Gale asked that I offer a tutorial on how to cover your own reusable grocery bags. I'll try to be clear, but I usually do these things on the fly.
1. My T. Joe's bag is round on the bottom, so I used my basic hat pattern to crochet a bottom for my cover. I used worsted weight acrylic yarn and a size "I" crochet hook.
2. Once the disc was the size of the bottom of the bag, I crocheted a row of single crochet decreasing evenly, one stitch about every 5 stitches around the edge. If it's not exactly even, it doesn't really matter.
3. I continued in basic double crochet stitches up the side of the bag, switching colors to make some stripes.
4. I could have eliminated the stripes and attached more granny squares, but I wasn't feeling like making more squares and I wanted a few stripes for variety.
5. My granny squares usually measure one inch per round, so if I want a 5-inch square, I crochet 5 rounds. I needed 8 squares @ 5-inches each to go around the circumfrence of the bag. I'd already joined all the squares, using this method. I merely joined the piece into a cylinder using a single crochet stitch.
6. At this point, I attached the granny portion of the cover to the grocery bag with some binder clips
7. I held up the striped bottom portion of the bag to the granny portion to see if I had enough stripes to fit. It seemed a bit big, but I recklessly joined the striped portion to the granny portion, also using a single crochet stitch.
8. I unclipped the top portion of the bag and, using the black yarn, did a single crochet border around the top of the cover. On the second row of single crochet, I essentially made a button hole around the bottom of each handle portion. This is done by crocheting around the top of the piece and when you get to the handle, chain out about 6 stitches, around the handle, then come back to your previous row of single crochet where you have skipped 5 stitches and continue crocheting around until you reach the next handle bottom. You will do this four times, creating this window for the handle to slip through while the top of the cover is attached to the grocery bag.
9. I used a plain ol' needle and thread to sew the granny cover to the top of the grocery bag. That's another reason I used black yarn for the top border...the top of the T. Joe's bag has a thin black plastic edge and black handles. I wanted everything to be matchy matchy.
My cover is slightly longer than the actual T. Joe's bag, but it doesn't show and you only realize it when you set it down. I'll measure more carefully next time! I'm thinking that this custom bag cover would make an excellent gift! I'm also thinking that I could fill the bag with some faboo T. Joe's groceries for the recipient!I hope my creation doesn't end up here!
Granny squares are the building blocks to fashion.
Labels: yarny stuff