plush clutch

 

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I decid­ed to begin this new chap­ter of the blog with a cel­e­bra­to­ry project to share :D The idea of a plush clutch came from a com­ment that a vis­i­tor, Jen­na, made on the com­i­cal neck­warmer pat­tern, which involves a 16mm hook and cro­chet­ing with mul­ti­ple strands of yarn held together. She sug­gest­ed that the same hook/yarn com­bi­na­tion would look cute for a purse too! I thought it was a bril­liant idea — I could total­ly pic­ture a fun, plushy purse burst­ing with colours. So I did some test­ing, and the plush clutch was born! Thank you, Jen­na! :D

It isn’t tech­ni­cal­ly a clutch, because it has a strap. Clutch­es are for clutch­ing and there­fore don’t have shoul­der straps. But I’m call­ing it such because it kind of rhymes… or at least it kind of has a ring to it… Um. Any­way. It’s real plushy though!

The con­struc­tion is pret­ty sim­ple, just one rec­tan­gle and one real­ly long rec­tan­gle (aka a strap) put together.

It mea­sures 9″ wide, 5″ tall, and 3″ deep, with a 47″ strap.

So, with­out fur­ther ado, here’s how it’s made.

Yarn: I used 6 strands of worsted weight yarn held togeth­er. If you’d like to sub­sti­tute yarn of oth­er weights, I’d sug­gest doing a swatch with sc rows to see if the stitch­es are too loose, and add strands if they are. Because it’s a purse the fab­ric needs to be on the stiff side to hold its shape.

Hook: 16mm

Oth­er stuff: fab­ric for lin­ing, sewing nee­dle, two 1″ — 1.5″ buttons.

Note: To avoid extra, unneed­ed bulk I did not do a turn­ing ch in the begin­ning of each row. Instead I just pull the loop on the hook slight­ly high­er and sc direct­ly into the first stitch of each row.

Bag

Row 1: ch 11, sc in sec­ond ch from hook, sc in each ch across. (10 sc)

Row 2: turn, pull loop on hook slight­ly high­er, sc in first sc, sc in each sc across. (10 sc)

Row 3 — 24: repeat row 2.

Fas­ten off. When fas­ten­ing off, I found that it’s help­ful to leave a 4–5″ tail for weav­ing in. If tail is too short it can eas­i­ly come out, because the stitch­es are so large.

Strap

I mea­sured the strap of anoth­er purse (47″, that’s the length of the strap plus the sides of the bag — see dia­gram below) and made the begin­ning ch 4″ short­er (43″), because the stitch­es will stretch quite a bit after the sc row. You can adjust the length of the strap and the num­ber of stitch­es in the begin­ning ch accordingly.

Row 1: ch 72, sc in sec­ond ch from hook, sc in each ch across.

Row 2: turn, pull loop on hook slight­ly high­er, sc in each of next 6 sc, sl st in next sc, fas­ten off, weave in ends.

Join yarn at the top of first sc of row 1, ch 1, sc in first sc, sc in each of next 5 sc, sl st. in next sc, fas­ten off, weave in ends.

Putting it all together…

This dia­gram shows how the strap and bag piece are attached and the row counts of the front, the bot­tom, the back, and the flap.

 

Row 2 of the strap is attached to the front of the bag on each side. Seam with wrong sides fac­ing out, and turn the bag inside out when finished.

I cro­cheted the seams togeth­er using sc’s with 1 strand of yarn and a 5mm hook, and I decid­ed to do 2 rows of sc on the back of the strap to min­i­mize stretching.

I did the seam­ing and the cro­chet­ing on the strap in one con­tin­u­ous round: start­ing from the top cor­ner of right front, around to the bot­tom right, up 7 rows of the back, then cro­cheted across the strap until I got to the back of the oth­er side of the back, 7 rows away from the bot­tom. Then I start­ed seam­ing again, down the back, around the bot­tom, up the left front, then at the top edge of left front I cro­cheted across the strap the oth­er way until I reached the top of right front, where I started.

Here’s how I cro­cheted the 2 rows of sc across the strap.

On the back of the strap there are “ridges” near one edge and upside-down‑V shapes across. I did 3 sc’s in each “ridge” down one way, and then when I came around the strap the sec­ond time I did 1 sc around one leg of the upside-down‑V, 1 sc around the strands of yarn between the legs of the upside-down‑V, and 1 sc around the oth­er leg of the upside-down‑V.

So, after it’s all said and done the back of the strap looked like this:

OK, I under­stand that all these can be a bit con­fus­ing… I wish I could demon­strate this to you in per­son, but I can’t. And I know that I’m not ter­ri­bly good at explain­ing things some­times. So while I want to let you know what I did, I’d encour­age you to put the pieces togeth­er in ways that work best for you. Here are some suggestions:

- sc along the strap before attach­ing to bag, then sew strap to bag with yarn and needle.

- Line the strap with fab­ric, then sew strap to bag with yarn and needle.

Either way, I would high­ly rec­om­mend doing some­thing to sta­bi­lize the stitch­es of the strap. I once cro­cheted a purse and did­n’t line the strap and it got stretched to near­ly twice the length after being used for just a month :S

Alright! Now that it’s all put togeth­er, it’s time to line the bag itself. Here are some awe­some tuto­ri­als on how to make a bag lin­ing, and to sew lin­ing to bag on Future­girl’s Blog. I made the lin­ing from a pant leg of some old khakis.

