This is a brown and beige version of a project from the first day of the Knitting and Crochet Seminar by Golden Dragon 2014. Watching Ms Kasuyo Nakamura demonstrated the how to swap between the two colours for the motive on the bag, I knew had to make this bag!
I use this bag as my runabout project bag – I cart the projects I am working on in this little bag. Its sturdy enough that it does not need a lining which makes life so much easier. I love it! I bought a book on crochetted bags based on the same philosophy recently and will be making another one soon.
Crocheting the bag
I discovered that my version of the bag is bigger than the one on display at Golden Dragon. This means that my tension is looser than specified by the pattern. My bag is slightly floppy and not as firm. This is why tension is important. It seems that I am fastidious knitter, but not so for crochet! Not only is tension not right, I unpicked the base of the bag project once or twice because I did not pay attention to the stitch count.
The bag is not difficult to make even with the design – which is not a difficult technique. The bag is mainly crocheted in single crochet through the bag loop with the exception of the handles.
The hardest part is keeping the stitch count correct. I unpicked a few times!
Hamanaka Eco Andaria
It is very much like raffia string. I am not entirely certain whether this yarn is made from the raffia palm or not, but it looks just like raffia which you can buy from the hardware store. It’s not difficult to work with. The resulting fabric is firmer than if you crocheted with yarn. I am in love the variety of colours this string comes in. It would be so fun to combine different colours and create exciting bags and hats.
Some tips on working with Eco Andaria
The string, (it’s nothing like yarn!) tends to unravel like crazy as make your way through the ball. To avoid the mess from having string all over the place or the chaos in your handbag, stick the ball in a loose sock. This really helps with keeping it neat.
No need to “unwrap” the yarn, use it as is straight from the yarn. I noticed that some people where “opening” the string to reveal the string as a flat transparent fibre of about 2.5cm before they crochet it – unnecessary and too much work!
Try to crochet as evenly as possible – that is try to have crochet each single crochet in the same size. However if they are not quite even, you can use the crochet hook to even out the stitches so that they all look the same size.
Try not to splice the string, as it is quite delicate and sometimes bits might break off. If it does break off, continue to crochet the affected area like it is one piece and later cut off the bits that stick out.
This bag was crocheted with the new clover XXX crochet hook in size 5/0 or 3.00mm. More about this hook and the set it came in another post!