The purse takes just over 2 skeins of yarn- you can make it with 2 skeins if you do something simpler for the strap. You could make your own rag yarn, but the advantage to this yarn is that the thin chiffon makes a very workable yarn. The chiffon is sourced from saris and it's fair trade. I have this weird hangup about purses. Beyond preferring cross body and big enough for the stuff I carry daily, I also like recycled or upcycled. I buy my purses used, or handmade, or make them myself.
Click here for a discount on yarn! - the discount applies to your first purchase from Darn Good Yarn, and because of their amazing loyalty program, I'll get a credit to help pay for more pretty things from them! They have several assortments of the yarn used, it's more yarn than you'll need for this project, but that's good because I'll be posting a basket tutorial soon too and there are a lot of other things to do with the yarn. Check out the chiffon ribbon color packs. The color I used is Istanbul.
So first- some tips.
The yarn is going to have some natural variation. I noticed that some of the joins are stitched, and some are knotted. It also has raw edges that can unravel a bit. When you're balling it up, work a loose ball and don't use a ball winder. I wound center pull balls around my fist working nice and loose with a pair of scissors to trim long raveled edges as I wound. The skeins are easy to work with. One end is knotted, so you'll need to unknot it carefully when you reach the end.
While you're crocheting, you may run across a join that's too bulky, just unknot it or clip it, taper the ends of the ribbons and tie a new overhand knot. Make sure you don't taper too narrow. It's so exciting watching the colors that are coming up next.
The chiffon yarn is stronger than you'd think, it twists as you crochet into something like a ribbon rope. You can use anything from a size K to a size Q hook easily with this- but since I wanted a purse that I may or may not line, I used a K for a nice tight stitch.
Chiffon Ribbon Purse Pattern
You will need:
- 2-3 skeins of Chiffon Ribbon Yarn
- size K crochet hook
- Yarn needle
- 1 inch button
- sl st= slip stitch
- st or sts= stitch or stitches
- sc= single crochet
Chain 17 stitches, insert hook in second chain from hook and slip stitch to the end (this reinforces the bottom)
Round 1: Ch 1 tightly (does not count as first sc) sc in first st, sc in next 14 sts, sc 4 times in end st, working down the other side, sc next 14 sts, 3 sc in end st, sl st to join (36 sts)
Round 2: Ch 1 tightly (does not count as first sc), 2 sc in same st, sc in next 14 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 2 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 14 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 2 sts, sl st to join. (40 sts)
Round 3: Ch 1 tightly (does not count as first sc), 2 sc in same st, sc in next 14 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 4 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 14 sts, 2 sc in next st, sc in next 4 sts, sl st to join (44 sts)
Rounds 4-17: Ch 1 tightly (does not count as first sc), sc in same st, sc in each st around, sl st to join. Break off, weave in end.
Chain 80-90 depending on the length you'd like. I like a longer strap so it hangs close to my hip.
Sc in second chain from hook, sc in each st.
Ch 1 to turn, sc in each st. Break off.
Count back 2 sts from joining st on the bag, and stitch strap in place in next 2 sts. Count 20 sts from strap on one side, and join on the other side.
Button hole tab- count 8 sts from strap on bag and join in yarn. Single crochet in that stitch and next 4 sts.
Rows 2-8: ch 1 to turn, sc in each st across
Row 9: ch 1 to turn, sc in first st, ch 2, sc in last st
Row 10-11: ch 1 to turn, sc in each st
Row 12: ch 1, skip first st, sc in next 2 sts, sl st in last st. Break off, weave in ends.
Put the flap over the front and mark where to sew in button. Sew on button. I had a big shank on mine so I was able to use the chiffon ribbon. Otherwise just use strong thread or embroidery floss.
I haven't decided if I'm lining it or not. If I do, I'll use one my husband's old, stained shirts to keep with the recycled theme, and possibly a salvaged zipper. My daughter saves zippers and buttons off the thrifted clothing she upcycles into costumes.