Then I sewed on some but­tons. No need for but­ton holes, the gaps between stitch­es would do. Note that I attached the yarn on the front of the bag, so that I don’t have to sew through the lin­ing, and if the but­tons ever fall off and I have to do some repair­ing I can eas­i­ly untie the yarn. I hid the tails by hook­ing it behind the stitches.

To accom­mo­date the thick­ness of the fab­ric I used the method that I men­tioned in the wrist cuff / cup sleeve pat­tern to sew on the buttons.

AAAAND we’re done! :D

 

 

I love the soft spring colours in it :D But I imag­ine it would cre­ate a nice tweed look with some brown and gray yarn. Or sim­i­lar shades of one colour would be love­ly too! Might also be great with t‑shirt yarn, or plarn! I hope you enjoy the pat­tern; if you have any ques­tion or com­ment please feel free to drop me a note! :)

Thank you for vis­it­ing me at my new place! I will be back with anoth­er cel­e­bra­to­ry plush pat­tern lat­er this week! Until then, take care and hap­py craft­ing! :D

27 thoughts on “plush clutch

  1. trish you’re sim­ply awesome!!!! =)
    i love your new site (and the old site!!)

    xo
    kityan

  2. Do you have any idea how much yarn I will need? Will it take an entire skein of each col­or? I was think­ing of mak­ing it with my scrap yarn, but need to know approx how much I will need to form 6 balls. Any idea? Believe me, I have a lot of left over yarns of all types and col­ors. I can’t wait to start this project. I have been look­ing for some­thing like this for a long time. Thank You!!!

  3. Thank you for vis­it­ing, Tina! :D I should have men­tioned how much yarn is need­ed! Def­i­nite­ly less than half a skein of each colour, and each skein I used was about 100g. Hope that helps! Let me know how it goes!

    Trish

  4. This clutch purse thingy is too cute lol!
    Do you remem­ber which brand of yard you used? I would like to use the same col­ors too.
    TFS this free pattern!

  5. Thank you! Glad you like the pat­tern. Unfor­tu­nate­ly some of the yarn I use don’t have labels on them, they were half-skeins that peo­ple have giv­en to me, so I don’t know what brand they are. I think the orange was Bernat Satin… and the rest are just some ran­dom acrylic. But they are all worsted weight. So any com­bi­na­tion of worsted weight yarn would work.

  6. Instruc­tions are easy to fol­low. I would like to rec­om­mend that you do not use that nice, com­fy, or soft expen­sive yarn. The stiff and stur­dy kind are the way to go. Also, lin­ing the bag with a lin­er will be dif­fi­cult depend­ing on how much expe­ri­ence you have in sewing. I had to hand-sew my lin­er in because the yarn made it so bulky. How­ev­er, it came out great regard­less and I am thrilled with the way it turned out. More infor­ma­tion is avail­able on the tumblr. 

    Loved mak­ing it and I’m sure my friend will love it as well :D Thanks for sharing!

  7. What kind of stich did you use? Are there any video tuto­ri­als that you recommend?

  8. it’s main­ly made of sin­gle cro­chet stitch­es. i like the lion brand yarn cro­chet tuto­ri­als (you can find the link to it on my “tuto­ri­als” page. hap­py crafting!

  9. Hi! My friend ordered one of these purs­es (it is super cute!) and I am work­ing on my own purse now, but I real­ly liked the lin­ing inside the purse and I was won­der­ing where did you get the sup­plies, how did you get it in, and how did you get the but­tons on it? Thanks!!!

  10. thank you, Hai­ley! for the lin­ing i just use scarp fab­ric from my pile of scraps :D but if you’re buy­ing fab­ric, a quar­ter yard of cot­ton will be more than enough (craft stores often sell quar­ter yard of fab­ric as “fat quar­ters” for quilt­ing — i’ve even seen them at wal­mart). in my tuto­r­i­al i linked to Future­girl’s instruc­tion for lin­ing a cro­cheted purse. her instruc­tions are very detailed and excel­lent, and i pret­ty much fol­lowed it :D for the but­ton, attach the sewing yarn on the out­side of the bag on the spot where the but­ton will be, sew on the but­ton (i’ve linked to instruc­tions on how to sew on a but­ton with a shank in the tuto­r­i­al), then fas­ten off and weave in the yarn tails. i hope the pho­tos in the tuto­r­i­al will help to fur­ther clar­i­fy things. 

  11. but then how does the but­ton keep it closed if its on the out­side of the purse?

  12. oh! sor­ry about the con­fu­sion. i meant to attach the sewing yarn on the out­side of the body of the purse, not on the flap of the purse. hope that makes sense…

  13. Hi! I real­ly like this pat­tern and you’ve done such a great job on it. :D I was won­der­ing if there was an easy and not quite vis­i­ble way to change col­ors in the mid­dle of the piece, since I’m about to run out of one of my col­ors (before I buy a new skein). Thanks so much and keep up the great patterns! :)

  14. thanks for try­ing out the pat­tern Taryn! i think that hap­pened to me to when i was cro­chet­ing with mul­ti­ple strands of yarn togeth­er and one of them ran out. i just tie the new yarn to the end of the piece that’s run­ning out, leav­ing tails of both pieces that are about 3″, and then weave them in after. hope this helps! hap­py crocheting!

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