Below is a FREE pattern for making this fun rainbow bag in Tunisian crochet! The main bag is worked in Tunisian crochet and the rainbow is made in cross-stitch using the little squares formed with the Tunisian simple stitch as a grid. The bag lining is optional but it hides the back of the cross-stitched fabric, finishing it off nicely and also making the contents more secure!
I designed it for my 2 year old daughter who loves to carry things around! She also loves bright things and is starting to learn colours so I thought it would be a nice little thing to make for her. It has been a big hit!
The pattern is written in UK terms and is perfect for beginners to Tunisian crochet, or for anyone who just fancies a quick fun make. If you haven’t tried Tunisian crochet before click here for my guide on how to get started!
I made the bag in DK yarn but you can use any yarn you like. I hope you like the pattern!
YOU WILL NEED:
- Approx 65g of any DK weight yarn, including yarn scraps for the rainbow
- 6mm interchangeable or long-handled Tunisian crochet hook
- 4mm standard crochet hook
- Tapestry needle
- Lining for the bag approx 20 cm x 38 cm
- Needle and thread
- Approximately 18 cm long and 18 cm wide when using DK yarn (excluding straps). Using a different yarn weight will affect final measurements.
Gauge is not critical but work as follows if you wish to make the bag to the measurements above: 17 sts x 16 rows = 10cm x 10cm over Tss.
STITCHES AND ABBREVIATIONS (UK TERMS):
- BO – Bind off – finish on a FP by inserting hook in 2nd vertical bar, and ss. Continue to the end.
- Ch – Chain
- FP – Forward Pass
- Rdc – reverse double crochet (crab stitch) – work a double crochet backwards with each stitch being made to the right of the last.
- Ss – Slip stitch
- RP – Return Pass – 1 ch, (Yrh, pull through 2 loops) to end.
- Tss – Tunisian Simple Stitch – insert hook under the next vertical bar, yrh and pull up a loop
- Yrh – Yarn round hook
- Remember to keep your tension even and focus on the placement of the first and last stitches of your Tunisian crochet to keep your work straight:
- The first stitch worked is the second vertical strand of yarn from the row below (first stitch is already on the hook)
- Place the last stitch through both the front and back vertical strands of the outside edge of the work from the row below.
- The first ch 1 on the bag edging counts as a stitch.
- If you would like a reminder on the basics of Tunisian crochet click here!
Using your 6mm Tunisian hook, ch 31.
Foundation Row – Insert hook in back bump of 2nd chain from hook, yrh, pull up a loop, repeat to end. (31 loops) RP.
Row 1 – Tss in the 2nd vertical bar. Tss to end. (31) RP
Row 2-53 – repeat row 1 52 more times (the crocheted fabric will measure approximately 34cm in length and be square in size when folded in half). (31)
BO and sew in ends.
Do not worry if your crocheted fabric is starting to curl – once the bag has been constructed and edged you wont notice any curling. You can always block the fabric at this stage if you prefer.
Ensuring the front side of the fabric is facing and your tapestry needle is threaded with the colour of the outer rainbow arc, use the chart below to cross stitch the rainbow.
Start at the top of the rainbow and work right making diagonal stitches top to bottom. Then when you get to the end work back again finishing the cross off in each square (see pictures). Ensure you are inserting your needle into the holes to the right of the Tunisian simple stitch vertical bar and work with one colour at a time.
Continue to work downwards following the chart for each colour. Ensure your tension is even and you do not make the crosses too tight.
Try not to carry the yarn across the back of your work too much. To keep your work neat, cross-stitch down one side of the rainbow, fasten off your thread and reattach it on the other side of the rainbow.
When you have finished, secure the yarn ends so they do not work through to the front of the bag over time, you can do this by weaving them in on the back of the work prior to cutting.
Make up your bag as follows:
1. Fold the crochet fabric in half lengthways so the short ends are together and the front sides are facing each other. Sew the two sides together using ladder/mattress stitch, ensuring when you work that you are catching the stem of the outer stitch on each side of the bag. Work a couple of extra stitches into the corners and then fasten off and sew in ends. Repeat for the other side.
Turn your bag inside out so the right side is on the outside.
2. Switch to your 4mm crochet hook. With the front side of the bag facing, insert hook under the top 2 bars of the first stitch on the top right hand corner of the bag, ch 1. 30 dc across the top of the bag. Do not fasten off.
3. To make the bag strap – Ch 142. Do not attach to the other side. Insert hook in 2nd chain from hook and 140 dc along the chain just made, ss to join. 31 dc across the back of the bag to the first ch 1 made. Ss to join.
4. Ch 1 and 31 rdc across back of bag until you get to the strap. 140 rdc (into each dc on the strap), 3 rdc in the last stitch at the end of the strap, then 140 rdc into the base of each ch. 31 rdc across front of bag. Ss to ch 1.
Fasten off and sew in ends.
I chose to attach the strap to the other side of the inside of the bag at this point – sewing it in with a needle and thread and attaching the lining over it for a neat finish. If this bag is for a young child and you would prefer to be extra safe you could attach the strap on at the very end instead with velcro – by sewing velcro on the end of the strap and to the bag lining once its finished.
LINING THE BAG (OPTIONAL):
Take your bag lining and check it against the size of your finished bag, making sure it is approx 1/2 inch larger all around than the size of your bag.
- Press the lining and turn the top of the short ends down to the wrong side and press to hold in place.
- Fold in half lengthways with the short edges at the top and pin along the side edges.
- Sew the sides using at least a 1/2 inch seam allowance. I used a sewing machine for this but it would be quick to hand sew.
- Check it will fit inside the bag, if not adjust accordingly.
- Place the lining inside the bag with the wrong sides out. Pin in place.
- Stitch the lining to the top of the bag. I used fell stitch but you can use running stitch if you prefer.
- Secure ends and sew in.
And there it is! I do hope you enjoyed this free bag pattern!
Don’t forget to share your makes with me on Instagram using the hashtag #rainbowtunisianbag and #feetupandcrochet – I would love to see!
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Copyright: – Pattern belongs to Katherine Lee and is for personal use only. It must not be reproduced or resold. You may sell items made using this pattern as long as you credit me as the designer. ©Feetupandcrochet 2020