nice plump rounded bottom.

 Now depending on the size you’re looking for, go ahead and join hexagons to the top of your project and increase the height or width as you desire.

One small hexagon and so many ideas – this is just fantastic, isn’t it?




I’ve given links on how to line the bag.  I have personally given my bag to a professional for a better finish than I am able to get.

Enjoyed this ?? I sure did.. come back right here for more patterns. J

If you're visiting me here for the first time, do add me to your mailing list (for your convenience) , and all my future free patterns will come straight to your mail box.  

I’d also appreciate if you could credit this blog & the link you have used when you complete your project.  Thanks.

Check out my awesome pins on Pinterest at https://in.pinterest.com/shyamanivas/ 



And please join me on my Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sweet-Nothings-Crochet/248919438644360  for more patterns.

Have a great day and see you soon. J

 You may want to take a look at some more beautiful and unusual bag / purse patterns.

 https://shyamanivas.blogspot.in/2016/07/two-beautiful-heart-shaped-bags.html

































 http://shyamanivas.blogspot.in/2015/02/my-star-clutch-easy-clutch-bags.html